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The Music Lesson by Victor Wooten, a Spiritual Search for Growth Through Music

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In my interview with Victor in our February-March issue, Victor and I spent a great deal of time talking about the “instructional process.” His views are unique and decisive, and his book “The Music Lesson” perfectly outlines his agenda on this particular subject.

As the title clearly indicates, this is not a traditional method book per se, and “why” he decided to not follow that path will be incredibly clear after reading it. He decided to present his thoughts on this subject in the form of a novel, telling the story of a bassist, and his relationship with his musical/spiritual mentor, Michael. I’m choosing at this point not to tell what the story is about; contrary to how I would approach explaining a method book, as I feel my “personal” interpretation is not what needs to be discussed here, even though it is a “review” on my end. What I feel needs to be communicated to you from my point of view (and I’ve chosen my words carefully) is that this “guide” for ones desire to become a better musician/person is a “must read”. Why? This book is about enlightenment, a tough word in my book as it represents something we all strive for, and yet can be looked a facetiously as there are so many people offering this up in one way or another and guaranteeing results.

Growth, musically, is definitely a multi-faceted endeavor as I’ve learned in many of the interviews I’ve conducted for the magazine with players that are incredibly well respected in the bass community. There are many “printed” avenues to consider as far as instructional aids are concerned, and I, as well as Victor himself feel it’s wise to check these out and find what you feel works best for you personally. But as far as my “review” of this particular option of study is concerned, I’m going to state that no matter what you decide to pursue as far as a learning tool goes, this book is designed to work in conjunction with, and augment that decision as far as musical (as well as personal) growth is concerned, and I highly recommend it.

I’ll end with repeating a phrase I wrote in my introduction to Victor’s cover story last issue, which I feel is totally apropos to this book review as well. “In my humble opinion, the odds of reading this article (“book”) and not sitting back and reevaluating “some” aspect of your musical quest are very small”.

Available online at www.victorwooten.com

Bass Books

Review: The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention and Better Health

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Review: The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention and Better Health

The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention and Better Health

I have often thought that it would be great if the doctors who delivered us as newborn babies provided us with a user manual to help us navigate through life in the best way possible. Now Dr. Randall Kertz, D.C. has produced a manual specifically designed to address the many possible afflictions plaguing us bass players.

Many of you will remember volumes 1 & 2 of this book and our first review in 2007. The new complete guide combines the two volumes and features over 20 pages of new material including interviews, techniques, and conditions.

If you play bass, you can read this book cover to cover and walk away with a ton of relevant and helpful knowledge. Another option is to search out issues relevant to you specifically (I found quite a few of my own with helpful options). This is possible because the book is very nicely organized into six chapters that address Pain, Conditions, Techniques, Road Issues, Inspirational Q&A with some of the biggest names in the bass community (too many to list here) and finally How to get relief.

All said, this book is essential if you play either electric or upright bass to the point where they should issue you one when you get that first bass in your hands.

Lastly,  if you have this book and you have specific questions, Dr. Kertz is readily available through his website, www.drkertz.com. As if that was not enough, he has a wealth of knowledge you can find right here on our website at bassmusicianmagazine.com/author/randallkertz

Get this book… Live long and play bass well into the years! Available on Amazon.com

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Bass Books

The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention & Better Health

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The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention & Better Health

The Bassist’s Complete Guide to Injury Management, Prevention & Better Health is now available!

A compilation of Volumes 1 & 2 of the acclaimed Bassist’s Guide with 20+ pages of new interviews, techniques, and conditions, The Complete Guide puts everything in one convenient place.

Available at Amazon.com and from our friends at Bassline Publishing

Follow Dr. Kertz’s Bass Player Health at Bass Musician Magazine

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Bass Books

Music Book: 365 Days of Practice

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Music Book: 365 Days of Practice
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365 Days of Practice…

365 Days of Practice is a unique guide on how to deepen your practice routine from one of the masters of contemporary jazz! This book is the result of a project by Rick Margitza in which he posted an idea online every day during the year 2020.

The exercises cover a broad spectrum of musical ideas that range from basic bebop language to its transformation into contemporary jazz. See sample pages below.

The lines are often totally unique and will enlarge your melodic pallette considerably!

