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i'll give you teachers!

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by mike_odonovan, May 27, 2003.

  1. hey,
    i have been posting a bit lately :hyper: for good reason. i have just graduated from a music degree on a jazz course over here in london and i am finding that my technique is really having a few problems :spit: i have had quite a few lessons from a jazz teacher at my university and very little was said to me with regards to posture and how to hold it. it was more of the grab it anyway feels comfortable and let's go :bassist: now this was kind of good at first as i seem to get up and running without hassle but now i am having to totally re-examine the whole thing. particularly as i am in the habit of using my left hand thumb to grip the neck when fretting. i never really noticed it until i started bowing in TP and couldn't suddenly use my thumb to grip the neck :confused: now i have taken a few exersizes from posts describing this problem and am really taking it slowly and trying to build up again.
    what i am trying to say is the "get a teacher" thing should be tempered with "if you go to a jazz teacher, great for all the music, but watch out for the technique side" ie. be carefull. i am now going to go to a classical guy next week and see what he can make of it all. wish me luck i am in a bit of a state.
  2. Johnny L

    Johnny L

    Feb 14, 2002
    Victoria, TX
    I began standing to play when I started trying to teach myself to play the bass...and when I developed to the point of seeing advantages to formal instruction, I was lucky enough to find a teacher who also stood while he played and emphasized thumb-liberty from the get-go regardless of what music reached the audience's ears.

    It wasn't until some months into lessons that I began to see why thumb-liberty is so important, and it supercharged me into digging into as many standing solutions as possible. My teacher had much to share with me on how and why Gary Karr stood the way he did, and why angled endpins can provide alternate solutions that many bass wheedly-deedlers (my affectionate term for Rabbath's powerful influence here, of whom I intend to mirror also as my technique flourishes) who draw some living from the Texas academic establishments prefer.

    I haven't invested in an angled endpin yet, but I plan to...it will let me balance the bass better as it leans towards me and make the Bottesini tongue-in-cheek harmonic tricks much easier to reach on my bass. Until then, my straight endpin forces me to keep the bass upright and lean it forward as I reach the thumb position register (a la Gary Karr, who's penetrating sound I admire and try to imitate at this time).

    However you find your answer to taking the weight off your thumb, I'm with you on finding a teacher who can share the many standing options with you and help you come to your most comfortable preference, as your thumb isn't the only thing that will ask you to take heed...
  3. Alex Scott

    Alex Scott

    May 8, 2002
    Austin, TX
    yeah, screen your teachers-

    they don't always screen themselves, and good players aren't always good teachers, but it doesn't hurt.

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