Posted by Swede on July 26, 2000 at 17:56:09:
In Reply to: SOME GOOD OLE WISDOM... posted by Stinko Stanko on July 26, 2000 at 17:29:02:
Right on, brother... That makes me think of something I've just seen too many times... I attended a jam session the other day, and up comes a constellation that haven't got a bass player. So they ask the crowd if anybody want's to jump in on bass for some funky stuff, and up comes a guy and takes the bass. It starts of well, some fusionesque funk in D minor comes up, bass player is slapping like a hero (and it GROOVES). In old fine fusion style, every member of the band takes his solo, and finally, bass player will take a solo. So he shows up some cool slapping chops, and he IS good at slapping. Halfway through the solo, he probably thinks like, "Hell, I'm gonna show 'em. Let's kick some ass", so he starts this Wooten doublethumping-plucking-triplet-show. Or tries to. Cause all the time he messes things up, it sounds just like shit, and finally he finishes of the solo, the band eventually finishes of the set and they leave the stage. Not soon thereafter, bassist guy leaves the bar. This is what I'm getting at. It was so apparent to me that he had been sitting at home, feeling he was good at the ordinary slap chops (which he was), and wanted to take it one step further. So he approaches the Wooten slap technique, learns some nice chops, but he does not learn to improvise using this technique. He just learns to play some patterns he feels he can handle with some extra effort over the right chords, and he messes up because he haven't had time to sit down for half an hour before the set to warm up.
The lesson? Good damned, boy, don't try to play it if you can't!
: Hey... Look at it like this... Everybody who practices his instrument eventually gets better playing it. The reason most folks wants to get better usually isn't that they want to sit at home watching themselves improve, but they wan't to hit the stage and feel the ability to play whatever is demanded of the situation, or just simply what comes in mind. To do this in a satisfying manner, logically, you have to know your instrument like a part of your body (Hey, a kliché, but what the h*ll). But there will never come a time when you master everything, 'cause the better you get, the more there is to learn (which is also a kliché, but even the great mr Wooten admits there is tons of things he wants to learn. That is also the reason he still practices like a bastard several hours a day).
: Anyway, the point I wanted to make from the beginning is that Vic, like many other "virtuosuses", isn't up there to show what he can do, but to play some good MUSIC, which is the standpoint every musician should have, but so many, sad enough, haven't got yet.
: In other words; play what you can play and love to play, practice to be able to play what you can't play yet, and play it when you CAN play it. There's no shame showing some shops, as long as you can play them well. Most of all, play music that gives a good picture of you and your heart, and not just your hands. This is nothing more than the true essence of being a good musician.
: Just one more thing... Try to get over some interviews with bassists, and other musicians as well, to learn not just about their technique and stuff, but also learn about their thoughts of playing, performing and other stuff, even take notice of things that hasn't to do with music. This is what I have done, and I must admit, it has probably helped me in my musical improval as much as, if not more than, the physical part of playing (technique and theory and stuff). Check out for example Bass Player Magazines home page (www.bassplayer.com) for tons of old and new interviews. Another place you can check out is Anil Prasad's "Innerviews" homepage (www.innerviews.com). These are great resources of fine musical wisdom... :P Don't stop there, try to find anything you can come over, even with musicians that doesn't play bass, or even the music that you specialise in. There's a gem everewhere you look...
: Keep the beat
: Stinko Stanko
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