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Re: What am I doing wrong with my playing???

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Posted by Rick Threadgill on February 15, 2001 at 10:59:16:

In Reply to: What am I doing wrong with my playing??? posted by Antonio on February 13, 2001 at 23:58:41:

: Hello all! I am new to this board, but I am in serious need of help.

: I have been playing for close to 5 years now, and find myself to be a proficient enough bass player to hold down my groove. BUT.......

: In these past 2 years, I have barely progressed enough to notice. Yes, this is a RUT. One hell of a rut might I add. I have done everything people have told me to do... I have listened to ALL sorts of different music and do so religiously, tried to play along with it, EVERYTHING. What it always seems to come back to is I play the same note patterns when I am creating a line. As well as my finger picking speed is quite slow. I can't keep anything going consistently when I am playing faster. Slower things aren't a problem and I articulate these lines and notes VERY WELL. I don't know what to do here ladies and gentlemen. For the love of everything holy, I am begging for suggestions.

: I appreciate any and all comments that you may have!

: Antonio

Yes, tons of good advice and ideas. What I havn't heard so far is something that helped me become the player I'm becoming. Those articulated lines and patterns are there for a reason. It sounds like you don't have a teacher - if this is true, you have the ability to develop YOUR voice uninhibited by a teacher's point of view. Like it was said, we're not knocking teachers. But every person that gives you an approach to something new puts it in their light. It's not like history or math - there are no definitions. Any note, scale, or pattern will likely mean something different to you then them. If that approach becomes engrained, you will find yourself in the same position you are now, but with someone else's viewpoint. Now, those things you articulate so well are examples of how you will play everything if you devote yourself to it. Those are foundations for the voice that will be known as yours. When you find yourself doing patterns, its because you've mastered that style. Now, sit down start playing, force yourself to never play those patterns, and LISTEN. You will hear what you want to come next, but you will not be able to play it. Learn it. One line at a time, running tideas like you did scales. Again, 15 minutes of concentration is better than an hour of screwing around. Let your imagination run, and you wwon't even be able to keep up. This will build the vocabulary that you are now tired of. When you can run through those, go back to playing. Half of the fun I have is learning to incorporate the things I hear into what I play. EVERY MUSICIAN HAS HIT A RUT. Bird, Trane, Jimi and Beethoven all found themselves in a position of discontent within their music. And usually long after reaching what we consider genius. Anyway, I've probably said too much, but I hope you see my point in context with everything else people tell you. Best of luck with all your musical endeavours.


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