Includes an extensive introductory chapter outlining Rick’s practice method, learned from Gary Campbell, who was also Michael Brecker’s teacher.

The book also includes access to audio files for each example that Rick created and plays along with. Very helpful for ingraining the sounds of these exercises in your musical memory!

365 Days of Practice can be used by musicians of all levels, on any instrument. 171 pages. Spiral-bound. Don’t miss it!

“Rick Margitza’s 365 Days of Practice is a masterpiece! It lays out the fundamentals in such a clear fashion and adds a little spice to it as well. If you are looking for concepts and music to practice to expand your horizons as well as your vocabulary, this book will be your friend for life. Thank You, Rick!”— Jerry Bergonzi

“His new book: 365 Days of Practice by the great saxophonist Rick Margitza, explains in depth his methodology for expanding one’s Jazz Vocabulary. There are not only 365 audio play-along examples, but also the clearest, most concise and to the point explanation of this daily method of practice, and it’s genesis, that I’ve yet seen. So please avail yourself this unique learning opportunity, and check out this book!”— Randy Brecker

“Rick Margitza is a wonderful saxophonist with a unique sound and approach. He has laid out a year’s worth of daily practice exercises that pinpoint various areas of focus in the art of compositional improvising. This is a fascinating book. I look forward to absorbing the contents!”— Bob Mintzer

365 Days of Practice is available at Amazon.com

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Bass Books

Bass Book: Walking Bass Line Construction – F Blues

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Bass Book: Walking Bass Line Construction - F Blues
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Walking Bass Line Construction – F Blues by Bob Sinicrope

The most helpful beginner’s guide to walking bass lines ever published! A ‘must’ for teachers and students!

Each exercise introduces one new advancement to help you learn how to create your own bass lines. The book progresses step-by-step from simply playing roots, all the way up to complete blues choruses in the style of 18 bass legends – from ‘Pops’ Foster to Ron Carter!

Choose from four different, professionally recorded backing tracks: 1 — piano, drums; 2 — guitar, drums; 3 — B3, drums; 4 — drums only

Exercises include concepts of approach notes, enclosures, passing tones, and forward motion.

Access to detailed explanations of each concept, plus how to practice, playing with spirit, how to deepen your groove and much more!

TAB included for beginning electric bassists. Range limited to high C (1st 5 frets for electric players).

“An amazing book for anyone learning to walk jazz bass lines. A very simple but unique approach!”— Victor Wooten

”Teaches what the bassist needs to do to be musically successful. It is quite thorough and will teach the user to be an excellent bassist/musician/listener.”— Rufus Reid

”Bob Sinicrope presented this unique and effective teaching approach to creating walking bass lines many times at the Jamey Aebersold Summer Workshop. The ideas presented herein will help bassists create their own functional bass lines. I highly recommend this book.”— Lynn Seaton

Walking Bass Line Construction – F Blues is available at Amazon.com

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Bass Books

20 Salsa Basslines for Electric Bass Guitar

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20 Salsa Basslines for Electric Bass Guitar
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20 Salsa Basslines for Electric Bass Guitar by Alvaro M. Gómez A…

If you like salsa and also play the electric bass guitar, then 20 Salsa Basslines is for you. Whether you have no experience in the genre or are a dedicated salsa bassist, there’s a lot to discover here. The content printed in this book will show you in detail what the bassists who contributed to immortalizing the pieces chosen to make up this music material decided at the moment of capturing their performance in the recording studio. Total attention and meticulousness have been put into the creation of these transcriptions, written down with both bassists with formal musical training (standard notation) and bassists who play strictly or mostly by ear (tablature) in mind. Certainly, in general terms the only things that an expert bassist needs to play these pieces while reading a piece of sheet music are the harmonic guide (chords) and the obbligato parts. But the intention here has been to write down with the highest possible accuracy what was left for posterity in the recordings, which, among other things, is a good way to know the style of the scrutinized bassist in-depth and eventually find playing options that may not have been thought of.

If the seasoned bassist may find this book useful to enrich his/her arsenal, the material contained here will undoubtedly constitute one of the main bases for building vocabulary and style as a salsa bassist for anyone who’s just starting to approach this genre, either out of pleasure or curiosity.

20 Salsa Basslines for Electric Bass Guitar is available at Amazon.com

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