Category Archives: Learn to Play Bass Guitar
In order to learn a piece of music fast, we need to be aware of the following 3 steps:
First– analyse the piece of music and make sure that you understand all of the elements (melody, rhythm, harmony, counterpoint and form) along with the technical considerations that are instrument specific.
Secondly– play at a tempo that gives you complete control over everything; develop the ability to look ahead- anticipating each note and the resulting hand movements to play them accurately. Remember that control comes from constant listening and evaluation.
It’s Saturday night and you’re just about to go on stage to play a high energy gig. The drummer counts you in and as the fanfare begins you are beginning to feel a bit tense. The band is kicking it old school and as you get closer and closer to your 16 bar bass guitar feature you’ve noticed a slight decrease in stamina followed by tightness in your shoulders , while your fingers feel like they are starting to cramp up. When the big moment happens the tension consumes you and your performance is uninspiring as a result. What happened? Why does this always happen in your big bass moment? If you are lucky, a forward thinking teacher might point out to you that you are periodically holding your breath when you play!
What is wrong with this picture?
Bad bass guitar technique? You got it in one and this unfortunately is subscribed by many as being current, young and/or hip. There are a deluge of music educational programs that – in an attempt to attract more bass guitar students – use these very same pictures in their advertisements; buyer beware!
How important are learning methodologies in relation to your evolution as a bass guitar player? Many people understand what they have to do in order to improve and develop, but how they get there and the time that they spend doing that can be a problem if their methodologies are ineffective and/or outdated.
Becoming an expert is no simple task. Mastery does not come easy as many people simply do not have the will and discipline to become better bass players. Throughout the years, I have witnessed that the students who progress the fastest and furthest are those who understand how to practice effectively. Before we break down the essentials for effective practicing, here are a few terms that we need to define:
- Preparation: Understanding how to set goals and organise a plan.