PDA

View Full Version : JamPlay Bass Check-In



Chris.Smith
06-18-2014, 11:24 AM
Hello Jamplay Bass Players!

Just wanted to check in with you and see how it's going with bass lessons here at JamPlay. Are there any genres you'd like to see more of? Less of? What about skill levels? More or less beginner stuff? Intermediate? Advanced?

We are constantly looking to improve the content on the site, and of course, we appreciate and consider all the feedback we get from our community out there!

- Chris
Jamplay.com Content Producer

pink midnight
06-23-2014, 06:52 AM
I think it would be great to be able to access the songwriting lessons.

Chris.Smith
06-25-2014, 10:15 AM
That's a great thought, pink midnight. I'll throw it out to the guys and see what they think. If anything, it would be interesting to explore songwriting from a bass perspective.

-Chris
JamPlay.com Content Producer

rba2124
07-12-2014, 08:32 PM
I've been looking at the beginner lessons. So far, none of them have had any related documents/materials. It would be nice to have bass tabs for the exercises and bass lines. If the lesson presenter is doing anything more complicated than walking half steps with one finger per fret in 4/4, I can't tell which finger is fretting, let alone write fast enough to get all the positions recorded for future reference.

oldshepster
07-12-2014, 09:27 PM
I'd like to see at least one lesson a week. Specifically I'm looking for help learning/improving the bass lines for some of the songs my band plays. In some cases, I'm looking for dumbed down bass lines I can play while I get up to speed, then I can build up from there (ex. Galway Girl). In other cases, the band wants me to 'busy up' the bass line since we are a three piece and I could use some suggestions (ex. Honky Tonk Woman).

Thanks for listening,
Shep

platofunfactory
07-16-2014, 07:36 PM
I'd love to see a little more structure. Specifically, I'd either like to have the teacher describe how to get the most out of any exercise they introduce or else have a guide in the supplemental info that says "Practice this exercise for X minutes or until you can Y at Z pace, then move on to the next lesson."

I'd also be delighted to see more jam-along tracks. I think those are a great tool for practicing writing bass lines and learning groove.

Chris.Smith
07-17-2014, 12:45 PM
Thanks for all of your thoughts everyone! I will look into some the issues, and explore the ideas with some of the others on our team. Great to get the feedback!

- Chris
Jamplay.com Content Producer

jazzart
08-30-2014, 01:44 PM
That's a Great Idea.

I've been looking at the beginner lessons. So far, none of them have had any related documents/materials. It would be nice to have bass tabs for the exercises and bass lines. If the lesson presenter is doing anything more complicated than walking half steps with one finger per fret in 4/4, I can't tell which finger is fretting, let alone write fast enough to get all the positions recorded for future reference.

rarebird0
09-01-2014, 02:52 PM
I've been looking at the beginner lessons. So far, none of them have had any related documents/materials. It would be nice to have bass tabs for the exercises and bass lines. If the lesson presenter is doing anything more complicated than walking half steps with one finger per fret in 4/4, I can't tell which finger is fretting, let alone write fast enough to get all the positions recorded for future reference.That's JamPlay's Achilles heel. From a conceptual standpoint on all levels they see the video as the primary and the actual documentation as "supplemental". That usually means a time and logistical lapse between finding the documentation which is absolutely explicit whereas the best any angle of video of the back of someone's hands is more implicit than explicit. Therefore the so-called "supplemental" is really primary and the video should be supportive with integration of the documentation as a completely illustrated lesson on one screen. I brought this up and spoke at length (2 hours) witha Jamplay rep who PMed me his number. I'm afraid they are invested already way to heavily in their assumptions and fundamental change of that order won't be forthcoming any time soon.

I'm joined up to the guitar and bass offerings as well as a member of their competitors and am an instructional designer with 25 years experience that predates the internet where instructional delivery by computer to teach a number of things (except music so far). This gives me my perspective. I have also been an activist in educational reform communities and have learned the hard way that what the problem really is is that new educational initiatives should get the human learner right in what they can handle and what motivates them rather than just shifting around conventional "stuff" and thinking it an "improvement".

