A beginner bassist's foray into the unknown

Archive for April 7, 2015

HLBM 12: More Notes on the E-String

Yep. Its 4:15 AM. Didn’t fall asleep yet. Again. Anyhow, I worked out of the Hal Leonard Bass Method more. I ran the Notes on the E String stuff and only had a problem with the ending of Exercise 15. Then, I went over to More Notes on the E String and got through 18 and 19 with no problems. 20 is still tricky to read. Some of it is also because there are both sharps and flats in the exercise. Its my understanding that in actual music (not exercises) this doesn’t happen. Its either all sharps or all flats. I could be wrong about this, but I’m fairly certain that I read it somewhere. But, yeah, it slows me down and throws me for a bit because I’m thinking in sharps, or thinking in flats, but not in both.

I decided to push past it though, since I’ll be repeating it again today for certain, and likely more tomorrow and maybe the rest of the week. The second 1/2 of the page introduces shifting. Its accompanied by 3 exercises that have us shift on a different finger. The first (ex. 21) shifts on the index, the 2nd (ex. 22) shifts on the middle and the 3rd (ex. 23) on the pinky. I found the index one manageable after running it a few times. Again, its not the shifting that’s the problem. Its having both sharps and flats in the same exercise. It really makes me pause.

Snippet from More Notes on the E String (pg. 17)

Snippet from More Notes on the E String (pg. 17)

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HLBM 11: More Notes on the E-String

I didn’t get up early in the AM to practice more after all. Going to bed around 4:30 in the morning nixed that idea, and then later in the day, work got intense, with client requests and a server locking up. Once I got that stuff out of the way, it was after 5 in the PM, so I huddled with the baby, bargained with her so I could change her pamper before getting mommy from the train, and spent the rest of the evening and beginning of night trying to get her to eat before my shifts at being a dinosaur, an elephant, running in circles in the living room, watching Peppa Pig, failing at fixing hair (hey, I’m bald) repeatedly stealing a toast-shaped pillow to sleep on and having it stolen back and vacuuming the ground floor. After she went to bed, I snuck in about 30 mins of practice.

Snippet from More Notes on the E String (pg. 17)

Snippet from More Notes on the E String (pg. 17)

I ran through the Notes on the E String stuff in one shot. My aim was to play them nonstop, as if they were one big exercise, and I did it. I made 3 small mistakes during it, and they were on the exercises that had given me trouble before (14 & 15) but nothing major. Its encouraging to know that just a few days ago, I wasn’t reading accurately enough to translate the notation in front of me to the right fingers at more than a snail’s pace, and now I’m doing it – even if its only 3 notes.

I’m somewhat heartened that the journey of a thousand miles has only 12 notes in it. It means that I’ve made it through 400 of them in 2 pages. 😉

So, I turned the page and beheld the next section, aptly titled More Notes on the E String! They’re just not finished with me yet. Here, we move from 1st position (starting with the index finger on the 1st fret) to 2nd position (starting with the index finger on the… 2nd fret – who’d have guessed?) This one introduced us to our first sharps and flats – on the 2nd fret (F#/Gb) and the 4th fret (G#/Ab).

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