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In my experience with the guitar, I think I do best with strumming. But it's always difficult for me when I have try to keep singing while strumming. How can I learn to do both?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

@Mark is right on. You've gotta practice enough so you can do it without thinking, even without the instrument.

My trick for getting there… play and read the news at the same time. It takes practice; at first you'll only be able to read a headline and then you'll mess up a chord, but eventually you can digest entire news stories while you're playing through a song. That way you don't have to actively think about DOING something while your muscles are going through the strumming and chords to a song.

I've heard of people who play in pit orchestras for broadway, etc., being able to read books while they play. Could be a rumor… but if you play eight shows a week for a year, I bet you get close to that!

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How amazing! Those people can read books while doing play. I think I have some experience like them when I 've take some alcohol drink. It alway make me feel relax and play it fluently . but I prefer to take no them every time! :P – Sakares Jan 29 '12 at 9:05
Rubinstein was known to read the newspaper while practising. But then he was playing something like the same finger exercises for hours each day I think before starting with the actual practising. – User8773 Mar 2 '14 at 9:31

If you have to do 2 or 3 things at a time, make sure you have to think about only one of them. So, in this case, really practice the guitar part until it goes automatically. Then, start to rehearse it together with the singing. Good luck!

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yep, It's not actually diffucult or easy practise. Thanks for suggestion. :) – Sakares Jan 29 '12 at 9:02

Try to keep the strumming simple with one strum per four beats then as you get comfortable strum once every 2 beats. Progress to one strum per beat, eighth notes to sixteenth notes while singing the lyrics.

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That remind me when I started to play guitar about 10 years ago. :D Thanks for suggestion – Sakares Jan 29 '12 at 9:00

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