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Lessons vs. Self-Taught

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by ishmael_the_god, Jul 15, 2002.

  1. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    If you want "valuable" - you'll have to pay for it!! ;)

    Maybe get a teacher......?

  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY

    You said it, brother. Jazzbo is a dullard and a buffoon. And a drunkard. But at least he plays well...
  3. bill_banwell


    Oct 19, 2002
    I had 4 lessons, after that all i got taught was scales, and i can get them from the internet anyway, so it would be a pointless 20 quid an hour.. and now im just teaching my-self more advance stuff..
  4. Phunky

    Phunky Guest

    Aug 1, 2004
    I'm just wondering what kind of "bad habits" self-taughters are refering too being developed?

    I'm self-taught and the only bad habit i can think of is my improvement is kind of dull and repetetive, but that is something i'm working on now, i'm just pretty much wild on the fretboard playing with feel to records and trying out notes everywhere and combinations that i've heard players use on some songs that i've learned.

    My goal is to learn reading, i got some books at home for that, it's just so freakin' agonizing and boring. but i think it is a huge plus if you want to play in a proffesional band some day or be a session musician. After learning how to read i might finally learn scales, and how that system works, it's such a mystery to me.
  5. fr0me0


    Dec 7, 2004
    Winnipeg Canada
    I find not having lessons is like when people say they know someone live a healthy life while smoking 2 packs a day. When questioned about smoking someone might say "well my grandma lived to 85 smoking 2 packs a day" even though we all know how many people die as a result of smoking and thats like saying "well *insert name* didn't need any lessons to become a professional" to rationalize not having lessons even though we know most professionals had some form of instruction.
  6. Hi but how do you know if you're doing it properly ?.I've been playing for 20 years,For the first 5 years I struggled picking this up and picking that up, then I enrolled at music college -Basstech inLondon.What a difference just one lesson made.Four weeks later when I went back for my 2nd lesson I was a totally different bassplayer.I now consider myself to be a musician not just a bassplayer - I have a good understanding of theory,good technique and ability all of which mean that I can express my musical ideas better.Also look at other questions regarding pain in peoples hands etc - a good teacher will show you good ergonomics.Too many people critiscise this sort of thing but I think that is just plain stupid.
  7. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Best comparison ever -- I'm definitely gonna remember that one!
  8. AuG


    May 22, 2005
    Fort Collins, CO
    I smoke, and I don't need lessons. :D

    Just kidding. If I could scrape the cash together, I would DEFINITELY go and take some more lessons.

    That comparison was strangely worded, but I caught the gist of it. Maybe I need to move to Canada.....at least I'll get my hockey back(somewhat).

    I need my hockey fix(ed) :crying:

  9. geddyleewannabe


    May 4, 2006
    Call ME Ishmael !!!!! That is my last name and I just so happen to be pondering that question as I've had my Geddy Lee Fender for about a week now. I kinda wanted to do some self taught stuff just to at least be more coherent of what an instructor might first talk about. I'm trying to get a grasp on music again and did get a DVD intructional book. Randy Ishmael, like Rocket Ishmael, only slower...
  10. seventai


    May 9, 2006
    well the truth of the matter is even if you are taking lessons, it doesn't mean your not going to learn on your own as well. anyone with a love for their instrument is going to seek out information about it on their own. the difference is the guy with lessons is going to have someone knowledgeable around to help put all of that info into perspective.

    in the end online lessons, books, videos and private lessons are all just tools to help progress your playing. private lessons are an extremely powerful one at that. if you are able to study one on one with a good teacher, i highly recommend it.

    personally my playing progressed at much more accelerated pace when i was studying with stewart mckinsey. now that i'm stuck in the middle of indiana without a great teacher around, i am forced to go the self study route and lemme tell ya, in comparison. it friggin blows.

    my advice: hunt down a great teacher. you won't regret it.
  11. pete&petelives


    Jan 8, 2006
    Here's what I think about teachers. 90% of them are total ripoffs who won't teach you anything (this is from personal experience). Yet, if you find the right one, you'll really learn a ton. At all the music stores around me, the lessons they offered only had cocky classic rock guitarists who didn't give a crap about me when they were teaching me bass... I really only learned how to read music and that's it. I ended up hating going to lessons because I wouldn't learn a THING! They would sit there and tell me how amazing AC/DC or Van Halen was... (I personally hate those bands (I'm a funk freak)) but then I finally found an amazing teacher, and I learned a whole ton from him. After a while though, it just seemed I had surpassed him (he was a guitar player, and didn't know tons about slapping and the like, but he was just an amazing teacher with anything jazz), so I decided to quit lessons... yet I still think lessons are a good idea as long as you get a good teacher. But hey, some of the most creative players were self-taught, like Les Claypool, even though he did get taught a bit in jazz band at his school.
  12. redsox&bass


