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Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by B. Graham, May 3, 2005.
Anyone know of a play-a-long series for Bluegrass like what Jamey Abersold does for jazz?
Never heard of a playalong for bluegrass.
I bought this book and it served me well in the beginning:
Most instructive was playing, and in our neck of the woods there are opportunities.
Check out banjo-in-the-hollow, lots of open picking sessions on their calendar:
Listen to Backporch music on 91.5 WUNC Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights and play along.
I hadn't heard of much, at least not as much as one would expect in our area. Pickin' in person would certainly be the best, but I need a supplement. New daughter arriving in a few weeks, and getting out will be tough to do for a while.
Thanks for the direction.
While the Abersold stuff is kind of bland, it's great stuff. Bluegrass versions of the same could be really handy for a whole compliment of folks.
If I could play halfway decent I'd come up with a product and take it to market.
You might try Jay Buckey . He has some stuff--it is very slow and geared more toward beginners but it is okay for some practicing. At one point he had some free MP3 files available for download but I think he pulled most of those.
Another option might be to get Band in a Box then download some 'grass midi files. There are lots of them out there. It's not like playing with humans but it surely beats playing alone.
Since the majority of bluegrass records reduce the bass to a percussive thump, you'd probably find it pretty easy to cut the bass on your stereo and just play along with recordings.
Homespun Tapes has a few things (some are videos) but I think they're aimed more for the front line than the bassist. Here they are:
Then there's the old fashioned way, just picking along to any old recording
I use the Amazing SlowDowner software to play CDs at a slower tempo for learning songs and to change keys for practicing songs in different keys. It will slow down, speed up, and change keys/pitch independently of each other function
It also has a built in eq to boost the bass and cut the other noise like banjos.
You can download a sample or trial version from www.ronimusic.com.
A decent set of speakers with a sub-woofer for your computer is also very helpful.
Get of copy of some of the Flatt and Scruggs recordings from the late 50's early 60's era with Jake Tullock playing bass and crank it up.
Just remember that they tuned a half step high for most of their stuff. I understand that used to drive some folks nuts.
Hee hee. I was at a practice the other night and watched a couple of guys listen to the first few bars of "Maybe The Good Things Will Outweigh The Bad", which is recorded in F#. Bluegrass in F is weird enough, but F# had 'em capo-ing and barring to beat the band!