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By the best-selling co-author of Inner Tennis, here's a book designed to help musicians overcome obstacles, help improve concentration, and reduce nervousness, allowing them to reach new levels of performing excellence and musical artistry. By the best-selling co-author of Inner Tennis, here's a book designed to help musicians overcome obstacles, help improve concentration, and reduce nervousness, allowing them to reach new levels of performing excellence and musical artistry.


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By the best-selling co-author of Inner Tennis, here's a book designed to help musicians overcome obstacles, help improve concentration, and reduce nervousness, allowing them to reach new levels of performing excellence and musical artistry. By the best-selling co-author of Inner Tennis, here's a book designed to help musicians overcome obstacles, help improve concentration, and reduce nervousness, allowing them to reach new levels of performing excellence and musical artistry.

30 review for The Inner Game of Music

  1. 4 out of 5

    Erik Dabel

    Great book. Every musician, every music student, and specifically every music teacher, should not only read it, but own it for future references. There are so many great tips and ideas, and ways to both play music and teach it that get better long term results. Some of which I have already implanted in my own playing and teaching, some of which I am simply waiting for the opportunity to do so. That being said, there are also several sections that seem like a bit of overkill to me. We must remember Great book. Every musician, every music student, and specifically every music teacher, should not only read it, but own it for future references. There are so many great tips and ideas, and ways to both play music and teach it that get better long term results. Some of which I have already implanted in my own playing and teaching, some of which I am simply waiting for the opportunity to do so. That being said, there are also several sections that seem like a bit of overkill to me. We must remember to not get to wrapped up in gimmicks and technical ideas, but that music often just needs to be completely free in order to survive and flourish. This book is a mix of both, but it's still important to have the complete idea of the "Inner Game" technique in order to know when to use it, and when to simply let go. Musicians: Go out right now and buy this book. Don't borrow it, don't check it out from the library. You need to own it, mark it up, put bookmarks in it, know it all. Do it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Marijke

    This was accidentally given to me by my viola instructor after being recommended as a way to improve my performing skills. However, while many of the concepts the book gives are excellent, I found the writing patronising and long-winded. While it is sometimes useful to have the 'Inner Game' techniques spelled out in musical concepts, I have found that 'the Inner Game of Tennis', which I am currently reading, is generally more useful in spelling out concepts. Many of the exercises in 'the Inner G This was accidentally given to me by my viola instructor after being recommended as a way to improve my performing skills. However, while many of the concepts the book gives are excellent, I found the writing patronising and long-winded. While it is sometimes useful to have the 'Inner Game' techniques spelled out in musical concepts, I have found that 'the Inner Game of Tennis', which I am currently reading, is generally more useful in spelling out concepts. Many of the exercises in 'the Inner Game of Music' seem to dumb down the concepts presented rather than promote them. I think almost all readers of this book are experienced musicians looking to up their game and tapping exercises were both pointless and hindered reading the book in public. If you're looking for similar concepts I would highly recommend reading 'the Inner Game of Tennis'. It presents the same concepts but in a more concise manner that does not assume the reader is clueless. The tennis metaphors are not a hindrance and the book is considerably shorter!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Marshall

