If you ask me 2016 seemed to be a bit of a musical disaster. We lost way too many incredible musicians and had the craziest election year I have ever witnessed. I myself started the year with several well-intentioned musical goals but sadly did not manage to achieve any of them. Let this be my attempt to kick things into gear again for the new year. I’ve dragged my heels for far too long working through Teach Me Bass Guitar. 2017 is the year that I finish it!
Lesson 15 of the Teach Me Bass Guitar focuses mainly on the technique of two-handed tapping. Roy refers to this technique as a “Spice”, meaning a little is okay, but too much can be a bad thing. Two-handed tapping is more of a “Look at me” style of playing, not something you would make a living out of doing.
Before I get into my review of Lesson 14 of Teach Me Bass Guitar I would like to talk a little about my journey so far. Looking back I am realizing that it has been more than 5 years since I started My Journey with Teach Me Bass Guitar. In that time I have had numerous ups and down in my life, but have continued to work through the course at my own pace. Upon completing Lesson 13 and returning from Roy Vogt’s Bass Boot Camp in 2013 I decided that I rushed through too many of the lessons and that I would start the course over. Working through the course a second time I feel I had a greater understanding of the concepts presented and thus got lot more out of it than I did the first time. This journey has taken me longer than I ever anticipated, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I have learned so much about music and playing bass, and met so many incredible people along my path, I wouldn’t have it any other way. Today I am proud to say that I have worked my way back through to Lesson 13 and am close to completing Lesson 14. To some it may seem long over due, but to me it seems just about right.
It is almost here! Roy Vogt’s Fantasy Bass Boot Camp 2014 is only one month away! I Can’t wait to head back to Nashville to spend an entire week solely devoted to playing bass. Looking at the agenda it looks to be a phenomenal week; Technique, Theory, Style, Jazz, Ear Training and more. So much to learn and absorb in one week, but with Roy, Adam Nitti, Anthony Wellington and Tim Smith as our instructors, I know we will be in good hands.
I’m not much of a competitive person, but I don’t like to feel defeated. If you’ve been following along you may recall that Lesson 9 of Teach Me Bass Guitar left me feeling a little bruised and battered. I don’t know what it was, but I just couldn’t get the feel for playing slap style and eventually gave up and moved on. I’ve always regretted that and now feel that it has, in some ways, held me back.
My last couple of days at Roy Vogt’s Fantasy Bass Boot Camp were so jammed packed that I didn’t have time to blog about it. Fear not though, I have decided to pick up where I left off and finish out the week now that I am home.
Thursday our group spent the day with Tim Smith focusing on groove and discussing ways to get our hands and ears at the same playing level. Tim is a great guy and superb teacher! He gave us some practical tips on things we should be doing to develop our ears and suggested that we go back and review the earlier lessons of the Teach Me Bass Guitar course to make sure we haven’t forgotten some of the earlier concepts. As a homework assignment, Tim suggested that we learn one new song everyday as a way to help develop our ears and hands.
Roy Vogt’s Fantasy Bass Boot Camp is just two days away which has me transitioning from the practicing stage to the packing stage. I am feeling fairly confident in my playing ability on the two songs I chose to learn, though my soloing efforts have not improved as much as I would have liked. At this point I’ve decided not to worry about it too much and just enjoy the ride. As I said before I’m not going to spend my days at Bass Camp stressing over whether or not I can pull off a solo, it’s just not that big of a deal.
Roy Vogt’s Fantasy Bass Boot Camp is a little over a week away and I have been prepping my gear in eager anticipation. I decided to make the journey with my Fender Jazz Deluxe as I have been preferring the thinner neck lately. One of my big worries was how to safely transport my bass from San Francisco to Nashville and after much deliberation I decided to go with a good hard shell case. I picked up an SKB 44Pro case which fits my Jazz like a glove. It has a nice plush lining, reinforced TSA locking trigger latches and is fairly lightweight for a hard case. Ultimately I would prefer to gate check it, but if not I can at least have the piece of mind that it is well protected.
I have a confession to make, sometimes I wonder why I continue to play. I think I may be technically challenged. I feel like no matter how much I study or practice, all I am really doing is maintaining my current level. I study theory for a month then move on and forget 95% of what I learned, I work on scales and triad for a while then move on and forget 95% of what I learned. I don’t know why but I seem to have very low retention for musical studies. I feel like for every step forward I take 6 steps back, which frustrates me to no end. Working my way through Teach Me Bass Guitar has certainly improved my playing immensely, but still I feel like my retention is low.
Roy Vogt’s Fantasy Bass Boot Camp is just one month away and I still can’t believe I’m going! Although I am obviously excited, and look forward to it, I must admit I’m a bit nervous. I haven’t worked on the songs Roy sent us back in April as much as I wish I had. So far I have one of the songs mostly down, but would like to add at least one more before I head off to Bass Camp. Now, more than ever before I need to focus on the task at hand.