Musical Talent: How important is it?

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We’re all born with different degrees of natural musical abilities, some people can memorize a tune just after hearing it once without any prior training, some have a natural knack for rhythms and beats, and we all know a prodigy when we see one. But how important is musical talent in learning music? Do you need to be musically gifted to become a good musician?

It helps.

If you are born with a good ear for music, you will be able to get a good grasp on musical concepts more quickly, and you’ll be more sensitive to pitch, dynamics, rhythm, intonation, etc. The learning curve will be less steep for you, especially in the beginning, which could be a confidence boost that leads you to naturally develop a passion for music.  

But it’s not everything.

However, the good news is, even if you don’t have exceptional musical gifts to begin with, you can still become a great musician. Everyone, as long as you have the will and patience, can learn any instrument and become good at it. Practice, or more specifically, deliberate practice, is what allows you to improve your skills. Your techniques on your instrument, your ability to sing, or your ear training skills can all be built on as long as you are willing to put in the time.

Passion.

What is more important than talent is how passionate you are about music. People who become great musicians are not only exceptionally talented, but they also tend to have this obsession with music, where they just have to go make music every living second of their lives. A child who’s forced to practise the piano (even if he has a natural knack for it,) might pass his exams, but he’s not likely to stick with it for long or excel at it. So if music is something that brings you joy, and you decide to devote your time to it, you will undoubtedly become a better and better musician.

Enjoy the journey.

Everyone’s musical journey will be different, some will pick it up quicker than others, some people start when they were young and some discover the joy of music later in their lives, and it’s never too late either. Music is not a competition, the only person you’re competing against is yourself. You want to continue to challenge yourself to become better than you were yesterday. We’re all on this journey of learning music together, as long as you are having fun that is all that matters!