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4 Tips for Memorising Music!


music sheets on a music stand

Practicing for a recital or a performance can be tough, especially if memorising is not your forte. In school, teachers would always tell us to memorise but not how to memorise. Well, there are 4 main ways in which you can practice memorising : visual, auditory, motor memory, and analyzing.


  1. Visual Memory

Probably the most common way to memorise, visual memory is a form of memory which preserves some characteristics of our senses pertaining to visual experience. We are able to place in memory visual information which resembles objects, places, animals or people in a mental image. In learning music, the way we remember how the notes are on music sheets, and how we remember the shape of our hands on the keys are forms of visual memory. If you are someone who is strong in this aspect, continue practicing with the image of the music sheets in your mind, along with how your hands move as you play the piece.


2. Auditory Memory


This is the most useful form of memorising when it comes to music. As playing an instrument requires listening to the piece, practicing with auditory memory requires the recollection of how something sounds or what words were spoken. Constantly listening to the piece will greatly aid you in remembering which parts to play and how to play it. It is similar to how one remembers a song's lyrics without practicing much. The constant hearing of an audio over and over again helps the brain recollect the music easily.


3. Motor Memory


Pretty much the concept of practicing your instrument, motor memory is similar to muscle memory where if you keep doing an action over and over again, it becomes natural to you and you would know what steps comes next. Repetition of your fingers helps build muscle memory and that's why physical practice is important!


4. Analysing


Analyzing is having an understanding of the piece. For example, understanding would include knowing what key the piece is in, the hand positions, chord patterns, and intervals. Some people prefer to analyse the piece while others prefer to "feel the piece" without caring too much of its technical aspects. This depends from person to person, although analysing comes in really useful as it helps you spot your mistakes quicker.


Zoe is an avid fan of all kinds of music. Her primary instrument is the guitar but she is always passionately learning how to play other instruments such as the drums and keyboard. She is currently playing the bass guitar in a band and has been routinely involved in music since she was a child.


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