Practice tips: the 12 Marsalis Rules

A while ago I stumbled online on a few good articles on practice tips: a few of these included these12 rules by master jazz trumpet player Winton Marsalis. I want to share them with you as I think they are a great way of approaching practice and playing in general. Enjoy.


1. Seek out the best private instruction you can afford.

2. Write/work out a regular practice schedule.

3. Set realistic goals.

4. Concentrate when practicing

5. Relax and practice slowly

6. Practice what you can’t play. – (The hard parts.)

7. Always play with maximum expression.

8. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

9. Don’t show off.

10. Think for yourself. – (Don’t rely on methods.)

11. Be optimistic. – “Music washes away the dust of everyday life.”

12. Look for connections between your music and other things.

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