The Happy Tortoise
From our Tower of London correspondent
by, 07-29-2012 at 08:02 AM (591 Views)
Almost August already! Summer is here with a vengeance, hot and humid one moment, sudden heavy showers the next. I've been doing a lot of my practice outside although I've been using headphones and my Tascam, to avoid annoying my neighbours.
We've been dealing with some serious family problems in the last few weeks and I feel like the bass guitar has been helping me stay sane; just a small oasis of rhythmic consistency in an utterly mad world. Not sure what happens next, but hopefully my four stringed friend will be there for the ride.
I moved on to Lesson 6. I'm using the tunes from Lesson 5 in my warm up and it is surprising how what appeared impossible now feels relaxing and easy. My "music room" is currently on the third floor of my house; it looks out over the rolling Derbyshire hills and I find myself playing California Groove automatically whilst watching the sheep and the beautiful mackerel skies we have had recently. It astounds me that I can make music like this, sounds coming from my fingertips with no real conscious input from me.
I know it could be put down just to habit. I must have practised this tune five hundred or more times, so what's the big deal? Well, for a start, I never thought I had the patience to practice so diligently and secondly, this is me we are talking about and if I'm not careful I'm going to be turning into a musician (or at least a bass player ). I've even started using harmonics to tune by - in a music shop!!
So to Lesson 6. Shuffle and swing. Sounds a lot like my running these days; a combination of slow foot turnover and uncontrollable bodily motion...... Actually though, it's fun!!
I converted "Shufflin Along" to a tab-free version and I'll post it when I get my PC working again... The slow speed came easily, once I'd sorted that E-B-D-E turn around. Interestingly, I started off by playing it as fingers 2 and 4, which felt right. Then I noticed the book suggested 1 and 3, so I changed. Then I went to the DVD plays through and realised Roy plays 2 and 4! So I changed back; maybe I am starting to get it.
The fast version currently feels unattainable and I've been there before. So I'll continue to practice and let it get together in its own time.
I'm so pleased to see Donnie B back contributing to the forum and playing his new Ibanez. He is proof of how a noble human spirit can respond to adversity and a role model for me at the moment.
Now, assuming that I ever get out of the Tower, I'm looking forward to the jazz licks section of Lesson 6. I'm thinking it may be just about time for me to inflict my talent on the wider world.....
Enjoy the London Olympics everyone. That thing I said about Charles - it's not actually true.
(Now please can I go home, I need to feed my cats).