I teach pro, semi-pro, and serious amateur bassists via Skype and in my office in Nashville. My Skype lessons feature Hi-fi pro sound and wide angle HD Camera. I have been bass tutoring privately for over thirty years and many of my former students are working professionals or are successful part-time bassists. With bass mentoring you will find correct, useful, and musical information regarding what it takes to compete and function in the pro world of bass playing or simply to play better.
I play bass full time in the studio and have exhaustive credits in the recording field as well as the live venues too…. ( click on the ” About Steve Bryant ” tab) I started playing in 1969 and went pro in 1975 playing just about every type of music out there. While there are tons of material out there in the form of videos, books, magazine articles, and clinics; These avenues are generally fixed on a particular player’s style and indeed the ” athletic event” of the chops being displayed…. This is all well and good for the fan of the player or bass fans who love to cop those licks. ..but because they do not study music and good content that fit the requirement of the gig and develop their own artistic style, they are dead in the water..Witness many a blooming player who copies players and are either unaware or willfully not recognizing that there are a legion of bassists copying the same licks as a famous player and cannot groove, know what key they are in, or get a handle on how to project a tune. Very few on this path stop to consider that what they are doing is predicating their entire musical output on something has already been done and you will only be a copy. The true musical life is not built on that. First, meet the requirements of the gig and after that is satisfied you can invest yourself and your own art into whatever music you are doing…..This is simply what makes a great player. I am amazed at the lack of material out there that helps the aspiring bassist to have the skill level to gig, play shows and record..
This site is NOT about
”licks, scales, or what player did this run on this tune”
By the way, I’ve never been hired to play a scale. Music functions chordally…not this scale over this chord…but PLAYING the chord. You will be learning chordal theory that forms that basis of all western music
Correct grounding in real music will be your portal to being your own person while satisfying the requirements of the gig.
My tutoring sessions are an intensive and complete program in the grounding you need to compete in the real world of music. I will teach you what I’ve learned over 35 years of recording and touring. I am an experienced teacher to dozens of bassists who are pro and semi-pro.
I’ve found many sources of bass education to be lacking. This is because they teach licks, scales, and exercises that have nothing to do with understanding musical events and functioning in chords.
When you understand how music works, you become a more engaged and competent bassist. It doesn’t matter which musical style you play. With this program, I am making myself available to musicians who cannot travel to my office in Nashville and need professional guidance.
1) I recommend weekly sessions, especially for the first two or three lessons. Weekly lessons will get you up to speed quickly. You will need to work about 30 minutes daily on the material. Practice is a requirement. You will not see results if you do not practice daily. Consistency counts. After the first few lessons, you may decide to have bi-weekly lessons. This will depend on your progress.
2) Beginners are welcome. But, I do not teach ‘groove exercises,’ licks, scales, ‘hand warm-ups’ ‘speed exercises’ or songs that are current huge hits. I teach musical information and good habits. These will keep you playing for a lifetime. If you learn the right stuff you can function in any musical style. You must learn correct information and good musicianship. This process requires discipline and the decision to learn what it means to be proficient on your instrument.
3) My fee is $65.00 per hour payable thru PayPal. If you do not have a PayPal account, it is easy to set up. You will also be responsible for the small PayPal service charge on my side of the transaction( $ 2.00) that I will add to my fee.
4) I will be happy to go over a few minutes at no charge if we are working on something that needs to be addressed on the spot or you have career questions. I find it very rewarding to teach and help people reach their goals. I want you to learn at your own pace and ‘get it.’ No two students are the same.
5) I am a living, breathing Session Bassist/Producer in Nashville. That is my career priority and my primary source of income. There is a rare occasion in which we will need to reschedule. I can generally let you know a couple of weeks before our ‘Skype time’ so we can reschedule. Please understand that it is possible that I may need to reschedule with you on a shorter notice. This has happened a few times in the last 5 years, but it is a reality of the session business.
Skype address: stevenontheoneRead More
I was approached via facebook recently by a student whom had heard of ” the 10,000 hour rule”. It states that it takes that long to ” master your instrument”. This is an oversimplification. It stresses quantity over quality and how much time the bass is in your hands. it is FAR more important to work on what and how you are practicing than the amount of time you are putting in. Remember to practice music content and to take breaks often to rest your ears, mind, and fingersRead More
Practicing music on your bass ( chord tones, chordal movement, reading) not only gives the musical carpenter the hammer and nails with which to build the house of the creative in expression and artistic content; It requires ongoing work of fundamentals…and practicing them with a view that they are not supposed to contain emotional content — the emotional and creative is right brain dominant and the left is logical and analytical. Many bass players get tripped up when they confuse the two.
