I would like to share my experiences on improvisation as an amateur blues enthusiast. I am not saying that I am a great improviser but at least I know a thing or two. This advice is the top 5 tips that made me play better and confidently. These are the best tips I got from talented musicians and I think this advice are really valuable and I am happy to share them with you. Anyway, let’s cut the crap and get right into it.

1. Keep it simple.

The most crucial mistake in improvisation is trying to playing every single note like you will never have the chance to play them again. Just keep it simple and start with 3 or 4 notes or even just 2 notes could be enough to make good sounding music. Believe me, you will be shocked when you see what can be done with just two notes. Limiting melodic choices will push you to maximize the rhythmic diversity.

2. Don’t be afraid of repeating.

I was doing this mistake a lot. Trying to be original will not help you at all, even on top of that it will bring down your creativeness. Just go ahead and repeat riffs from your favorite musician or just create your own riff and repeat it over a backing track. Repeating a riff will give you a good basis to build on your solo. Now you can try to play slightly altered versions of that same riff. Also don’t be afraid of playing cliché riffs. They are good to spice up your solo and even they would sound very good if you play them at the right time.

3. Mean it.

Don’t be afraid of hitting notes. Every note that you play should sound like you meant it even if you didn’t intended to play it. I bet Jimi Hendrix wouldn’t think twice before playing a note. This is the key to reach a climax while soloing. I know it doesn’t sound like a real advice but that’s really all about it. When you get the real meaning of this saying you’ll feel the change on your solos.

4. Mistakes are good.

Oops, you hit the wrong note? No worries, because it’s the next note that determines if it is good or bad. Hitting a wrong note doesn’t mean that you messed up your beautiful solo, on the contrary it will give you the opportunity to play something very different.

“If you hit the wrong note, it’s the next note that determines if it’s good or bad.”—Miles Davis

5. Listen, listen and listen.

Listen to masters. Imitate them. Get inspired.

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