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Review - Jeff Berlin Bass Mastery: A Complete Reading Course

Bass Books

Review – Jeff Berlin Bass Mastery: A Complete Reading Course

Review – Jeff Berlin Bass Mastery: A Complete Reading Course

Jeff Berlin Bass Mastery: A Complete Reading Course…

When I first started playing bass at age 11, reading music was the furthest thing from my young mind. I wanted to be in a band. I wanted to be famous like the Beatles.

A few years later, as my playing improved and my tastes in music started to change I began to think about reading music for the bass clef. Oh yes, as a young kid I took piano lessons and then was in the school band on clarinet, but that was different.

Growing up in NYC afforded me a lot of benefits, one being a bus ride away from 48th Street, the Mecca for musical instruments. One day I got on the #104 bus and headed to Manny’s. I was going to stare at all of the great basses available and buy a book for the electric bass.

Since the electric bass was still a relatively new instrument, there was very little to get my hands on. The one book that stood out was “Electric Bass Lines Vol. 1” by Carol Kaye. At the time I had absolutely no idea who Carol Kaye was but the book looked cool!

I got home, opened it up, and to my surprise, it was filled with notes and rhythms and I had no idea what to do with it! As I look back, I think about the many aspiring bass players who probably had the same experience… the book ended up on a shelf.

So, what’s the point of the story? Well, if Bass Mastery by Jeff Berlin had come out then, I would have learned to read a lot sooner.

Bass Mastery is a great way to learn to read music because he has systematized the process in 100 pages, starting with whole notes on each string separately, the beginning reader becomes comfortable and starts to read half notes, then quarters then rests, ties, etc.

There is no way you can fail! Jeff gives you the tools and if you take your time and slowly develop confidence, you are on your way to becoming a good reader.

Jeff takes you through each step, adds dotted notes, etudes and gives you as many possible choices that you might come up against reading music.

I am very impressed with this book and if you want to get out of the tablature trap and actually learn to read music, this is a great place to begin!

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