Is this too much

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by andybb1500, Jun 20, 2008.

  1. well ive been playing bass for a year and a half now and have recently decided to really step up my practising, as i would like to teach bass once i finish scool as a part time job (im 15 atm). I used to practise for about 30 mins a day on average usually when i got home from school. However i now am waking up at 5 in the morning to play bass until 7 and then when i get home from about 7-8 most days. So i usually total about 3 hours. Is this too much for my age?

    Cheers :)
  2. jnuts1


    Nov 13, 2007
    i practice every moment i can get. it is hard to practice that much when you get out of school & get a job so i would say do as much as you can now. you won't regret it.
  3. yeah good point mate, ive got a part time job aswell but that doesnt cut in too much thankfully :) ive got heaps to work on too so its not like im getting bored. Im trying to learn Stuart Hamm's Solo piece (well the start anyway) haha and been working on Teen Town so yeah ive got alot to spend my time on haha
  4. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    If you want to teach, working on theory, different techniques and formal ear training are also very beneficial.
  5. I wouldn't say it's too much - just make sure you're practicing the right techniques and whatnot, otherwise your muscle memory would be set playing something the wrong way.

    With 3 hours a day to practice, I'd set up a routine, like 30 minutes playing scales. 30 minutes playing arpeggio/runs. 30 minutes playing chords & melody. 1 hour playing along with music. etc etc. doesn't have to be that - but just as an example. better than 3 hours of noodling.

    Wish I had 3 hours a WEEK to practice sometimes! ;)
  6. BillyRay


    Jan 20, 2008
    Learn how to read and sing too, if you have time. Transcribing bass lines is an essential part of getting a "vocabulary" but it's not all there is to it.

    Becuse you are transcribing Jaco's and Stu's pieces by ear, right ?
  7. GianGian


    May 16, 2008
    It is not too much, but make some warm ups and stretches, otherwise you can get some real bad problems on your body and then you won't be able to play at all. If you feel pain in your tendons on anywhere else, stop right away and only play again when the pain is completely gone. Also, eat bananas, they help to avoid tendonitis.
  8. DocBop


    Feb 22, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    An old Jazz pro I took lessons from said a being a musician is no different from any other job you need to play 40 hours a week. That breaks down to about 20 hours a week gigging and 20 hours a week practicing. So three hours a day six days a week you're in the ballpark.

    Actually the amount of time isn't as important as how much of that is quality focused practice. Some talk about long hours of practice but get nowhere because they are noodling around, and in general just going thru the motions. So if your getting more than an hour serious practice that is great.

    Keep a practice journal and log what you are doing, tempo, and other pertinent info. That helps you cover everything in your plan even if you stop short one day and pickup from that point the next. Also it will show your progress. Those times you feel you not making progress you can look at your journal and see you have progressed.
  9. Ten Four One

    Ten Four One

    Dec 5, 2006
    Huge +1. There's a huge difference between constantly challenging yourself and working on your problem areas and just playing.
  10. thanks for that i didnt know bannanas help tendonitis, funny thing is when i wake up i eat a banana anyway haha. pretty weird coincidence
  11. hehe im trying to learn how to sing, i get to sing 'Sunshine Of Your Love' with the class band so that alright haha although im probably way outta pitch. I like to transcribe music but i only transcribe stuff like Kool & The GAng, Bob Marley, Incubus Etc. With Jaco's and Stu's pieces im trying to read them, the bad thing is im learning off powertab and I have trouble controlling myself not to just look at the tabs to make it faster, as i know reading the music will do me more good.
  12. Thanks ive actually started a journal a few days ago to help me stay on track and not get lost doodling haha it currently goes like this and ill probably stick to it for about a week or two

    5:30-6:10am Work on Stu Hamm's bass solo
    6:10-6:30am Work on speed exercises which also includes playing teen town at as fast a tempo as i can haha.
    6:30-6:45am Scales!, modes,7th chords,triads
    6:45-7:00 Work on my tapping by tapping all those scales up the octave with my right hand

    Then at night

    8:00-8:30 Stu Hamm bass solo
    8:30-9:00 Transcribe stuff im currently listening too (atm its jamiroquai)
  13. GianGian


    May 16, 2008 are healthy and you didn't know:D There are some other things to eat too. It is the potassium that helps, so it is not necessarily bananas. But bananas are ok, they don't taste that bad.
  14. Stumbo

    Stumbo Guest

    Feb 11, 2008
    Don't forget to take some breaks. About every 45 mins, get up and do some stretching.
    Walk around some and drink some water.

    Be sure to use a metronome.

    Also, make of list of the all the things you want to learn (and at what tempo) and set up a practice plan.
    When you move on to new things, spend part of the time cycling through all the previous things.

    If you make a simple worksheet:

    Practice Item ! 6/20--6/21---6/22---6/23--6/24--6/25--6/26

    It not only is a plan but becomes your journal as you check off each item, day by day.
  15. hehe yeah, im thinking about posting a video of how i usually play so people can tell me if im developing bad techniques. The only problem is that my camera takes incredibly large videos filesize i mean so i cant really upload them onto youtube. However my biggest concern is when i play my right hands fingers dont land on the string next to it after they play the string for example if im playing a c on the a string i wont let my finger land on the e string afterwards. However I dont really think this as bad because i still get the same tone and its more comfortable for me. Do you know of any other bassists like this?
  16. BillyRay


    Jan 20, 2008
    Don't knock transcribing silly stuff. I've transcribed a lot of Christmas carols, jingles, famous broadway songs because:

    a) They're memorable and you usually have the melody ingrained in your head after a few listen.
    b) You learn how to write more melodic lines (how to have your bass lines ingrain in the head of your listenenrs).
    c) It's easier so you don't get frustrated (everyone has to start somewhere).
    d) It'll make it easier later on for relative pitch recognition (Top Gun anthem = perfect 4th for example)

    Also, transcribing grooving basslines from a band setting will show you the role of the bass player in most music. Solo pieces aren't all that useful in that regard. Jamerson, is especially important. He is the Paul Chambers of R&B.
  17. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Yorktown, VA
    That's a great amount of time!!

    Just follow the recommendations above for practice routines.
  18. GianGian


    May 16, 2008
    I have never seen it, but I don't think it is a bad thing. The good thing about "landing" on the next string is that you mute this string, so you don't get ugly notes.

  19. hehe yeah i mute the string with my left hand kinda weird i guess but it sounds alright. The only problem i see though is that i cant play as loud, but this could also be seen as a good thing.
  20. GianGian


    May 16, 2008
    The thing is that you limit your playing by muting with your left had. You will find a lot of things that you won't be able to play that way. It depends on how far you want your skills to go, if you want to be a really technically proficient musician, stop doing it and do it the usual way.