We are joined this week by one of the best Brazilian guitarists out there. An artist-in-residence at Stony Brook University and a member of Brasil Guitar Duo, João Luiz answers a few questions for us.

1) Why is rhythm important?

I like to think about rhythm and pulse as two of the most vital components of music, at least regarding the type of music that I like to listen and play. Good rhythmic foundation is essential, and it is present in Palestrina, Bach, Chopin, and many others. In the guitar, the act of synchronizing the left and right hand is the understanding of the ‘rhythm’ of the fingers of each hand moving together at the same speed.

2) How often do you practice with a metronome?

I only practice with the metronome. Even at times when I am playing extremely slow, or sight-reading a piece I always like to use the metronome and play around with its subdivisions.

The more you learn how to play on the beat the freer you become!

3) Why is it important to practice with a metronome?

One can be so creative using the metronome, with a lot of possibilities of subdivisions, accents in different places, or even as I like to do using two metronomes with different speeds. The metronome allows me a lot of flexibility in my practice, as oppose to imprisoning as many people think. The more you learn how to play on the beat the freer you become, at least in my experience. Although I don’t think that the practice with the metronome corrects bad rhythm it is important that musicians do use the metronome regularly and creatively, and that brings us to the great features of Metronome Online.

4) Can you name one thing that you like about the metronome on metronomeonline.com?

I like how metronomeonline keeps track of our practice goals.