Friday, 20 July 2007

Rehearsals in the past

Many thanks again to the friends and supporters who have attended d'Bassists' performance, Esplanade Presents: At the Concourse: Basso Bravo!

It is time for some nostalgia. So please sit back and enjoy a few of the photos taken from our past rehearsals.



Saturday, 14 July 2007

The ensemble: Contrabajos de Baja California

Contrabajos de Baja California. Video source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V08hwHqeTz4
Taken on 13 Jun 2007.



Seven double basses on the stage. Contrabajos de Baja California is a double bass ensemble formed by Andrés Martín (living in Tijuana, Mexico) with his students. Most of Andrés' students are beginners to the double bass.

I am inspired by Andrés' passion for the double bass and his good efforts in forming a double bass ensemble with his students. Recently, I have been corresponding with Andrés via texted messages. I have found the following words from one of his messages worth a read and a thought about:

Andrés: "I believe that a bass ensemble is the best place to learn how to play chamber music (for a bass player) and (it) challenges our technique so keep playing with your ensemble as long as you can."


With players of varying level of playing, most being beginners, I believe that Andrés probably has had a challenging time writing interesting yet effective arrangements for his double bass ensemble. In this post, I shall share the above video of Contrabajos de Baja California having fun playing on the double bass. Please do listen out for how Andrés attempts to arrange for the double bass ensemble.

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Andrés has his own blog which is in Spanish: http://www.andresmartin.blogspot.com

Video recordings of Andrés playing the double bass can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/user/mgandres

He is also a member of a tango quartet, and the quartet's website is: http://www.cuatroparatango.com

Sunday, 8 July 2007

Barry Green's Inner Game of Music


Image source: http://www.innergameofmusic.com

Nervousness, self doubt, and fear of failure. How does a person who is learning or playing music overcome these internal obstacles?

In Inner Game of Music authored by double bassist, Barry Green and co-authored by Timothy Gallwey, one can learn how to acknowledge and overcome these internal obstacles in order to bring a new quality to their experience and learning of music.

I have read Inner Game of Music a few years ago and I have found it an insightful and useful read. It has helped me to better deal with thoughts and feelings of self doubt and the fear of failure. Admittedly, I did find the first few chapters of this book quite technical to read. It took me quite a long time before I had managed to read through those first few chapters. However, thereafter, the rest of the chapters became more interesting to read.

Inner Game of Music also covers topics such as how one can learn in the most natural way, and to experience the joy of music. It also contains chapters on ensemble playing, and tips for music teachers.

One of the sections that I have found useful is the topic on Permission to fail leads to success. It speaks about how giving ourselves the permission to fail could help us to overcome the ill concerns that we might otherwise feel about performing a piece of music. In turn, we are left free to accomplish the task at hand. To find out more, you may wish to read this book.

Please do check out this site for more information: http://www.innergameofmusic.com

Tuesday, 3 July 2007

Listen to Contrabass Conversations

Where in this world can a double bass enthuasiast listen to interviews with fellow double bassists like François Rabbath, Ira Gold and many more simply by sitting in front of one's computer?

There is such a place, online at http://contrabassconversations.com.



Contrabass Conversations is a project by double bassist, Jason Heath. It is a weekly 20-30 minute podcast devoted to all aspects of the double bass. Episodes will be released every Monday. In this project, Jason will do interviews with double bassists from all walks of life.

Some of these interviews offer insightful tips to double bass playing and practising, and are worth your time listening to. Even a short five-minutes listening to just one of those tips could have a significant impact in enhancing one's playing of the double bass.

For your convenience, you can listen to Contrabass Conversations right from d'Bassists official webhome. Please click accordingly on the Podcast icon on the left side-bar of this blog, and presto, you can listen to your selected track.