    The book provides a comprehensive analysis on what helps / hinders our musical growth. As a musician early on in the development, I find some advices extremely valuable. The concept of "self 1 and self 2" lays the foundation for most discussions: every musician involves two “self” in terms of performance - Self 1 is logical, judgmental, and self-conscious, Self 2 is spontaneous, natural. We should apply techniques to be aware about self 2. Our goal is to let self 2 express the most, and reframe The book provides a comprehensive analysis on what helps / hinders our musical growth. As a musician early on in the development, I find some advices extremely valuable. The concept of "self 1 and self 2" lays the foundation for most discussions: every musician involves two “self” in terms of performance - Self 1 is logical, judgmental, and self-conscious, Self 2 is spontaneous, natural. We should apply techniques to be aware about self 2. Our goal is to let self 2 express the most, and reframe the impact of self 1. Another concept reveals three aspects of training - will, trust, and awareness. There are many tips on how to increase will (set clear goals), trust (build up confidence and focus) and awareness (connect with emotions and memory). It’s a book worth re-read as I continue on music practice. Some great quotes: Thinking is natural, and thoughts are likely to be present in every aspect of our lives: sometimes we pay attention to our thoughts, and sometimes we ignore them and change the subject. Self 1 includes not only our own thoughts, but also whatever we have picked up from our teacher’s instructions, the hints our friends give us, our parents’ hopes and desires, and our own urge to fulfill or reject those expectations. It includes everything we “think” we should be doing or worrying about. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 18). . Kindle Edition. The challenge of the Inner Game is for you to bypass the critical interference of Self 1 and unleash the natural power and grace of Self 2. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 24). . Kindle Edition. Our musical challenge is to imagine that we always have a second chance—to give ourselves permission to fail. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 33). . Kindle Edition. The body’s kinesthetic sense is an important part of musicianship. Dancing, singing, foot tapping, and “conducting along with the record” are other ways to engage the body with the music. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 59). . Kindle Edition. The body, like a computer, remembers its instructions when it has been properly programmed. But like even the most sophisticated computer, it needs to be programmed “a bit at a time.” Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 67). . Kindle Edition. Trust isn’t the kind of thing you exactly learn—you either trust or you don’t. And when you feel you can’t trust, you can’t let go. So why is it sometimes so difficult to trust? I’ve found that there are often obstacles between us and our capacity to trust, and in order to overcome them, we first need to know what they are and how they work. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 78). . Kindle Edition. The secret of getting past your worries about how you’ll appear to others is to give yourself the character and emotions of the music. You become the music, not yourself. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 80). . Kindle Edition. Leonard Bernstein once said: “The only way I have of knowing I’ve done a really remarkable performance is when I lose my ego completely and become the composer. I have the feeling that I’m creating the piece, writing the piece on stage, just click, click, click, making it up as I go, along with those hundred people who are also making it up with me.” Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 81). . Kindle Edition. Boredom is what I feel when I don’t feel sufficiently challenged by what I’m doing. But I can always choose to find challenge in what would otherwise seem boring circumstances. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 123). . Kindle Edition. One major element in “letting go” is our vulnerability. Much of the excitement in playing live music comes from not knowing what will happen in each performance. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 123). . Kindle Edition. “It is in this whole process of meeting and solving problems that life has its meaning…. Problems call forth our courage and our wisdom; indeed they create our courage and our wisdom. It is only because of problems that we grow…. It is for this reason that wise people learn not to dread but actually welcome problems.” Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 127). . Kindle Edition. The conductor George Szell remarked, “In music one must think with the heart and feel with the brain.” Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 176). . Kindle Edition. Those who feel unhappy often attribute their problems to a loss of personal identity or to boredom. Green, Barry (2012-03-11). The Inner Game of Music (p. 190). . Kindle Edition.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Stefan Kanev

    It's a bit tricky to rate this book. It appears that it has some very sound advice for musicians, but since I'm not a real musician, I cannot tell whether this is true or not. Anyhow. I learned about the Inner Game from a friend of mine and I've been wanting to read more about it for a while. I was not that interested in The Inner Game of Tenis, since I don't play tenis. I'm trying to pick up music lately and it seemed like a great way to get introduced to those ideas. The gist of it is creating a It's a bit tricky to rate this book. It appears that it has some very sound advice for musicians, but since I'm not a real musician, I cannot tell whether this is true or not. Anyhow. I learned about the Inner Game from a friend of mine and I've been wanting to read more about it for a while. I was not that interested in The Inner Game of Tenis, since I don't play tenis. I'm trying to pick up music lately and it seemed like a great way to get introduced to those ideas. The gist of it is creating a distinction between Self 1 (your inner chatter) and Self 2 (your intuitive/reactive self). You should try to silence Self 1 as much as possible and focus on Self 2. A good example is working on dynamics in a musical piece - instead of trying to play evenly, you should just be aware of how loud or soft you play. In this particular example, you create a better feedback loop between what you're doing and what you're hearing, which is purported to be more effective than focusing on trying. The book is full of exercises and applications of the Inner Game technique. I'm very eager to try some of them, but since they are geared towards proper musicians, I cannot really practice a lot of them. Even if we put aside the whole Inner Game part, the book was full of interesting stories and thoughts about music - that alone made it worthwhile to read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    I actually did not even finish this book. I was recommended to it by my piano teacher, hoping that it would help me with some of my performance anxiety. However, I found it completely unhelpful. I found myself falling to sleep while reading it when it wasn't even bedtime. To keep it short and sweet, I found the analogies and connections from sports to music a little far fetched, and it didn't keep me interested. There was too many mathematical equations as to how this plus that would equal doodl I actually did not even finish this book. I was recommended to it by my piano teacher, hoping that it would help me with some of my performance anxiety. However, I found it completely unhelpful. I found myself falling to sleep while reading it when it wasn't even bedtime. To keep it short and sweet, I found the analogies and connections from sports to music a little far fetched, and it didn't keep me interested. There was too many mathematical equations as to how this plus that would equal doodlysquat. I wanted to be inspired and reassured about my performance anxiety, not lulled to sleep. This is a completely personal opinion, though. Everyone learns and appreciates things differently.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sandy Maguire

