Preferred instructional format

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by GastonD, Jul 22, 2018.

  1. 4 string

    5 vote(s)
  2. 5 string

    1 vote(s)
  3. 6 string

    1 vote(s)
  4. all of the above on each of the exercises

    2 vote(s)
  5. doesn't matter, as long as I understand the principle

    4 vote(s)
  1. GastonD


    Nov 18, 2013
    Belgrade, Serbia
    I am discussing a possible instructional presentation with an established entity, but they are specialized in guitar. Now, I was wondering, if you were consulting an instructional package (video + pdf) that focused on scales and their application across the neck, what sort of bass would you prefer the material demonstrated on?
    Spin Doctor likes this.
  2. 4 string. It is the most common format, and you don’t want your students to feel like they need a 5/6 string to accomplish your techniques/understand your principles.

    Just be very clear in your teachings so that people can apply the lessons on any bass, in any tuning.
    LeeNunn likes this.
  3. ba55i5t


    May 24, 2006
    I liked how Gary Willis presented his material on 4 5 and 6 string bass and think this is the best approach.
    Pendulous and Spin Doctor like this.
  4. GastonD


    Nov 18, 2013
    Belgrade, Serbia
    Another possible advantage is that the tuning corresponds to that on guitar. The extended range, however, provides a clearer overview of how certain shapes correspond to each other.

    I also like Gary Willis' approach in the Fingerboard Harmony, but my concern is that on the video it would simply take too much time, i.e. be overly tedious to watch.
  5. You could always use a 4 string and show the certain shapes in different areas of the neck (ie starting on the C on the A string or higher up on the E string, etc), depending on what you're teaching of course.
  6. I've honestly never gotten much out of videos, unless it's extremely finger technique specific. It's usually too hard to see what the fingers are doing, and I'm not sure it's ever necessary to see them. Maybe for slap, you kinda need videos since finger technique is so critical to the sound.

    Anyway, my thought is that if you clearly write out the exercises and present them at various tempos, I think that is enough. But a hybrid video and audio format might work. Maybe just a few videos here and there. I really dunno if a scale book needs video.

    I know in the Gary Willis book, I do sometimes wish he had some video, (in one or two cases) just to outline an exercise, but once you get the fingering, an audio file that you can loop for hours if need be is helpful to really get the exercise in your hands and head. Looping video to hit on a downbeat is a dicey proposition and is also super annoying to watch.

    Concerning which instrument to use, I voted all of the above, also like the Willis book, but that could be pretty time consuming. if you do it on 6 string you can cover all the basses (pun in tended) and inform the 4 string players to just ignore the B and C string areas. I think 4 stringers need to put more effort into understanding the relationship between 4,5 and 6 strings anyway. They seem to act like it's some kinda mystery.

    One advantage of a 4 string presentation is that it takes a lot of shifting to get up the neck and that's probably something all bassist need to work on. But of course you can shift on any bass...

    Just my 2 cents...
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2018
    GastonD likes this.
  7. GastonD


    Nov 18, 2013
    Belgrade, Serbia
    It won't about the scales as such, but rather on how to use them for the purposes of visualizing/connecting the fingerboard, while also developing some technical facility, phrasing and ear along the way :)
  8. Nice! Good luck with the project!
  9. AFRO


    Aug 29, 2010
    I voted for the 6.

    I have a book of scales and modes I purchased it long ago when I was on the 4 banger.. but its one of my favorite books because it has the fingering for 5/6 string basses included! so once I purchased my 5 string I did not need to get a new book. I could jump right on in! the additional "Work" was mastering muting dampening and such.. and getting the new notes in a position under my fingers. this book took the holistic approach to include the 5/6 in their charts. the 4 string notes are highlighted (as most use 4 string bases) If I am playing/explaining a concept or scale to a 4 string Bass player, I can have them omit strings/notes they do not have access to. but for demonstration purposes; its much easier to say omit the top/bottom string(s) than it is to have to "ADD" (any) strings IMO/IME. (imaginary strings can be difficult conceptualize)

    its the old adage, its better to have it and not need to use it, than it is to need to use it and NOT have it.

    the 4 is 'included' in the 5/6 string formats, so it to me its always best to demonstrate on a 6 in case you actually get some folks who rock one. essentially covering all bases (or Basses in this case:D:bassist:)
    GastonD likes this.
  10. GastonD


    Nov 18, 2013
    Belgrade, Serbia
    Well, since there will be a PDF file included, I guess it should serve to remove any potential dilemmas regarding the execution of the exercises regardless of the number of strings.