Doing it the slow way
In one of the threads on TalkBass, a member was complaining about the speed in which his lessons were moving. He feels that he’s not covering much ground, considering that he has about 10 years of experience playing guitar and bass and for the past 2 lessons, his instructor has only shown him 3 arpeggios. I believe that he’s looking for a structured approach to learning the theory behind what he’s been doing for the past decade.
One of the replies to the post was from a TB member named Ed Fuqua. Ed linked to an article from a bass player who taught him for about 14 years, Joe Solomon. Here’s a link to Joe’s article:
- Doing It the Slow Way – The How, When, Where, What and Wise Guide to Practicing a Musical Instrument
One of Joe’s points is to take time to improvise every day, not to save it for special moments. I found this especially interesting because I’ve only recently started to spend time, at the end of each practice session, just messing around with things I’ve been practicing. For example, if I’m learning a scale or chord, I try to come up with an interesting pattern using it when I’m winding down. I then try to blend it into something else that I’ve learned, like when I was practicing major triads a lot and began to mix them with minor ones.
I don’t think that what I’m doing is full-on improvising, but at my level of skill, it suffices, and it lets me experiment with sound, which, for me, is a fun way to reinforce practice.