Sunday, October 11, 2015

Moondance: the Best Jazz Version Ever (#PlayingBass)

My jazz/swing band is practicing "Moondance," the great Van Morrison rock tune, which is also suitable for jazz versions.  I used to play this song often with a rock band, but how do you transfer it to jazz?  So I have  been viewing jazz versions on YouTube to learn just that.

I came across this version by the New York Jazz Quartet.  In my opinion, this is the best jazz version ever of "Moondance."  See if you agree.  Watch the video below.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Now That I Read Notes, a Lot of Practice Manuals Become Useful (#PlayingBass)

Five or so years ago, after I got a carved string bass, I set about trying to learn to play it.  I went on, and bought several books on constructing bass lines and other bass topics.  The books came, and soon went into my bookshelf unread.  The books relied on note reading as a means of teaching, and I didn't read notes.

Now, however, I do read notes.  Suddenly all of these manuals I bought several years ago, become useful.  I chose one and started playing the exercises.

There's no way around it.  If you want to learn bass, you must learn to read notes.  Forget those god-awful charts, they do not compare.