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Beginning Instruction

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Shlomobaruch, Mar 6, 2003.


  1. Shlomobaruch

    Shlomobaruch

    Dec 31, 2002
    Boise, ID
    A little bit of history on this...

    Many years ago I started playing bass guitar. Eventually I switched to double bass and have been playing that pretty much exclusively for ten years or so. Unfortunately, being a double bass major and piano minor in college, I didn't have time to even look at another instrument, BG included. I recently acquired a new student on the double bass who also has a bass guitar and would like to learn it, and I would like to teach her, but I'm at something of a loss.

    Now, if I were to have her learn the same way I did, it would involve starting with some Hal Leonard Elementary book and a collection of Pink Floyd LPs. Not what I want to do. It's not that I don't know music or that I don't know the instrument - it's just that I have no idea how to present a structured approach to an instrument that I've never had a lesson on.

    Now the field of instruction materials has had over 10 years to grow since I last peeked, and I was wondering what folks were using to introduce bass guitar. What *good* methods are available, and include lessons in basic theory if at all possible?
     
  2. WillPlay4Food

    WillPlay4Food Now With More Metal! Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2002
    Orbiting HQ
    I started bass lessons last Summer. The book my instructor and I work in is called "The Complete Electric Bass Player: The Method" by Chuck Rainey. There is no TAB in this book, it's all reading music.

    Once I got some of the basics down in the book, we started on 12 bar jazz blues progressions (while continuing with the book). We started with the basic progression with Root being a half note, then a fifth plus a half step approach (above and below) into the next root.

    The next step was adding a ii-V-I turnaround in the last bar. After that it was doing root-third-half step, then root-b7-half step, and lastly root-octave-half step approaches. Basically, as I've gotten one concept down solid, he's introduced a new piece to the puzzle.

    Right now I'm adding the ii-V of the IV in the fourth bar, the ii-V of the root in the sixth bar, and ii-V of the ii in the eight bar (I hope my description makes sense).

    I should add that we've been doing the progressions in all the major keys following the cycle of fourths, while everything I've done in the book up until now has been in C Major. I haven't started any minor keys at all yet. The other keys do get presented in the book, I just haven't made it that far yet. :)

    I wish I had more time to practice so I could speed up my learning, but no one is willing to pay me to woodshed.

    I don't know if this would be considered "good method" as I've been playing for less than a year. I know how to read bass clef sheet music, the book has taken me through triplets quarter, eighth and now sixteenth notes. Amazon lists the table of contents, but if you want samples of what's in the book I could scan an exercise or three.

    I do like the idea of learning to Pink Floyd though. :)