Since early 2020, the whole world has suffered the most surreal time of all. It’s hard to picture a more maddening time since the second world war, but this global pandemic has created a significant paradigm shift in how society conducts itself how individuals cope with the strains of a modern global crisis.
As imminently a second wave continues to drive through Europe, severe restrictions are now rearing their heads in different countries with the punishing effects of home quarantine and more time left isolated from friends and family.
Considering the term, ‘New Normal’, has now become a buzz word in terms of describing peoples lifestyles, the notion that entire countries are enforced into domesticated quarantines, the opportunity to learn a new skill is a fantastic time to do so in the New Normal we are in.
Peter Dvorak is a multi-instrumentalist and tutor of various musical styles who has recently brought his course material to an accessible channel streamed from his website. The most pressing thing about his tutorials is the manner in which he describes musical abilities being something that it tacitly possible through the simplest forms of rhythm syncopation and following his guided online jam sessions.
For any aspiring music lover, here are three reasons why we should follow Peters step and take up an instrument in this time of Covid chaos.
It is highly frustrating to spend prolonged period of time sat at home with same people or even your own company with little variation. Consider on top of this, the unstable political theatre that presents itself in the media and the general sense of unease people have, its ideal to have something to focus one’s mind to.
Peter describes picking up an instrument that is affordable and accessible, to allow one to feel comfortable and non-precious about the activity of finding ways to play it.
Walking through simple steps to generate chords or successive notes, Peter encourages you to find your own rhythm and practice frequently to find a body comfort to the instrument. In doing so, there is an element of free expression that provides quiet distraction from the noise of Covid.
Focusing on something other than a screen has been proven to reduce stress. The tactile and cognitive association of playing a guitar for example provides a consistently immersive experience where one can absorb the senses of touch and sound with mental capacity of memory and rhythm. Peter encourages a lot of open minded approaches to sound and to this end, make for a relaxed method of learning to make music.
Skills for your soul
Perhaps the most important aspect of the course is the frequent invitations to jam alongside other course members. Peter hosts regular jam room sessions online so that people can meet other like-minded people in their homes and engage their learning alongside other musicians. With graded groups, no one feels self-conscious playing against other members. Most importantly, it provides a network for people to converse through music as a form of expressive conversation.