Beginner encouragement - 6 months out

So I have been plugging away through Josh’s lessons for 6 months (got my bass for christmas). I am on module 12. I have basically made it through slow workout on most of the lessons (with occasional success at med and fast throughout) and I feel a bit discouraged. I practice anywhere from 1/2 hour-1 & 1/2 hours every day. I feel like I should be further than I am. I tend toward perfectionism and I don’t want to let it ruin my enjoyment. When I get something down with minimal mistakes, it is SO AWESOME. I have zero intention of stopping – I just feel discouraged I am not better. Any helpful tips? Or encouraging words? I am particularly challenged by fills that my fingers just don’t want to do/getting up to full speed. That jump between 75% and 100% in youtube videos seems so HUGE. LOL “Don’t stop believin’”


First off congrats on making it to module 12, and sticking with it the last 6 months! Roots, fifths, and octaves will take you far in the bass world :slight_smile: It’s not a race and keeping up a consistent practice schedule like you’ve been doing is the most important thing.

Yes! It’s way too big of jump. I used to try to do this using You Tube too. What I found was I needed to be able make smaller increments. This is true even after you’ve been playing a while. The metronome is your best friend here. Then you can fine-tune it a few bpms at a time until you reach the actual song tempo. I’m doing this now with Zeppelin’s “Good Times, Bad Times”. It’s way to fast for me at 100%, but too easy at 75%. I spend about 10 minutes a day working my way up. Am at about 90%. I’ll get there eventually and you will too! Once you get to full speed, you probably won’t even have to think about it anymore, it will become autopilot. But its a grind for sure.

Keep up the great work :slight_smile:


Hi @angierevans

I’d encourage you to also have a look at playing along to songs on YouTube that are relatively simple. Just so you can have fun and feel the joy in being able to play along.

A good easy tune would be Hit the Road jack. Only 4 notes to learn. You can add extra notes if you want but the basic song is just 4 notes all the way through. You’ll surprise yourself at how far you’ve come.


It’s always important to keep things in perspective. 6 months is not a very long time, and expecting too much too soon will only leave you feeling disappointed. Keep playing. You’ll get better.


Also, you can copy the link to the YouTube videos you are watching and post them in LooperTube. Then you can move the speed slider by 0.05x increments.

Hang in there! That feeling will try and creep back in along your journey, but it’s proof you are learning!


You’re doing fine, @angierevans. Every musician wishes to play better, faster, cleaner - whether beginner, intermediate or pro. It’s natural.

Don’t stress. You’re learning something new and foreign to you. Everything comes in time.

Just take it slow and easy. You’ll get there. Just relax and keep practicing.


It took me almost a year to get through the course (if I remember correctly), so if you’re at Module 12 in 6 months, you’re doing fine. Remember you have lifetime access to the B2B course, so you can always do it again. You mentioned you got to the slow workout on most lessons. Maybe you can start again at some point, and try to complete all of the medium workouts that time?

Either way, as others have mentioned: it’s not a race, so just take your time. And maybe let the lessons be for a while, and focus on learning some (easy) songs! The 50 First Songs (in the course extras) are a great place to start.


I might have missed it, but is there a post or thread somewhere describing how exactly to access all the required assets (songs, tabs, etc.) and a step-by-step how-to that explains the 50 First Songs process?

Beginners could really use a detailed walk-through like that.


I struggled with this also. It’s not a good place to go for a new musician. It’s too much pressure without enough experience.

I had to remind myself, over and over, that perfection is the enemy of good and it’s really okay to not be perfect. Actually, it’s really okay to kinda suck at something you love as long as it still brings you joy.

At that point, when I took it from being a job to being purely for my own enjoyment, the course was a lot more fun. Which is what it should be.

I started the course with all this pressure on myself, had to stop before I finished, came back to it months later, had to start over, finally finished.

As adults we’re used to being good at the things we’re good at. For most of us, learning music is completely new. It’s going to take a few years to get “good” and more than a lifetime to learn it all.

You are doing great. Don’t worry about perfection. Try and enjoy the process.

Also, when your finished, consider doing the whole course again. It’s great for seeing how far you’ve come and everyone picks up pieces on the second time around.

You’ve got this! :sunglasses::+1:


In the categories list, on the left, it’s listed as the 50 Songs Challenge and the following thread is pinned to the top. But, there’s also plenty of people to help if anyone has any questions.

50 First Songs 100 Week Challenge

Also folks can go to this link and it has all the relevant links for the challenge.
50 First Songs Pack / 50 first Songs Challenge


Just to be sure: there’s no need to participate in the 50 Songs Challenge. You can just practice and play them for your own enjoyment.

Edit: can’t link to the 50 Songs directly. You’ll find them under the Course Extras on your Lessons page.


You are doing absolutely fine @angierevans

A couple of thoughts, in no special order.
Tempo increases when learning things in the real world can often be 2bpm (beats per minute - if a song is 100bpm, thats a 2% increase), a very small incremental jump, vs. a 25% overall speed jump.

  • 95% to 100% is the hardest jump most of the time for me. Learning a song I can start anywhere between 50 and 75%, all depends on how complex or how my brain and hands feel like cooperating with each other that day.

  • as @Barney says - find SIMPLE songs, or even just riffs to play - play them over and over and over. Riffs are great as they are only snippets and you don’t have to play entire songs.
    You can find youtube people that lteach simple, common bass riffs for free.

  • play what you love, and keep playing it alongside the course work. In the beginnning I played a lot of Styx’s Babe, because it is really simple and sounds really good when you play along. I played cheesy easy songs like this over and over and over.

  • the beginning curve is quite long and slow, but things will start to click. Try to ‘feel’ what you are doing/playing and don’t concentrate stress too hard on it. Part of playing well is letting go (after burning it into your brain and hands that is).

  • I didn’t do my first cover until after over a year.

Keep on thumpin’ - it will come.


@angierevans , i think you are precisely where you need to be.

Myself, i was not able to do the course in 6 months. I re-started numerous times. In fact, i still do the lessons-and it’s two years out now.

There’s a lot to be said for heavy practice, but it’s more important in my estimation to be kind to yourself and recognize the progress you’ve made.
All that time practicing, that’s gonna pay off.

But don’t be afraid to take an easy day, it helps.

Keep plucking. I promise you, you’ll find it.


WOW!!! Thank you so much. I really appreciate your response. Very helpful.


Thank you!!!


Oh thank you. I have been thinking about that. I picked more difficult songs to bite off. LOL


Thank you. You are exactly right. I need to focus on what I have learned. And I have made progress.


I love Babe! I definitely need some easy cheese in my life. LOL. Thank you so much. I really appreciate it.


Lots of quality tabs from easy to hard - great guy, has a you tube channel. Lots of cheese in there including Babe.


Could be encouraging words, could be the worst news you’ve ever heard.

I’ve been playing for over 30 years, 20 of those professionally.
Many, many, many days I feel discouraged that I am not better.
If you are a person that focuses on perfectionism, you’re probably going to have more days thinking you should be better than enjoying how good you’ve gotten.

Best thing you can do - join a band.
Make music with people who make you happy.
Then, you can all gripe together about how you wish you were better, get starry-eyed together about the musicians you aspire to, and - best of all - you get to make music that you are good enough to make, and enjoy it.

When you’re making music - and not just practicing - you don’t need to be better. You just need to do the best you can with what you have.
That’s the best feeling in the world.
And it really helps to lean into that feeling when the “I should be… (insert superlative here)” voices show up.

Best of luck finding a way to make music with others in your circles and community! It will be the best thing you can do for your playing and learning.