LEARNING HOW TO MEMORIZE MUSIC MAKES IT EASIER TO MEMORIZE OTHER THINGS
There is a correlation between being a good musician and being a good student. Students who learn a musical instrument consistently score 39-51 points higher on the SAT’s than their nonmusical peers. More parts of the brain are active when playing a musical instrument than any other activity. Learning a musical instrument has long-time effects on the brain because it enhances the development of reason, memory, logic, visual shapes, and math and verbal skills. It seems incredible that something as enjoyable as music could increase your your ability to learn, improve your memory and make your brain work better – but it’s true.
FIVE STEPS TO MEMORIZING MUSIC
These same steps can be altered slightly to learn other subjects or tasks.
1. Sightread and play or sing the music slowly. For an instrumentalist, use the correct fingering at first even if it takes more time and concentration.
2. Analyze the music and look for patterns. Are there repeated phrases? If so, how many times is the phrase repeated? Does the music change key? For instance, it might be in the key of F Major, then Bb Major, then back to F Major – or the entire piece could be in F Major.
3. Learn the music in sections or “chunks,” rather than trying to learn the entire piece at once. Just as in every task, sometimes looking at the entire project can be overwhelming. By learning each section individually, then putting it all together, you are less likely to draw a blank in the middle of the piece.
4. Try to perform the music without the sheet music as soon as possible. You can always glance back at the paper when needed.
5. Review and play or sing the piece again and again, in different settings if possible.
You can learn more about music and the brain from my book, Music, Healing and Harmony. http://www.amazon.com/dp/0961551305