Do it the “SmartDoubler” way

It takes a lot of practicing to become good on any one instrument, much less 3 or more! But there ARE ways to shorten the learning curve as you tackle new instruments. With a background in pedagogy, and many years of playing woodwinds in a wide variety of settings, I can help you speed up the process using the “SmartDoubler” principles. You can read these down below, and take a look at my blog/vlog while you’re here, where I’ll be posting lots of tips, gear reviews, and other useful information. 

SmartDoubler Principles

  • As humans, we learn almost everything in relation to something we already know.
  • As soon as you begin to play any wind instrument, you create a completely integrated sound production system, wherein all the parts of the system affect the others. (No single part can be changed without requiring compensation from the other parts.)
  • Good tone is non-negotiable. When your tone is excellent, everything else about playing becomes easier – tuning, articulation, technique, altissimo, etc. – because you have properly integrated all the parts of the sound production system into a properly functioning whole.

Application of the SmartDoubler Principles

  • Learn one woodwind instrument really well first (your “primary” instrument).
    • If you don’t play at least one instrument really well, stop doubling and get good on your “primary” first.
  • Learn new woodwinds in reference to your primary.
    • Some things will be different; some will be the same. Your mind will naturally make note of the similarities and differences.
  • Practice time on your doubles should be mostly fundamentals, until you become truly “comfortable” on them.
    • Trying to play actual music on an instrument you don’t play well simply reinforces bad habits and behaviors.
    • Don’t be in a hurry. Learning actual music will be much easier (and go faster) once you no longer have to sacrifice any of your attention on fundamentals.