    Let's clarify something: despite its name, this book is not written by the same guy who wrote "The Inner Game of Golf." I'd heard great things about that book, and decided to pick up this one instead, since I care more about music than golf. Huge mistake. Green spends most this book paraphrasing Gallwey, but doing it in a way that comes off as sanctimonious and without adding anything of his own. As a result, TIGoM is like twice as long as TIGoG but somehow still manages to say nothing. I'll save y Let's clarify something: despite its name, this book is not written by the same guy who wrote "The Inner Game of Golf." I'd heard great things about that book, and decided to pick up this one instead, since I care more about music than golf. Huge mistake. Green spends most this book paraphrasing Gallwey, but doing it in a way that comes off as sanctimonious and without adding anything of his own. As a result, TIGoM is like twice as long as TIGoG but somehow still manages to say nothing. I'll save you some time with what this inner game stuff is all about: 1) do it for fun, 2) be aware of your performance, 3) the first step to fixing problems is to identify exactly what the problem is, 4) don't overthink it. Good advice, but not good enough to warrant trudging through 242 pages of shit.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Akhil Jain

    My fav quotes (not a review): -Page 2 | "The point of the Inner Game of sports or music is always the same – to reduce mental interferences that inhibit the full expression of human potential." -Page 5 | "Not too many people know that Mozart was also one of the finer billiards players in Europe, or that he gained inspiration for his music from listening to the click of the balls and the soft thud as they bounced off the green baize of the billiard table." -Page 10 | "there are two games being played My fav quotes (not a review): -Page 2 | "The point of the Inner Game of sports or music is always the same – to reduce mental interferences that inhibit the full expression of human potential." -Page 5 | "Not too many people know that Mozart was also one of the finer billiards players in Europe, or that he gained inspiration for his music from listening to the click of the balls and the soft thud as they bounced off the green baize of the billiard table." -Page 10 | "there are two games being played: the outer game, where we overcome obstacles outside ourselves to reach an outer goal – winning at tennis, playing well, or succeeding at whatever we are interested in – and an inner game, in which we overcome internal obstacles such as self-doubt and fear." -Page 15 | "‘the game ends up playing the person’, rather than the other way around." -Page 27 | "It is understandable that our teachers, parents and friends may have instilled some fears and doubts in us when they told us what we ‘should’ be doing. As anyone who teaches the Inner Game quickly finds out, it requires effort and attention to teach without prescribing ‘shoulds and shouldn’ts’." -Page 27 | "The critical Self 1 may tell us: ‘You are going to goof up . . . Here comes the hard part . . . Relax your third finger and press the thumb . . .’ But we don’t have to listen." -Page 38 | "Permission to fail leads to success There’s a custom in golf called ‘taking a Mulligan’. It works like this. If you miss your first drive at the first hole, you can take a Mulligan and do the shot over again. Although Mulligan doesn’t seem to have made it into the professional circuit, it’s a nice idea." -Page 64 | "Performance goal 4: the music in your head Many of us have heard our teachers say ‘If you can’t hear it in your head, you can’t play it.’ The Suzuki method teaches children to play music without reading it, and uses recordings to give them an idea of the way the music should sound." -Page 68 | "‘Amateur’ has come to mean ‘non-professional’ or ‘unpaid’. But the word is derived from the French aimer (‘to love’) and literally means someone who ‘loves’ what they do. The true amateur, then, is someone whose attitude to music never loses sight of their experience goal." -Page 70 | "there’s a wide-spread legend that the tarantella is named after a spider, the tarantula, whose poisonous bite was a serious problem in southern Italy in. the Middle Ages. Apparently, the people of those times believed that this furious dance would cure the spider’s bite – hence the name. The dance has taken on a new meaning for me. Instead of concentrating on all those fast shifts, flurries of notes, bowings and fingerings, I allow myself to feel the panic and energy of a poisoned villager dancing as though life itself depended on it." -Page 72 | "Find the precise place where the problem arises. Use your awareness skills to locate ‘What’ is going wrong, ‘Where’, ‘When’, and ‘How Much’." -Page 83 | "that I was losing my focus on the music by worrying about my reputation and that of the Inner Game. She told me she suspected my performance wasn’t working because I’d put all my attention on my awareness and will techniques and forgotten to trust myself. And she suggested that I had problems with my self-image, compounded by the fear that my fellow musicians’ whole impression of the Inner Game was on the line." -Page 130 "This kind of teaching is quite different from the ‘do this’ style of instruction with which everything from tennis to music is usually taught. Instead of the teacher telling a student to ‘change the tempo in the last bar,’ for example, they are more likely to ask questions that focus the student’s attention on the problem areas. This allows the student to make the necessary corrections without being told exactly what to do." -Page 133 "‘Try’ instructions tend to cause anxiety, and then we are liable to tense up and ‘try too hard’, making us fail at tasks we might otherwise accomplish without any problems." -Page 134 "The ironic thing is that almost all ‘do this’ and ‘try’ instructions could be rephrased as awareness instructions." -Page 134 "‘Notice how evenly each of your fingertips transfers the weight from your arm. Notice the most comfortable place for your thumb, somewhere opposite your first and second fingers.’" -Page 135 "Be aware of . . . Listen for . . . How does it feel when you . . . Tell me the difference you notice between . . . What do you hear when you . . . Pay attention to the . . . Let’s see if . . . Notice the feeling you get when" -Page 137 "Sometimes you may feel it would be quicker and more effective simply to tell someone ‘do this’ instead of asking them whether they can tell what’s missing. You’ll usually find you can still give a specific suggestion, while rephrasing it in awareness terms. For instance, you might say something like ‘Let’s run an experiment: use the fourth finger this time, and see if it works better on the shift than the second.’" -Page 138 "Notice what sort of curvature of your fingers lets you play with the least effort and best support. (Play with your fingers curved.) Imagine there’s a ruler balancing on your wrists as you play. (Don’t flop your wrists.) See how close your fingers are to the keys when your semiquavers sound correct. (Keep your fingers close to the keys.)" -Page 139 "See if your face reflects the meaning of the music. (Look more expressive while you sing.)" -Page 140 "Notice whether your neck muscles are stiff when the music gets more difficult. (Relax your neck.)" -Page 159 "He has researched the ways in which different musical vibrations affect different parts of the body, and reports that higher frequencies seem to register in the head, while lower sounds are ‘felt’ in the throat, chest or abdomen." -Page 160 "Another way to experience music you are listening to, in your body is to pretend you are one of the performers." -Page 162 "If you listen to the Fifth with an appreciation for the way he must have felt about his approaching deafness, the volcanic, exuberant, impulsive and unrelenting power of the music may reach you even more deeply." -Page 165 Skip, "That was great!” Say, “I could really feel your expression. I loved it!" -Page 204 "‘Brass, you are too early with your entrance. Come in later this time,’ could be rephrased as an awareness instruction: ‘Brass, notice whether you are early or late with your entrance,’ or ‘Pay attention to the three notes in the violins just before you come in.’"

