1) Dan it is great to sit down and talk about your new online class, how did this all come about? — Hi John, Well all this came about after reading an article online about putting video courses together for teachers and thought I’d have a crack at it with the The Slap Bass Formula
2) You are a phenomenal bassist, can you tell me how you got started and the biggest hurdles you overcame as a musician? — I started playing when I was 19 by chance and I found that I could express myself more musically. The biggest hurdles were practicing and getting better. All I Wanted to play was slap bass which at the time was a bit ambitious considering how advanced the style is. That’s why in The Slap Bass Formula, I’ve made the first part of the course as easy as possible to give beginners a grasp of the style and start slapping as quickly as possible.
3) What is the best approach to learning how to play bass? — Find a a good Teacher. I’m working on a beginner Bass guitar video course at the moment that would be a good approach and introduction to the bass. Buy a decent Bass guitar. They’re much better and easier to play especially when you’re starting out. You only really need a small bass amp to start with, spare strings, a guitar strap, a tuner and away you go.
4) You really have mastered slap bass and it is a thrill to watch your lessons. Did you study under anyone to gain your mastery? — I was a little obsessed with Mark King of Level 42 and could only dream about playing like he does but the style was way too hard for me as a beginner so I just listened to all the music I could find with slap bass in it and tried to emulate it myself. Besides Mark King there’s been some very inspirational bass players along the way. Louis Johnson had a big influence on my playing style, sadly recently just passed away. He was very laid back and into the groove, I kind of got it when I studied his playing style. So I think I’m self taught in a way with the slap bass technique. Before that I learnt the basics off a few teachers here and there.
5) What level of musician do your courses cater to? –The Slap Bass Formula is aimed at bassists with a basic understanding of the bass guitar who want to progress to the next level. and The Beginner Bass Formula is for Bass start ups.
6) What is the best advice you can give anyone who is interested in mastering the bass? —Go to gigs, study the bass player, get a band together, master your favourite bass lines, enjoy the journey, its not a chore it’s an adventure. Stay in time, have good groove. The drummer doesn’t always have great tempo so it’s down to you as the bass player to keep the pace.
7) Who are your greatest influences? —Lots, Larry Graham, Mark King, Louis Johnson, Pino Palladino, Norman Watt Roy, Jaco Pastorious, Verdine White, Stanley Clarke, Paul Maccartney, Jack Bruce, John Entwistle to name a few.
8) How long will it take someone to master the bass like you have? — Hmm that depends on how much time is spent on practicing. When I got lost or confused I just wanted to put my Bass in the cupboard and run away LoL. So a fair amount of self discipline definitely gets you there a lot quicker. I’m still learning so I’ll let you know.
9) Is there a recommended amount of time you should invest in practicing every day? — A good rule of thumb (no pun intended) would be to commit yourself to 5 minutes per day. That way there’s no pressure. You need to get yourself into a daily routine and 5 minutes is doable, any more time than that can seem like a chore. So 5 minutes a day committed to the mind works really well and is easy. My 5 minutes a day can last for hours, no pressure.
10) Do you offer any special coupons for first time buyers of your class? –Yes John mate here’s a half price coupon for your viewers. AskJohn-50%-Discount-Slap-Bass The Slap Bass Formula