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A nice reminder

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by fettbass, Mar 6, 2008.

  1. I just finished having dinner with a guitarist friend of mine.First off, let me tell you. I respect this guy. His playing is good, he writes interesting songs, overall i really dig what he does. We got to talking about theory, and the like. I found out he does everything completely by ear, he doesn't run over scales and modes and all those things i spend hours a day doing. In fact, he has very vague idea of what scales are, and doesn't even know what modes are. He doesn't do silly technical drills like me. Despite all this, he's a great player and he makes great music. I thought it was a nice reminder of how others perceive you versus how you perceive yourself.
  2. DocBop


    Feb 22, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    Guess you missed the lesson that you need to take time to make music with everything you learn. Scales, arp's, theory exercises, and etc. Also sing all this stuff so you not only can play it, you can hear it, and one up on your friend know what you did so you can use it again.
  3. Rob Mancini

    Rob Mancini Guest

    Feb 26, 2008
    People who can play great without knowing anything about theory and scales and stuff are by far the exception and not the rule.
  4. bonzo4880


    Sep 16, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    ive met a handful of folks like this over the years, and they are almost always guitarists. it basically comes down to a lot of practice and a great ear. my friend steve is like this, he doesnt know the names of more than 10 chords but consistently amazes me with the stuff he writes. he also studied classical piano when he was a lot younger and i guess some of that stuck with him. he is 21 now and has been playing since he was 10 or 11. but he also almost always has a guitar in his hands when i see him and plays incessantly.
  5. drumsnbass

    drumsnbass Bassic User

    Dec 13, 2004
    Phoenix AZ area
    I can read most things easily, but my ear has never been all that good. I have a guitarist friend who can hear and pick
    out chords easily, but can't read a note for the life of him.

    we all have our weaknesses and crutches...
  6. manbass


    May 20, 2004
    Tampa Bay
    If I copied Tiger Woods swing long enough...I could beat him eventually, right?

    Just sayin.....
  7. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    as long as music is consumed via the ear, a great ear will always be the most important thing a musician can have

    it's a tough one for some bass players to accept, because our job is usually to be a part of a music playing ensemble... we're a plain cog, and it's more important to be solid than to express some new musical ideas... and have an EAR for music and a will to risk doing something new

    I mean, how often do we put 'creativity and originality' at the top of our 'desirable bass player traits' list? most of us approach bass playing like we're operating machinery

    'reckless and interesting' will always lose out to 'dependable and boring' bass playing (unless it's YOUR own band)... which is why some of us are amazed when people can play by ear without knowing theory... because how can you be a boring dependable cog in the engine without that?
  8. mambo4


    Jun 9, 2006
    They will also have more difficulty reproducing their creations and communicating them to other musicians
  9. No claim to greatness here, but I'm definitely in the 'ear' camp(less a decision & more a matter of having painted myself into a corner w/bad habits), & I agree wholeheartedly w/both points.
  10. Rob Mancini

    Rob Mancini Guest

    Feb 26, 2008
    No, not unless you have a stronger mental game than him and you can putt as well as he does. There are a whole lot of variables outside of the technical end that you also can't forget.
  11. manbass


    May 20, 2004
    Tampa Bay
    ;)My point exactly.

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