Bassology Lessons

Bassology Lessons

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***I wanted to extend a special thanks to Rick Poncheri and to Greg Blount, who are both students and good friends, for all of their assistance with these lessons.

For more information about lessons, email Anthony at  or call 301-535-4589

Suggested Learning Material



I've been collecting & reading theory books for 20 years and this one is my favorite. It's concise, to the point and explained in layman's terms. I am constantly rereading it and recommend it to all my students and musician friends. It's a MUST HAVE.



The Jazz Theory Book


This is a very detailed theory book with emphasis on Jazz theory. It lists recordings to reference examples of 'licks' that are notated in the book.



Charlie Parker Omnibook


This is a good book for all the hard core 'Jazz guys' out there. It's full of transcripts of Charlie Parker's solos and you can get this book in bass clef. I bought it initially to study how Charlie Parker played over various ii-V changes.

Chord Progressions for SongwritersCHORD PROGRESSIONS FOR SONGWRITERS

Each chapter of Chord Progressions For Songwriters provides a comprehensive self-contained lesson on one of twenty-one popular chord progressions that every songwriter should know inside and out.


Giant Steps


This book was written by a guitarist and is written in treble clef, but I think it's a must have for any bass player that's thinking of taking on the tune 'Giant Steps'. This book lays out a very logical and analytical way of approaching this tune.


Edly's Music Theory for Practical PeopleEDLY'S MUSIC THEORY FOR PRACTICAL PEOPLE

This is a unique, conversational and sometimes humorous theory book people will actually want to read! Topics include: notation, natural & chromatic alphabets, scales, keys & key signatures, intervals, chords, ear-training. It also features advanced topics, such as: voicings, chord extensions & alterations, voice leading, reharmonization, melodic harmonization, and harmonic analysis.




This is one of my favorite books and now Dan Levitan is one of my friends. This book explains what is happening in the brain when we play music an listen.



The World in Six SongsTHE WORLD IN SIX SONGS

Dr. Levitin identifies six fundamental song functions or types-friendship, joy, comfort, religion, knowledge, and love-then shows how each in its own way has enabled the social bonding necessary for human culture and society to evolve.



Outliers is a great book on how mastery is formed.







Blink is a book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant-in the blink of an eye-that actually aren't as simple as they seem. Why are some people brilliant decision makers, while others are consistently inept?



Music, The Brain and EcstasyMUSIC, THE BRAIN AND ECSTASY

Robert Jourdian brilliantly examines why music speaks to us in ways that words cannot, and why we form such powerful connections to it.





Moonwalking with Einstein recounts Joshua Foer's yearlong quest to improve his memory under the tutelage of top "mental athletes." He draws on cutting-edge research, a surprising cultural history of remembering, and venerable tricks of the mentalist's trade to transform our understanding of human memory. From the United States Memory Championship to deep within the author's own mind, this is an electrifying work of journalism that reminds us that, in every way that matters, we are the sum of our memories.


The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire.




DriveDRIVE: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

In this provocative and persuasive new book, he asserts that the secret to high performance and satisfaction-at work, at school, and at home—is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.


What is the secret of talent? How do we unlock it? In this groundbreaking work, journalist and New York Times bestselling author Daniel Coyle provides parents, teachers, coaches, businesspeople—and everyone else—with tools they can use to maximize potential in themselves and others.


According to distinguished journalist Geoff Colvin, both the hard work and natural talent camps are wrong. What really makes the difference is a highly specific kind of effort-"deliberate practice"-that few of us pursue when we're practicing golf or piano or stockpicking. Based on scientific research, Talent is Overrated shares the secrets of extraordinary performance and shows how to apply these principles.


Gift of FearGIFT OF FEAR

True fear is a gift. Unwarranted fear is a curse. Learn how to tell the difference.




Oliver Sacks explores the place music occupies in the brain and how it affects the human condition.




Mastery synthesizes the years of research by Robert Greene and demonstrates that the ultimate form of power is mastery itself. By analyzing the lives of such past masters as Charles Darwin, Benjamin Franklin, Albert Einstein, and Leonard da Vinci, as well as by interviewing nine contemporary masters, including tech guru Paul Graham and animal rights advocate Temple Grandin, Greene debunks our culture’s many myths about genius and distills the wisdom of the ages to reveal the secret to greatness.

Thinking Fast and SlowTHINKING FAST AND SLOW

Engaging the reader in a lively conversation about how we think, Kahneman reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and our personal lives—and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble.



A renowned professor of English at the University of Virginia, Edmundson has felt firsthand the pressure on colleges to churn out a productive, high-caliber workforce for the future. Yet in these essays, many of which have run in places such as Harper's and the New York Times, he reminds us that there is more to education than greater productivity. With prose exacting yet expansive, tough-minded yet optimistic, Edmundson argues forcefully that the liberal arts are more important today than ever.




If you like philosophy tied to your musicianship, this is the book for you. I try to read this book at least twice a year and it always has an immediate effect when I read it. It gives a very good non-physical, non-cerebral, but very spiritual approach to playing a musical instrument.


This is another book that approaches music from a philosophical/spiritual point of view. It features some meditations that are designed to address various problems or mental blockages that can hinder a musician from achieving their full potential.


Surfing the HimalayasSURFING THE HIMALAYAS

An inspirational and spiritual adventure uses a central metaphor of snowboarding to explore a holistic approach to living and making the most of the mind/body connection



From legendary bassist Victor L. Wooten comes The Music Lesson, the story of a struggling young musician who wanted music to be his life, and who wanted his life to be great. Then, from nowhere it seemed, a teacher arrived. Part musical genius, part philosopher, part eccentric wise man, the teacher would guide the young musician on a spiritual journey, and teach him that the gifts we get from music mirror those from life, and every movement, phrase, and chord has its own meaning...All you have to do is find the song inside.



Summoned by a remote tribe of nomadic Aborigines to accompany them on walkabout, the woman makes a four-month-long journey and learns how they thrive in natural harmony with the plants and animals that exist in the rugged lands of Australia's bush. From the first day of her adventure, Morgan is challenged by the physical requirements of the journey—she faces daily tests of her endurance, challenges that ultimately contribute to her personal transformation



If you belong to a band and love the art of your job, but sing the blues when it comes to the business side, you needMusic Law. Composed by musician and lawyer Richard Stim, the book explains how to:. find the right manager . buy, insure and maintain equipment
. get gigs and get paid . tour on a budget . use samples . do covers legally . protect your copyright . trademark your band’s name . choose a recording studio . sell your music
. manage your website . understand record contracts . deal with taxes


This book was so good that it was made into a movie. This book details the musically historical life and sad death of James Jamerson. It features transcripts and includes a CD of his prominent recordings played by some of the most renowned bassists of today. This is a great book about a truly innovative player who defined the Motown sound.