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Bass Teacher Question

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by Sippy, Apr 4, 2006.

  1. Sippy


    Aug 1, 2005
    I went to my local music academy to see if anybody gave double bass lessons. The strings instructor came out and she was incredibly nice! She told me she teaches Violin, Viola and Cello, but not double bass. But she said she thinks she would be able to.
    This woman has a fantastic reputation, and is the instructional director of the academy. She's the only person I can find in a 30 mile radius that even said they could.
    Do you think it would be wise to be her student?

  2. EFischer1

    EFischer1 Guest

    Mar 17, 2002
    New York, New York

    Unless you intend to study the violin, viola, or cello.

    I'm only a bass player, but if you would like bassoon lessons I think that I could teach you...
  3. GirlBass


    Jul 31, 2005
    New York
    Very bad idea to study with her. Do you have a local symphony? Does she know any bass players?
  4. Monty


    Apr 25, 2005
    I think that if you have a double bass, she might be able to teach you scales, sight reading and harmonic concepts, but in order to learn the rudiments of playing the bass, you should ask someone that has played bass for a while. It's a quite different technique, and it exerts a different force on the body and mind than the cello.
  5. Kam


    Feb 12, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    I took a string methods class in college. The basic premise is that you learn the basics of the orchestral string family so if you end up directing a high school orchestra, you know more about the individual instruments. The class was seperated into basically 2 parts, high strings and low strings.

    Personally, I had little trouble picking stuff up on both violin and viola, even if it did bother me how small they were. Cello kind of felt like a hot rod...2 octave scales in one position!?!?!

    Anyway, getting to the point...all the other string players in the class were similar to me as far as competence on everything but when we got to the bass...they kind of fell off the learning curve. I think it really screws them up because in their words:
    A) The strings are "backwards"
    B) The notes are so "far" apart
    C) This thing is "Huge!"

    I guess my point is, a bass is a bass, learn from someone who knows bass. My college orchestra director always said the 2 hardest instruments in the orchestra are the Horn and the Bass. I wouldn't want to learn Horn from a trumpet player, and I wouldn't want to learn bass from anyone but a bassist.
  6. EFischer1

    EFischer1 Guest

    Mar 17, 2002
    New York, New York
    Definitely not. She might be able to tell you what a scale is but wouldn't be able to teach you how to play it. This includes proper fingerings.
  7. mcnaire2004


    Jan 17, 2006
    It depends on what skill level you are at. If your younger and more of a beginer than do it. But, even if you're not, go with her anyway. If there is no one near you than you should. She obviosly isn't a complete string stranger and knows what she is doing. She may (and probably will) show you some stuff thats not good bass tecnique. But, hey, you'll learn your rythims, scales, and she can still tell you how something is suposed to sound even if she doesn't play bass. If she can help you than do it. So I say YES YES go and learn from her.
  8. bpclark


    Apr 30, 2003
    West Central, OH
    According to you, she didn't say she could, she said she thought she could, which means she doesn't really know. My advice is expand your radius to 60 miles and plan to go half as often for a longer lesson. If it is your goal to really learn the bass, then it's worth driving the extra miles for someone who is really qualified.
  9. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    I suspect she's not familair with German bow, either, so you'd be on your own there.

    The hardest part about bass initially isn't the reading, or finding the notes It's stuff like holding and balancing the bass, hand position, and fingering. A teacher without specific bass knowledge isn't going to be able to help you. The stuff she can teach you- reading, scales, etc- you can teach yourself.
  10. jgbass

    jgbass Guest

    Dec 17, 2003
    I would say that possibly learning bad playing habits from someone not experienced in bass would be worse than not learning at all.

    If I were in your situation, I would consider going to a bass camp this summer that can help beginners. And, I would expand my 30 mile radius. I think my teacher is great and I travel a couple of hours each way for a lesson and it is always worth it.
  11. Kam


    Feb 12, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    I'm sorry but that is terrible advice. I'm still unlearning bad technique that I have learned in the past. It is far better to learn correctly the first time around.

    Aerospacebass - Perhaps you're not looking in the right places for a teacher. I would take the earlier suggestion of seeking out local symphonies, go to a performance and approach some of the bassists. You can also try the nearest college or high school.
  12. Justin K-ski

    Justin K-ski

    May 13, 2005
    Where is Stuart in relation to big cities in Flordia. The networking here is pretty strong so if you give us a region, someone can find you a teacher.
  13. Bassist4Life


    Dec 17, 2004
    Buffalo, NY
    I am a public school orchestra director. Bass is SOOOO different from the other strings. If you're serious; I would find a bassist, even if he/she lives an hour away. There is one caution, a great performer is not always a great teacher.

    Hope this helps.
  14. BGreaney

    BGreaney Guest

    Mar 7, 2005
    Yea Mcnaire, I think you have the wrong angle on this one. All she'll do is tell you if the scale is in tune, not how to play it properly. The best way to learn to play an instrument is to learn what you have to do to produce a good sound. Knowing how it's supposed to sound then leaving a novice player to their own devices r to figure out the best way to reproduce that sound is not the way to go.
  15. Sippy


    Aug 1, 2005

    I'm in stuart.. 30 minutes north of West Palm... 2 hours south of Orlando. I actually stopped by her place after work with my bass she's good!! She can play with a german bow. I reread my original post and It was worded terribly.
    She can play bass. She has just never taught bass before. I'd never go to a trumpet player to learn the sax!! She plays bass, but just has never taught it before.
    I was wondering if you would all go to a teacher with little experiance in teaching, even though they play the instrument. That's really what I meant... sorry for the confusion! :bag:

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