Meet The Metronome
Click, click, click, click…
Making friends with the metronome is super – I’ll say it again, SUPER – important! It’s a really fantastic tool we’ve got to help us develop our sense of rhythm and keep our tempo consistent. If you practice with one regularly, you’ll find that your “inner metronome” improves over time so you can keep a consistent tempo even when you’re not playing to a “click.”
Choosing your Metronome
While I do like the “old skool” stuff like the old tick-tock pendulum-type metronomes that you’ve probably seen in your grade school’s music room, they are quite limited in the tempi (the plural form of “tempo!”) you can choose from, not to mention that they don’t exactly travel well. I think it’s a good idea to have one that can go at every tempo, so you’ve got to go digital.
In this modern era, most people use a metronome app on your smartphone to keep time – and funnily enough, I’ve got one available for sale. More on that later!
Most phone metronomes are loud enough to hear over your instrument unless you are playing loud through an amplifier. When playing acoustic guitar I sometimes rest mine in the top 'cradle' so it's nearer my ear - but if you need to rock out you'll have to use a single earphone to hear the click clearly!
Tempi are measured in beats per minute or BPM. For example, 60bpm equals 60 Beats Per Minute or one click per second.
Most metronomes allow you to set an accent. For most of this course you’ll be playing songs in 4/4 time, or four beats per bar. If you set the accent for the first beat of every bar, you’ll always know where beat 1 is. This is good for making sure you don’t get too far off track at any point.
Metronomes can also be good for inducing panic because they don’t let you slack off and fall behind! They ensure that everything is consistent. If you’re one of those (many) people who have trouble keeping a steady tempo, practising with a metronome will help you immensely. It might feel too easy or too tedious at first, but trust me, it will come in handy later. It can have such a positive impact on your playing that you can practically tell the players who practice with a metronome and the ones who don’t. This is something that even the most advanced players do, so it’s a good habit to get into early on.
The Time Trainer Metronome
Many years ago, I wanted a metronome that had all of the features I ever wanted in one while being super accurate and reliable. I couldn’t find one that ticked all the boxes for me, so I had one made! My Time Trainer Metronome was born, and as the name implies, it has some super awesome training modes that were designed to help you develop your internal time quickly and easily. There’s a countdown timer, as well, which you can use to time your practice sessions to ensure you’re spending the right amount of time on the right things. It's only the price of a posh beer, so go check it out and help support more free lessons ;)
- LESSON STEPS -