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Mastering Songs: A Practical Approach

learning songs listening repitition training to listen Jul 19, 2023

When teaching guitar, a common question is, "How do you learn songs?" This blog post explores an effective method involving extensive listening. By immersing yourself in the music and training your mind like a mental tape player, you can learn songs more efficiently. Let's dive in!


1. Embrace the Power of Repetition:

When faced with the challenge of learning multiple songs, repetition is key. By listening to the songs over and over again, you allow your brain to internalize the melodies, harmonies, and structures. Take advantage of modern technology by using streaming services like Spotify or YouTube to access a vast library of songs.


2. Utilize Your Mind as a Tape Player:

Our minds possess an incredible ability to recall and replay music. Once you have listened to a song extensively, your mind can act as a mental tape player, allowing you to mentally hear the song without relying on external devices. This skill is particularly helpful when practicing or rehearsing on the go.


3. Observe Live Performances:

To enhance your understanding of a song, consider watching live performances of the same track. By observing where each instrument plays its part, you can gain insights into different ways of approaching the song. This technique is especially valuable when learning songs with multiple guitar parts or complex arrangements.


4. Choose Your Parts Wisely:

When playing with a band, it's essential to select your parts wisely, especially if there are multiple musicians. The more players involved, the fewer parts each individual needs to cover. This principle applies to guitarists as well. Understanding how to complement and blend with other instruments will make your performance cohesive and professional.


5. Deep Cuts and Deeper Listening:

When collaborating with artists or joining bands, you may encounter songs that are not well-known hits but are still integral to the artist's repertoire. In such cases, you must dedicate time to listen to these "deep cuts" repeatedly. By doing so, you will become intimately familiar with the material and be able to deliver exceptional performances.


6. Adapt to Technological Advancements:

Over the years, the way we consume music has evolved significantly. While CD and cassette players were once the norm, digital platforms like iPods, smartphones, and streaming services have taken over. Embrace these advancements and leverage their convenience when learning songs.



Learning songs requires dedication and practice, and one effective method involves repetitive listening. By immersing yourself in the music and allowing your mind to become a mental tape player, you can internalize songs more effectively. Additionally, watching live performances and adapting to technological advancements can further enhance your learning experience. So, keep Rocking in the Free World and enjoy the journey of mastering songs!


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