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Learn Bass Guitar & Music Theory with Ari

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Ari is an experienced teacher who will guide you through the creativity of playing the bass guitar. Her book, Music Theory for the Bass Player, combined with her new online bass guitar course will get you improving your grooving one fret at a time.

Latest Posts

perfect fifth perfect fifths
When you should not play the perfect fifth…
Ari | 17, October

The Perfect Fifth is always safe to use, right? Yes. Except when it isn’t! Related, in case you missed it: The Fifth – Why it is the bassist’s best buddy The Forgotten Fifth We often refer to “perfect fifths” as just “fifths” – that is sort of an okay thing to do, since there are

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The Forgotten Fifth (Have it Under Your Fingers?)
Ari | 10, October

Fingering a Fifth You probably know it as a “1 by 2”: one string up, two frets over, like this (the numbers are fingering options for fifths): According to my Wall Chart’s interval formula, this is a “1 by 2” – one string up, two frets over.   The Forgotten Fifth But what about this

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fifth ariane cap
The Fifth – Why it is Your Best Buddy…
Ari | 03, October

Root – Five – Root – Five… it is a kind of signature bass line – and it works! In country, bluegrass, folk music, as well as in bossa (where it’s root – five – five – root root – five – five); also, a great way to start playing walking bass, for example, is

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Pi mnemonics
Remember How You Remembered Pi? (On Bass Mnemonics)
Ari | 26, September

“May I have a large container of coffee?”  This handy mnemonic never made it to my German speaking  classroom back in high school, but it would have come in handy to remember those elusive digits that make up the mysterious Pi! Mnemonics are one of my favorite ways to learn and teach because they work

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sus chords
Sus2, Sus4, Sus7 or just plain Sus? I’m in Suspense!
Ari | 19, September

Ah, sus chords! Sus means suspended – what we are suspending here is the third of the chord, so a sus2 or sus4 chord is essentially a chord with “something else” instead of the third, which leads to it being less stable and not defined as major or minor. This “something else” can be the

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phonetic alphabet for the bass player
The Music Theory for the Bass Player Spelling Bee…
Ari | 12, September
It all started with marveling about the note H in the German musical alphabet and me being on the phone trying to spell something akin to Oachkatzlschwoaf (which means tale of a squirrel where I come from!). English is not my mother tongue. The way German is wired, we just don't spell like they do
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rhythm changes
The Ultimate Shortcut to Rhythm Changes
Ari | 05, September

What does “Rhythm Changes” mean? We refer to “Rhythm Changes” to a chord sequence made famous by George Gershwin’s tune “I Got Rhythm”. The A section of this tune features a two bar phrase with chords changing every other beat, like this: I chord, VI chord, II chord, V chord. In the key of C:

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melodic minor Ariane Cap
A Melodic Minor Key With Three Sharps…?
Ari | 29, August

Let’s talk melodic minor for a second. It is a beautiful scale. What is it? It is the natural minor scale (AKA the sixth mode of the major scale, aeolian minor) with the raised sixth and seventh scale degrees. In classical theory it makes a difference whether you ascend or descend… ascending means sharpening the

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B and H in German
To B or not to Bb? Or to H?
Ari | 24, August

The International Musical Alphabet… Are you from a country other than the US, where quavers make you quiver (rather than eighth notes), where Do means C, or sharp means “crosse“? Feeling like you need to relearn pretty much everything from scratch as you foray into the land of YouTube videos, international teachings and real books,

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Great Bass line Ariane Cap
How do I Make a Great Bass Line as a Bass Player?
Ari | 17, August

Play in a band and asked to contribute a great bass line to a song? Happy jamming and want to take it a step further? Writing a song from the bottom up? Being Able to Create a Great Bass Line From Scratch is a Useful, Rewarding and Learnable Skill! While some great bass lines are

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Ariane Cap BJ Fogg Motivation Tiny Habits
Low on Motivation? The Power of Tiny Habits
Ari | 07, August
A Tough Place to be It can strike without warning or creep up slowly over time- this feeling of being in a lull with our instrument pursuits: burnt out, joyless, completely without motivation to pick up the beloved bass. It makes no sense, because you know that you are a bassist at heart, you know
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ariane cap fretless bass guitar
Converting to fretless?
Ari | 03, August

How difficult is it to convert from fretted to fretless bass playing? While I don’t recommend to convert fully – both fretless and fretted have their uses – read in my article below what I recommend to keep in mind. The transition is so much easier if you have a solid one-finger-per-fret regimen under your

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arianecap.com website
Arianecap.com: Website Redesigned
Ari | 01, August

Websites Gallore: arianecap.com I am very happy you are here, on my blog! My blog (arisbassblog.com) is dedicated to bass education, courses, learning, my blog. arianecap.com is my artist site and I have completely redesigned it with the help of my awesome web wiz Amber Kim. For new releases, artist news, bio, audio, video, pictures,

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solo bass Ariane Cap
Does the bass guitar sound good when played solo?
Ari | 30, July

Solo Bass Playing? To some it is a sacrilege – using bass outside of the band context, using bass for anything but grooving in a band. I challenge that view – amazing solo bass music has been made. It is a very special sound – even though it is “just bass”, the variety of tones

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The Horrors of Errors
Ari | 26, July

In this article I answer a question on quora about errors. Errors are a difficult topic for me personally because I have a history of being extremely hard on myself if things are not “perfect”. So much so that my self judgment at times completely paralyzed me and sure took the fun out of performing

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Efficient Practice Hacks: Sleep!
Ari | 19, July

Learn in Your Sleep or: Put Your Bass Under Your Pillow for Maximum Practice Effect. Wait, what? In this article I talk about the magic window of learning we get right before we drift into dream land. Another opportunity to maximize your practice bang with just a small pre-sleep routine. It is really easy and

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learning channels
Learning Channels: My 5 for Bass and How to Use Them
Ari | 17, July

Learning Channels Ever played a piece over and over and it still failed to “stick”? No matter how often you repeat it, when you return back to it it feels as if you are starting from scratch? Don’t worry, there is nothing wrong with you. Likely you just never learned how to practice effectively. Focusing

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Efficient Practice Hacks – How to Take Breaks
Ari | 13, July

It’s a no-brainer, you practice, then you take a break, right? True, but, even that process of taking breaks can be improved upon and hence make your practice session significantly more effective. How you take those breaks, the spirit in which you take breaks and at what intervals all plays into how much you will

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feedback loops
Efficient Practice Hacks – Creating Feedback Loops
Ari | 09, July

I recently wrote on Feedback Loops, and I got a few questions on it. So I wanted to go a bit deeper on the topic, particularly, by giving you examples of “how not to” and rather “how to”. It helps to have examples  – whether it is to improve yourself or others! Make sure to

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Adapting Patterns
Adapting Patterns for Four-, Five-, Six-string Basses
Ari | 05, July

Adapting The Patterns for Four-, Five-, Six-string Basses – Surprisingly Easy and Not What you Might Think I have been getting a few emails lately with questions about The Pattern System. The Pattern System is a systematic approach of getting the fretboard down, learning to think ahead (great for the groove!) and being able to

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ISB PORA video
PORA Video: Watch the Method in Action
Ari | 04, July

The best method I know of for habit change is the PORA method. I learned the basics of it at the University of Music in Vienna, Austria, refined it over the years and created a step-by-step infographic. Get the scoop and a video I did for ISB here.        

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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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