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Why Jeff Berlin should be president of all music education

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by John Wentzien, Nov 10, 2009.


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  1. Thunderthumbs73

    Thunderthumbs73

    May 5, 2008
    I'd try iTunes- not only can you see if there's any music there that fits the requirements, you can also download it too. Of course for music that isn't on iTunes, you're outta luck, of course.
     
  2. Dmanlamius

    Dmanlamius

    Feb 24, 2008
    Folkestone
    That has hit the nail right on the head for me.

    Everyone is individual, and people respond to each other in completely different ways. This includes learning.

    One mans medicine is another mans poison and all that...
     
  3. Thunderthumbs73

    Thunderthumbs73

    May 5, 2008
    Thank you very much. I like Mr. Berlin's playing. I like SOME of what he says.
     
  4. Roy Vogt

    Roy Vogt

    Sep 20, 2000
    Nashville,TN
    Endorsing Artist: Kiesel, Carvin, Accuracy, Hotwire, Conklin Basses, DNA, Eden
    I just became aware of this post via Jeff's bulletin on Myspace. I have an interesting perspective on this in that I've probably taught upwards of 1,000 bass students over the course of 30 years. I've reached same conclusion that Jeff has as far as the 16 points of music education and bass education. I've also reached them independently of Jeff (with the exception of practicing transcribed solos from other instruments slowly so that you understand what is being played. thanks, Jeff! :)
    I'm a Rock Guy turned Jazzer/Rock Guy/Studio Player/String Bass Guy. Jazz teaches you to think harmonically. That's something you can use regardless of styles. Sometimes I'll look at a James Jamerson transcription with a student and we'll change the feel and it will magically transform into a great walking bass line. Try it with "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" sometime. Players like Chris Chaney, John Paul Jones, Pino Palladino and Raphael Sadiiq routinely worship at the altar of Jamerson, to say nothing of Sir Paul. James took JAZZ bass vocabulary and transformed it and Pop Music.
    Jazz not your cup of tea? You can also learn a great deal about music from J S Bach and his Cello Suites. Harmony is a powerful engine that drives music no matter what style.
    I teach Slap, Tapping, Studio, Groove and whatever in the "verboten" list in the course of my day-to-day as a teacher. Interestingly, you can teach ANYTHING using the concepts of the 16 points that Jeff brought to the table. It helps you learn Slap better, Tapping better, and anything else. Techniques are the easy part, but learning how to learn and how to apply Music really streamlines the process.
     
  5. John Wentzien

    John Wentzien

    Jun 25, 2007
    Elberta, AL
    Artist:TC Electronic RH450 bass system (original test-pilot)

    Do you actually have any important info for us?
    Specific points of where you think Jeff's methods are lacking, and where yours are better.
    Don't just dissagree and not state why.
    Please tell us specifically what they are, and why.
    I'm asking a fair question.

    You seem to want to argue just to be arguing.....and its giving me a head-ache!



    Please
     
  6. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    OK, EVERYBODY JUST CALM DOWN!!!

    :D

    Honestly, I thought this thread was a thread discussing why or why not Jeff should be president of musical education. I gave my opinion why he shouldn't. I did go overboard, yes, but again, if you put yourself out there in such a grossly negative way, you shouldn't be shocked when people react negatively. I got all the respect in the world for Jeff as a music educator and musician, but I think he's sufficiently proved that he shouldn't be president of all music education. I think he should be president of the Player's School, though, and it would be a darn shame if he was not allowed an outlet for teaching where his views are allowed to flourish unencumbered. But I don't have to like it ;)

    I like you a lot, though, John, and I apologize for gumming up your thread with my agenda.
     
  7. Thunderthumbs73

    Thunderthumbs73

    May 5, 2008
    John, when you take the time to have written your own treatises of music education, the state of bass, and have built up a professional and scholarly history as Jeff has, INSTEAD OF MERELY COPYING AND PASTING JEFF'S AND CO-OPTING IT AS YOUR OWN *THEN* I'll take the kind of time to respond as you requested.

