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Ari is an experienced educator, bass coach and performer – explore this site for ways to learn from her. Systematic and comprehensive, practical and giving you lots of ideas for groove applications, play with more confidence and freedom. Subscribe at right for free bass educational content directly into your inbox each week!

Latest Posts

music theory for the bass player hour glass PORA
Three minutes? Yes, three minutes! The Power of Focus
Ari | 21, September

“C’mon Ari, how you say I should do this exercise for only three minutes – I haven’t even scratched the surface!” Well, actually, if you do it right, that is really all the time you need for the type of practice I have in mind. And when you do it right, you will make more

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Fill fills
To Fill or not to Fill?
Ari | 06, September

We are getting all Shakespearean here but it is indeed that deep (ha!) of a question: To Fill or not to Fill? Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to be content always staying in the background or to take arms and make a fitting statement? Whether it’s worth the risk of getting chastised (or fired)

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solo groove groove solo
Oh my, they want me to solo: Super Simple and Effective Strategy!
Ari | 24, August

Called to solo and feel cold sweat coming on? Wrestling with a million thoughts in your mind and feeling like you have to now play a million notes to impress everyone with your chops, speed, loudness, and amazingness? There is lots to say about soloing effectively (more on that coming). But if this is new

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dexterity drills
Video: Got Dexterity?
Ari | 17, August

These Wicked Dexterity Drills are just what the Doctor ordered… First published on notreble, this dexterity regimen effectively addresses several common issues: coordination between the right and left hands independence of all fingers, but especially the third and pinky fingers more comfort with one-finger-per-fret string crossing speed training Dexterity is all about coordination It’s a

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Gadgets for Technique Practice?
Ari | 10, August

I got this question twice last week: Ari, what do you think of squeeze balls and grip devices and other gadgets to strengthen my fingers? From my experience these items will not help you. I advise against them because to use them corectly, one needs to have a good plan, pay attention, be constantly aware

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tension relaxed
How to Send Tension Packing… And Play More Relaxed
Ari | 03, August

Last week I was talking about the importance of sending tension packing so creativity and flow can move your way instead. Here are a few general tips and checkpoints for relaxed and effective playing technique Work on your technique regularly so overgripping and overworking become a thing of the past. Let the big muscles get

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The Number 1 Enemy of Creativity, Timing and Tone
Ari | 29, July

I used to believe that peak creativity is just happening to us in rare, lucky moments and that the best we can do is pray to the muses. Over time I realized that there are a lot of things I could do to foster creativity and to have more of these lucky moments. This gives

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kinked straw crooked kinked fingers
Kinked or crooked fingers? Here is relief!
Ari | 13, July

When I wrote my book, Music  Theory for the Bass Player, me and my editors went back and forth (and forth and back!) about using the description of “kinked fingers” in the Technique Chapter! My editors wanted me to use the word “crooked” instead. It’s a subtle distinction between the two, but the word crooked just didn’t

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triplet triplets swing walking bass
Triplets in Walking Bass Lines
Ari | 05, July

Working on Walking Bass? Creating an interesting walking bass line over changes is one part art, one part science (music theory) and a whole lot of feel . Well, how can we turn this somewhat cryptic recipe into a useful recommendation for walking chord changes to give your own lines an instant lift? Walking bass

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fret buzz
Buzz off, Fret Buzz! (Buzz-free Bass tone)
Ari | 22, June

Got a fret buzz that is just not going away? A fret buzz can really be putting a damper on the joy of playing. Here is help: First – check your set up! Maybe your truss rod is not adjusted correctly, or you have a fret sticking out that is causing the buzz. Take your

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dominant subdominant tonic functions Ariane Cap Music THeory for the bass player
Tonic – Subdominant – Dominant – Why you need to know
Ari | 15, June

If you have ever opened up a music theory book, you will see the “functions” of chords within a scale. They are famously named: The “Functions”: Tonic, Subdominant, Dominant Tonic (that’s the chord built on the first scale degree) Subdominant (that’s the chord built on the fourth scale degree) and Dominant (that’s the chord built

