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Return To: "He Won't Learn The Boxes"

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by SurferJoe46, Feb 4, 2013.

  1. OK - he BEGRUDGINGLY is now allowing me to show him the boxes.

    Here's the next hurdle to clear: I am at a loss to explain the ROOT (yeah - it SHOULD be easy) and all the numerical names of the associated notes in any key - but let's start with a C[SUP]maj [/SUP]first.

    I know it's not like pulling teeth - in this case, it's more 'installing teeth' with a hammer to this guy for him to learn something new. He still gets all squinty-eyed when I go into a new area - but there's hope at least.

    Here's an even bigger request: Anyone got any suggestions on teaching him the Circle of Fifths?

    And --- talking 'Modes' - is there a way to tell him in a different language or perhaps not in the way I learned them to un-muddy the water a tad bit? That would be helpful.

    I'm in a rut to explain it to him without all the 'technical gobbledegook' (his words, not mine).

    Determinately a hard-case student have I (my Yoda-ism for the week) but there's light at the end of the tunnel. He's softening just a bit.
  2. JacoNOT


    Mar 7, 2012
    If me, I'd purchase The Hal Leonard Bass Method (written by Ed Friedland) and require your student to purchase the same. It contains all three volumes with three accompanying CDs for less than $16.

    Here's the Amazon link.

    In fact, YOU should buy two of them (one for you), get the FREE SUPER SAVER SHIPPING (orders > $25) and charge the student RETAIL ($22.99) for his. :bassist:

    Walk him through the books step-by-step, and assign homework. Just make sure you're familiar with each chapter BEFORE you try to teach it. It'll provide a nice REVIEW for you, AND...I'll bet you learn some useful tricks in the process. :D
  3. Thanks -- just ordered it --two copies.

    I also pulled an old copy of Edly's "Music For Practical People" as I hear it's pretty good too.

    At home, I've got The Bass Grimoire, and Appleby's "You Can Learn To Read Music + CD to show him --- but I'll review it FIRST betcha by golly!

    ALL COWS EAT GRASS and away we go!
  4. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    If I ever got a student who dug in his heels like that, I'd tell him to go to the local GC, and they'll be happy to let him dictate the curriculum to them and take his money while he doesn't learn a thing, but if he's going to study with you, he's not going to dictate the curriculum. Period.
  5. JacoNOT


    Mar 7, 2012
    Yow, a man of action!

    Ed Friedland is excellent. I think you'll be pleased with the material and with the structure it'll provide when working with a 'resistant' (or lazy or just plain stupid :D) student.

    I've been thinking about relocating to Wyoming, Montana or Utah. Can I PM you with a few preliminary questions about life in "The Rugged (and free) West"?
  6. CraigTB


    Feb 16, 2012
    Personally I'd keep him far away from the Bass Grimoire for the time being.

    IMO it's way too much information for a guy just getting over his fear of boxes.

    Though the music theory breakdown at the beginning is an excellent crash course, I'd guess your guy hasn't yet gotten to the point where he could learn from it without you translating and keeping it interesting.

    From what I've read about this guy, I'd probably leave the grimoire, multiple scales, and the circle of 5ths alone and start with the goal of teaching him how to arpeggiate his major and minor chords. If he's a guitar guy with big ears who doesn't like to learn with his brain, that may give him more of a handle on what he wants to know vs. trying to keep him interested all the way through the hal leonard method.

    Don't get me wrong on hal, it's 100% the right way to learn, but is this guy really going to be motivated to start reading standard notation?
  7. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Probably not, and that's exactly why I'd cut him loose. Paying to learn music without learning notation is a tremendous waste of time and money, and a disservice to the student not to teach it to him/her. There are plenty of teachers willing to let the student dictate the curriculum as long as the checks clear. I'm just not one of them and couldn't ever become one of them.
  8. narud

    narud Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    santa maria,california
    when the man is looking for his money, i have an easier time becoming one of them:bag:
  9. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    First : Box playing is boring as hell just like pentatonic... anyway.

    For the circle of fifth ... In one of my theory book I have a nice circle with all key center written clockwise and below them there is the alteration and then the relative minor.

    what you can do is : make him play the Cmaj scale, ask him to play the fifth ... so G .. make him play a Gmaj scale, then ask him the fifth ... so D ... etc

    once you you have done that maybe doing it with all the relative minor ...

    then for the mode : write a C major scale and write chord over each note with the name of the chords on top. Then make him play a D scale without C# and F# ... now tell him this is a Dmin7 chords and the mode is Dorian. This is a sound and the structure is WHWWWHW. You can do it with all 12 tones. Show every other mode like that. Then with a program like Band In The Box you can make it play a Cmaj7 chords over and over and over ... then make him play a solo only using mode ... so his root will be different than C ...

    maybe it will open his mind a little.

    Then, obviously you can try to teaches him a Jazz standart like Autumn Leaves ( walking bass line, Chords on bass, theme and solo ).
  10. Well - at least I've kept him away from Tab evil.
  11. JacoNOT


    Mar 7, 2012
    I think you just opened up my mind a little. :D That's a great lesson outline.

    And while I agree with JimmyM's POV, we all gotta eat, so sometimes you just have to grit your teeth and carry on, as SJ46 is doing. Who knows, maybe the "student" (using the term loosly) is his nephew or something...:D
  12. gre107


    Dec 25, 2005
    Send him to Anthony Wellington. Anthony has multiple ways of explaining everything.
  13. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    Thank you very much. But I think I just had great teachers with a good methodology. And for the record I still have a lot of work to do but at least I have a good idea how to get there.

    If you have a question I'll be happy to help you.
  14. JoeWPgh


    Dec 21, 2012
    I would sit him down at a keyboard and just go through the key of C for an hour or so. It's not asking a lot if all he has to deal with are the white keys, and it covers a lot of the basic theory he's not "getting".
  15. He's my barber, and he uses sharp things behind my head all the time - so getting him aggravated is not in my best interest.

    Funny that although he is resisting it mightily, he still shoves money in my bass strings and insists that we do it all over again the next time.
  16. Thanks - loaded them up and printed them. Also did a YT dnwld.
  17. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    I just thought that you could do :

    C ionian
    G dorian
    D phrygian
    A lydian
    E mixolydian
    B aolian
    F# locrian
    C# ionian etc

    or you take a scale like E major going from the lowest note to the highest note on your bass ... so it will mostly be a 3 octaves thing.

    You brake it down in blocks of 4 notes,
    E-F#-G#-A in E ionian
    B-C#-D-E in E dorian
    F-G-A-B in E phrygian

    or it could be :
    E-F#-G#-A in E ionian
    B-C#-D-E in B dorian
    F#-G-A-B in F# phrygian
  18. ics1974


    Apr 13, 2012
    What boxes are you talking about? Pentatonic?
    I would teach him chords. I mean teach him how chords are made from the major scale but chord tones should be primary before getting into anything else theory wise IMO.
  19. I tried the chords-thing. He can visualize the chords he plays on guitar, but since the string count is different on the bass, he gets all fogged up trying to just imagine the fat strings on his bass are the same as the #3, 4, 5, & 6 on a guitar. That just blows his mind.

    Imagining that he somehow got the G, D, A & E on a mandolin, and I'm at a large impasse here.

    It's been a good review for me - especially my finally getting a firm insight into Minor Triads and all - but I'm still trying to find The Rosetta Stone in this series of musical lessons I'm giving.