1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Instructional books without reading music.

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by MCBTunes, Aug 8, 2005.

  1. Can I get some good suggestions of instructional books/mags. In tab, I dont want to see any written notes :) I'll deal with that after, maybe. I'm looking for something to teach me scales(and HOW to use them), chords, appregio's that kind of stuff. So I can write basslines that are in key.
  2. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    I'd look for one that has both-i'm not experienced with any tab only books. Good Luck Man.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    There is a reason why there are no tab-only instructional books.
    Learn to read standard notation now, not later. You'll progress faster.
  4. seanlava


    Apr 14, 2005
    Amen! For some reason, kids/beginners seem to think that reading will somehow get in the way of their playing. The opposite is true. Spend a little time learning to read, save a LOT of time learning to play.
  5. You can't really understand scales and how to use them, chords, etc. with tab. Tab is merely a mechanical method of showing you where to put your fingers. There's no understanding involved. "Keys" don't even really exist in tab.

    IMO you'd be better off starting to get a handle on reading notation now. It will give you a vastly better choice of instructional materials and will serve you much better as a musician. If you can read English you can read music.
  6. well i learnt to read like 6 years ago and lost it, it was kinda a major pain. are there any that make it easier by showing the pattern on the fretboard or anything so i dont need to readit on the fly? No one in my band can read music, and we have some pretty damn good musicians, myself excluded :)
  7. dhadleyray

    dhadleyray Guest

    Dec 7, 2004
    "patterns on the neck?" Why do you want to go out and clutter up the scene? Bassists are already perceived as "the janitors" of the music world, in the words of Anthony Jackson. That is typical of what I see these days, people want the money, fame and everything else, but don't want to work for it. :eyebrow:
    C'mon man, If you're gonna try to skip the basics, you're not allowing yourself to be a musician, you're closer to being a bass owner. ;)

    Tab is a crutch. :bag:

    You're gonna have BIG holes in your program.

    P.S. I hope you consider what everyone is saying about by-passing the essentials. :(
  8. Well, there you go - sounds like they've got it sorted - perhaps they'll teach you all they know…

    Good Luck! ;)

    - Wil
  9. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    How about an instructional DVD?
  10. Correlli


    Apr 2, 2004
    New Zealand
    I highly recommend learning standard music notation.

    It helps you to understand the harmonic structure of music in far more detail.
  11. Dude, I don't mean this as a putdown, honest I don't, but consider what you're asking. Imagine if you couldn't read English. Suppose you wanted to understand more about literature, but you thought learning to read was a major pain, so you were asking around to see if anybody published editions of Dickens or Tolstoy with just pictures, no words.

    Or suppose you wanted to learn math but thought it was too much trouble to learn what all those weird symbols meant. How far do you think you'd get?

    Yeah, they're not exact comparisons, but you get the idea.

    And no, this is not the can-you-be-a-good-musician-if-you-don't-read-music argument. (That's in a different room.) This is the you-can't-effectively-learn-theory-through-tab argument, which is different.

    Sometimes there is no shortcut, no easy way, and you just have to do the work. If you want to learn the things you say you want to learn, odds are you'll need to learn standard notation. And that's just the start.
  12. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    If I said that, I'd get banned. But ditto what all the readers are telling you.
  13. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Honestly and truly, one of the best ways to learn to read music and learn scales, chords, arpeggios and modes is to learn them both at the same time. There are very fundamental bass instruction books that start out just that way. They teach you the building blocks (scales, chords, arpeggios, modes) at the same time you learn to read music. That's how you learn to read music by playing those building blocks and intervals, also.

    You WILL NEVER REGRET learning to read music. In fact, if no one else in your band reads music, you will be able to help them by reading, because you will be able to transcribe your band's music. Then, if one of your group leaves, another person can step in and rapidly learn your songs because you will have them all transcribed.

    Give learning to read serious thought. Just because the others in your band do not read, does not mean that you should not.
  14. Rody1069


    Jul 14, 2002
    Philadelphia, PA
    Is there an effective way to learn to read music without getting lessons, i.e. a specific book series, video or even website?
  15. "Play Bass Today" Mine was a purple book, but I think they've changed the color. It took me a day to learn to read bass clef, and all of the notes.
  16. Knives


    Mar 18, 2005
    Athens, Ga
    "Note Reading Studies For Bass" by Arnold Evans - Mel Bay. That is the book that I am using to try to learn how to read F-clef. Learned about this book from the book something or other sticky in this very section of the forum. But now that I am heading to UGA I hope to find a teacher who hopefully deals with mainly bass.
  17. Phil Smith

    Phil Smith Mr Sumisu 2 U

    May 30, 2000
    Peoples Republic of Brooklyn
    Creator of: iGigBook for Android/iOS
    Check out www.carolkaye.com
  18. Rav


    Dec 29, 2004
    Aurora, IL
    Do yourself a favor and check this out.


    Its a flash card program. You can learn to read bass clef with it to a decent level in about an hour. Not fast enough to sight read on the fly but fast enough to understand anything in a scales instructional book without a problem.

  19. seanlava


    Apr 14, 2005
    For beginning reading, Hal Leonard Bass Method Book 1, by Ed Friedland.

    If you are looking for more advanced reading studies, try Arban's Method for the Trombone. This book works mostly in keys that most bassists are weak in, namely flat keys, like F, Bb, and Eb. Since the music in this book doesn't cater to easily played, "bass oriented" music the way a lot of bass reading studies do, you'll find yourself confronted with plenty of fingering and technical challenges.
  20. Pruitt


    Jun 30, 2005
    Danbury, CT