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Bach's Chaconne, HELP!

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Jeff2287, Apr 12, 2003.


  1. Jeff2287

    Jeff2287

    May 4, 2002
    Hello, my bass teacher has been teaching me a piece by Bach for the past few weeks and I've been getting better and better at it. He's been teaching me different sections of it (two melodic parts and one chordal part). I can handle the melodies fine and I'm getting better with the chords but there's one major flaw and that's, you guessed it, playing each section back to back in one sitting.

    The chord part starts first and there are many very difficult chords which tend to get my left hand really tense (I'm right-handed, by the way). After this I play a simple melodic part which sort of leads into a very complex melodic part that pretty much explores the majority of my bass neck (4-string).

    The main problems I've had are with the difficult melodic part. It comes after the chordal part that tenses up my left hand and I either play the melodic part too quickly, too aggressively or I can't play it at all. I believe that this is mainly because when I chord I have a tendency to push down on the strings WAY too hard. It's sort of hard for me not to do.

    So my main question is how does one develop enough discipline to play chords gently and more relaxed? Is there any practicing method I can use?
    I think that if I could just play chords more relaxed then I might have an easier time with it.
     
  2. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    It's especially bitchy for this piece because it was composed for an instrument tuned in 5ths, not 4ths.
    The idea is to find the right positions so you don't have to move much when you play the chord.
    If you have to skip strings of slide to another position, you'll automatically press harder on the strings.
    Use barres as much as mossible, that's way less stress and helps muting while you go back to the regular position.
     
  3. ConU

    ConU

    Mar 5, 2003
    La Belle Province
    A quote from my theory/ear-training prof.after I complained to him my inability to play some parts of the Bach suites perfectly(the sarabandes!!ouch!!):" My dear boy,the Beethoven piano concertos have been on my bench for 20 years "...that statement has stuck with me for a long time.If you've only been doing this for a few weeks,relax,takes time.When the material is absorbed enough,and you can let go of the mind and the need to sound good,you will.Check out "Effortless Mastery" by Kenny Werner(Abersold Jazz)
     
  4. Jeff2287

    Jeff2287

    May 4, 2002
    I've been playing for about a year and I'm getting pretty danm suprisingly good. My teacher wouldn't have taught me this if I wasn't. Anyway, I've found that I just haven't been patient enough with it but I've just kept practicing and I'm getting A LOT (!) better at it now. Thanx for the support and advice:D .