We as students are masters of procrastination. Why start writing that 10-page paper when you could marathon a show on Netflix? Who cares about studying for that midterm when you can play NBA 2K14 for hours on end? For my fellow procrastinators out there, I present to you another thing to add to your procrastination repertoire, and one of my favorite ways to optimize the time you should be spending working on something with a due date: learning a new instrument.
When it comes to wasting time online, I’m not ashamed to say I spend at least 87% of it looking for the strangest instruments I can find and learn. Learning a new instrument is exciting and rewarding, and above all things, fun to do when you have (or don’t have) a moment to spare.
Here’s a list of some instruments to enjoy while your homework stares up at you like an abandoned puppy.
I’m a big fan of this one. I invested in a pineapple-shaped ukulele last year and I’m extremely happy I did. Not only does it have a happy sound, it’s nice and portable, in case you ever feel like serenading someone on campus. I still play mine every day and pretend I’m the lead singer of a critically acclaimed ukulele band in Hawaii. Don’t judge me. You can find what ukulele is best for you and some easy-to-learn tabs at UkeHunt. Also, there are many smartphone apps to help you tune your instrument such as PitchBot.
A classic. Literally all you need to do is learn four basic chords and you’ll be strumming almost every hit song you’ve heard in your life. And plus it’s super versatile – you can belt out some country tunes or jam to some rock classics. Hit up Guitar Center across from the Westside Pavilion on Pico and check out Chordie for tabs and you’ll be singing covers of all your favorites in no time.
Another classic, and another where you can learn some basic chords and be rocking out in a flash. I personally love the keyboard not only so I can feel soulful as I pretend to be Adele, but also for when I’m feeling funky and use the sound effects to change all of the notes to strange sounds and animal noises. It’s actually the best; over break I learned the Spongebob Squarepants theme song and played it completely in howls and screams, it was a fun time. OnlinePianist is a great place to start figuring out the chords and makes it super easy for beginners to pick up.
Don’t roll your eyes! This is probably the best one on this list. I got one of these suckers for only $2. Two dollars! It’s almost a crime NOT to get one. Although fair warning, your roommate will probably cry in pain while you’re trying to learn how to play. Best to do this one alone, far from civilization as you figure out how to play it, but then come back and dazzle all of your friends when you whip it out of your pocket and literally blow them away. There’s plenty of tutorials on YouTube, or you can check out Harptabs to get you started.
Or you could just keep it simple and rock out the old fashioned way, with a bunch of friends crowded around a TV while you pretend you’re a rockstar.
What instruments do you play in your spare time? Comment below or tweet us @dbmojo.