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  • Sight Reading for Auditions: Tips for Bass Players

    Sight Reading for Auditions: Tips for Bass Players

    Q: I’m a bassist starting my last year in high school now. I really feel that I need to become a sight reader as quickly as possible due to an upcoming audition for the music university I wish to attend. A friend of mine did the audition and they ended up handing him some crazy... »

  • Five Minute Practice Sessions

    Five Minute Practice Sessions

    Do you have five minutes of free time? Yes, you do. You may say that you don’t, but really, you do. It’s easy… wake up five minutes earlier than you usually do and pick up your bass before work. Or, go to bed five minutes later. Or, DVR your favorite TV show, watch it and... »

  • Lines on a Fretless Bass: Is it Cheating?

    Lines on a Fretless Bass: Is it Cheating?

    Q: Is it cheating to have lines on the fretboard of a fretless bass? Also, what would be better for a first fretless: picking up a quality used instrument and de-fretting it (assuming I cant find a used fretless) or a brand new entry-level one? The only fretless basses I’ve played so far I liked... »

  • Structuring Your Practice: A Checklist for Bass Players

    Structuring Your Practice: A Checklist for Bass Players

    Any serious musician will practice regularly. While consistency is the most significant factor in our progress, we need to make good use of our practice time if we want continued improvement. No one set of specific materials (i.e. specific etudes, etc.) will be appropriate for everyone, but any successful long-term plan will hit on a... »

  • Getting the Feel: A Guide for Bass Players

    Getting the Feel: A Guide for Bass Players

    Q: What’s your suggestion for someone trying to get a better feeling on where to put a “pop” on a bass line? Sometimes I want to put a pop on a slap or a pizzicato line, but I always end up putting it on the beats 2 or 4. How to develop a better feeling,... »

  • It’s All in the Hands: Time to Dust Off the Old Axe

    It’s All in the Hands: Time to Dust Off the Old Axe

    I’m sure than we’ve all heard the saying “it’s all in the hands.” Many of us, myself included, are willing to support this statement. But is that really all there is? Is our musical voice the same regardless of what we play or what we play through? After all, we’re the one picking up the... »

  • Finding Your Musical Path and Overcoming Musical Ruts

    Finding Your Musical Path and Overcoming Musical Ruts

    Q: I’m a sophomore in high school, and I’m the lead bass player in the jazz band. I feel I hit a brick wall, and I don’t really know what else to practice. I can play almost all of the music that’s given to me, and the pieces I don’t get right away I usually... »

  • What’s In My Gig Bag? Part 2: Jazz/Rockabilly, Solo Shows and Flying

    What’s In My Gig Bag? Part 2: Jazz/Rockabilly, Solo Shows and Flying

    One of the things every gigging bassist needs to refine is what they bring to the gig, in addition to their bass and amp (if appropriate). We all have items we might need for gig emergencies and unforeseen circumstances. Showing up to the gig and having an equipment problem is no fun and ultimately it... »

  • Track By Track: Evan Brewer Talks “Your Itinerary”

    Track By Track: Evan Brewer Talks “Your Itinerary”

    Bassist Evan Brewer has returned with his second solo album, , out now. The effort represents a big change from his bass-only debut, Alone, and features eight full arrangements of original songs with drums, keyboard, guitar, and more. Each track on Your Itinerary stands on its own, but as a whole the album creates a... »

  • Knuckle Cracking: Bad for Bassists?

    Knuckle Cracking: Bad for Bassists?

    Q: I have a tendency to crack my knuckles, and my bass teacher really frowns on it. Do you have an opinion on this? A: I’ve heard both sides of the story, and I crack my knuckles, and always have. So I decided to do some research. Here’s what I’ve learned: Cracking your knuckles does... »