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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. unclejane

    unclejane Guest

    Jul 23, 2008
    It's true - Fergie has actually collapsed the original 16 points into 8, a vast improvement in clarity, economy and applicability and purges the awful prejudices introduced in the originals. It's wonderful.

    Ya'll should follow some of the discussion on the points over there, it's good reading (most of it).

    Ducking out again to leave the sleeping dogs asleep,

  2. Somehow I knew you were going to say that. My reading is poor at best. I've got work to do, thanks Jeff.
  3. Billnc


    Aug 6, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    Has anyone actually used these principles and then debated them? No, there is an arguement about them. Try them to see their merit.
  4. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    Just do it slowly and in Peace. Guys make their practice more tense than it has to be. Simply do the tasks and the results will show up, not when predicted or hoped for, but they still will come, 100% guaranteed Let me know how it goes. Best, Jeff
  5. UncleBalsamic


    Jul 8, 2007
    I just want to say hi Jeff! I love your playing.
  6. whocaresnotme


    Jun 21, 2009
    By the time I was exposed to Jeff Berlin's stance on music education (thru bass player mag-which I don't read anymore) I had already been a bass "player" for many years. Those lessons/rants/columns or whatever you would call them inspired me to become a "musician" not just a bass player. When I, mentally, got my arms around the difference I began to improve remarkably and very fast. For that I thank him.

    One more point re: Mr. Berlin's credibility in a "modern" musical world. Although "methods" of teaching may evolve with time, those new methods are just improvements on prior methods to teach the same principle/theories to make it easier and quicker for the student to learn. The principles and theories are still the same and always will be and they must be practiced properly. With this in mind, I don't see where Mr. Berlin's credibility is tarnished just because time has passed. The truth is still the truth no matter what.
  7. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    These are a guide and they are perfect. They have existed for a long time before people started to debate them or move them around, changing them.
  8. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    Thank you Sir. I try to improve all the time and practice a lot so that I can contribute new bass lines to each new CD or gig that I play. I often repeat myself but, I am aware of this and I aim for new standards. I appreciate your kindness.
  9. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    You have identified my points in a paragraph. Example: the wheel is the wheel, but today it is made out of galvanized rubber. But it is still the wheel.

    Musicians cannot change what are already academic facts. A minor Major 7 chord is always that. The best way to learn the harmony is to practice it slowly, out of time, without a metronome, to learn the facts first, not perform it. Players can't innovate perfection. They can only upgrade the method to transmit it. But music is an art that requires the mind to be the central orb in the learning experience. I have a saying that is popular around The Players School of Music; "You Can't Play What You Don't Know!" But this logic escapes a lot of people.

    To be honest, I have noticed a complete 180 here. Except for the several difficult guys, EVERYBODY else has been terrific. For this I thank you all and offer to any of you everything that I have to offer.
  10. onlyclave


    Oct 28, 2005
    I felt that my electric bass playing improved the most when I was playing a lot of double bass. I studied both Simandl and Bille methods and aside from the electric bass neck feeling like jelly in my hands the theory and logic of double bass just fell into place on electric. What helped the most was the practice in shifting and connecting the notes.

    The muscles used might be different but if you can learn to play relaxed and fluidly on the double bass then playing electric is a breeze.
  11. René_Julien


    Jun 26, 2008
    That was a point I tried to make earlier.
    I have the same experience.

    I build up 2 "settings" of muscle memory. It benefits my electric bass playing the most.
    I don't feel as cramped anymore.

    Although I feel it's not needed to learn double bass to improve technique on bass guitar.
    But it can be a helpful sidedish.
  12. Billnc


    Aug 6, 2009
    Charlotte NC
    Man Jeff, the toughest bit I learned from you was 1.let the results happen, they will in time. 2. Practice out of time and be gentle on yourself. I was extremely hard on myself for many years, when practicing and getting nowhere I continued to practice, breaks were for the weak! Two years ago I sold off my other instruments keyboards etc, except a guitar to teach and dedicated myself to bass exclusively as I love the instrument, inspite of years of jazz guitar study I'm drawn to bass. I've been following your advice.

