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RE-learning how to play music, the right way! (without tabs!)

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Peatroosio, Apr 26, 2004.

  1. Peatroosio


    Apr 24, 2000
    So I just recently realized, after playing the bass for five years and the guitar for six, that I really have no idea what I'm doing! I've been learning music in one form or another throughout my life, but i never actually pursued learning chords, scales, rythms, or anything else that seemed potentially complicated. I'm not going to have my computer with me this summer, so I plan to relerarn how to play music without Taborama at my command. Do you have any advice for how to do this? Any good instructional books that start at the begining and help develop a functional understanding of music? Any advice is much appreciated!
  2. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Good advice, but, in my opinion, a bit too advanced for someone starting on "all this theory nonsense" from scratch.

    Hint: you could do a lot worse than reading jazzbo's "Introduction to Scale & Chord Theory", link below


  3. WillPlay4Food

    WillPlay4Food Now With More Metal! Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2002
    Orbiting HQ
    I would get either "Serious Electric Bass" by Joey Di Bartolo (may have author's name wrong) or "The Complete Electric Bass Method: Volume I" by Chuck Rainey.

    Neither of these books have TAB and both assume you are just picking up the instrument and start with right hand / left hand positions, how to read sheet music, etc.

    I think if you want to concentrate on theory, chords, scales, modes, etc. then Serious Electric Bass is for you. I got my copy at GC last weekend.
  4. CJK84


    Jan 22, 2004
    Maria Stein, OH
    A piano (or keyboard) is an easier instrument on which to learn scales and chord construction than a bass - probably much easier for most folks.

    You do not have to be, nor attempt to become a skilled pianist to benefit from using the piano as a means to learn theory.

    I learned the intervallic steps of major and minor scales and chord construction on a piano years ago. The graphical nature of the piano keyboard made this relatively easy.

    Once learned on the piano, it's fairly simple to transfer this knowledge to any other instrument - like the bass.

    I'm not anti-tab, but I believe it hinders ear development if used more than rarely. Learn some bass lines from recordings (by ear) and then try to analyze what's being played theoretically.

    For example, McCartney's wonderfully melodic line on Penny Lane follows a descending major scale at the beginning of each vocal phrase of the verses.

    Using the piano to learn theory saves a bassist or guitarist lots of time.

    Good luck.
  5. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Aah OK, I admit I assumed (bad idea from the start) based on the title "Harmonic Materials In Tonal Music" sound pretty scary!
    I might check it out myself then.

    jazzbos article is still a danmed fine start point tho.. plenty to learn for years to come within

  6. WillPlay4Food

    WillPlay4Food Now With More Metal! Staff Member Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2002
    Orbiting HQ

    I checked at Amazon.com and they want $73.00 each for those books. Where could I pick up the pair for $60? I'm very interested in these books.
  7. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    I might well check them out. Honestly tho, I have a huge back log of books I've been meaning to work on. I tend to play a lot more than I study

    Not to be pedantic, but I dont (think I) have an especially superficial knowledge of the theory I've grasped so far, but an extra angle cant help of course. I've learnt tons in the last few years to the point wher I've gone from playing "big dumb rock" to my first jazz band now... this is where the learning really starts of course :)
    I've noted the names of those books anyhow, and thanks

    Improvisors bass method by chuck sher is goodun too... a bible of bass playing almost
    I have a copy of levine's jazz theory book.. i'll get to it one day!
  8. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    hey chap, no, that's cool.. i wasnt sure, but i wasnt worried anyhow, cheese :)