6 Podcasts Every Bassist Should Listen To

Podcasts

Currently podcasting seems to be the new darling form of media.  You can find podcasts focused towards everything from self-help, business, and comedy, to story telling and music production.  I’ve found myself diving deeper and deeper into the world of podcasts for a while now.  For me there’s nothing better than listening to a good podcast on my morning and evening commute.  While I have explored many different types of podcasts, my favorites all revolve around music.  Being a bass player I naturally sought out bass related podcasts first.  While I can’t say I’ve found many devoted specifically to the bass, the couple I have found are truly stellar.  As audio production and songwriting are also areas I have an interest in, I eventually branched out to find more and more interesting podcasts to fill my drive time.  
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Tonic: The Music Improvisation Card Game

Tonic Game

Tonic: The Music Improvisation Card Game is finishing up it’s Kickstarter campaign this week, having more than doubled its original pledge goal.

Created for all musicians, playing any style, on any instrument.  Tonic is a new card based game, developed as a new way for musicians to learn & practice improvisation in a way that emphasizes freedom and fun.  For most of us the idea of improv can be intimidating, and the goal of Tonic is to break through that barrier and make it more accessible.  The game can be played either alone or with a group and requires no experience or knowledge of music theory.   read more

Review: Notation Trainer Android App

Notation-trainer-splash

Concept and Features

Notation Trainer is an incredible Android app created to help musicians improve their sight-reading skills.  Designed by London-based music tutor Stuart Bahn, Notation Trainer generates original sight-reading exercises to musicians’ exact requirements.   read more

Seeking Inspiration? Follow the Sonic Highways

sonic-highways

I just finished watching Dave Grohl’s HBO series Sonic Highways, and I must say that I think it is the most inspirational series I have ever seen.  Each one-hour episode features a different iconic American city’s music scene and one of the studios that make it tick.  The history of each city’s music scene is explored as well as it’s culture and interviews with artists that have defined and been shaped by each city’s musical identity.   read more

Review: Rotosound Swing Bass 66 Nickel – 5 String Set

RS665LDN

There was a time, early on in my bass playing years, that the only strings I would use where Rotosounds.  To be honest, I don’t remember which exact strings they were, all I recall is that they came in an orange package, that the E string was .105 gauge and that they tore the crap out my fingers and frets.  At the time I really had no inkling of what the differences in strings were.  Steel, nickel, roundwound, flatwound, I just played whatever was on my bass and when I needed a new set I’d buy a set of Rotosounds. Looking back, I’d have to guess I was using Stainless Steels, which accounts for the loss of finger skin and fret metal.   read more

NorCal Jazz Presents the JazzDeck ™

JazzDeckTM

After reading Brian Fox’s glowing editorial about the JazzDeck in the May issue of Bass Player Magazine, I decided to order a set and check it out for myself.  Visually, the JazzDeck is a thing of beauty.  The cards are well laid out and easy to read and include a couple of instructional cards to hep you get up to speed quickly.  Music theory is an area I am constantly trying to improve in, so for me the JazzDeck seems like the perfect tool to help me start incorporating theory concepts into my playing.  Once I’ve spent some quality time with the deck I will post a full review, but for now here is the official press release: read more

Jack Bruce Releases ‘Silver Rails’

jack bruce cover

‘Silver Rails’ is the eagerly awaited new studio album by the legendary JACK BRUCE, one of the greatest popular musicians Britain has ever produced. A supremely talented instrumentalist and vocalist, eminently respected by his peers, Jack’s pioneering bass playing style has influenced successive generations of bassists, including such luminaries as Paul McCartney, Jaco Pastorius and Sting, alongside more contemporary musicians such as Flea of the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. He is also the possessor of one of the most powerful voices in modern music and a composer of some of the most original and influential music of the past forty-five years. As a songwriter he has written some of popular music’s enduring classics such as “Sunshine of Your Love”, “White Room”, “I Feel Free” and “Theme from an Imaginary Western”. read more

Chris Tarry Lessons

ChrisTarryLessons

These days bass players have such a wide array of teaching tools it is simply amazing.  When I started playing you either got a book or took lessons from a more experienced player, and those were pretty much your only two options.  Now we have books, videos, private lessons, Skype lessons, YouTube videos, Apps, and an increasing amount of Online Lesson sites. Falling into this new category, Juno Award winning bassist, Chris Tarry, has recently launched ChrisTarryLessons.com.   read more