Neil C Young is an internationally acclaimed jazz guitarist and composer. He has performed around the world with his trio, has collaborated with a plethora of artists including King Creosote and The Earlies, and has enjoyed success as a gifted songwriter, including two Grammy nominations and recognition at The International Songwriting Competition.
“Watching Neil play is like watching someone who is fluent in a second language. After initially being impressed by the sounds, you then start looking at the technical ability and fluidity and finally feel slightly envious that so much talent is within one person!” – Mat Short
1) Practice – it’s the only way to become better, plus it’s another excuse to play or sing. Use your individual practice/playing time to not only work on technical areas but also use this part of your musical life to experiment wildly! All the gain and none of the pain.
2) Listen to as much music as possible. Try music that you wouldn’t normally choose to listen to – there will be something in there that will grab your attention. Also, as well as listening and reading about what your favourite musicians have to say about their craft, don’t forget to listen to what the musicians you work with have to say; we can all learn something from each other.
3) An open mind goes a long way. Try to avoid making judgements or assumptions and keep an open mind when listening to music and when working with other musicians. The musical unknown is a very fruitful place!
4) Be yourself. You know the music that you like to listen to, you know the music you would like to play, sing and/or create so believe and trust in your own instincts and be confident in what it is that you do.
5) Just enjoy yourself – whatever musical situation you find yourself in, there’s no reason not to have a good time.