  8. 4 out of 5

    Tony Ren

    My vocal teacher recommended this to me. I thought it was alright. The techniques and tips the book covers are things that may marginally improve your abilities. But it in no way can substitute a real teacher. A common theme in the book is to: try this, now try that, and notice if it feels and sounds different. For example, the author would suggest try playing a passage as loud as you comfortably can, then as soft as you comfortably can, and suggest you to try and find a middle level in between. My vocal teacher recommended this to me. I thought it was alright. The techniques and tips the book covers are things that may marginally improve your abilities. But it in no way can substitute a real teacher. A common theme in the book is to: try this, now try that, and notice if it feels and sounds different. For example, the author would suggest try playing a passage as loud as you comfortably can, then as soft as you comfortably can, and suggest you to try and find a middle level in between. I mean, that kind of generic advice might be good for the first step, but doesn't really offer anything substantially useful for going beyond that level of mastery. I feel like this book addresses and is helpful to certain students of music struggling with the specific problems covered in the book. Which are: not trusting own abilities, muscle tension, balancing awareness and focus, and inefficient practice habits. Overall I think it would help most students. But you should skim through parts that you feel are irrelevant

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amalie Simper

    This was a re read from my college days in piano performance degrees. It was such a great reprise to see how I have grown as a musician over the years. It explains the idea that a person has two sides to their personality self 1. The self conscious doubting side and self 2. The letting it go, emotion filled side. He gives 4 different ways to work on awareness, several ideas that discuss will power and trust in your playing. It discusses working on your individual instrument, working in ensembles This was a re read from my college days in piano performance degrees. It was such a great reprise to see how I have grown as a musician over the years. It explains the idea that a person has two sides to their personality self 1. The self conscious doubting side and self 2. The letting it go, emotion filled side. He gives 4 different ways to work on awareness, several ideas that discuss will power and trust in your playing. It discusses working on your individual instrument, working in ensembles, and improvisation. I did appreciate the memories of the sound recording devices of the 80's.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Tyrone Steele

    This is an astounding work related to breaking down the walls that prevent us from executing a relaxed and enjoyable performance. I recommend this for all musicians, but is applicable to nearly any type of performance.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Charles

    I bought this book years ago but decided to re-read it and see what tips I can gain for playing piano.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Helped me learn how to deal with my stage anxiety and helped me to focus better while performing

  13. 5 out of 5

    Greg

    Tempted to give it 4 stars but I have to let it percolate for a while. I bought this on recommendation from a fellow symphony player around twenty years ago. Gave it a start and something about it just did not click with me so I left it alone. I suspect that Green lost me a little right away in the introduction with a ridiculous story about young Mozart, a spittoon, and dancing, followed by things that made me feel like I wasn't going to see much more than Caddyshack "be the ball, Danny" wisdom. Tempted to give it 4 stars but I have to let it percolate for a while. I bought this on recommendation from a fellow symphony player around twenty years ago. Gave it a start and something about it just did not click with me so I left it alone. I suspect that Green lost me a little right away in the introduction with a ridiculous story about young Mozart, a spittoon, and dancing, followed by things that made me feel like I wasn't going to see much more than Caddyshack "be the ball, Danny" wisdom. Thinking back, I started experiencing mild panic attacks on stage, and I must have been talking about it with this friend which led to the recommendation. Forward to 2019 and I had the urge to open it up and give it another look. This time I made it all the way through. My main fear in reading this was the potential to run into touchy-feely self-help junk, but thankfully there was very little of that. What I did find was very similar to the loads of mindfulness training that I have come across as a school teacher to help de-stress and calm the mind and body, so it was interesting to see how many of those ideas are already well-worn. There were only a couple of the exercises that I felt would have very little use for me or were silly (and Green admits to the potential silliness of some exercises), but I won't dismiss those because different things work for different people, and I was not only reading this for myself but as a music teacher who wanted to increase my repertoire of methods to help students approach their instruments. Some meaningful differences from all of those mindfulness seminars I have attended come in the form of compartmentalizing a little more specifically in how music is felt, heard, and interpreted. It was also an excellent verbalization of things I already do as a musician but have never really put into words, and some things I have forgotten to keep doing over time. I did find many good ideas to try out in my classroom this year, especially in the realm of avoiding the "do this" kind of instruction and goal-setting. The next time I'm preparing to play or conduct and that ball of anxiety and tension pops up, I now have some music-specific exercises and mindsets to help dissipate the jitters.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Hannah King