On the bass lessons I took Evan Brewer's lessons and thought him to be a very good instructor.On the second level I was surprised there are only I think four genres. I picked Jazz and there were two teachers. I tried the second one and his 6 string headless bass with no fret markers intimidated me. So I went a few lessons with the first guy, Tom Appleman who plays the four string. It wasn't long before I felt I was watching a musician give a best-effort lecture as opposed to a worked-on lesson, and he deferred to the "supplemental content". That to me is really falling back to using the computer as a sophisticated page=turner instead of a uniquely powerful medium. Given all I've said, I think what JP is doing with songs is one the best track. They take a song appart and you have the chance to work one section at a time. For bass, that is not as practical because bass isn't layered like guitar parts. But IMO there are a zillion songs in different genres which can be chosen which have a particular bass technique in them that is really something a secondary level or above person would want to learn in context. Perhaps that might be a good direction for the bass section as i is in the guitar. And thus that is my answer to the thread starter's question in terms of content. Once the basics are thoroughly covered--and they are, song illustrations of various techniques and changes is something I connect with more than a general take on styles and a then parachuting out to leave a person to explore the "supplemental". That model leaves too much room for a procrasinater to just bail and look for something else that does feel motivating. No diss to Tom Appleman. He seems like a really nice fella and his chats have value.

dennis.hodges
09-01-2014, 05:08 PM
please specify which Phase 1 bass lessons for which you need supplemental material. Every bass lesson that was posted that NEEDED tab (i.e., the teacher is actually showing a scale or exercise) has the required material. Some lessons are just talks, like the introductions in each series, or discussions about parts of the bass, tone, etc.

I know this because I personally notated the following Phase 1 bass lessons: Dave Ellefson, Evan Brewer, Billy Sheehan, and John DeServio, and proofread all of Larry Cook's material (he supplied his own).

There have been times in the past where lessons slipped through the cracks and went up without tabs, but those days have been over for about 2 years. If anyone ever finds a lesson without tab, please send a note to JamPlay's customer service and it will be fixed immediately.

rarebird0
09-02-2014, 12:12 AM
please specify which Phase 1 bass lessons for which you need supplemental material. Every bass lesson that was posted that NEEDED tab (i.e., the teacher is actually showing a scale or exercise) has the required material. Some lessons are just talks, like the introductions in each series, or discussions about parts of the bass, tone, etc.

I know this because I personally notated the following Phase 1 bass lessons: Dave Ellefson, Evan Brewer, Billy Sheehan, and John DeServio, and proofread all of Larry Cook's material (he supplied his own).

There have been times in the past where lessons slipped through the cracks and went up without tabs, but those days have been over for about 2 years. If anyone ever finds a lesson without tab, please send a note to JamPlay's customer service and it will be fixed immediately.

Hi Dennis. On the screen is a thing that says "print write up". That always seems to produce a blank page with JamPlay's header on it. Perhaps it HAS a function but it had confused me early on when I began my subscription. One can confuse it with what the designers term "supplemental content". Also on the new interface there should be cursor "hovers" which tell you what a button does. Those are so standard it's hard to believe a beta test wouldn't turn that up as a distinct oversight. The buttons around the screen where the instruction is given don't have needed hovering cursor balloons to say what the action the button triggers.

dennis.hodges
09-02-2014, 12:08 PM
I see. I can't help with cursor balloons, but hopefully this will make sense-

the "Print Write-up" option, located in the "About" section, exists to print a write-up if one exists for a lesson. This is, in my opinion, an embarrassing problem since we stopped doing write-ups for lessons back in 2009 or so. I understood the original concern to be the supplemental content, meaning TABs for lessons. These are always found in the "Supplemental" section of each lesson.

For anyone who wasn't sure, any lesson on JamPlay currently that is meant to have TAB has it, and can be found in the "Supplemental" section, not the "About" section. By clicking on "Supplemental," you will see all pages available for the lesson, as well as print options, MP3 files, and downloading options for MP3s.

jazzart
09-02-2014, 10:27 PM
Is there any tricks to get your left hand to stay in proper form when playing?

jbooth
09-02-2014, 10:39 PM
Is there any tricks to get your left hand to stay in proper form when playing?
Practice as slow as possible to a metronome and concentrate on your form. Don't worry about speed at all, just playing correctly. Slowly increase the speed over time and you will find your concentrated practice has turned itself into muscle memory.

rarebird0
09-03-2014, 12:22 PM
Is there any tricks to get your left hand to stay in proper form when playing?

