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On Bass

First on the Scene

December 10, 2012
Other players are supposed to be able to follow us. We set up chord changes like drummers set up sections of a song with fill. It is one of our primary functions. We always have to be first on the scene.
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Me and Victor

November 5, 2012
No boundaries for this game-changer: Victor Lemonte Wooten. Photo by Steve Parker In the religious world, it would be referred to as “illumination” or “enlightenment.” I call it the
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Mastering the Groove

October 8, 2012
Mastering the art of grooving requires practicing your bass lines to sit in front of the kick drum, behind it, and right on it. Sometimes, a tight relationship between
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The Right Bass for You

September 5, 2012
We’ll address the three basics for tailoring your custom needs in an off-the-rack world: tone, playing situation, and budget.
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The Space of the Bass

August 10, 2012
What is the sound you hear in your head when you think of the word “bass”?
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Aiming for Perfection

July 9, 2012
Steve Cook combats a truckload of technical difficulties at a recent outdoor festival: No signal due to a faulty DI, a funky mix from having to re-route his signal,
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What Would Duck Do?

June 8, 2012
While many of us know about the beginning and end of Duck’s incredible musical life, it’s the middle that will have bassists grooving for years to come.
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Tools of the Trade for Bassists: Eighth-Notes

May 11, 2012
I believe the single most important piece of advice is to obsess over playing eighth-notes well.
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A Lesson for Substitutes

April 6, 2012
If you have ever wondered about the process—or want to be ready for this situation—please read on.
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Getting The Best Out of Your Bass Tracks

March 9, 2012
Want to cut a great bass track in the studio? Bring your own headphones—ones you always use that provide a comfortable fit and consistent sound. Photo by Andy Ellis
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The Rock Bass Tone that Won’t Go Away

February 10, 2012
That timeless thunder is the sound of a Fender P bass played with a pick while fueling an Ampeg SVT and 8x10 speaker cabinet.
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Where's the Love?

January 10, 2012
To play bass is not second-rate, as the guitarist may imply, but rather an honor to hold such power in your hands.
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It's The Glue

December 20, 2011
But what makes this musical glue? For me, the three main elements are time, foundation, and movement.
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Take Control, Make it Happen

November 15, 2011
I hit a wall last year. Not literally, but musically. My tone and my touring basses were just not doing it for me anymore.
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How to Choose the Right Gig

October 18, 2011
Opportunity cost is a way of assessing potential gigs based on the musical, rather than monetary gains you might receive from choosing among them.
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Working When You're Not Working

September 20, 2011
During your not-busy season, what are you going to work on? I suggest starting with small goals and then moving on to the more ambitious ones.
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What's on Your Wall?

August 16, 2011
I admit it—I have a strange fascination for cheap bass decorations on my wall.
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Risk...And Survival

July 19, 2011
An important consideration for lining up a variety of musical opportunities is the risk involved.
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A Quick-Start Primer to Summer Touring

June 14, 2011
Artists typically stay busiest during the summer months when the fairs, festivals, and amphitheater shows are happening all over the country.
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Taking the Backseat

May 17, 2011
Available on DVD, the documentary Bring on the Night offers a revealing look into the world of top-tier touring. Shot in 1985, the film shows a young Branford Marsalis
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