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hearing the modes eartraining
Hearing the Modes – Made super easy!
Ari | 08, June

Remember the shortcuts to Modes from last week? Here is a great ear training exercise to hearing the modes. It is so amazingly easy, it is wild. Remember there are three major modes, three minor modes and one mode that is in a class of its own. The three major ones: ionian lydian (with the

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Kala Ubass give away
Kala UBass Give Away – Winner Chosen Tomorrow
Ari | 08, June

Remember to enter to win the beautiful Kala UBass! That lovely Passenger Kala UBass will be drawn very soon! Repeat submissions encouraged! Lucky winner, get ready! Terms and Conditions here! Repeat entries encouraged. It sounds awesome, check it:  

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Modes course music theory for the bass playe aeolian ionian phrygian lydian mixolydian
Are the Modes all Greek to You? (Super Short Cut!)
Ari | 01, June

Are you Mystified by the Modes? I have a theory (not a music theory in this case, ha) which is that some are eyeing the modes with suspicion because they have such complicated sounding names. As always, I aim to simplify things and point out the deliciousness of the musical topic at hand. Modes, dear

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This Talking Technique Hit Home: “Burps”
Ari | 25, May

This particular Talking Technique Episode got a lot of views, thumbs up and shares. You can find three gems in it: phrasing straight versus “swung” – even if you just play quarter notes creating a rhythmic variation that enhances any walking bass line how to practice any variation systematically (a bit bland sounding) so that

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Privacy Policy Updates Info and Thank You
Ari | 25, May

First of all, thank you for being here, reading, learning, grooving along. Whether you are subscribed to our newsletter, read the blog, are part of our course or have the book and watch the free videos that come with it – a big colorful heartfelt thanks! Undoubtedly you have heard that a set of new

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What you need to know about “Diminished”
Ari | 18, May

The thing with the word “diminished” is, it is used in so many different contexts it can really throw one for a loop: scale? triad? four note chord? or just an interval?? To make matters worse there is no unified system of how to name chords, so when someone says Cdim, that’s a triad! But

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Kala Ubass Give Away
Win a Kala U-Bass!
Ari | 06, May

I am super excited – I have a new endorsement with Kala UBasses!   Ubasses are so much fun, I can’t put mine down!!     Want to Win Yours? To celebrate, Kala and me are giving away a Kala UBass to one lucky winner chosen at random. Here is how to enter – and to maximize

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Second INversion Hit Music THeory Bass Music THeory for the bass Player
Second Inversion Hit: Van Halen to Branford Marsalis
Ari | 04, May

After taking a look at the first inversion of a triad (sampled with Deep Blue Something’s Breakfast at Tiffany), let’s check out the second inversion. If you missed the basics, here they are: What’s the second inversion of a triad? Play it on your bass to hear it G/D? Say “G over D”: A G-major triad

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Breakfast at Tiffany’s: First Inversion
Ari | 27, April

Last week’s blog post talked about interval inversions. But not only can intervals be inverted – chords also can! How? The same way – just take the lowest note and move it up the octave. The example below shows a G major triad, consisting of the root (G), the major third (B) and the fifth

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Vallejo Empress Theatre Nick Phillips gig
In the News (and at The Empress)
Ari | 20, April

Collaborating! One of the most rewarding activities as a musician – is collaborating! Creating, together, something from nothing, sharing a vision, doing the work, the practicing, the promoting, the charts, the setlists, the invite lists… I am proud and happy to introduce to you my new project with trumpeter and GRAMMY® recognized Producer Nick Phillips. Trumpet

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Healthy Bassist

Persuasive Point For Good Bass Technique

November 30, 2015   14 Comments

In this blog post I will put a bit of attention on the importance of good overall bass technique when playing and tell you about an awesome experience I had a few months ago that plays right into healthy bass technique. Effective Bass Technique – My Take in a Nut Shell I believe effective right

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