IFR blog > Practice tips
Thinking melodically vs. harmonically

When you're studying the notes of a chord, should you be thinking relative to the key (e.g. "note 1 in the 6 chord")? Or should you be thinking relative to the chord (e.g. "the flatted 3rd of the 6 chord")?

IFR Exercise 1 Daily Meditation with whole steps for soprano sax

For IFR students practicing Exercise 1: Landscape, this is a demonstration of the Exercise 1 Daily Meditation. Marina Vallet demonstrates the exercise on the soprano saxophone using the interval of a whole step.

Composing with a looper pedal

Are you curious about looping? In this video I'll show you how the looper pedal works and how easy it is to create your own loops with what you already know from your IFR practice.

IFR video lesson: How to study the modes

In this video I teach you how you can study the modes creatively and learn to make your own music with these beautiful sounds.

How quickly should an improviser advance?

I'm currently practicing the IFR exercise Seven Worlds and I'm not sure how much time I should spend in each harmonic environment before advancing to the next. Is there any guideline?

IFR video lesson: Sound, map and instrument

In this free video lesson, I show you how you can learn to understand music by ear and to play the sounds you imagine using the "Sound, Map and Instrument" technique from Improvise for Real.

IFR video lesson: Demystifying chord extensions

In this video we will demystify 9th chords, 11th chords and 13th chords and you'll see how simple these chords really are. I'll also try to show you that you are actually already producing these sounds in your music all the time, even if you don't realize it.

Q&A - How music should I practice?

An IFR student asks how much he needs to practice to be successful with the IFR method.

Jeremy Chapman on musical creativity

This great Ted Talk by Jeremy Chapman offers many surprising insights about musical creativity. His talk includes improvisation with the audience and guest musicians, and he even mentions Improvise for Real about halfway through the talk.

Why nursery rhymes are great ear training for improvisers

I'm currently singing and playing short tunes like nursery rhymes, hymns, etc. The way I do it is that I will play a tune only once and try to make my best attempt at playing the correct notes the very first time. Is this approach a good one?