Music Theory for the Bass Player – The Online Course

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Music Theory for the Bass Player – The Online Coaching Course 2.0 is OPEN NOW!

Unlock your hidden talent, and play bass with more freedom and confidence than you ever dreamed!

Thousands of musicians have this priceless gift, but never discover it!

If you’re disciplined, courageous, and open-minded, there’s only one more thing you need.

A “talented” bass player is just someone with an intuitive understanding of the way certain notes go together. They can naturally “feel” what to do next, so they play with freedom and confidence.

I’ve got great news. If you’re willing to work at it, you can learn this skill.

Introducing the only real “magic bullet” that can make you an outstanding bass player

Let’s be clear. If you’re just looking for tabs and other shortcuts, you’ve come to the wrong place.

But if you want to deepen your bass skills, if you have passion for your music, then I can teach you what has already worked for hundreds of my students.  

So let me introduce myself, and ask you a very important question.

My name is Ariane Cap.  I have played bass for over 27 years and have been teaching for 20 years. I’ve been featured regularly on Scott’s Bass Lessons, NoTreble, TrueFire and the International Society of Bassists. I’ve been written about in Bass Player Magazine, Bass Musician Magazine, Der Bass Professor, Riff Magazine and Bass Quarterly. My book, Music Theory for the Bass Player, has sold thousands of copies and is a frequent Amazon #1 Best Seller in the Bass Guitar Songbooks Category. 

I have always been fascinated by the learning process – how it is different for everyone, yet how there are so many parallels and commonalities when learning an instrument.

After 20 years of teaching bass to hundreds of students, I’ve found the closest thing to a magic bullet that can take your playing to the next level.

The secret is a thoughtful, step-by-step program that combines two important skills: A solid technique, and an understanding of music theory so deep it becomes intuitive.

Why do I start with those two? See what happens when you put these together:

  • You can overcome roadblocks and bad habits that have slowed your progress for years
  • Your practice sessions become more focused, productive, and enjoyable!
  • You reach a point where you can just pick up the bass and jam– spontaneously create your own bass lines and grooves as you play better than you ever imagined! 

This will not happen overnight. It takes a bit of discipline, courage and an open mind. And that brings me to my question:

Do you sincerely want to take your bass playing to the next level?

It’s one thing to understand music theory the way an arranger or a composer does. That’s enough to write out notes on a staff so they sound good.

But while you’re actually playing, you don’t have time to mentally transpose this into a bass line.

That’s why I teach music theory the way a bass player learns naturally: Using patterns and shapes on the fretboard that bass players are already familiar with.

If you were one of my private students, I would sit down with you personally and show you how to master your technique while gaining a deep understanding of music theory.

But I currently have a waiting list for private lessons, and not everyone can meet me in person, or afford single lessons. That’s why I created Music Theory for the Bass Player–The Online Course.

Now you can learn from anywhere, at your own pace, on your own schedule, at a very affordable price. And you can come back to the lessons as often as you need to.

20 Units of Step by Step Guidance Give You The Freedom to Create Your Own Bass Lines

Approach the Level of Skill You’ve Always Dreamed About

When you enroll in Music Theory for the Bass Player, new material unlocks for you at a weekly schedule. You get new material via reminder emails and once you have finished a unit you get reward emails — as well as coaching support! 

But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

If you can put in 45 minutes of practice, 5 days a week, you’ll start to see changes surprisingly soon.

Your technique improves. You’re more aware of what’s going on in your fingers, your hands, your entire body. Even your posture, your breathing, and your thinking become an intentional part of your playing. You begin to notice bad habits and new opportunities in your playing.

You start to understand music theory in a new way. Soon it becomes intuitive, and then, instinctive. Applied theory becomes a regular part of your growing skill as a bass player.

Before long, your playing feels free and spontaneous. As exercises become natural movements, you can simply groove without thinking about it. You’ll know theory in your hands as well as in your head.

You know the feeling. When the music just flows and you know exactly what note to play next and everything fits in perfectly.  You can learn to play this way more consistently!

After 20 units, you’ll have such a thorough grounding in theory and technique that you will be ready to handle any challenge.

But the weekly reminder emails are just the beginning. You’ll also get:

  • Live Q & A’s with me and Wolf (my teacher!)
  • Additional exercises in the videos and PDFs that are not available in the book: Creative applications, applications, and even more applications! They will help you get the theory shapes under your fingers while having fun in the process.
  • Lifetime membership–You can go back and review/revisit the lessons whenever you want!
  • Guidance for great technique while covering the theory.
  • Awesome audio background tracks created by fellow bassist and composer Wolf Wein, to practice to!
  • Practice tips and constant encouragement!
  • Now NEW: Theory Quizzes, Coaching questions
  • Community support
  • Reviews! Rewards! Reminders!
  • It is a carefully structured, tested and refined approach that gets gradually more challenging

Which of these 7 approaches will be your ticket to super skill?