    Until that time, my points which are pointedly about YOUR approach and perspective will continue to stand, and I assume will remain unanswered. You can continue to try to make any naysaying about "dissagreements" with Jeff (see above in your post), but you're not fooling anyone. Jeff doesn't need any defense, but if you want to be the self-appointed defender, that's fine. Just don't complain about the job you wanted, and got, and have had for 30-something pages now. You can exit the thread at any time.

    Truth is, if you really like Jeff and feel his opinions (OPINIONS!) should reach a larger group, and hopefully a receptive group, it is my opinion that you have not necessarily done him a great service or "advanced the cause".

    Sorry that dissagreement and thinking causes you a headache.

    Sorry, if I seem a little peeved. The "I think X is right, and I believe in X, and therefore I'm right" line of thinking is ummm... unfortunate and frustrating.

    Have your "Here's what Jeff Berlin says, and btw, don't dare question it" thread. Enjoy.

    :scowl::scowl::scowl:
     
  8. Thunderthumbs73

    Thunderthumbs73

    May 5, 2008
    Jeff, love your playing with Bill Bruford, btw. Tootles, kiddies!
     
  9. John Wentzien

    John Wentzien

    Jun 25, 2007
    Elberta, AL
    Artist:TC Electronic RH450 bass system (original test-pilot)
    I like you also Jimmy!

    I just think we would get a lot more mileage from this thread if posters that disagree with any of Jeff's views would be specific on WHY they don't agree, and then offer up a BETTER or different view so we can discuss it.
    Don't just complain and nag without an explanation.

    Fair enough?
     
  10. Roy Vogt

    Roy Vogt

    Sep 20, 2000
    Nashville,TN
    Endorsing Artist: Kiesel, Carvin, Accuracy, Hotwire, Conklin Basses, DNA, Eden
    I missed a couple of points in my earlier posts. I'm about the business of helping people to make a living as bassists. The more that you can do, the more marketable you are. A Rock guy who reads music, plays any and all styles, and "gets" Jazz is-Will Lee! I'd certainly not feel bad about having his bank account or datebook. In Nashville, the number of quality, versatile bassists who read, play any style, and "get" Jazz are increasing, but I'd still number them under 100-150 players. This is in a town with over 1,000 bassists in the Union directory and countless others scrapping to survive. You're still in the top 10% at least if you are in that category. These guys always work. I want my students to work. It reflects well on me as a teacher. I think Jeff feels the same way.
    I'm also an advocate of the "20%" rule: You should always work on stretching your abilities so that you're frequently the most over-qualified guy on the session or bandstand. I first heard the 20% rule from Stanley Clarke. He said he realized early on that most Commercial Work required about 20% of his technical ability. How cool would it be to be at a point where Liquid Tension Experiment, The Who, Rush, or Dave Matthews band is 20% of your ability? That's my goal and the one that I try to instill in my students. I think if you take Jeff's course of action it will help you get there quicker.
    Now if he'd only write the definitive Jeff Berlin Bass Method....How about it, Jeff?
     
  11. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Braintree
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    LOL sorry John but you made a rod for your own back,so to speak. The very thing you ask of us is all we ask of Jeff but you don't see that. Stand back and look objectively at all this you are abit to close.
    Example I said Pitch fork you highlighted it and pointed it out, i replied, apoligised, and corrected it. Look at point 16 on the first page of your post, why not correct that with Jeff rather than me? There is no instance of Jeff ever apoligising or correcting himself, so what does that tell you? Check out the other thread it is at least discussing and debating.
     
  12. John Wentzien

    John Wentzien

    Jun 25, 2007
    Elberta, AL
    Artist:TC Electronic RH450 bass system (original test-pilot)
    Happy Trolling Dude:D
     
  13. Billnc

    Billnc

    Aug 6, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    What he said +1.
     
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Roy, I don't think anyone would argue that Jeff's methods don't work well (OK, some will argue). Jeff himself is proof that they do. But there's this layer of ugly "my way or the highway" BS where he says that anyone who doesn't follow his exact teachings to the letter is just plain wrong. Then he writes columns and Myspace bulletins dumping a load of dead fish on them. If you get to a point in your life where you don't think you can learn from someone else unless they support what you already believe 100%, or think that no other type of music has anything to offer to a student except your favorite, then you've reached a pretty sad point in your development.

