ClarinetMike’s 101 Clarinet Tips: #10 Summertime is Practice Time!

Summertime is Practice Time!

Summertime is Practice Time!

“Summertime and the livin’ is easy.”

That means it is time to practice! Generally, summer is when we actually have extra time to get some things accomplished. I suggest that one of the things to accomplish (in addition to taking time to rest and refresh) is to really make progress in our clarinet playing. And the only way to make real progress is Lots and Lots and Lots of High Quality Practice!

Below and HERE is a practice routine that will help you organize your practice time. Notice on the practice routine that there is an emphasis on clarinet basics. Improving clarinet fundamentals is the key to real progress in clarinet playing. (Great fundamentals are key in any endeavor!) Click HERE for links to more tips on how to practice.

FYI, if you are a Texas high school clarinet student, the time to make progress toward all-state band is not when the music comes out in late July, but RIGHT NOW. (I thought about giving this post a startling title such as “The Easy Road to All-State” or some such thing, but chickened out!)

Clarinet Practice Routine
Dr. Michael Dean
Clarinet Performing, Teaching and Consulting * 682-888-7639 *

-Burke Pre-Playing Warm-up Stretches [See Burke]
-Relaxation/Air (Balance)
-Tone (Emb. & Voicing/Articulation)
-Long Tones (Projection)
-Various Exercises (Over The Break, Overtones, High C, High Notes, Legato Fingers, Octaves, Tuning, Reeds, etc.)

-Major & Minor plus Arpeggios
-Fully Diminished 7th Chords
-Others (Whole-tone, Octatonic (a.k.a. Diminished), related to a work, etc.)

-Excerpts (Band, Orchestra, Chamber, etc.)

ClarinetMike says, “Thanks for reading this. Now, GO PRACTICE!”

About ClarinetMike

American clarinetist MICHAEL DEAN performs and teaches internationally and across the USA to consistent praise such as "world-class clarinetist and pedagogue," "consummate performer," "inspirational," "outstanding teacher," "super," "brilliant performer," and "one of the best clinicians I have ever seen." His career is headlined by appearances at Carnegie Hall, ClarinetFest, NACWPI, Eastman School of Music, and Royal Northern College of Music with recent recitals and master classes in Canada, Italy, Spain, Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Louisiana, and Texas. In July, he will again return to Vipiteno, Italy as Clarinet Artist Faculty in Residence at the international Orfeo Music Festival 2019. He is featured on 5 commercial CD's and on New Media, such as YouTube. He is currently preparing another new clarinet CD, Postcards from Silver Lake. Dr. Dean has given more than 500 clinics, master classes and performances at high schools, universities, conferences and other venues. For 11 years he was a clarinetist with the Paducah Symphony and he's also performed with the Southwest Symphony, Nevada Symphony, Abilene Philharmonic, Southeast Chamber Players, Red Mesa Trio, and Duo 35. His articles appear in journals such as Southwestern Musician, WINDPLAYER, NACWPI Journal and The Bandmasters' Review. As "ClarinetMike," he writes for his widely-viewed ClarinetMike Blog, the Internet’s #1 clarinet blog read in 150 countries on 6 continents: After a successful 25 years of teaching clarinet at the university level, he relocated to his native Texas due to family concerns. He is a past president and former National Board officer of the National Association of College Wind and Percussion Instructors (NACWPI). Dr. Michael Dean studied clarinet performance at Texas Tech University, University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Texas at Austin and University of Texas at Arlington. His teachers include Robert Walzel, Phil Aaholm, Carol Jessup, Jess Youngblood, and Bob Ackerman. His web page,, features video of his teaching and performing as well as information on his CD's and other publications. He is a BG France Performing Artist.
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6 Responses to ClarinetMike’s 101 Clarinet Tips: #10 Summertime is Practice Time!

  1. Wesley Gray says:

    Thanks for your great and informative blog, Mike. I learn a lot from you. Speaking as a longtime saxophonist who used to be totally intimidated by the misery stick, I have to say that some of the things I’ve picked up here have greatly enhanced my enjoyment playing what has always been my least favorite double.

    Again, thanks for everything you do and share with the rest of us!

    Wesley Gray

  2. Pingback: ClarinetMike’s 101 Clarinet Tips: #1-10 | ClarinetMike Blog

  3. Pingback: Summertime is Practice Time! | ClarinetMike Blog

  4. Heya! I realize this is kind of off-topic however I had to ask.

    Does operating a well-established blog like yours take a large amount of work?
    I’m brand new to blogging however I do write in my diary everyday.
    I’d like to start a blog so I can share my personal experience and feelings online.

    Please let me know if you have any kind of suggestions
    or tips for brand new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

    • ClarinetMike says:

      Great questions. I’ll give you a couple of off the cuff thoughts.
      1. If you write in your diary every day, then you are likely the kind of person that could post regularly (once a week, two weeks, or a month, etc.) So that is a good sign.
      2. I think it is important to know what you want to post about and how you want to do it. Some reflection on this before you start is important. However, you can also adjust these things as you go.
      3. Importantly, make sure you know what you trying to accomplish – why you want to do it. This need not be grandiose. For example, your purpose might be to spout your opinions about the Texas Rangers baseball team. I would follow you as I’m always looking for commentary on my beloved team!
      4. Make sure your english is at least decent. My view is that blogs don’t have to make english teachers happy, but they shouldn’t make people cringe.
      5. Get to the point. Don’t rattle on and on. People are generally in a hurry.
      best wishes, Mike

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