Every weekly lesson is divided into seven sections.

First, there’s an Intro section where we set the tone for the week. You’ll  get a manageable reading assignment from the book, and there are some amazing coaching questions there for you.

Now I know you’d rather be playing than doing homework answering questions about your goals, but research has shown the immense impact writing about your goals has on the psyche!  If you answer the thought-out coaching questions, you may just multiply the effectiveness of your practice time. 

The intro is a powerful music theory lesson on its own. But then things start to really pick up:

Finger Kung Fu is all about technique. I’ll give you practice regimens to get your fingers in shape and prepare you to face any foe: arpeggios, tricky grooves, fills or solos! You’ll be ready to handle them all. There are usually two to four videos in this section, including some that you just have to pop in and practice along with.

Theory Practice comes next, where you really ingrain the theory on the fretboard so you know your way around. We may be creating grooves using a theory concept as a starting point, improvise on a new sound/shape we just learned, or put the theory into practice by doing some improv. Often we practice the new concepts all over the fretboard – that is putting theory into action!

After a good grounding in theory, it’s time for the Bass Line Lab, where you create your own bass lines using the theory material you have studied earlier. Each week builds on the previous one, and we will do this in lots of variations.

For example, one exercise I call “Groove and Fill” helps you put the theory materials to great creative use. But watch out! This can be addictive!

Another favorite is “Call and Response” – can you follow along with the easier versions? How about the more advanced ones? (Hey you can slow down the video if it’s too fast at first)!

Combo Class is where you get a double bang for your practicing buck! In particular, a series I call “Creative Notefinder” takes you through all 21 notes (yes, twenty-one! That’s not a typo).

“Creative Notefinder” helps you find the notes all over the fretboard while making use of new concepts we learned. Students say it doesn’t feel like practicing at all, but jamming, rather, and that’s exactly what it is!

But it’s not “just” about finding the notes. We also switch it up each unit by using different time signatures and adding additional, progressively harder assignments. Wolf created a unique jamtrack for each note name, including wicked variations and rhythmic twists!

In later units, Combo Class turns into Styles Lab and that is all about various styles of grooves: we tackle pop, rock, reggae, funk, jazz, blues and more.

Just in case you’re still not completely filled with low-end goodness yet, each week I include a section called Hip Bits that’s packed with cool stuff, fun stuff, sample licks, fills, grooves, songs…

And finally, I send you off for the week with an Outro section which is much more than an outro. It contains tips to make your practice more effective, helpful insights from learning psychology, and all the PDFs and sound files, as well as resources (including easy cut-and-paste!) for your own practice journal. All these goodies come in handy zip files, so you can download them in one click!

Believe me, you’re going to have plenty of useful work to keep you busy for the week or two. But if you run into trouble, we are here to help.

Live Q&A to Address Your Specific Challenges

I co-created this course with my own teacher and mentor, Wolf Wein, and we have now added “Ask Ari Featuring Wolf” sessions.

I realize how important personal interaction is when learning. Additional motivation, information, and interaction make all the difference! In these sessions, it is all about you! Join us – Ask Ari sessions are included in the course and they happen every first Sunday of the month at noon Pacific!

. .

If you’re the kind of person who gets excited at the thought of all this guidance and support, all these exercises and resources, you’ve probably already made a decision.

If you know that a systematic, step-by-step approach that combines theory and technique is what you need right now, then I won’t have to twist your arm to enroll.

If you like the idea that you can ask your questions in a live format, and get direct, immediate answers, then this should be a no-brainer.

You can sign up for the course below. 

But if you need more convincing, I’ve got even more to offer you.

You already have everything you need to become as good as you want to be

You’re still reading this, which shows me that you’re interested. If you didn’t see any possibility of reaching higher with this course, then by now you would have closed this window and be watching a cat sing “O Sole Meow” on YouTube.

But you haven’t signed up for the course, and that means you’re still on the fence. Maybe you don’t know what this course is.

How extensive and yet practical it is.

I could tell you about the results people are getting – I get so many emails and awesome feedback from our participants from all over the world. (You can read a fraction of them on this page.)

We even have people going through the course a second or third time as one can adapt it in complexity! And 95% of all participants say they noticed a marked improvement in their playing!

