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I Wish I Knew That - Page 2

Playing Music with an Open Mind

Playing Music with an Open Mind

Playing music is a curious thing. We excite at the opportunity to play with and for other people. We look forward to it, prepare for it, take pleasure in it, and enjoy the feeling of making music together. Sounds perfect, right? Well, the funny thing is that the more you play in a “formal” scenario (such as a gig or...

Looping the Bass: 7 Activities for Musical Growth

Looping the Bass: 7 Activities for Musical Growth

Fruit loops, drum loops, loop-the-loop roller coasters… there are all kinds of loopy things out there. Lucky for us, the looping pedal is one of them. After a recent acquisition and an afternoon of messing around I wondered “why didn’t I get one of these sooner?” As a matter of fact, I did. I just never used it. Loopers can...

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Learning New Tunes: Go Beyond the Bass

Learning New Tunes: Go Beyond the Bass

Let’s face it, we’re not all singers. Some of us opted to join band in school instead of choir, and in doing so, we missed out on the vocal warm-ups and breathing lessons. We never took the bull by the horns and sang lead, be it on stage or around a campfire, and maybe a few of us have been...

Buying a Bass: There’s More to the Budget than Meets the Eye

Buying a Bass: There’s More to the Budget than Meets the Eye

Investing in a new instrument is a lot like moving into a new house. You have a budget in mind, a good idea of the amenities that you want and need, and a few sources to help you find the perfect place. Finally, you find the right home; it’s in your price range, you sign the lease, and prepare for...

A Different Way To Listen: Thoughts on Transcribing Bass Lines

A Different Way To Listen: Thoughts on Transcribing Bass Lines

Think about all of the ways we can hear music… we can listen to it in our car, hear it as we walk through a super market, be encompassed by it in a movie theater, experience a private listening session on our headphones, or hook a record player up to a great set of speakers. Clearly, there are many mediums...

The Blues: It’s Not “Just a Blues”

The Blues: It’s Not “Just a Blues”

Believe it or not, I’m a huge fan of the blues. This particular genre caught my attention at a young age and it has taken years (and, I expect, will require many more) to appreciate some of its subtleties. If you’ve had an opportunity to check out my series on blues bass playing, then this column acts as a quintessential...

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 fast forward through the commercials,...

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 instrument, and our years of...

Breaking Down Music: Start with the Songs You Love

Breaking Down Music: Start with the Songs You Love

When it comes to music, we all have our favorite bands, our favorite songs, favorite singers, bass players and maybe even some guitar solos. Some of us develop a preference for certain genres; they shape our music library, our concert expenditures and our playing repertoire. It’s easy to know that we like something, mainly because we find ourselves singing along...

Overcoming Stage Fright

Overcoming Stage Fright

Do you ever get nervous about performances? I certainly do. I’ll spend hours and hours learning material, charting it out, listening to it in the car, and getting everything in order for the gig, and even after all of that, I’ll still be nervous! For some reason, I think that everyone else will be cool as a cucumber, right? Wrong....