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  • Playing Pain Free

    Playing Pain Free

    Q: As someone who wants to practice for hours each day, what advice would you give to prevent injury? Do you have any warm up routines or other advice? A: You know, I’ve been lucky. I’ve never consciously warmed up when practicing, and I’ve never had any pain issues. However, I’ve noticed more recently that... »

  • Custom Shop: JC Basses

    Custom Shop: JC Basses

    Meet Jared Carpenter, the sole proprietor of California-based custom shop JC Basses. We first discovered his work after watching Seth Horan, whose custom bass features fanned frets and an eye-catching red finish. After picking up bass, Carpenter quickly realized he couldn’t get what he wanted from a production instrument and boldly decided to make his... »

  • Playing by Ear (and Self-Evaluation)

    Playing by Ear (and Self-Evaluation)

    Q: I have been playing bass for about 12 years now, and over the last 5 years, I have been practicing more and more. I’m definitely seeing progress in the areas of practive, but sometimes I feel there are holes in my playing. For example, I get very nervous when I´m in a situation where... »

  • Upright Bass Set Up for Playability and Sound

    Upright Bass Set Up for Playability and Sound

    I thought I would address a question left on No Treble’s Facebook page regarding string action on upright and volume discrepancies between different strings by talking a bit about set up on the upright bass. When someone talks about getting the upright bass set up, they are referring to a number of things, from bridge... »

  • Transcribing and Incorporating Bass Lines and Licks

    Transcribing and Incorporating Bass Lines and Licks

    Q: When I practice, I spend a lot of time transcribing different bass lines. After I’ve transcribed and learned to play it, I try to incorporate it by jamming along the record, using some of the cool ideas from original bass lines. Do you have some ideas and concepts for incorporating transcribed bass lines in... »

  • Custom Shop: Wyn Guitars

    Custom Shop: Wyn Guitars

    Wyn Guitars is a one-man custom bass shop run by Randy Fullmer, a man with a healthy obsession for exotic woods. An artist at heart, Fullmer got his his start as a luthier at an early age before becoming an animator and producer for Disney. He eventually returned to building instruments, switching to exclusively making... »

  • Long Term Practice Routines

    Long Term Practice Routines

    Q: I have a question about long-term pratice routines. There are a lot scale/arpeggio exercises out there, but I want to know: what do you is the best method to really cover all types of scales/chord in all keys all around the instrument? Is it good to do an exercise in all keys an then... »

  • Practicing Scales (Part 2)

    Practicing Scales (Part 2)

    This week, Dr. D. continues the series on practicing scales. Check out part 1. Advanced Scale Work At whatever technical level you have been playing scales, you have hopefully been incorporating technical challenges into the mix. Mastering various fingerings, bowings, plucking techniques, refining your left hand shape, trills, vibrato, artificial harmonics, etc., should be an... »

  • Listen: Lessons Learned from Scott LaFaro

    Listen: Lessons Learned from Scott LaFaro

    In the past four years or so, I’ve been asked to write or speak about Scott LaFaro many times. Each time I delve back into the experience, I find another side of the story to tell. That’s because my brain is constantly processing all of the information that I put into my head by transcribing... »

  • Wanna Be Great?

    Wanna Be Great?

    Q: In your opinion, what is it that separates the “greats” from the rest of us mortals? A: In short, thousands of hours spent working hard at their craft. Great work really is 99% perspiration, and 1% inspiration. I see this constantly in my students and my peers. The one thing that every great musician... »