Instruction videos/books

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Ruud Das, Sep 14, 2000.

  1. Alright, this message has propably been posted numerous times before, but I didn't want to go through the trouble of searching this forum for a post on the topic.

    This is my problem: At the moment if find myself without a teacher, because there simple aren't any good bassplayers where I live, who also have time to teach me. So I'll have to resort to books and video's, so my question is this: What are good books/video's for a moderate bass player. Moderate meaning I'm not an absolute beginner (I'm playing metallica, simple Primus and such), but I need to learn all cool techniques. Especially funky slap techniques and such. Any suggestions? Let me know!
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    So why should we "go through the trouble" of replying again?
  3. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks!

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    What happened to the "kinder, gentler" Bruce that we all came to know and love?

    Just kidding. Bruce is right, the information is here, look for it.

    Chris A.:rolleyes:
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Just asking the obvious question! I thought I was being quite gentle; now I could have said a lot more.....;)
  5. Haha, well I guess you got me searching through this whole forum then :) I probably got myself to blame for that one.
    Thanks anyways (?)
  6. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    Welcome to TalkBass, Ruud.

    Performing a search on TalkBass is really easy, thanks to the "search" feature. All you have to do is click on Search, type in a keyword, like "Video" and wait for the answers to pop up.

    If I had to recommend a video for a beginner, I'd say "Fingerstyle Funk" by Rocco Prestia.

    By the way, "Anyways" is not a word.

    Will C.:cool:
  7. Thanks man,
    a reply that will actually help me out!

    O, and I know anyways is not a word, I don't know why, but I usually type it instead of anyway. (I have absolutely no idea as to why that is, mmm.... maybe I should get rid of that habit :)
  8. Gard

    Gard Commercial User

    Mar 31, 2000
    Greensboro, NC, USA
    General Manager, Roscoe Guitars
    Ruud Das -

    You don't say where you are, there may be someone from here that's nearby and could either teach you themselves or recommend someone that you're unaware of. Failing that, have you checked out You may find a teacher in your area there.

    I agree completely with Ed Fuqua, nothing beats having a living, breathing person watching how you're doing stuff and working with your strengths and weaknesses. A book or video can be helpful, but if you're doing something wrong it can't straighten you out and make your path easier like a teacher can.

    That said, I've seen the Rocco Prestia video that Big Wheel recommended, and it's really good, but not necessarily for learning, more for the whole "gee whiz, THAT'S how he did that" factor. Having to play several of the tunes he goes through on that tape with my present band, I've found that tape invaluable for its lick-stealing qualities ;).
  9. Ed and Gard are right, no video can really "teach" you. But, if you want a great video that also comes with an instruction booklet with some killer exercises, get Jaco Pastorius' "Modern Electric Bass."
  10. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    I agree, almost all videos are only valuable in terms of inspiration or motivation (BTW, I was deeply shocked when I saw the Jaco video - so sad, I wish they'd recorded it earler when he was still at his peak).
    But I'd just like to mention that classical teachers won't get you far in term of learning modern bass guitar techniques (I just wished I'd had one for learning theory, though!). This is where videos are useful! For example, I couldn't get the hang of Vic Wooten's double thumping technique. But when I saw the video it all became clear to me at once. And it was the only chance for me to see Vic play...the Flecktone's only performed in Germany once and I didn't get to see them:(
  11. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    To Ed Fuqua and the others here who spoke of being trained by a bassist with a symphony orchestra. I am extremely fortunate to have been trained by such a teacher. He was the first chair double bassist with the state orchestra in the South American country where I lived. Not only that, he is the bass player in that country's longest surviving and most successful heavy metal band! I suppose such a person is the rarest of rare birds, but he was able to give me excellent perspectives from both orchestral and rock standpoints. I was really lucky to have such a teacher. Furthermore, he never tried to force some notion onto me that orchestral music is superior to rock.

    I just wish I hadn't been nearly fifty when I started learning to play bass guitar, because I would have loved to have learned double bass too. However with such a late start, bass guitar was challenge enough.

    As for videos...I have bought several. The main disadvantage of a video is that you can't ask a question if you don't understand something. Also, if any written material comes with the video at all, it tends to be quite unsatisfactory. The best video/book combination I have seen is Roscoe Beck's Introduction to Blues Bass published by Warner Brothers. I may not have the name quite right and I don't have the video here.

    My personal philosophy about learning bass is there is no substitute for a living, breathing teacher who can see your technique, spot habits that may be interfereing with your best technique and tailor your lessons to your speed and your objectives. Try to get one who is first a bass player. Too many bass teachers are really guitarists who "second" on bass. They may be okay for starters, but they just don't bring as much to the class as a true bass player who loves bass guitar.

    Jason Oldsted
  12. First of all, thanks everybody for your comments. I should say that I already had one teacher who taught me the theory of melody and harmonics. He was kind of a bass player, but also a guitarist, and god knows what more. He couldn't teach me any real stuff about technique though, because when I asked, it turned out I knew more about slapping and such then he did. So when I was finished taking lessons from him (he said I was done), I found myself without one. I agree that nothing beats a real teacher, so maybe I'll just try one video or so until I have my drivers licence and can check out some other places :))

    O yeah, I live in Valkenswaard, Holland. So if anybody from around that place feels the need to help out a fellow bassplayer, let me know!
  13. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Ruud, I'm amazed your bass teacher told you that you were "finished" with your lessons. Actually, lessons never really finish. There is always something new to learn or improve or bad habits to change or some new style to explore. Most teachers want their students to continue if for no other reason than to keep the income, but I find it hard to imagine that a "real" bass teacher would ever run out of things to teach. At the worst, he might say, come less often, but give you "homework" to practice and present at the next class, so he can see how to improve your performance or to say that you are ready to move on to more advanced work. That's another reason why a "real" bassist and not just a guitarist who thinks he knows a little about bass is the better way to go.

    I can see where it would be hard for you to find a teacher where you are located. Maybe you can find a teacher if you advertise or just keep looking. I hope you can eventually find a better teacher than you had.

    Jason Oldsted
  14. Well, the thing is, he wasn't a really real bass player. He was more of an allround musician and he felt he taught me all the theory I had to know. He couldn't teach me any more techniques, because he couldn't play it himself. That's why he thought I was finished.

    So..... I bought Alexis Sklarevski's Slap Bass Program yesterday, along with a new 5 string (Bogart custom) so I guess that will keep me busy for a while. And in the mean time I'll keep searching :)

    Greetz Ruud