Marek Bero: Bass Gym Series Books
As an aspirational young bass player, I’ve set my goals very high. My heroes have been Victor Wooten, Marcus Miller, Jaco Pastorius, Flea, John Myung and Robert Trujillo. I’ve admired their incredible skills, grooves and creativity. At the same time, I’ve experienced immense feelings of frustration as I couldn’t achieve their level of playing. We all know 10.000 hours theory and it seems like a mountain we wouldn’t ever be able to climb. Never-ending aspirations, expectations and tons of hard work.
How to keep your mind on the goal? How to stay motivated?
I’ve found an answer in kaizen, Japanese technique for overcoming laziness. The idea behind it is very simple. Practice something for a single minute every day. Even the laziest person should find that one-minute task doable. It is one very small step towards greatness. The terrifying mountain is now enjoyable stroll in the garden. Little successes are more sustainable than big failures.
And this principle is in the core of Bass Gym 101 series of books for aspiring bass players.
In every book, you’ll find 101 exercises that will help to improve your finger strength and dexterity, as well as develop the independence of the four fingers of your fretting hand.
Each exercise is designed to challenge you and push you towards achieving better finger movement on the instrument. Whilst books focus on technique, all of the exercises are musical and enjoyable to play. Hopefully, you’ll also find them inspirational and will use the ideas to create your own lines.
Working through the exercises methodically should produce great results in a relatively short period of time. Over time, you should discover that previously unplayable passages will have become easier to handle and that your overall movement around the fingerboard is smoother and quicker.
These short exercises (between one to four bars) are ideal as part of your warm-up routine. I recommend using them before rehearsals, gigs or recording sessions.
Whether you are a complete beginner or a seasoned professional you will find value in the exercises in this book. You’ll find that they are adaptable to five and six-string basses.
All of the exercises include tablature, recommended fingerings and MP3 files are available to download from the publisher’s website.
This book is especially recommended for bass players with limited practice time, but who still wish to develop a high level of technical skill on the instrument.