I might be getting a little ahead of myself as I only started the course on Monday but I’m taking the ‘30 day hardcore approach’ as I have some previous experience and although I’m going to allow myself some extra time on more difficult lessons I reckon I will still have completed the course in another four to five weeks? So what then? Looking at the lesson plan I’m guessing the course takes people up to somewhere around intermediate level so how have people progressed beyond this? I have a lifetime membership to Scotts Bass Lessons (am I allowed to mention them ) but I have avoided it so far as his scattergun approach to lessons and old school ‘let me show you something and leave you to explore it yourself’ approach doesn’t work that well for me. What I’d really like (and I guess this is a question directly for Josh) is a supplementary course to take skills from Intermediate to advanced - How about it Josh? something else that occurred to me - reading some of the general comments I get the sense that a lot of members have quite advanced skills, playing in bands and such like, so what keeps you coming back? Are you still finding value in the course after you have completed it or are we just such a great bunch that you can’t tear yourselves away . Please share with me your strategy for continuing to improve and Josh - What do you reckon: Badass and Beyond?
There’s this thread where Josh has been collecting feedback and suggestions for his next course. I’m not sure whether he’s actively working on it or it’s something for the future, but as far as I know he hasn’t shared any specifics yet (especially not a release date).
As for what you can do after the course, you can take a look at the BassBuzz video guide thread and go through all of Josh’s YouTube videos. Or if you are doing the course right now, you might as well watch the relevant ones after each module.
Many people also plan on doing the course a second time. I definitely think that would be useful for me as well, but haven’t been able to convince myself to dedicate those 100 or so hours to the course again.
Personally, I spent a month or two learning songs after B2B, and then started going through a bunch of books with all kinds of exercises. I’m now working on improving my groove (especially 16th notes), finger dexterity, sight reading, some more music theory… So basically everything. (Except joining a band. That’s not for me.) And I am nowhere near advanced, so I keep coming back to the forum to ask stupid questions. and share accomplishments, if there are any
I wouldn’t say the course leaves you at an intermediate level. More of an advanced beginner level with all the basics and the tools you need to get to the next level, but that’s on you.
What it gets you is a really solid foundation to build on and the ability to work with others (or continue practice yourself) and improve. You can definitely jam with a band or gig after the course.
I think you are right Howard. I probably worded it badly. I think B2B probably takes you ‘up to’ intermediate level rather than ‘at intermediate level’ if that makes sense.
Hey, I totally missed that thread Akos, but I’m new here and I’m sticking to that excuse. It’s good to know that another course is being considered!
Hi Chris! Just some names of my favorite online bass educators other than Josh:
- Mark Smith, Talking Bass
- Ariane Cap, Music Theory for the Bass Player
- Jim Stinnett, Real Bass Lessons (very good after you’ve reached a certain level - learn to read music and get his books, too!)
Apart from that I would say: Take your time, repeat things often, slow them down, repeat them even more, and repeat them again! The problem for me was (and is) that as a beginner I didn’t know what I didn’t know. It’s an exciting and ever challenging journey. Muscle memory, good technique and many other things won’t happen overnight but with playing, playing and playing (at least for me and I think Josh’s course is built the same way) - That said, it took me a year to finish B2B but I got sidetracked in between. Three years later I can say that Josh’s course definitely was the best jump start into bass world I can imagine!
@chris6 yes, you are allowed to talk about Scott, there are many many threads and comments here about him. If you do a search, you’ll find lots of them.
As @howard pointed out, completing this course doesn’t automatically land everyone at the same level. You could come out as a strong beginner level player, or a mid level intermediate player. It all depends on each individual and their level of commitment to the craft, their goals, and how much time and effort they put into practice along the way.
For me I found myself yearning for more as early as 1/4 of the way though the B2B course, so I purchased Arian Cap’s book, “Music Theory for the Bass Player”, which I read cover to cover when I wasn’t watching my B2B lessons. I also signed up for Mark Smith’s “Scale Essentials” course at TalkingBass. I began that course and took it simultaneously with B2B. I finished the Scales Course prior to finishing B2B, so I then started on Mark’s “Chord Tone Essentials” course, again taking it simultaneously with B2B. I finished B2B prior to completing the Chord Tones Course, and at that time felt that I was a low level intermediate bass player (my own personal assessment). I have since gone on to finish the Chord Tones Course, and am still taking additional courses at TalkingBass.
My point is, everyone is wired differently, some with loftier goals than others; some with more spare time to devote to practice, etc. My goals were (and still are) quite high, and being retired I have plenty of free time. But not everyone is able to do what I have done. So, its on you entirely as to where you want to go from B2B, and whether or not you are willing and/or able to take two courses at the same time or wait until after finishing B2B etc.
I will say, that B2B is probably the best beginner course you can find, so you chose well.
That’s all really helpful advice. I’m still hopeful for a follow up course from Josh but I will check out Talking Bass in the meantime
Yeah, if I were to elaborate, I would say that this is by far the best beginner bass course online. And it retains its beginner focus to the end, with the last few lessons in particular being very helpful in helping you move on. The course contains all the fundamentals you need to get up to an intermediate level.
That said, some of the things that I would consider critical parts of an intermediate level toolkit are only introduced briefly in the course, no doubt on purpose, and require significant practice followup work on your own to get there. Specifically, things like 16th notes and syncopation come to mind.
