I like Mark. Sure, he doesn’t have the sense of humour that Josh does but it’s like white bread and brown bread. Scott is brown bread. There’s a bunch of filler in his tutorials that you just don’t want (ironically I actually like brown bread). Josh is like 50/50 bread. He still has a sense of humour but he jumps straight to what he’s trying to teach. And Mark is like white bread. No funny business. He just teaches. There’s a good analogy for you to figure out which person you want to get lessons from.
I’ve found the players path on SBL to be a great learning resource and is structured really well. I have found it a great next step from Josh.
If you like a more freestyle learning style then Arianne Cap is another option. She is starting a cohort (learning group) at the moment (kicks off Jan next year).
I personally find the courses at Talking Bass To be very dull and uninspiring but it is horses for courses. Mark definitely knows his stuff and his live sessions are good fun. But I purchased his beginner lessons and they didn’t do it for me.
There is no need to burn any money working out what works for you as they all offer money back guarantees. Try them out and stick with the one that inspires you to pick up the bass and make some noise.
I never took any of the beginner courses at Talking Bass, but I will say that going from finishing B2B to completing some of Mark’s advanced courses (Chord Tones, Walking Bass Lines, Sight Reading, etc.) was like going from an undergrad degree to a doctorate in a short time.
If you go into Mark’s courses expecting the zaniness of Josh, you will be disappointed. He may seem droll compared to Josh, but he’s a darn good teacher.
I also like Arianes online lessons and her book, which helped me a lot in the beginning. I watch Luke’s videos whenever he posts one, but I really don’t care much for his style. I feel the same about Scott.
IMO Josh’s B2B course is the best for beginners, and Mark’s Talking Bass courses (the advanced ones) are the best for intermediate and advanced bass students.
Somehow this thread has become more about Mark than Scott, oh well. I wanted to update my feelings about Mark at talking bass, now that I have completed a few of his courses and have better feel for them. Mark is a former professional musician (cruise ships mostly, like Josh) and music school grad. His philosophy seems to be to give you ALL the information you’re ever likely to come across as a bass player. He does skip some of the crazy esoteric stuff, but in general, he errs on the side of too much info. This makes sense as a guy heavy into jazz would probably want a whole different set of info then I would. But what can be a little difficult is trying to weed out what is essential to me, what is useful, and what can be put aside. That said, I do find his courses to be very good and worth the time and money.
I switched here from SBL because Scott was starting to rub me the wrong way. It started to seem like a money grab. You spend a good deal of money for the course then you have to spend more for the even better course that he just came out with but wait, if you spend even more it’s a lifetime membership. It started to be too much. I didn’t think there was as much guidance either. Josh has a way more organized system that’s easier to follow and I like his teaching style more.
I guess it has actually become as much about the personalities than the material. Scott divides opinion because SBL is a big marketing machine. And on his free videos he does like to talk about himself. It is easy to turn off the notifications and not be suckered into buying more courses as the standard content will keep me occupied for years and is largely devoid of the Scott woffle. It is B2B part 2 for me.
But as Pam alludes to; much is about what an individual is looking for. I have a full time job and I want to focus on playing more than studying so SBL suits my wants more than Talking Bass. I treated myself to the Arianne Cap course as I do like the style of her teaching; it takes it out of my comfort zone and forces me to think.
But I’d go back to my original statement - try things out for yourself. See what works for you. None of them are bad and none of them are perfect. All the courses have different strengths and weaknesses and they all have money back guarantees if you don’t like them.
All you guys are arguing over which teacher is better when I have something even better. Bass lessons at school with a bass teacher who can actually see what I’m doing and correct me! >:)
You are a lucky one ;). Most of us are not in school age and/or found the passion for the instrument in later stages in life.
I would love to have a teacher, but it’s prohibitively expensive for me to make it a regular thing.
So, all that remains are the online lessons. Therefore, the teacher quality matters a lot, more than the teaching materials I’d say. Hence the discussion
And don’t forget that some of us were unable to have face to face lessons because of COVID restrictions.
It turns out that Mark and Scott have been friends for over 20 years.
Does anyone have experience with Ian Martin Allison (a.k.a. American Scott)? He does videos for the SBL YouTube channel sometimes, and I find his enthusiasm really infectious. It feels as if he could make me excited about watching paint dry. Does he do courses on SBL?