    The Inner Game of Music was a very helpful book for people who have performance anxiety. Since reading it, I've learned a lot from the book and have grown more confident in my music skills. It explains different methods of how to cope with performance anxiety, and how to be a better musician. For example, the book portrays different stories of different people who struggle with performance anxiety, and how people got over it, from thinking it's okay to mess up to even taking deep breathes and cl The Inner Game of Music was a very helpful book for people who have performance anxiety. Since reading it, I've learned a lot from the book and have grown more confident in my music skills. It explains different methods of how to cope with performance anxiety, and how to be a better musician. For example, the book portrays different stories of different people who struggle with performance anxiety, and how people got over it, from thinking it's okay to mess up to even taking deep breathes and clearing your mind. The book also gives you examples to play or sing on, and lets you look at music in a different spectrum. Even though there might be some stories, this isn't a storybook, it's an informational book on how to cope with your fears. So I wouldn't give this book to a little child, or a starting musician, it might panic them into not playing the instrument. The book would be more for people who have been playing for quite some time, and struggle with performance anxiety. The things you should not look forward to the book is a simple, and open message, there's many messages and different techniques, which made the book kind of confusing of which method would be better, yet it was balanced out by directions and the examples. The introduction was also sloppy, first trying to put in three little stories, but also explaining that their's other books for help with people that the Author wrote, and even though it one of the most informational books, it is outdated a little in information. Yet, I liked the way all the methods taught in all different manors, and how it had examples showing that the methods work. Overall, the book it a good story for someone who struggles with music-based things, and just performance anxiety in general, and would be one of the still most used book to this day.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Katherine Wang

    Generally speaking, I found the first half or so of The Inner Game of Music to be quite helpful and plentiful in novel ideas and reflections surrounding musical performance. The later sections often seemed redundant and more repetitive of the terms and concepts introduced earlier on. That's not to say that repetition isn't necessarily complementing the learning process; on the contrary, it helps to cement certain key elements of the book's purpose into one's memory. Being written as a self-help Generally speaking, I found the first half or so of The Inner Game of Music to be quite helpful and plentiful in novel ideas and reflections surrounding musical performance. The later sections often seemed redundant and more repetitive of the terms and concepts introduced earlier on. That's not to say that repetition isn't necessarily complementing the learning process; on the contrary, it helps to cement certain key elements of the book's purpose into one's memory. Being written as a self-help book in 1986, certain references and segments were well outdated, for example anything related to the emerging, potentially useful tool called "the Internet", record tapes and other technological references. These had to (after a little inner chuckle) be skipped or modified to suit the current decade. I would conclude that even the gaining of a few new awareness techniques for stage performance and for handling nerves/inner game challenges and quirks is well worth a read. Recommended as another little easy read handbook for any musicians interested in self-help and in further explorations of their inner world.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    I think I'd give this another star, star and a half if I were a practicing musician. The rating shouldn't be counted as a knock against the book. There is excellent advice here if you ARE a musician. I read it because I've found that these books can be helpful if you take the subject as a stand-in for your own sport or hobby. That was the case with this book. Green takes lessons from Gallewey's The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance and applies them, w I think I'd give this another star, star and a half if I were a practicing musician. The rating shouldn't be counted as a knock against the book. There is excellent advice here if you ARE a musician. I read it because I've found that these books can be helpful if you take the subject as a stand-in for your own sport or hobby. That was the case with this book. Green takes lessons from Gallewey's The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance and applies them, with concrete examples, to practicing musicians. The downside of this approach for the non-specialist is that you don't get complete mileage when the subject gets into the guts of technique. That's okay. There's still enough here to keep you interested, though I wonder if Gallwey's original book might not be more appropriate, as it spends more time on the basics of the ego-centric Self 1 and the Zen-like Self 2.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Hope F.