    Apr 28, 2006
    well im still in the mix of teaching my self. but my dad always tells me "thats the way a u turn a bassist into a bad bad bad bass man" and bad is meaning good. Than again I'm a bit sketchy on the notes. But you might get a bad teacher or a good teacher...or even a teacher thats not good as a bassist
    No matter what you choose just rock on :bassist:
  13. seventai


    May 9, 2006
    well man you have to br proactive about it. you have to hunt down a teacher that is good, hopefully even great. it isn't just a matter of going down to your local music shop and paying 25 dollars an hour for some dufus to try and show you some lynard skynard song. you need to hunt down the dudes in your area that really are worth studying with and see if they give private lessons.
  14. SOA_bassist

    SOA_bassist Guest

    May 10, 2006
    i want lessons, private or group, but my parents wont let me dish out $25 an hour, whether its my money or their money. I have bought myself the bass grimiore ( helped a little, tons of scales ) and a slap N pop dvd, but it just isnt good enough. The book taught me scales, not how to apply them in riffs, lines, and solos. The dvd taught me some slap lines and technique, but it didnt teach me when to use muted notes or enough slap and pop rhythms.
  15. TL5


    Jun 27, 2005
    I've been playing bass since I was teenager. I'm now in my 40s. I've had the fortune of playing with and for some really gifted folks.
    I figure there's always something to be learned.
    So, I signed up and started taking lessons from a pro last week. I wish I had started formal lessons much earlier. YMMV
  16. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    I don't know what category I fall into.

    I was taught electric bass in the 70s by a couple of old jazz guitar players. I feel I was really fortunate in that they taught me chords and chord structure. They would play chords to jazz and pop songs thereby allowing me to hear what notes worked (how they sounded) or what would sound more out there. I basically took lessons to help me out learning charts in stage band and jazz choir.

    The thing they weren't all that helpful on was fingerings and technique. I played finger per fret because it made sense to me. On my right (pluck) hand I used index and ring.

    I played double bass in grade school so I was kind of hip to proper orchestral fingering, but that kind of went out the window when I took up electric. I quit orch in jr. high because I didn't get along with the band teacher. In college I picked up bass viol again because I had to as a music major (no electrics in the 70s). There I had my first proper bass teacher. She was OK, but, of course, her thing was classical. I quit college after two years (two years of theory -- didn't want to take two years of music history --- and I was broke!) and that was my last bout with the bass viol.

    I began incorporating some of the dbl bass fingerings (i,m,p) into my bass guitar playing and working in the middle finger in my plucking hand. So now the way I play is muttsky - that is a compilation of a bunch of stuff. I consider myself pretty much self taught, but took advantage of teachers when I could. If I could do it over again I would have continued dbl bass throughout and learned with proper instruction and teaching.

    Then there was the couple of lessons with Gary Peacock: what a disaster!! haha! But that's another story.......
  17. Fro0d


    May 7, 2006
    I personnally believe you should have teacher, but only if he/she is a good one.

    If you just go to your local music house and find a guy that doesn't care about you at all, then your friends will probably be dissuaded(which probably isn't good).

    You should deffinately look for a guy that cares about music, and will teach what YOU want to learn, not just a bunch of sheet music (which will come in time).

    P.S. To those who play bass directly from videos and sheets: try learning some stuff you like.
  18. Jay! you're everywhere these days!

    if you're looking for a great teacher, Scott Pazera is in Lafayette and he's one of the baddest low enders on the planet. he took over my teaching duties and he's opened his own shop... MONSTER! also he's one of the best teachers I know. if you contact him, tell him I say 'hi'!


  19. Im a Self-Teacher(as in, never stop teaching myself)...Im sure that having an actual teacher wouldve made everything alittle easier, but I like knowing that everything I have accomplished has been done by myself, from learning Primus by watching Les' technique to building a bass.
  20. Hendrix was self-taught.
    Learning an instrument shouldn't be out of reach to people who can't afford to learn every instrument they want to learn.

    How did the first person to play bass learn anyway?:cool:

    (p.s.) i understand completely why having a teacher is helpful.

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