Even if you’re some kind of musical genius or savant, it’s difficult/time consuming to learn a musical instrument without an instructor there to guide you. A good instructor points out and teaches you the important practical things you need to know to be a competent player. They should be able to show you how to play various techniques and styles so you can be playing them yourself with some practice. The instructor needs to present the information to you in a logical order, explain one topic at a time and add to what you already know with clearly set goals. That way the information won’t overwhelm or confuse you. Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to have a really good bass instructor around whenever its convenient.
Traditionally, bass players who don’t have access to one on one bass lessons from a professional had to turn to whatever method books are available. But nowadays people find books slow and tedious to learn from and in the case of a musical instrument like bass, its even more difficult to understand and learn from a book. It’s also harder to stay interested and enthusiastic about practicing exercises out of a book. Someone that teaches you in person will keep you pumped and focused on becoming a better player. Nowadays, most bass players eager to know more go to the internet for info.
As we all know, it’s usually easier to learn by watching someone show you how it’s done as opposed to reading about how to do it. Depending on how articulate the bass instructor’s writing skills are, it can be hard to completely understand a written explanation about how to do things on a bass guitar. After all, the instructor is a musician, not a professional writer and may have no previous writing experience. It’s much quicker and easier for a musician to be able to just show you on camera in a video. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then imagine how much time a video can save you when trying to learn a musical instrument. High quality video bass lessons clearly offer more bang for the buck than bass method books because of the time and heartache they can save you.
The problem is the huge differences in quality and costs of video bass lessons available on the internet. The web is full of non-pro bass “instructors”. A lot of the best players don’t offer bass lessons on the web. Many of the top players get offers from offline publishers such as Hal Leonard or Mel Bay and aren’t hip to carving out their cyber learning place. There are tons of free videos on YouTube from guys who have good intentions, but they can only offer so much help since they’re not that good at playing bass. Free bass lesson videos are often times on very random topics and the explanations can be more confusing than helpful.
Most of the better bass instructors only give you one or two free videos and then want you to start paying lots of money for a “complete” bass lesson course. Also as a side note, some of these guys are perfectly decent bass players and teachers but don’t actually gig that much. Sometimes it helps add to the excitement of playing music and getting better at it when your instructor out there doing it for themselves. They can add a certain energy to it.
Video bass lessons can be a quick way of learning how to play bass. It’s usually faster than learning from a book for most people. It’s still hard to find good players with websites that offer high quality free lessons or video bass lesson courses at a reasonably low price. If you’re looking for bass lessons on the internet, it’s best to find an instructor you can easily understand, who speaks plainly and makes the lessons easy enough understand so you can quickly absorb and use the knowledge and techniques they explain. It’s also best to find lessons that keep you excited about playing bass and getting better at it. Guys who are active working bass players put a lot of excitement into breaking down and explaining techniques they use on a regular basis – even when talking to each other. They’ll usually add in valuable professional bass playing tips they’ve learned over years of experience. Not a bad way to learn fast!
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