    I also find it very disconcerting that Jeff would have guests like Vic out to his school, use pics of him in his advertising, then call him someone you shouldn't want to learn from. Then he denies he trashes them and calls it "pointing out the truth." Whose truth? Jeff's? Vic's? If you don't think the guy's worthy, don't use him in your advertising.

    Roy, you're a highly respected player who's done great things, so let me ask...when you teach, do you go by Jeff's 16 points to the letter? Do you believe that the only type of music you can learn anything from is jazz? Do you publicly trash others who don't believe what you believe?
     
  15. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Fair enough...OK, a metronome has helped me tighten up my already good time, I can tune my own bass but I usually use a tuner and have never once felt the need for a tuning fork, I have learned a lot academically about music from so many non-jazz situations that it's not even funny, and I challenge the notion that one can hang with a top notch country band after a month of lessons at the Player's School...you might be able to play root/V convincingly but you're not going to be able to hang much past that. I know Jeff has said he's going to ignore me from now on, but I'm putting those out there if he wishes to address them.
     
  16. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Banned Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    I have heard many recordings with Mr. Berlin, seen him play at a NAMM show and read MANY of his old columns (I had a subscription to the old & new BP back in the day)... So here's my take.

    Jeff is a great player and a smart guy.
    Jeff is a questionable communicator. By that I mean that while he has many interesting ideas about music/teaching/etc, he doesn't state his case(s) in a way that is convincing so much as it is confrontational. When I later read that he's a big boxing fan, it all started making sense: Jeff is a pugilist. Okay, that's fair - - I just don't much care for that type of guy.

    Eventually, I stopped reading his column - - it seemed like he was just hurling bombs, not trying to impart information. But you can't take anything away from his playing - - He's the bees knees on the old four string, no doubt.
     
  17. TripleDouble

    TripleDouble Guest

    Aug 5, 2008
    I'm curious on Jeff's (And everyone else's) take on the benefits and merits of studying and transcribing rock n roll basslines as a use of one's time instead of always practicing for the sake of progressing within jazz or classical music. I can't find it in this monster thread if this qualifies as "factual" music to study. I personally enjoy looking into every minute detail of a solid, inspired rock bass part to try and learn what gives it that special something, and find it really interesting to see what gives killer rock players their characteristic swagger. I'm a hard practicing jazzer who still loves his Fugazi, I have equal love for Count Basie and Bo Diddley and all they spawned. I personally see musical growth coming from learning everything i can about both intellectual and more primal music. But, according to Mr. Berlin's wisdom, am I just studying and refining some unrefined art that communicates to the masses in the manner of "Hillybillys or even rappers" (C'mon, thats really snobbish), and gaining no real benefit from this? If this has been covered, please just redirect me, this thread is beast.

    And for the record, I'm a good rock player and an always progressing jazz player. I can neither lay it down quite as monstorously as the freight train of Cliff Williams nor improvise for days like Mr. Berlin. I'm a mutt/remix/sponge, and I'm cool with that. Not sayin' I'm right, thats just what I am.

    Also, I'll apologise for some earlier snarky crankiness of my posts and rudeness towards Mr. Berlin's music compared to other music that I have personal preference for, I was just put off by the absolutist nature of "Jeff Berlin should rule the WORLD". Berlin didn't start the post or make that claim, and i'm really appreciating everyones input at this stage. It's nice to not be reading and talking about gear for a change.
     
  18. nortonrider

    nortonrider

    Nov 20, 2007
    Jeff doesn't fight, but he is very knowledgable about the sport.

    I spent most of my teens in the gym with gloves on so I am wondering what you mean by.....that type of guy?
     
  19. Kitsapbass

    Kitsapbass What key is this?

    May 26, 2005
    Bremerton, WA
    I know he did some sparring. I too remember his old GP column where he talks about it.
     
  20. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Braintree
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    If you like the detail, then learn to transcribe the parts you want to examing. Like Jeff say transcription, the art of writing out music you are listening to is a great way to understand it and learn more.
     

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