I could tell you all about the research and testing that went into the material, from refining it with students over years of teaching – one-on-one and in groups.

Then there is the learning psychology I continue to study and add into the course experience, including best practice habits and help with accountability in the online learning format.

And the totally awesome suggestions we are getting from our participants, which we are incorporating (or work to incorporate) constantly. It is one of the reasons why we are making the move to this new exciting platform.

The testing and tweaking have lead to many revisions, additions, and changes since the course first went online. (To say we are obsessed would be an understatement).

We even have students who contribute material – such as Alan’s practice log resource which we have incorporated into the course. And we hear from students all the time who create their own practice logs and send it to us.

Then we hear how much traction and motivation the Ask Ari Live sessions provide, which also include my very own teacher, bassist and composer Wolf Wein, whenever we can get him.

We are near obsessed with people being successful with this course.

  • Over 20 hours of highly focused video materials, all broken down into small bite-sized portions. Absolutely zero fluff, showing-off or time-fillers. Included is a written synopsis of the exercises with purpose and benefits so we know why we are doing this, and links to jam tracks and PDFs, so it is easy to practice right away.
  • Over 130 sets of PDFs with examples to inspire you (it is really about you creating your own bass lines, though, and I show you how)
  • Over 120 awesome and unique background tracks to practice with, custom composed by Wolf.

Our course participants talk to us a lot–because of the results they are getting!

We have enthused hobbyists who are thrilled to see consistent growth, leaving plateaus behind, excelling and improving. They love the challenge and are intrigued with meeting the bass musician who emerges as they follow through the units.

We have church band players, weekend warriors, regular giggers, wedding band bassists, bassists playing original material in their own bands… I know because they email me telling me about that rehearsal when their bandmate commented on a cool fill (thanks to the systematic “Groove and Fill exercises”) or the drummer notices their solid groove (thanks to the “Finger Kung Fu”!)

Or they tell me about that moment when they learned a new tune and it was so easy because they understood the chord progression instantly.

Or they played their first solo and it was awesome.

We have 20-somethings who are gung-ho and dedicated and practicing way more than the recommended 45 minutes 5 times a week.

We have busy professionals in other fields who want to improve with the little spare time they have and follow the 45 minutes/5 times a week prescription with great consistent success. Consistency is key and the course provides the structure that makes this easy!

And we have people in their 60’s and beyond who tell me that for the first time in their lives they feel hope, a sense of confidence growing, and are beginning to leave the old “could have, should have” behind in favor of actually enjoying making music.

We have aspiring pros who have set their minds to becoming bassists and say they have never seen material presented in such a concise and results-oriented way.

We have busy bass pros and studio musicians who take the course because they have some holes in their theory knowledge they want to plug once and for all.

Wherever you fit along that spectrum, from hobbyist to professional, from player to fanatic, I am obsessed with making you reach and exceed your goals successfully.

You already have the desire, the fire, and a belief in what’s possible, or you wouldn’t be reading this. I can give you the roadmap and be your guide. You are not alone, but you have to show up.

You have everything you need right here in front of you. All you have to do is take that first step.

Are these common myths holding you back from becoming a better bass player?

  • “I’m not talented”
  • “I’m too old”
  • “I’ve been playing for years and can’t improve any further”
  • “I don’t have time to practice 8 hours a day”
  • “There’s just too much to learn and I don’t know where to start”

None of these obstacles are real. I’ve seen hundreds of students move beyond them. But you have to bring two things to the table: A long-term perspective and an open mind.

This Course is not for you if…

  • You are happy just playing songs by rote or from TAB
  • You don’t desire to learn how to create your own lines and play more freely on the fretboard
  • You only want to play licks and songs
  • You are accepting compromises in technique and tone
  • You are not willing to go slow, to take a step back, learn to relax with the instrument and incorporate breathing
  • You are not interested in anything that involves shortcuts like  visualization and mental training

But if you’re sincerely interested in improving your playing technique, get ready for an amazing journey!

Questions and Answers about this Extraordinary Course

What do I need for this course?

  • The book (get it on Amazon or order it in bookstores. has free shipping world wide!)
  • Email and an internet connection! This is all online. Exclusive content will be streamed straight to you. 
  • Your bass

 What’s up with the price increase?

Tuition for this course is still a steal for what you are getting! We had to make a few adjustments because we have added so much material and many features since it first went live in July 2016!

We also moved to a new, amazing platform with even more features such as

  • Theory Quizzes
  • A streamlined layout
  • More coaching support
  • Reminders, reviews and rewards!
  • Discussion forums
  • Super easy navigation
  • Favoriting
  • Progress reports
  • …and much more.