    The Inner Game of Music deals with the inner struggles of nervousness, self-doubt- and the fear of performing in front of others. This book takes the theory of “natural learning”--which Tim Gallwey developed for sports such as golf and tennis--and applies it to music. The book is helpful if you are struggling with self confidence issues when performing, which is why I personally decided to read it. The book is also designed to give new insights on how to truly appreciate music as a whole, and ho The Inner Game of Music deals with the inner struggles of nervousness, self-doubt- and the fear of performing in front of others. This book takes the theory of “natural learning”--which Tim Gallwey developed for sports such as golf and tennis--and applies it to music. The book is helpful if you are struggling with self confidence issues when performing, which is why I personally decided to read it. The book is also designed to give new insights on how to truly appreciate music as a whole, and how to understand the process of composing it and performing it. Green also gives exercises and demonstrations that can help improve technique in any aspects of music. In my personal experience, I have always struggled with performance anxiety, and I’ve always wanted to understand and connect to music as much as I can. This book has really helped me overcome my anxieties of performing in front of others, and I have learned a lot from it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Josiah Aston

    Self 2 freedom from self 1 discipline I really enjoyed this book and its discussion of self 1, with all of its doubts and fears, and self 2, the uninhibited part of us that we need to allow to take over in difficult situations. Intuition is key, and we can enjoy and create much more fluidly if we allow ourselves to follow those deeper feelings without letting logic destroy the moment. Nevertheless, I felt the book was mostly appropriate for professional musicians, and not so much amateurs or begi Self 2 freedom from self 1 discipline I really enjoyed this book and its discussion of self 1, with all of its doubts and fears, and self 2, the uninhibited part of us that we need to allow to take over in difficult situations. Intuition is key, and we can enjoy and create much more fluidly if we allow ourselves to follow those deeper feelings without letting logic destroy the moment. Nevertheless, I felt the book was mostly appropriate for professional musicians, and not so much amateurs or beginners. The terminology was often beyond what I would expect a beginner to understand, and many beginners are often unable to let self 2 take over because they have never brought themselves to a level of self 1 discipline to learn the piece thoroughly enough that they can allow self 2 to emerge. Perhaps this book will help them though.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kit Warren

    This book has some useful information but is definitely entirely for classical players, despite the writer's attempts to make it universal. Its connections to the ideas of 'Inner Game' feel super forced and far better suited to sports as it was originally intended for. The most laborious part of this book is that the writer uses incredibly boring examples of his techniques working again and again which all read exactly like this: "Julie was having issues with her bowing technique, but then I tol This book has some useful information but is definitely entirely for classical players, despite the writer's attempts to make it universal. Its connections to the ideas of 'Inner Game' feel super forced and far better suited to sports as it was originally intended for. The most laborious part of this book is that the writer uses incredibly boring examples of his techniques working again and again which all read exactly like this: "Julie was having issues with her bowing technique, but then I told her this. Before my eyes, she became the best thing ever, we were shocked!". I'd believe he was making them all up if they weren't so boring. He is always 'shocked' by the fact that everything he says works brilliantly for everyone he's ever known. It's like Cake Boss but without the fun or the cake. 2/5

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Barry Green is an emphatically enthusiastic proponent of the subconscious "Self 2", the inner, core person who is competent, creative and capable beyond any of the usual self-criticism and self-doubt plied by "Self 1", the conscious, judgemental person. I found his observations and exercises to liberate and tap into one's unconsciousness quite helpful and instructive, although my reading attention span has a definite short shelf-life with most self-help-type reading. And although, as a professio Barry Green is an emphatically enthusiastic proponent of the subconscious "Self 2", the inner, core person who is competent, creative and capable beyond any of the usual self-criticism and self-doubt plied by "Self 1", the conscious, judgemental person. I found his observations and exercises to liberate and tap into one's unconsciousness quite helpful and instructive, although my reading attention span has a definite short shelf-life with most self-help-type reading. And although, as a professional bassist, Green is primarily focused on a musician's self-doubt struggles, I feel that anyone concerned with trying to free-up an inner performer of any activity would find this book interesting and useful.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Tara Robinson

    I read this after graduating from college with my BM - I had previously read The Inner Game of Tennis as recommended by one of my professors to help conquer stage fright (I know, right?). So, this (The Inner Game of Music) is like the “legit” version that a musician should technically use. However, I thought that The Inner Game of Tennis did a much better job at addressing some of the more intricate details of stage performance (again, I know- right?) and actually benefited me a lot more. So if I read this after graduating from college with my BM - I had previously read The Inner Game of Tennis as recommended by one of my professors to help conquer stage fright (I know, right?). So, this (The Inner Game of Music) is like the “legit” version that a musician should technically use. However, I thought that The Inner Game of Tennis did a much better job at addressing some of the more intricate details of stage performance (again, I know- right?) and actually benefited me a lot more. So if you’re interested in using this book for that purpose I would actually go with The Inner Game of Tennis and possibly just supplement with this book.