    When practicing chord tones, it's just that and expect nothing else. Same with reading pieces. It's all coming together without aggravation! You do what you can do and that's all. Practice time is still a few hours a day, but lot's of breaks, whenever and wherever needed.

    The extensive study of chord tones rather than scales (of course I know them) has lead to quicker and more sure variations of walking lines and solos.

    Reading is coming along much better too. Again, no expectations just do it, gently and lo an behold months later it's noticably better.

    So to those who are just starting on the path here, it works.
  13. Peter Weil

    Peter Weil Seeker of The New Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Edinburgh, Scotland

    Slow and steady will do it. Took me a while to learn that lesson. I kept looking for 'shortcuts'. But with the right materials and persistence, we will get there.

  14. TapyTap


    Apr 26, 2005
    Mr. Berlin,

    Thank you for being a light in a musically dark world. I recently purchased your Bass Logic DVD, sat down with my wife and daughter, and was thrilled with what I heard (both musically and logically!). This led to some great musical discussion between our family members and confirmed my desire to attend the Players School of Music (I also live in the "Sunshine State" ...so your school will not be that far of a schlep for me). Unfortunately, I am currently detained by a chronic health problem, but I certainly plan on attending as soon as I have healed. God willing...I will do so! (My family also backs me up in this decision.) It amazes me that such a fantastic school is practically right in my own back yard! I have actually been to your school a number of times in the past...but it was a music store then :D

    I also want to tell you how much I admire you for the way that you took care of your son during his illness. That speaks volumes to me about your character and integrity as a person. You and your family will remain in my prayers.

    Musically, I now wish to focus all of my energies into the electric bass, and I would like to work towards the 80 week diploma that your school offers. While I have played various instruments over the years, I am relatively new to the world of electric bass. Academic discipline and focus are strong points for me, and I am quite certain that I want to study bass at your school. Would you advise a "green" bass player such as myself to take this course of action, or would you suggest another route? By the way, if your school offered a 160 week course...I would most likely take it!

  15. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    ...And you always will. Without fail! No method of learning is guaranteed to help a musician become a better player except that method which insists upon articulating musical facts and truths. Factual music teaches facts and the player has to represent them on their instrument. Through this method you are 100% required to be musical, not necessarily creative or inventive, but representative of the music required to be played. Nothing else comes close in academia.
  16. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    Take care of your health first. This is the most important thing to do.
  17. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    Music is hard. Yakking about is is easy. some guys just don't know when to stop anaylizing the stuff and start working on it. Music truly throws a lot of guys. Don't be so mystified by music. If you need what to do, you start by recognizing that your bass was invented to represent notes. If you don't know how to do this then your bass can't do anything until its owner knows what to use it for. This happens with practice. Good luck and if you have any questions, let me know.
  18. Can we ask just, anything? Anything at all?!
  19. Bassman8416

    Bassman8416 Supporting Member

    Oct 18, 2004
    Long Island,New York
    Hey Jeff,
    I have nothing but respect for your music and your willingness to stand by what you teach. What are your views toward studying music in schools such as the New school, City College(CCNY) etc. I am 48 yrs old and have returned to school (CCNY) auditioned and was accepted to the BFA Jazz performance program. I have learned so much in one semester, but we really move through things fast. Its also a grind and taking math and science is tough as well...maybe its the age.LOL! I also commute 3 hours to and from the city and gig as well. It seems much of my time is spent going in running from class to class, doing homework. It seems to me that studying with a top notch teacher once a week and practicing and hitting workshops and playing with others a notch or two better than myself could produce similar or better results.
    Can one attain mastery of the electric bass(Jazz and other genres)without a college program, if so how? Private teacher, the points you mention?
    Thanks man..... I appreciate your time.
  20. JeffBerlin

    JeffBerlin Guest

    Jan 10, 2009
    Vy not!!!!!!!!!!!!

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