Author Archives: Joe Hubbard
A common question I get is: “Do you have any tips for practicing with recorded music?”
Your evolution as a player directly reflects what you practice, what you listen to and who you play with. With that in mind, one of the best ways to improve as a bass player and understand a related style of music is to study, listen and play along with recorded music. A common problem exists if all you do is aimlessly jam along without pinpointing the specifics of the music that you are attempting to learn. So, with that in mind, the first tip is to always learn what you want to practice specifically with before you actually start practicing with recorded music.
In order to develop the understanding of the evolutionary process of jazz, you need to understand the music that has come before. Many young players are deluded by trying to develop what they deem as their ‘own style’ without first spending many years studying the great bass players from the past and thus, learning to pay their dues. Learning how to play the bass is an evolutionary process that you must be aware of in order to improve your skills.
A common email that I often receive goes something like this:
“Hey Joe: I’ve been playing bass for many years and although I love music so much, I just can’t seem to find the time to practice. What is your advice for how I can improve my skills even if I can’t find enough time to practice my bass?”
The answer to this question is that there are only two aspects that you have to acquire in order to successfully improve as a musician. The first thing is having the burning desire to do it and the second factor is being able to develop an organised plan of study in order to transform that ‘burning desire’ into action.
I’m excited to announce the launch of my new book- Functional Harmonic Concepts. The book will be focused on both diatonic and non-diatonic functional harmony, along with applied exercises and ear training examples that will enable you to hear the concepts that you will run across in real tunes. The course will include an e-book comprised of applied harmonic concepts related to the bass guitar and how to play them (including tab). It’s going to be a complete brain dump of everything that I know about ‘Functional Harmony.’
I’m now a monthly contributor for highly regarded online bass guitar site No Treble. Click here to check out my page and bass video lessons.
The column is geared towards the intermediate-advanced player and I’ve already got two videos up there. Feel free to leave comments below and let me know some topics you’d like me to cover.
All the Bass!