Case in point are some bassists not spending enough time on music fundamentals. Instead, they will only practice what they know ( or even more dangerously, what the Think They Know:-) and expect improvement for their efforts…compounded with this is bringing a performance attitude to the the practice session and thereby not tolerating or gaining self-critical thoughts that creates an environment of boredom–
Don’t Right brain your practicing…do the right stuff with giving grace to making mistakes and just correcting them. Go slowly so your mind, fingers, and ears absorb new musical facts…that way you can correct your mistakes simply and without the critical right brain stuff. Making mistakes are glorious in that you simply correct and learn from them — no pressure…just play the pattern chordal stuff that has been used for many generations and also how chords move and ”ask” for next one. This is the basis for all western harmony…it all eventually goes into the right brain creative thinking side without trying.
Remember to keep your practice sessions short at first and be very present with what you are working on — every day short sessions first and as you advance you can spend more time without rigor mortis of the brain:-)
All of my students learn this way, regardless of skype or in office here in Nashville. you can subscribe to my post at my blog landing page.. home page bottom left side and click on subscribe to Posts ( Atom) for an RSS feed
My Tutoring website is www.bassmentoring.com for more information. our will see the same blog content there under the bass blog tab.
Keep it Low, My Friends:-)
The Real Deal– Continued
In addition to getting the chordal patterns under your fingers then into your mind and ears…learn what makes up good chordal movement…If you practice your chordal patterns in fourths… i.e. G -C -F etc — you are playing one of the most common progressions in Western Harmony. Say the chord as you play…you will soon find your way around the neck that you could never learn with scales and just referring to a fingering chart as a crutch. You will also find that your EARS will be picking up the patterns in a recognizable, logical fashion that is musical and relatable to all styles of music….the ” DNA” if you will, of music
All of my students learn this and when the put in the time and study are amazed at how they can listen to music and pick our chords..and how they are functioning in a progression….and they are light years ahead of others who do the creative dead end of too much time practicing scales….
I have four free vids on my you tube channel
here is the fourth dealing with chord fundamentals that is basic to good strong bass lines
and keep it low, my friends:-)
I have played most forms of contemporary music. I’ve seen many acts, artists, and what’s hot come and go. I am posting this for the serious amateur, semi-pro and aspiring bassisst who are working toward a full time career while studying ( hopefully you are doing this) to acquire skills and knowledge to compete in the real world. or, you just want to seriously get good grounding to satisfy your own personal goals.
If this is you, then read on for a short tour of the Real World, Real Deal Music World….
I’ve never been hired to play a scale. That simple fact should inform many aspiring bassist to not waste precious time in ” playing this scale over the chord” — you need to understand two things…chord tones and the basics of chordal movement ( how chords ” ask ” for one another) Many bassists have crashed and burned by not knowing the chord tones that form the target notes for good strong lines. A case in point was a young player who I brought to a session with me and wanted to check our how things worked in the pro world and of course this was his first visit to a ” real studio” with ” real session players” In conversations with him before hand, he had spent many hours running scales on his instrument because ” it helps you find the notes” and that is what many are doing…..
In the course of the session, He was amazed at how quickly we could listen to a tune just once with a number chart in hand and most of the time nail it one the first take in most cases..and get five finished
songs in three hours…He could not believe we had not ” rehearsed the song” the day before…I turned
to him and said ” did you hear anyone play a scale or relate to the other musicians in terms of calling
out scale names to commicate? No you heard CHORDS being talked about” Music exists in chords NOT scale over this chord– my friend could not tell me what notes were in an A-9 chord nor could
even find the notes on his instrument…..yet he would have been in great need of that information if he
were working in the pro world. It is not hard to learn, just doing the ” right stuff”’
Make sure you are learning musical facts when you practice. If your music lessons don’t concern
musical facts then you are dead in the water and shortchanging your development
I’ll have more info on our short tour of the Real World, Real Deal Music World
thanks for reading and I encourage you to comment and add ideas for future posts…it
is about educating ourselves as bassists and more to the point Bass Musicians
see my site for info on studying with me.. www.bassmentoring.com via HD 16;9 wide angle camera and studio quality sound through my Neve Preamps…….
and Keep it Low, my friends:-)Read More
Bass Tutoring via Skype grows…and Steve has Pro Audio thru independent mic preamps and Wide Angle HD Camera
This article appeared today in the New York Times http://mobile.nytimes.com/2012/01/11/us/music-lessons-on-webcams-grow-in-popularity.xml
All of my Skype Students are learning well with this technology..contact me today for info! Skype address: stevenontheone or firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment here…
Leo Fender most certainly started a brave new world with his invention of the electric bass guitar. It made major contributions to the world of music in most pop idioms such as Rock and Roll and Country. One of the easiest instruments to pick up and play yet one of the hardest to master as the instrument is about” Feel” –and the definition of that very word at times can be the grist of arguments on the gig and off. In a world full of Youtube, Blogs, Facebook,Vimeo etc., of ” bass secrets”, bass scales”, ” bass lessons”- very little and especially the free stuff is useful or musicalRead More