Watch my Student… play Beautiful Practice in Eb!

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Student Feature: Beautiful Practice

Beautiful Practice is a practice regimen that tackles a whole legion of core challenges:

  • the diatonic cycle
  • arpeggios
  • inversions of triads
  • open voicings
  • going up the bass neck in a systematic way
  • string crossing
  • playing with a hocket delay 

It is a bear on your right hand, left hand and your mind!

Here is Carmie in a student feature playing it for you in Eb. He calls it “Practica Bella”. I am beyond beaming here watching him play it! Even more impressed knowing he has only been playing a few years! Amazing!

Carmie is super dedicated, having gone through my course twice, in addition to private lessons with me. I am so happy to see the pay off he is getting for his efforts! Please show him some love and well-deserved props in the comments below! (Plus, how about that cool video filter?!!)

I presented this exercise that I co-developed with Wolf in a Talking Technique Episode called “Beautiful Practice” a while back. It was so successful that I followed it up with a version in minor.

It is a very satisfying exercise because it doesn’t even sound like an exercise, but rather a piece of music (Bach, anyone?). And once you have done it in a few different keys, that diatonic cycle is yours!

Why is that diatonic cycle so useful to know? Because the entirety of it or parts of it show up in songs all the time! Even the Blues changes give a nod to the diatonic cycle, as is the case with so many recognizable tunes (i.e. Isn’t She Lovely, Oh won’t you Stay (just a Little Bit Longer) etc etc etc. 

For the entire diatonic cycle look no further than songs such as Fly me to the Moon (major), Still got the Blues, Autumn Leaves, Spain or Europa by Santana (minor).


Now it’s your turn!

Here is the PDF of Beautiful Practice in G major.

Got your own Beautiful Practice exercise? Post your video in the comments if you’d like. I’d love to see it!

Happy Practicing!




  • Kevin
    June 13, 2019, 07:00  Reply

    Wow! So well done! I am both amazed and inspired … great job by Carmie!

  • Rob Waxman
    June 13, 2019, 14:14  Reply

    Nice job Carmie! You did the course twice! Holy Macaroni Batman!

  • Carmie
    June 18, 2019, 06:58  Reply

    For the past few days, I’ve been on vacation and experimentally inattentive to my electronics. Now that I’ve returned, I’m astonished to discover that I’ve received thoughtful acclamation from my peers which, it turns out, is my favorite thing next to a thumbs up from the music teacher. Makes my day. Many thanks.

  • Mehran
    June 21, 2019, 21:08  Reply

    Nicely done, Carmie! I’m impressed how fluid your fingers move.

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