Putting in the work

I haven’t posted lately. I’ve been really busy at work, but about 3 weeks ago I made a change. I was looking at my beautiful Seafoam Green PJ, and thought to myself, “That bass on the stand over there…it really doesn’t care how much I work, or about any of my other excuses.” So, I committed to play the bass every day, no matter how short a time. If I want to get better, I have to put in the work.

It’s like when you first go the the gym, and you don’t see results right away. Having recently gotten my strap and holding the bass properly, I just needed to…do the work. What to do? How do I do this?

What I ended up doing, that works for me, was what amounted to some drills (something like Josh’s finger twister exercises, or spider climbs or pinky exercises). The idea here was to 1) have something to do if I am too short on time to setup a video lesson, and 2) work on a skill as a warm-up. In this way, there’s always time to do something on my bass. Then on those days when I have 30 minutes or an hour, after some drills, I’ll put on B2B and get to work.

Drills are, at least at the beginning were real drudgery, but then I could put on Josh’s course afterward as motivation to get through them.

  1. 10 minutes of skill drills
  2. 10 minutes of some site reading (knowing my fret board, knowing the staff)
  3. Fun time with the B2B course

I’m happy to say it’s starting to pay off. Today, I had only 15 minutes of lunch left for my bass time, and for the first time I was moving down the fretboard with hardly any buzz. Something just started working, and now things just seem much more attainable than before. I may fret like crap tomorrow, or maybe I’ll get even better-- but, I’ll keep working.

Just have to put in the work to get better.

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Awesome!
If i come across a riff or a line or an exercise that I like in a lesson of any kind, I add it to a list of things to do if I have a quick minute or two. Or if I am watching TV and want to noodle here and there but still watch/listen.
I find without the list i forget where all the good nuggets are.

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Yeah, there is a super hard, 3 string lick that combines off timing, hammer on - double hammer on that I play over and over and over and over if I am not thinking of anything else to do.
It helps that I can play that song much better, plus it is conditioning, strengthening, practicing, gaining dexterity and better timing, and all sorts of things. And even if I do it for 5 min a day, and thats all, I still did something.

I do not mean to make it sound like I only do 5 min a day, and only do that, but if its one of those days, and thats all I do, its still better then not doing anything at all.

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Good for you, Ken @kwt7667 . . . :slight_smile:

Glad to hear you’re making progress!

Cheers
Joe

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Exactly why you should always keep your bass in a place where it can keep a steady eye on you, and harass you if you fail to pick it up at least 5 minutes a day.

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@PamPurrs is absolutely right. One of the most overlooked essentials for continuous practice is a guitar stand with a guitar on it, ready to be played, sat in a place where you cannot ignore it. One in every room of your home is preferable. :smiley:

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@chordsykat, please connect with my wife and share your words of wisdom and logic until clear understanding is reached.

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I will call her up as soon as I find enough money to pay my phone bill! Spent all my dough on outfitting my house with a guitar in every room!

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Pam,

I think I remember you saying this a long time ago, and it inspired me.

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Hmmm. I have two…so, one more bedroom, den, living room, kitchen… what kind of bass would work in a kitchen bath environment. :stuck_out_tongue:

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A Bongo, it doubles as a toilet seat. :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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Large mouth bass, fileted and gently sauted in olive oil with a zest of lemon and some cajun seasoning …

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I’m really excited about it. I picked up my bass again today, and I just picked up where I left off. It’s like learning to talk all over again, except I am learning to communicate musically with my bass. Get those ideas out of my head…through my fingers…into my bass. I’ve so much I want to say with my bass! I really want to make something really beautiful.

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Give it time, put in the work, and soon enough, you will be speaking full sentences, even a paragraph with your new found language. Then one day, you will write an essay, and pretty soon, a book.
Put in the work today, and it will pay off tomorrow.

Really cool to see you all excited again, this truly is an instrument that can get your juices flowing.

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I’m in total agreement with a guitar in every room, but it’s not in my budget. Since COVID my wife does depositions via Zoom in our bedroom. I can’t practice upstairs since it would disturb her. I have a Carvin bass downstairs with a Phil Jones Double Four that I practice with while she is working. I just watch lessons or tabs on my home theater at low volume or use headphones, which I hate using headphones. Upstairs I keep my lovely seafoam green Fender Jazz with a brand new Markbass that I play after she’s done with work for a couple of hours. I’m disabled and can’t work so I don’t do much other than the gym, clean house, take care of my French bulldog, cook for the wife and practice, practice, practice. Wish I had a short scale bass to help with those octaves though. Small hands suck.

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It is. This forum is a bonus too. You read a lot of things, some your ready for, and some you will be ready for. :blush:

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I really don’t like headphones either. It’s gives my bass a different sound, and they are hot. Seafoam green is pretty cool color, I build my Fender PJ in Seafoam Green. It’s such a cool and relaxing color.

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Made a similar commitment to myself last month. With a new baby to draw my attention, I had neglected to really start learning for well over a year. Purchased B2B, and promised to do at least one full lesson and all 3 workouts every day. Only missed 2 days so far, one due to an extremely fussy baby, and the other due to vaccination side effects where I could barely move without pain, much less play bass.

Now my wife has decided to dust off her 6 string and relearn as well ever since this became a habit, so I’ll have a built in jam partner soon. Also promised myself no new gear until after I complete the course, so that’s an added driver as well!

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Hi @groovystargazer, welcome to the forums! Congrats on the new baby and on your start on the road to badassery :+1:

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Hey @groovystargazer, yeah, babies can put a damper in things, until you change a pamper, and put them down.
That is a great commitment, you should be progressing quickly with that schedule.
It is funny how vaccinations are so different for all people. My mom was sick on the 2nd shot, I have heard people saying they were sick for 3 days, or their arm hurt really bad. i had nothing, although, I did sleep a little more for a couple days, maybe?

It is really cool you will have a built in jam session in your house. In about 6-8 years, you can maybe get yourself a drummer in the mix??

Welcome to the forum.

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