Figuring out which local bass guitar teacher is right for you can be really difficult if you’ve never taken formal music lessons in your life.
I had a lot of success with a local instructor so I am a little biased, but there is no denying the fact that one-on-one lessons are the best way to figure out what you need to work on for bass guitar. Having an expert in the room with you is great because they can diagnose and issues you are having and give you custom tailored advice right away.
How to Find a Teacher
There are a couple of ways you can go about searching for the perfect instructor.
1. Local music shops or instruction halls have lots of flyers for one-on-one instructors in your area.
2. Online – Use google to search in your area or look on Craigslist. Make sure you are comfortable meeting a stranger before you take this step.
3. Through referral – Ask all your friends that play bass and just ask them who taught them. Then try to get a referral discount!
Selecting The Teacher
Make sure the instructor fits all the qualities you are looking for. Here is some criteria you can use to pick the right teacher for you:
- Experience playing in a band / playing shows / touring
- Lots of music theory knowledge
- Excellent at bass (technical skill)
- Flexible hours
And anything else you may want to use as a factor in your decision.
It’s very important you pick a teacher that will instruct you in a way that you enjoy since you may spend a year of seeing this person once a week.
Best of luck in finding your bass guitar instructor. Have any tips about picking a bass guitar teacher? Please comment below.
In this bass guitar music theory guide we will cover major and minor arpeggios and how you can add them to your bass playing.
What is an arpeggio?
A bass guitar arpeggio is basically 3 notes of a full chord that all fit into that chord very nicely. The reason why arpeggios matter is because they will help you creatively and spice up your bass lines.
The major arpeggio follow the pattern below. The example is a C major arpeggio repeated twice. They are the exact same notes, just pick what pattern you like to play more.
The minor arpeggio follows the pattern below. The example is a C minor arpeggio with 3 different playing positions. Pick the one that is most comfortable to you (but you should know them all).
So What Now?
Now that you have the two patterns memorized for major and minor, it’s time to apply this to an actual bass line. Here is a basic, boring rock bass line:
Really boring right? Well try playing it with these arpeggios:
While it may seem like a simple thing, arpeggios are “glue” when it comes to repetitive bass lines. Sprinkle these in, but don’t go crazy. Too many arpeggios is just as bad as 0 bass guitar arpeggios.
Hopefully this article about bass guitar music theory helped you out and made you a better bass player. Please leave a comment or question below and I will get back to you shortly. Keep Playing!
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Now that it’s the holiday season, it’s time to get better at bass! Follow these tips to become a better bass player during the short vacation time.
Practice Twice As Long
Take your daily practice time and double it. You can either turn that into 2 different times during the day or just one big mega-session. I avoid practicing too long because it is easy to get sloppy and stale when you are playing the same riff over and over and over.
Learn A Whole CD
This is something that not many players think about- Try learning every single song on you favorite CD. It will help you get into the bass player mindset and you can easily learn from just playing the riffs off of your favorite music.
Get Yourself A Gift
Don’t be afraid to spend a little coin on your own bass gear this break. What are the holidays for? Giving presents. And who deserves it more than you and your bass playing? Nobody!
Play Some Christmas Tunes
While they may be cheesy and a little agitating, learning some Christmas song riffs will put you in a good mood to spend some time with your family. You also may stand a chance at performing them in front of your family members.
Just keep in mind that family is very important while you are on break, and have fun. Come back a better bass player!
My favorite method I advise for someone who is trying to learn how to play bass is to join a band or start jamming with other musicians.
Joining A Band
You can start a band with a group of friends or try and find a local band that is actively looking for a bass player. You can use different sites to find bands like Craigslist. Or, a local bulletin board may contain some information or fliers about bands trying to find bass players.
Starting a band can be a great idea but it takes more time and resources. Just keep that in mind before you get excited and take the plunge.
Start Playing Music
There are basically two types of bands, original and cover/tribute. Writing original songs can be difficult but it is the only way you will ever be able to tour. It is harder to start this way but can be more rewarding.
A cover bands plays a bunch of different songs by different artists, and a tribute band plays only songs performed by one band. Small difference, but worth the distinction.
Get Some Shows
There are basically two types of shows, individual performances and tours. Individual performances are easier for cover bands to get because the owner of the venue will know exactly what to expect. As you build up your local following of fans as an original band it will become much easier to get shows.
Try some of the things on this list to help improve yourself as a player.
Let’s face it: the more you work out, the longer you are on the planet (generally). The less you have to worry about health, the more time you can spend playing bass.
Listening to Something You Do Not Usually Listen To
Pretty self explanatory, you just have to listen to a type of music you generally do not enjoy or typically listen to. I don’t usually listen to older hip hop, but I’ve found that I really do enjoy a lot of the catchy bass lines.
Use a Different Right Hand Technique
If you’ve learned a riff or song one way, try it with the other right hand technique. The main three I’m talking about is with a pick, your fingers, or slapping with your thumb. This will challenge your right hand technique.
Take A Break
This can be really effective if you are having some creative difficulties. Try not playing bass for 2 days and then coming back with new ideas and a clear brain.
Hopefully this list of 4 things you can do to improve you bass playing has been helpful to you- leave a comment below if you have any further suggestions.