  22. 4 out of 5

    CharityJ

    Even though an older title, everything still applies and even though it's focused on music, there are still a lot of takeaways for anyone trying to get out of their own way and progress to the next level. Took a lot of notes while reading because there was so much I wanted to remember. He breaks down the process of moving from status quo to growth. The mental game is often the biggest piece to the puzzle and he thoroughly explains how to overcome mental roadblocks to success. Highly recommend fo Even though an older title, everything still applies and even though it's focused on music, there are still a lot of takeaways for anyone trying to get out of their own way and progress to the next level. Took a lot of notes while reading because there was so much I wanted to remember. He breaks down the process of moving from status quo to growth. The mental game is often the biggest piece to the puzzle and he thoroughly explains how to overcome mental roadblocks to success. Highly recommend for any performer at any level. It's a book to refer back to when you find yourself stuck.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Ahead of its time in that it encourages mindfulness a few decades before everyone else and their mother did but after its time in that "You can use your brain to get good at music" was also the premise of "The Music Man." This book is fine, but it's also one of those nonfiction books filled with text that just regurgitates the introduction. It's fine, though. It's fine. Meredith Willson deserves royalties, but it's fine. Ahead of its time in that it encourages mindfulness a few decades before everyone else and their mother did but after its time in that "You can use your brain to get good at music" was also the premise of "The Music Man." This book is fine, but it's also one of those nonfiction books filled with text that just regurgitates the introduction. It's fine, though. It's fine. Meredith Willson deserves royalties, but it's fine.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    At 52 I finally had a pandemic-induced opportunity to read this book in the hope that it would improve my music ability. I'm about 40 years too late. True, I got a few tidbits out of the book but most of the guidance was of the kind I figured out on my own many moons ago. True new music students would get more out of this book. If you've been playing or singing for any length of time, I'd skip it unless you're truly at a loss for guidance. At 52 I finally had a pandemic-induced opportunity to read this book in the hope that it would improve my music ability. I'm about 40 years too late. True, I got a few tidbits out of the book but most of the guidance was of the kind I figured out on my own many moons ago. True new music students would get more out of this book. If you've been playing or singing for any length of time, I'd skip it unless you're truly at a loss for guidance.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Lyn

    As a music teacher I dived into this book with enthusiasm. There are some useful exercises and tips for overcoming nervousness as a performer, directing your focus and using practice time more effectively. I learned quite a bit but ultimately felt a bit let down; or perhaps it is just that there is no real alternative to just getting on and doing lots and lots of practising!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

    This was a good read for a classical musician. It gives helpful methods for solo playing, auditioning, ensemble playing, and teaching, which I did not expect to see going into this book. I read an older copy which was a bit outdated from a technological standpoint, but the author's methods could easily be adapted for modern technology. This was a good read for a classical musician. It gives helpful methods for solo playing, auditioning, ensemble playing, and teaching, which I did not expect to see going into this book. I read an older copy which was a bit outdated from a technological standpoint, but the author's methods could easily be adapted for modern technology.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Krzysztof

    It's not so good for hobby/adult learners but it's pretty good overall. It's not so good for hobby/adult learners but it's pretty good overall.

  28. 5 out of 5

    sami al-khalili

    Extremely valuable for novice musicians. Be prepared to act on the exercises. If not, you're wasting your time. Extremely valuable for novice musicians. Be prepared to act on the exercises. If not, you're wasting your time.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Alex Boon

    Didn't help me much and didn't get along with the style of it. Half of it seemed to echo my Buddhist practice but less useful. Didn't help me much and didn't get along with the style of it. Half of it seemed to echo my Buddhist practice but less useful.

  30. 4 out of 5

    dadooronron0

    Very interesting and though printed 1987 I doubt whether much has changed. It has given me reason for encouragement and improvement. Now all I have to do is to put it into practice.

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