This platform offers the ability to incorporate many student ideas and wishes as well. (Note: If you are on the current platform you got grandfathered in at NO change in tuition. I love my early birds and early adopters and this is my thanks to you!)

Is this about more than just music theory?
, it goes way beyond music theory. Technique, fretboard knowledge, bass line creation, groove playing, rhythm, grooves, fills, and solos… are all part of the package.

Does this course teach how to read music, or do I have to already read to take the course?

You may be surprised at this, but the answer is “neither.” Reading is a super important skill, but it is one that is not best learned at the same time as you learn theory!!

I have an in-depth program on reading and the Pattern System coming, but believe me when I say – learn the theory shapes first! You likely already know many of them, my students are always surprised to find it feels much more familiar than they thought!

See, after teaching hundreds of students and really paying attention to them I have learned a thing or two: bass is a visual instrument and box shapes are easy to pick up.

Many bassists learn songs quite rapidly, and may play in bands for years without really knowing what they are doing.

So when they get to the point at which they do want to know what they are doing, how it is put together, how to get to the next level… they pick up a theory book and it is all about reading or it requires reading.

They open up the book and it is like a foreign language stares at them. I say forget all that and go to what you do know – shapes on the fretboard.

Why make the learner step back, undo all they already DO know? If you have played a song on bass you have played a pentatonic, for example. You are not starting from zero!

And even if you are starting from zero, this course is the best way to start because it tackles theory AND technique.

So trust me when I say: learn theory first (shapes! shapes! shapes!) My course combines that with good technique. Then we do the Pattern System, Reading and Rhythm, and then some advanced theory, and you are unstoppable!

Reading, then, becomes a breeze! Boom! What a shortcut!

Do it this way around, not the other way. You utilize your strengths rather than fight against your weaknesses.

You talk a lot about “coaching” us, Ari. Nobody can make me do anything, only I can! What do you mean by your “coaching support”?
While it is correct that I cannot practice for you, there is a lot that we can do to support you. Performance and learning psychologists study peak performance and motivation for obvious reasons and we borrowed from them heavily:

  • The more accomplished you feel after a practice session the easier it will be to do more of it. We have designed the course to foster continued growth as you follow along by making you use the theory material in specific ways.
  • We show you focused practice techniques that can accomplish surprisingly fast results if you choose to accept the challenge.
  • Bite-sized learning units – just the right length.
  • Engaging quizzes
  • Reminders – emails to keep you on track!
  • Reviews – constant review sessions ensure that you stay on top of everything!
  • Rewards – after you finished a unit you receive a reward email.
  • Community support – everything is easier “with a little help from my friends”.
  • Progress tracking – it is motivating to see the progress bar near completion!
  • Coaching questions – research has shown that if you write down your goals by answering specific questions you contribute massively in making your dreams a reality.
  • Motivating videos with reminders to keep a supportive mindset.

Much of the above you have likely never seen mentioned or considered in an online course. Or it may seem unusual to you. Keep an open mind and be ready to be surprised!

Will I learn how to create my own basslines?
Yes! Bass lines, licks, grooves & fills. And solos, if you want. This is really at the core of this course. And mighty fun, too!

Does this course go beyond the material in the book?
. This course contains lots more information, exercises, and concepts than the book. It refers heavily to it, but it goes way beyond it. Lots of additional material, videos, and applications that can best be shown in videos. And, the core of it: the step by step approach, with each unit building upon the next, using the material in the book in more and more challenging contexts and applications.

Is this suitable for complete beginners?
Yes, if you are motivated and enthusiastic. If you are just starting out you best pace yourself and go at a slower pace. A good rule of thumb is to allocate at least two weeks for each unit. I have included a beginner crash course as well and instructions as to how to proceed through the course if you are a novice.

I am an advanced player and just want to plug some music theory holes. Will I get value out of this?
Yes! Intermediate to advanced players who are looking to improve their theory and technique will find a treasure trove of useful exercises here.

Can I start anytime?
Yes, you can start anytime. Once you sign up you get new material on a weekly basis for twenty weeks. Once unlocked, the material is accessible to you to come back to anytime.

Do you offer a money back guarantee?
Yes, we offer an unconditional 20-day money back guarantee. If you are not satisfied for any reason, you can email for a full refund.

Current Course Participants – I kept my promises: you got grandfathered into the new upgraded platform and received all the new content at no additional charge.

If you missed the Welcome email, check instructions here

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