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About Bilbo

  • Birthday 24/07/1963

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  1. The fundamental question is why do we want to learn to read. For me, it is not just about reading gigs, it is primarily about study and learning. Since I started learning to read in earnest, I have found the hundreds of books I have full of notes have become massively more useful to me. I am not reading Al Di Meola guitar parts with a view to performing them live, I am just getting deeper and deeper into the music and increasing my knowledge of the art form and the instruments I play. It takes me places in the neck I would probably otherwise wouldn't know and forces me to examine phrases and passages that challenge me. I now do a regular big band gig again and read for that. The number of passages where I get caught out are fewer and fewer which feels good and, frankly, makes me less of a liability for the rest of the band. I just think it gives you the potential to be a better musician that simply playing by ear.
  2. This is where you HAVE to start just DOING it. Every day. 20 - 30 minutes reading anything and everything. Start with something easy in C then F, G etc, adding one accidental every so often. It's a grind but it's the only way.
  3. There is only really one way to learn to read. Do it. A little each day. Start on single quarter notes, easy pieces, move to eights the sixteenths, add rests as you go along. One bar, then two then fifty. Then just do it. A lot. It is not difficult to learn the principles of how to do it but it is something you have to keep doing and doing and doing again. It is also something that you will lose if you neglect it. I am working on reading guitar parts at the moment as well as improving my bass clef sight reading. Luckily, I have just landed a big band gig so I am already seeing improvements just by needing to do it. You will see great progress simply by doing it for 20 minutes a day every day.
  4. Total time to find the right bloody screwdriver; 45 minutes.
  5. I think it is something that you have to 'get' in the same way that, say, dance music is. If you listen to dance music without understanding that it is to dance to, the you are likely to have unmet expectations. If you think 'melodies' can only be played using crotchets and quaver and that you cannot play spontaneously and melodically with sixteenth notes, then you are not going to hear the melodies and could interpret it as 'noodling'. There are noodlers out there, undoubtedly (count me in, for starters), but most definitely no-one on KoB.
  6. As for self indulgence, what is more self indulgent that a spotty teenager telling me about the trials and tribulations of his inane and predictable love life? Or a string of clichés posing as lyrics that read like a string of Facebook memes posing as wisdom? Or playing three chord songs and being promoted as the most exciting 'new thing'? Self indulgence is a matter of perspective.
  7. If you think Kind of Blue is just noodling and 'guys showing off', you really aren't getting it, are you? It is the least noodling Jazz album of all time.
  8. Nobody notices the bass player in a Jazz band unless he catches fire.
  9. https://youtu.be/0o7xojyeX2s
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