But as a beginner course, the only real lacking it has is that it ends
Thanks for this advice, Pam. I appreciate you sharing your experiences.
For anyone who is interested, you can watch this video and see if you are an intermediate bass player in Josh’s book:
The only way to really get better (well, not the ONLY way) is to start taking what you learned and applying it. Everyone has a different reason for why they play and where they go, but in the end? It’s a MUSICAL instrument. Musical instruments do 1 thing. Make sounds to be heard. As the player of the instrument you either copy sounds that have been heard before and play them for others to hear, or make your own sequence of sounds for others to hear.
I guess what I am getting at (hopefully not too harshly) is that learning a skill that you then don’t use kind of defeats the purpose of learning it. If you don’t either start playing with others, start making your own songs, or even just recording yourself doing covers…you aren’t really USING what you learned. So for example, if someone teaches you to cook a meal, and you do it…2 things. 1) If you just buy takeout or frozen dinners, what good is that knowledge? 2) Is that the only recipe you will ever learn? If not, will you always only follow a recipe, or will you start to experiment with your own dish? Will you ONLY cook for yourself, or others? Keep in mind on the second set of questions, there isn’t really a “wrong” answer.
What Josh has done with his course is given people enough skill to start to do these things. It’s up to you to decide how you apply the skill. What I can PROMISE is as you apply the skill (however you do it) you get better by doing it.
This is true, @kerushlow . . .
You make some interesting points.
Well put @kerushlow
This is so true. I’d add “simply playing songs for your own enjoyment” too; basically though, the goal is to play music, not be the fastest scale shredder in the west.
It’s one of the reasons I never practice for practice’s sake; I generally just play music and get some focused practice on the parts causing me trouble when I get to them.
Efficient for working towards being a bass virtuoso? no. Fun and sustainable? Absolutely.
Thanks. It’s just a big part of music or really just a part of it, is it IS a performing art. You CAN just do it for yourself, if that really is what you desire, that is cool. At the same time, I want people to KNOW and BE OK WITH, the part of you that wants to perform. It’s completely cool. There is NOTHING WRONG WITH wanting to play and perform for others. It is a noble and worthy cause. Creating something and wanting others to recognize and enjoy it is human. Music is UNIQUELY human.
Take what you are doing and perform it! Share it with other ears. It’s great. I tell ya, when I played my first show, and was playing original songs no one had ever heard, we completed our first song…it felt like an eternity waiting for a crowd reaction (it wasn’t, just that brief silence). The whole crowd freaking cheered!! It felt AMAZING! There is nothing like it.
You make some interesting points kerushlow although I can’t say I agree with all of them. But hey - we’re all different. That’s what makes the world fun! I can understand your enthusiasm for playing Iive but in my opinion, it’s by no means pointless to learn the bass without that goal (or indeed the ambition to record). For some (not me, I hasten to add) the acquisition of knowledge in itself is sufficient. For me, I got the performing bug out of my system many years ago playing guitar in bands and also even bass (badly) in one. These days I would get enough personal fulfilment just being able to competently jam along to backing tracks at home. Maybe one day I might even get into jamming informally with a bunch of guys in a non-live situation but I have no desire to haul gear on and off a stage or dodge beer bottles anymore. I’ll leave that to the young 'uns. It’s like, In a similar vein to learning bass I’m finally trying to get competent at French after being able to read and speak it very badly for most of my life. Not because I travel to France that often or want to speak French in conversation but becase I get enjoyment out of being able to read and properly understand French literature and newspapers (as well as the occasional Asterix book). People have all sorts of reasons for wanting to achieve a skill, some less obvious than others, but the important thing is that people achieve a sense of fulfilment and enjoyment in that persuit. My personal goals for bass are just to be able to achieve a level of competence at the thicker end of intermediate. I’ve no wish to be a shred monster (I’ve spent most of my guitar life trying to play as slowly as possible) but if I could play even one or two of those little licks Josh plays in his black and white lesson intros I’d be a happy man and it would be job done if I ever got the skill to improvise over jazz tracks. I don’t disagree with you at all when you say Josh has provided a springboard for us to go off and explore by ourselves and of course there are many routes to do that. At 62 there is a good chance I’m a bit older than yourself though and perhaps in a bit more of a hurry. Yes, I have the skills to work things about myself but I’ve found Josh’s structured teaching style helps keep me on track and learning much faster than I would otherwise. If there isn’t going to be any additional courses coming from Josh, I’ll probably end up signing up for more courses by Mark Smith or Arian Cap but I’ve spent an absolute fortune on guitar courses in the past that haven’t worked out for me so I would be sad to have to move on from something that I do know works well.
I don’t think he was saying you have to play live. I think he was saying the goal is to play music, and he happens to love and like to talk about playing live.
I have no drive to play live again myself either. I’ve been there and done that, and had a great time at the time but just am not taking that path now - I’m enjoying home studio production too much.
I probably will play live at some point, though, as my bandmate thrives on it. And I’ll gladly go along for that ride, he and I had some really good times doing it before. Of course that means he has to move here
But inasmuch as @kerushlow was talking about the goal being to play music - even if it is to yourself and no one else - I couldn’t agree more, at least for me. Even if it isn’t full songs. I didn’t pick up music again to simply play scales all day.
I don’t think anyone learns an instrument to play scales Howard
Yes, but - there’s picking up an instrument because you want to be a rock star - and then there’s actually being that rock star and playing the tunes, even if just for you and your dog