I just saw him the first time a few days ago, and he was talking about hearing training, matching pitch and intervallic relations. All on a rather basic level, but some very good points in there. I will try and see more of him to get a better idea of his “style”.
But, yeah, lots of comments on the YT video saying folks had to do a double take to realize it was not (British) Scott
Yes, they live very close to one another…
Dude. This is awesome.
I like the analogy, but I would flip it 180 degrees.
Mark is like Brown bread - his content is feature reich and filled with lessons
Josh is 50/50, although I would say more like 75/25 (good lesson / good fun)
Scott like White bread - had all the good parts to make a good bread, and stripped them out and filled it with a lot of hot air.
And that is mean-to to be a joke as opposed to a serious review. I do think Scott a great player, but not nearly as good a teacher as both Josh and Mark, which is too bad because I am sure he has a lot of great info to share.
I think I would have to be advanced intermediate in order to start to benefit from Scotts courses however.
So when I have dons all of Josh’s and Marks courses, if I think I need the advanced stuff, still in online format, I would go back and give it a try.
See, I never did his beginner courses. I went there after B2b and started with Scales Essentials, and Chord Tone Essentials and Sight Reading.
I don’t purchase his courses, I was able to sign up for his monthly pass that he offers about 2-4x per year, and for $16.99 it is gold. I started it in July, and did the full Scales Essentials and 2/3 of the Chord Tones Essentials and 3/4 of the first half of his sight reading.
The sight reading course was one of the most valuable classes I have started taking. It puts so much into perspective, especially when you are learning Scales and Chords (beyond basic shapes, when you go to modes and chord building, etc…) it just makes so much sense of things.
I did that much in about 3 months, so that would be $48 about, well worth it. Unfortunately, I got very sick in October which would have been the 4th month, and I have not been able to continue with lessons yet. but i am going back to them this week. I ended up paying for 3 months while not taking it, but it was well worth it for me to keep paying ($48, not alot) so that I will be able to go back where I left off when ready.
If you were turned off by Mark’s beginner courses, I would suggest trying his Scales and Chord tone Essential courses, they were life changing, and then Sight reading was life changing again.
I would suggest just signing up for his all access pass for 1 month, and testing out the courses, that way if you don’t like them, you are only out $16.99, but if you do like them, you can get so much out of a small monthly investment, OR, you can cancel the monthly, and wait for him to have his 30% off sale on courses and get the courses at a distount.
When you get the course, you get it for life, with all the content, when you don’t purchase it, and only have the pass, once you stop paying, you don’t have access to the course online, and you don’t have all the content (backing tracks and print outs), although I do have a workaround to being able to have the content, but you won’t get the class videos any longer.
I agree with this, but for me, I need more than the one hour with a bass coach once every week or two as schedule permits. I have had great results with my bass coach, as I have with the Talkingbass courses with the all access pass, both after completing B2B, which as others have stated, the best beginning course out there, to get you ready for the other things out there.
Once finished with B2B, there are so many other things out there, and all the free stuff is so out of logical order that It spins me in circles, trying to figure out the best way to stay on track, and learn what is needed, in the order it is needed. Talking Bass bass formats and structures the lessons the way I need them presented for me to have the level of success I want.
Bass lessons / sessions with my teacher / coach is the ultimate topper to my bass studies curriculum. My coach shows me what I am struggling with, and gives me great exercises and material to work thru in order to get stronger in those areas. He also encourages me for the progress I have made and helps me to know where I am at, so I don’t feel lost in the shuffle of YouTube videos and internet tab sites, etc…
But overall, what works best for me, may not work at all for others, so I agree, especially when it comes to the websites, between Scott and Mark, you can get access to some of the content as Free Trial, where you can cancel or get your money back if you don’t like it, so it is best to probably forget what any of us have said, and give them a try and see what works for you
My son shoots although i am not a big fan of it. Would you mind if I sent him a copy of your post, with your identity removed? I think he would enjoy learning about the extent to which you need to go to get better.
Sure. Knock yourself out.
It’s really a great thing to find what works for you but I’ve pointed out before that it might not be the best approach for everyone. I break out in hives just thinking about face to face lessons with a teacher (And, yes I have done it before). I much prefer online lessons. To each their own
I most certainly couldn’t do face to face at this moment in time. I like the online stuff because I can do as much or as little as I want when I want
Haha yeah I feel ya. But my phobia is not covid related, it’s sitting in a room with a stranger judging me shudder no thank you