Return to BBb Bass

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Pete Lawson, Feb 3, 2017.

  1. Pete Lawson

    Pete Lawson New Member

    Hello i've just started playing BB bass again after a thirty year break. Any tips to assist me regain my old skills would be much appreciated. I've joined a band that was started a year ago. I have Grade 6, but am very rusty as you can imagine. Am practising regularly, and realise that lots of time and patience are necessary to reach my previous level.
    Repman and 2nd tenor like this.
  2. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    Welcome back to playing and welcome to the forum.

    Quite a few posts or threads recently about returners so have a look back through recent items.

    Get a simple method book and work through it (tune a day or learn as you play), buy a solo cornet hymn book and work through it many times. With the Hymn book you can later play around with it to make the tunes more difficult e.g. Play them down an octave, play them in quavers, etc.

    It takes a lot of air to play a BBb, work on finding ways to maximise filling your lungs and then emptying them into the Bass such that you're able to play longer phrases.
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2017
    L J and Slider1 like this.
  3. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Hadleigh, Essex
    Sensible advice there. I would add plenty of long notes, and also do some breathing execises - breathe in for so many beats, hold it, and then breathe out. Vary the times to include long and shorts periods to inhale and exhale - both will be needed!
    L J and Slider1 like this.
  4. L J

    L J Member

    Vancouver, BC - Canada
    Reminder to play the music as written. Many players it seems, like to play an octave below the written music, thus sometimes not building a proper foundation for a chord.
    If you have a full complement of (4) basses, then you can agree with your BBb mate as to who will attempt the pedal notes.
    I think it is incumbent on all bass players to have a good range, definitely from G below staff to D or E an octave above middle C.
    When you are getting good long notes with a full sound, especially in the lower register plan ahead when you are playing - especially coming to the end of a section or the end of the piece to have lungs full of air to hold your note (s) so you don't end up squeezing your sound.
    Watch AND listen to the top players - if you meet them or know them ask them for tips.
    Don't get into bad habits -
    Just my observations over a few yrs.
    Pete Lawson likes this.
  5. Pete Lawson

    Pete Lawson New Member

    Thanks for the advice. Using a borrowed 3 valve instrument, so bottom F# is my limit at the moment. Managed top E at band practice the other night. I'm the only Bb at the moment, so practising lots to try and regain my skills.
  6. Repman

    Repman Member

    Welcome back, you sound like me except I'm taking it easy with cornet, good effort with the bass!
    Pete Lawson likes this.
  7. Stanley Accrington

    Stanley Accrington Member

    York UK
    Hello Pete. I too am returning to BBb bass following a thirty year break. I was initially filled with dread and foreboding....but I'm amazed how things are slotting into place. The fingerings returned faster than I expected...however breathing/lung power leaves a lot to be desired! But I'm enjoying my reunion with my big, bold and brassy lass. (Bass....not the wife).
    Jack E likes this.
  8. Jack E

    Jack E Well-Known Member

    Good for you, Mr A. - and I hope you find a lot of satisfaction in getting back into it!
    Stanley Accrington likes this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice