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How do you divide your Practicing

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Samelot, Nov 7, 2005.

  1. Samelot


    Jun 23, 2005
    hi, i was just wondering how ya all divide your practicing. For my practicing i have so far came up with :

    1. Theroy Practice. (scales and arpegios)
    2. Song learning. (learning music that interests me)
    3. Exersices (finding interesting patterns and practicing them on different keys and scales)
    4. JAM TIME (put on my drum machine, and practice jamming in different keys using what i know, and also just making up cool tunes.)

    I like to have different sections in my praciticing, because sometiems i feel i just go off on something for too long. (for example i'll play random notes that dont really make much sense, and ill just play them, too quickly.)

    SO how do u guys divide ur practicing time up?
  2. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    This is my new schedule for my upright bass practicing, but it works for electric as well.

    First 10 minutes...warm up with loose playing, then a few scales and exercises once the dust gets knocked off.

    Pick out 3 songs from Real Books and Aebersold, download them and learn them. First I learn the general rhythm, then I learn the head. Then I play a few rhythms, a few solos, and get sort of comfortable with it before I move on. Tonight I'm learning some classic Duke Ellington. That usually takes me an hour, maybe 90 minutes. Then I review what I learned the night before shortly, then it's time for pie!

    Now if you really want to get ambitious and learn theory and all that, you could stick a half hour of it in before you get warmed up.

    I try to divide practice up by percentages. Warming up is 15%, scales and exercises 15%, reading sheet music and learning new pieces 70%.
  3. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    I've tried a lot of different "regimented practice" routines and they NEVER work for me. It's just not how I work. Right now all of my *practice* is spent on upright or guitar -- about 90% upright, 10% guitar. On guitar, I'm mainly just practicing chord voicings and figuring out what common progressions in jazz sound like (2-5-1's, 1-6-2-5's, etc.)

    On upright, I'm doing a lot of technical practice to get my intonation more in shape, especially in thumb position. The majority of my time is spent on tunes -- walking the changes, learning the heads (working on Billie's Bounce in thumb position right now) and every once in a while, I'll toss in a 3 ocatve F or 2 octave Ab scale just to futz with myself (both arco and pizz.) A lot of my "practice" -- eg, working on tunes -- is done with my quintet at rehearsals, where I get to try out new ideas and hear how they sound with a full band. Most of those are pretty stock standards/bebop, while I work on "weirder" stuff and instrumental bop at home for my own purposes and for my university auditions in February. Right now, I'm working on Gloria's Step, Billie's Bounce, and I'm going to learn the regular Body and Soul first before learning the Coltrane reharm for my college auditions. For my own purposes, I'm also working on rhythm changes (Salt Peanuts) and Giant Steps.

    Almost all of my (lately rare) electric playing is solo composition, although I'm having a lot of fun at my electric lessons playing Nature Boy in a duet with my teacher.
  4. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Excercises with metronome atleast 3hours a day and then some sight-reading.
  5. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    I havent really learned a new cover song that wasnt a requirement for my band in about a year. Lately when i practice, i play my bands songs, or i just mess around , making up my own grooves.
  6. I have this question as well! I averagely have 1 hour for bass everyday. I used to do some drills on scales, and techniques and speed. But now, after realizing the lack of a musical ear/brain, I spend most of my time transcribing, my target now is to know the bass lines and chords of simple pop/rock songs the moment I hear it, instead of trying to jaco or trying to flea.

    But once in a while, I bumped into songs that I am transcribing that requires practice because my speed is not up to par yet, so I guess I will chuck in 5-10 minutes to work on that particular part everyday, but it gets boring very quickly.
  7. ras1983


    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    i split my practice up over the day.

    during the day i practice theory and scales while i learn songs from Aebersold. each song is about 5 minutes long, and there are about 8 songs that i do. so just to do each song twice takes 1 hour. during this time i also work on improvising and getting my modes and pentatonics right while the songs are playing. so i sort of jam to each song.

    at night, right before i sleep, i do technical excersises while i watch TV. they generally take 30minutes.

    Since i have my bass on a stand, i pick it up and noodle around for a few minutes at a time when i walk by it during the day.

    It isn't as regimented as it sounds, and i like to take 'creative' breaks every now and then when i am practicing.

    Above all, if i don't have any inspiration to practice, then i won't. No point in flogging a dead horse, it only kills my motivation when i see anything as a chore. This means that i go a day or two without the theoretical practices, just spending my time noodling.
  8. nataku


    Jun 21, 2004
    San Jose, CA
    +85 million, you just described my routine exactly.
  9. Samelot


    Jun 23, 2005
    i masturbate, then i play bass. good stuff.
  10. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    that was extremely random and im questioning your sexuality.
  11. Whafrodamus


    Oct 29, 2003
    Andover, MA
    1. Play
  12. Droog


    Aug 14, 2003
    Um, I practice with my band several times a week. Some random solo practices when I have time, sometimes I'll play acoustic guitar instead. Wish I could say I practice scales,modes,arpeggio's and all that fancy stuff.
  13. Like when studying or doing homework, I practice while watching TV or listening to music. It just seems to help me focus.

    I tend to try and bring things in my head out onto the bass or just screw around and see if I can come up with something cool. I really just jam for an hour or two without a guitarist or drummer or drum machine.

    I'm always fooling around with techniques (ie slapping, tapping, fingerstyle) to get better at them, and it works just jamming and trying to come up with stuff using the techniques.

    My biggest joy of practicing is when my friend and I get together (he's an amazing drummer) and we just jam for a couple hours. Nothing more satisfying for practicing.
  14. Unless I have to learn a tune for a gig/ensemble/session, I usually never divide my training into sessions. I usually just pick up a bass and go whenever I want.

    More recently, I've started working on my slapping a lot more, but other than that, it's mostly all just sheddin' Jaco.