I'm not sure what you mean but here are a few concerns. If your bass is slung too low the angle of your wrist will cause extra pressure on your carpal tunnel which is the channel on your palm that happens when you touch your thumb to your pinky. (I have had the surgery on that hand and it wasn't all that successful.) So hold the bass and neck where it least bends your wrist inwards.

Another thing is to make sure your hand is completely dry when starting to play. I have used a little baby powder after towel drying my hand. Don't leave any powder on--just clap your hands once to shake any extra off.

Make sure you're action is as good as it can be. Also, you might want to try flat wound strings or "half rounds". These make the surface of the string smooth and you get a small difference in action because the winding won't buzz with low action (unless it's really too low).

Keep your left hand finger nails trimmed be careful, of course, when handing anything that can cut you on the finger tip. I once forgot I put a razor blade in a little box and some time latter started throwing picks into the box. One night at a bar people started clamoring for us to play go get some guitars and jam. I was a little "oiled" and went up to my apartment to get my bass and grab a pick (I no longer use a pick on bass). So fishing around in a hurry without looking, yep, sliced open the tip of my index finger. That blew that. (But I wound up with someone else's bass and bled on his strings. Sorry). A cut on the finger tip is a nagging problem that can sideline you for a while--especially if you use round wound strings.

Other than that just being careful not to hurt your hand, using a hand strengthener (either the kind with several springs or the V shaped one built around one spring at the fulfrum). Always be care not to bend your wrist toward the inside. That can lead to the carpal tunnel--which feels like a "stinger". Good luck.

ricka47
02-07-2015, 08:36 AM
I'm just starting. So, I don't have much in the way of suggestions as far as content goes. I have had a Guitar Tricks account for awhile and I do find the interface here a bit more appealing. I do like the content for guitar at GT but the interface is more "clunky" than the one here. The only issue that I've had is that when I finish a series of scenes, it says that I'm 100% complete but my progress on my home main lesson page doesn't always match that. I've tried to manually go back and make sure that all of the scenes are at 100% and that doesn't usually do it. The only thing that works is just run through all the scenes in a lesson again and then it marks everything at 100%.

Here's something that would be nice for me. When there is music (and/or tabs) available under "supplemental", it would be nice to be able to open that in a new tab on my browser. I have two monitors and it would be so handy to see the instructor on one screen and the score on the other. Now, I either have to scroll down to see the music (often losing sight of the instructor) or I have to save the music as a .PDF and then open it to see it on the other screen. Or is there a better way to do that?

Dan Halbert
02-07-2015, 03:09 PM
When there is music (and/or tabs) available under "supplemental", it would be nice to be able to open that in a new tab on my browser. I have two monitors and it would be so handy to see the instructor on one screen and the score on the other. Now, I either have to scroll down to see the music (often losing sight of the instructor) or I have to save the music as a .PDF and then open it to see it on the other screen. Or is there a better way to do that?

How about:
1. Open a a new browser window and move it to the other screen.
2. Copy and paste the lesson URL into other browser window URL box.
3. So now you have two identical windows. Start the video in only one, and look at the supplemental material in the other.

ricka47
02-07-2015, 03:19 PM
That is a good work-around and I'll be doing it that way from now on - thanks!

Dan Halbert
02-07-2015, 10:47 PM
And don't forget you can make the video full-screen. Click on the diagonal arrows in the right hand corner of the slider bar in the video (move your mouse inside the video to see it):

803

ricka47
02-08-2015, 07:15 AM
Right, with the supplemental music in the second monitor, I will be doing that - Thanks!

platofunfactory
03-19-2015, 12:14 AM
I've been a member for quite a while now but hadn't logged in for a few months. I did today because I'm working on walking bass lines in blues jazz and jumped in to Tom Appleman's Jazzy Blues Walking Bass at lesson 7. In the supplemental section I found an mp3 backing track with drums and piano playing the chords. I think it's the first time I've seen this and I love it! I pulled the track into my DAW and just looped it while I practiced the techniques, then started writing my own line over the top. I would love to see more of this in the lessons.

One minor gripe: I do think the site logs me out too quickly. Just today I tried to return to the lesson and twice found that I was logged out. A minor annoyance, but something that could be improved.

Thanks for the improvements and for reaching out to us for ways to keep getting better!