For a while, it was scales, triads, and sightreading every day. Those things are important so don't get me wrong - I'm glad I made them a part of my daily routine. But, I was lacking something. Essentially, I wasn't really having fun with it anymore, and like my mentor said, I was "treating it like a chore".
I've been spending more time in focusing on improving my music skills. I want to dedicate more time to getting back into better habits, so here's the process I go through with doing that.
Let’s be honest, us bassists have it rough. We never get the credit we deserve, no one seems to care about us, and the guitarist always gets all the attention from fans. Totally not cool. We put so much effort into the band, frankly, we don’t have the time to do makeup like the guitarist does. I guess the fans only care about appearance these days, rock is dead.
I’m kidding, being a bassist is awesome. But it’s even more awesome when you use these hacks!
There's an "inside joke" amongst bass players: no one wants to be the bass player. It's a strange coincidence but most of the pros somehow got "stuck" playing bass. They either wanted to learn guitar, drums, or another instrument but somehow they wound up becoming the bassist. (We like to say it's fate. The bass chooses you, not the other way around.) One great example of this is Peter Hook of Joy Divison. The band was formed by a group of friends that didn't know anything about music, they just knew they liked the punk rock-attitude. Their story is actually quite inspiring and it's one that I may write on in the future, but for now all you need to know is that Peter didn't want to play bass originally. He's now one of my favorite bass players and he's one of the best out there.
The steps we take to reach a goal should be well out of our comfort zones. Each step should force you to grow, they should pain you, and they should frustrate you. I've publicly expressed my goals and made them clear in the past. (Those who have read my music-related posts know a big one is to be a professional bassist.) I've shared some of my personal struggles with this goal, but I've learned to see them as signs of growth. One of the ways I force myself to grow is by learning out of my comfort zone. (I did this with reading, piano, writing, etc.) This doesn't mean I think I'm the best, neither does it mean I'm no longer in the process of learning. But it's very clear that if you want to learn something, the most effective way to do it is by making sure it's uncomfortable, and frustrating.
I've been playing bass for nearly five years and in that short time I've heard a few phrases that I can't stand any longer. Ask any bass player, these phrases drive us crazy. I've put together a list of the most annoying phrases for you to avoid. For your sake and for our sanity, please, stop saying these.