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Google Tools for the Busy Musician - Full Article

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Google Tools for the Busy Bassist

Originally published in Canadian Musician magazine for the Sept/Oct 2017 issue.  In addition to being a professional musician, I'm also an IT guy, so maybe it's second nature, but I really like to use technology when it comes to organization because, like so many musicians, I wasn't blessed with the best natural organizational skills. I'm also an avid Google user. They do it right. They offer some pretty incredible FREE tools that allow a user to make so many different parts of their life/career/hobby easier. In talking to many colleagues, friends, and family, I find it is an incredibly underused service. Like most people these days, I use a smartphone, and the phone is smartest when used correctly. Using a tool like Google Calendar, it can remind you of all the stuff you need to do, and I'm not good at remembering those things on my own. I’m not a smartperson, except I know to use my smartphone smartly, so maybe I am a smartperson! So let’s say I'm

Google for Musicians - Pt 1 : Contacts & Calendar

I have a house.  In my house I have a music room.  In that music room I have a desk/shelf/computer, etc.  And in and/or on all of those items are books, sheet music, CDs, calendars, receipts, invoices, tax documents, bios, headshots, setlists, gig pics, Facebook pages, websites, plans, history, dreams, failures, successes, etc, etc,  And in that music room I have instruments that I play privately and professionally.  I have a career; however, large or small, in music.  That career is not limited to the instrument I play, the notes I choose, the styles I enjoy, or the gigs I get.  That career has a thousand tiny pieces that make up who I am as a musician - which translates to who I am as a professional:  which translates to this: when someone hires me .. who are they getting? Now... let's set a few separate hypothetical scenes.  Let's consider: I'm trying to sell some gear and I want to target a specific group of local musicians, that aren't all on Facebook!   I'

The Note-Well - Mastering the Fingerboard

if you are still struggling with the fretboard and names of notes it can be pretty daunting to try to apply concepts that you learn, especially in real time, say in a jam.  If someone is calling chords out, or you're looking at a chord chart it's just simply frustrating if you don't know the names of the notes you're playing. It can feel like you're playing blind.   A good portion of us have 4 strings, with 21 frets... that's 84 different notes to learn. can be daunting.  Yes there are only 12 notes, and they repeat, but if we want to be fretboard masters, we really need to know all 84 notes, more if you're a 5, 6 string player.   ... I watched an Anthony Wellington  master-class video on Scotts Bass Lessons .. he jokes about running into a student and saying "15th fret, A string" and that student has to know it's C .. but..he's serious.. it's your vocabulary.. no.. your alphabet and if you're denying yourself th

Bass Bits: Sweet Child O' Mine by Guns & Roses

Sweet Child O' Mine ...  yes Slash's guitar intro is universally recognizable but Duff McKagan's bass intro is just as recognizable in the bass world and arguably a rite of passage for any rock bassist.  It has melody.. higher register playing.. and that sweet chorus + Fender tone.  Enjoy

Bass Bits: Come On, Come Over

Here is the opening riff for Come On, Come Over by Jaco Pastorius & Bob Herzog, found on Jaco's first album. Keep those left hand fingers close to the fingerboard and do it as efficiently as possible.  Keep it tight, keep it groovy.   Make sure to channel your inner Jaco with your right hand. 

Jaco the Film

So.. we all love Jaco right?   I'm sure most of us have been influenced, affected, inspired, blown away, or at the very least moderately moved by his music...   As I'm sure most of you know there is a film.. Jaco the Film due to be released this spring... Robert Trujillo, the bassist from Metallica, has primarily funded it out of pocket... and now he's looking for some help with pre-orders and other goodies...  Let's face it... the DVD itself it's going to be a great addition to your collection ..  :)   Heck.... give someone the hint saying you want it for Christmas!!  If you want to help out .. you can go pre-order the DVD or other goodies ( you can even buy a bass of doom replica used in the film, or skype bass lessons from Jerry Jemmott, Robert Trujillo, and Jaco's son Felix Pastorius.... cool ) ..  here's the link.. If you can't buy anything you can help out by just spreading the