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i need help

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by zacpac, Jul 3, 2002.


  1. zacpac

    zacpac Guest

    Jun 18, 2002
    Corpus Christi, TX
    i've been playing for almost a year now...i think my technique is pretty good but my ear is terrible...i cant pick anything up by ear, make up my own basslines, or play other basslines without the music or tabs...i've tried to learn theory and i understand the concept of it... i understand how it works and why it works and everything...i guess i just cant get it to click...i havent learned very many scales or anything yet but im gonna get down to it...i just want to be able to sit down with my bass and play and just let things flow...i dont really want to think to much about theory...is there anyway you can help me? i hope ive made things as clear as i'd like to... thanks
     
  2. hey man find a song you like with a bass part you like but isn't that hard, and sit down with the pause button until you can play the bass line. then when you can play it go find another song and repeat. trust me
     
  3. wulf

    wulf

    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    As lemonpillow said, choose something easy to start with. What kind of music are you wanting to play (or succeeding in playing from music)? That might bring up some relevant suggestions of songs to look at.

    Secondly, have you got some other musicians you can play with? You can certainly learn a lot without taking bass lessons, but if you don't have other musicians around, your development is likely to be much slower. Of course, if you've got a bass teacher in the area, a few lessons might be a very worthwhile investment, especially if they are interested in helping you overcome this hurdle rather than just taking you through their set syllabus.

    Thirdly, you will definitely benefit from some work on scales. However, don't just play them from music. Learn to play them by ear as well. Listen to how the different notes fit together (intervals). You'll find that a lot of 'cliched' patterns come straight out of scales - for example, if you go from C to F by playing C D E F, that's using a couple of passing notes from the C major scale. Once you get some of these things in your ears, you should find it easier to work out what's going on in a lot of songs.

    Wulf
     
  4. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    I don;t think anybody wants to have to think about theory (or anything else for that matter) when the play. he music should just flow. In a different thread, I talked a bit on how to get that to happen. Let me expound a bit here.

    Evrything you have from your gear to your technique to your theory knowledge to your listening skills are simple tools. Tools that allow us to create the music that's inside. Tools that allow the music to flow. The larger our toolbox the easier, more effective and more expressive we become. The concpet here is to learn as much as possible so that we don't have to think about getting in touch with OUR music. We don't have to "translate" our musical vision into techniques, etc. The music can just flow. The next question is how do we get there. This forum is not the place be able to really get as involved as I wish that I could but here we go ...

    1. have patience - the study of music is a life long adventure. Don't be too worried about where you are know. Don't get yourself down becuase you have come to the WONDERFUL realization that there is more to learn

    2. Develop a habit of listening. Hear the relationship between notes, chords, and chord progressions. Before trying to transcribe something, listen to it a hundred times, be able to sing it. Take one note at a time. One you get it, try to examine how the bass line relates to the chords.

    3. Challange yourself - play with people you know to be better than you. Play simple, serve the song, develop the groove. Embrace your mistakes (they make you better)

    4. Soon all these things will click

    5. Take some lessons - a good teacher will inspire you, motivate you and provide you with a path for exploration

    6. Feel free to fail and be humble in your success

    I hope some of these ideas help

    Mike