Hello, for the new year I thought I would start a new bass ramblings blog where I will write about the miscellaneous bass related stuff the fills my brain on any given day. Recently my bass brain has been filled with the notion of getting a short scale bass. In reality, I actually already own two short scale basses, a Rogue Beatles style “Violin” bass and a Fender Acoustic bass. The Rogue is strung with flat wound strings and the Fender with Half wound strings. Anyway, in the process of working my way through Roy Vogt’s “Teach Me Bass Guitar” I decided one day to work on a lesson with the Rogue bass as that it is small and was easy to grab. I quickly realized how much easier it was to run through scales and exercises than it was with my Fender P-bass. This got me thinking and I broke out my Fender acoustic and found that it also was a joy to play. I bought my Fender acoustic bass back in 1998, I believe that it was one of the first acoustic bass offerings by Fender during the MTV “Acoustic” era. What I remember the most is that I wasn’t actually looking for a bass the day I bought it, I just happen to see it in a music store and decided to give it a try. I immediately fell in love and could not put it down, I HAD to buy it. Needless to say, 11+ years later I am still happy with my purchase. I am now realizing that the appeal may well have been the fact that it is short scale and easy for me to play. I do not have big hands and have always found it a bit of a challenge to play bass. My normal weapon of choice has been a Fender P-Bass, although I have tried several other basses I typically end up back with the P-bass. On a side note, I also own a Lakland Skyline 5 string which I also decided to play during this experiment and found that, even with it being a 35″ scale, I enjoyed playing it more than my normal 34″ scale basses. Perhaps the fact that the string spacing is closer together than a 4 string bass makes it easier for me, I am not sure.
Warning, Lesson 4 is full of enough music theory to make your head spin! Of course, I mean that in a good way. Clocking in at just over an hour, there is a lot to learn in this lesson. First Roy show’s us a Steve Bailey exercise technique called the “Hazard”, that is sure to give your forearm a workout. I was feeling sore before the lesson even began.
At long last, I am finally ready to report on Lesson 3 of the Teach Me Bass Guitar Course. Sorry for the delay, I have a number of excuses but will not detail them here. Let me start by saying that this was the first lesson that was a bit of a challenge to me. I was a little surprised by this as that I have been playing for so long, but am at the same time enjoying the challenge.
So, I’ve moved on to lesson 2 and am already wishing I had more time to devote to this. I am crazy busy at work right now, and did I mention I have 2 young daughters who demand most of my time away from work. Lesson 1 was very basic and I just ran through the exercises to get in the habit of doing it and work on my left hand technique. I am also trying to concentrate more on where all of the notes are on the neck.
Okay, here we go. Sitting in front of the computer, bass in hand ready for my first lesson. Our lovely narrator, Ashley, is back to give us a quick overview of the lesson before turning it over to Roy. Roy starts out with a quick overview of how the lessons are going to work then talks about the bass guitar. Realize now that this is for the complete beginner, the kid who just got his first bass and knows nothing. Roy describes the parts of the bass and essentially how it works. It is brief, yet very informative. I can see how the information provided would be useful to a new player and it is brief enough that it does not annoy an old dog like myself.
My first stop on my journey was the website: http://www.teachmebassguitar.com/ . Here You will find general information about the course and Roy Vogt as well as a couple of sample lesson’s. The website looks pretty slick and has all the basic info about the course including how to purchase it. Should you decide to purchase the course you can choose to split the purchase price into 3 equal payments, which is a cool feature if funds are tight. On the site there is a link called “Thunder Row” which looks to be a social type website for bassists. Upon clicking the link for Thunder Row you are directed to a page that informs you that it is a work in progress and should be available “This Fall”, it then presents you with the option to sign up to receive an email letting you know when it is available. I submitted my info and received an email a day or so later inviting me to check out the “Beta” version of the site. I have checked it out and a lot of the links are not working yet, but it looks to be a cool bass oriented site and forum.
So, on a whim I decided to break down and buy the new Roy Vogt “Teach Me Bass Guitar” instructional DVD set. Just so it is known, I have no affiliation with Mr. Vogt or The Learning Dock. My thought was that it might be helpful to share my experience with other’s who may be interested in purchasing this program.