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Author: Scott's Bass Lessons

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If you’re a bassist — you’re in the right place. Join Scott Devine and Ian Allison from SBL as they dissect every aspect to being a bass player - professional or hobbyist - from basses and gear hacks, to musicianship and gig tips, all the way to mental health and what the future might hold for the music industry.
284 Episodes
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U2 has officially finished their residency in Las Vegas – the history-making shows saw over 700,000 fans descend on Sin City, from September 2023 through March 2024. In today’s episode, fresh from a weekend trip to Las Vegas, we take a trip inside The Sphere to uncover how Adam Clayton and U2 redefined live music at the city’s new high-tech venue.In this episodeWas U2 at the Sphere worth it?What makes Adam Clayton’s signature sound?Which U2 track made Ian weep?Who did Scott meet at the show?What’s the SBL YouTube agreement?And much, much more!
The year is 2006 and John Mayer has just recorded a landmark album that will put his new trio on the map. Drummer/producer Steve Jordan had the great idea of bringing Willie Weeks AND Pino Palladino in to play bass on one track, with Pino adding his own accompaniment to Week’s muted 8th note figure. When Sean Hurley landed the bass gig with John Mayer in 2008, he combined both bass lines! So in today's interview, Sean is going to break it down note-for-note for you – and show you how to make it sound like TWO bass players are playing at the same time. Along with demonstrating four more iconic John Mayer bass grooves.
In this episode, we’re sorting through our pick of boutique basses from F Bass, Ken Smith, Olinto, Overwater and more. We’re also going to delve into some of the questions that often come along, namely: why are they so expensive? How are they built? And are they really worth it? The answers are often a matter of opinion, but we shall ponder them nonetheless!In this episodeWhat is a boutique bass?The pros and cons of owning one.What bass companies do you need on your radar?Why is Scott giving away his F Bass?How you can win one of Ian’s Mike Lull signature models.And much, much more!
There’s a TON you can learn from Gospel bass players – and one, in particular, you may have overlooked. Justin Raines could teach you everything you need to know about pocket, songwriting, and epic bass fills. In today’s interview, Scott and Ian sit down with Justin to breakdown his tone, his technique and some of his signature licks, including his astounding bass solo on Nobody by Ne-Yo.
So, what makes a particular bass guitar a classic? While some basses are undoubtedly born great (it’s a testament to Leo Fender that the P-Bass is still one of the most played instruments ever): some achieve greatness over time and some have greatness thrust upon them (Rickenbacker have long enjoyed the star power of Lemmy, Geddy Lee and Chris Squire, for example). And so, for your viewing pleasure, we’ve put a spotlight on 5 of the most iconic bass guitars of all time.In this episode:Why Scott’s never owned a Rickenbacker.What sucks about a Hofner Club Bass?If you’ve never played a P-Bass – you simply have to! What kept a Thunderbird at the top of Ian’s wish list? Will Scott pass our blindfold test?And much, much more!
Nick Campbell’s a busy LA session player for all the right reasons - great sound, groove, and awesome vibe. And in today’s new episode of our ‘Behind The Bass Lines’ interview series, Nick’s going to tell you exactly where he took ideas from to create his must-hear bass style – and even show you a few licks you can try out, too.In this episodeTop tips for playing fastAll about combining ferocity and comedy in solosThe benefits of active listeningThe beauty of whole notesAnd much,  much more!
There’s a reason more people listen to Guns N’ Roses than Victor Wooten, and it’s not because Duff McKagan is better at playing arpeggios! But still, good technique is something that every bassist should add to their skill set, and in this episode, I’m answering all of your questions surrounding our Technique Accelerator. I hope it gives you a little extra time to check out the course – and to find your next breakthrough on the bass!Learn more about the Technique Accelerator here → https://sbl.link/42OvqhGIn this episode you're going to learn:Why are we talking up our Technique Accelerator?How I developed my own technique (with a little help from Gary Willis).Why we’ve included a bunch of free bonuses with the course.Why might it not be for you?And much, much more!
Charles Berthoud’s YouTube channel is loaded with clips of him absolutely ripping. His virtuosic bass chops, epic bass battles  and his penchant for killer bass gear has earned him more than 1,750,000 subscribers, making him one of the most visible bass players to come from the social media generation. In this week’s podcast episode, we sit down with Charles and dive deep into some of his favorite videos, his approach to Victor Wooten’s Classical Thump, and the hidden genius of Cliff Burton.
Be afraid, be very afraid: the ‘80s are back. This was a time when synth keyboards ruled, when sequencers were rapidly making ground, and bass players feared for their jobs! Trends and innovations in bass design were not exactly scarce either, and to prove it, we’ve collared together five of the very best bass guitars from the 1980s.In this episodeWhy Scott bought a Yamaha BB.What makes the Wal bass circuit so wacky?Ken Smith and the first wide-necked 6-string bass. Who’s taken Scott’s Kubicki X Factor?Should Scott and Ian start an ‘80s bass duo?And much, much more!
In this episode, we delve into Sharon's latest acquisition: her brand-new fretless RKM bass from NAMM. We unpack the journey of acquiring the bass and delve into its standout features & discuss the highs and lows of NAMM 2024. Everything from Steel Caster guitars, the exquisite craftsmanship of L.E.H basses to navigating the NAMM labyrinth!In this episodeWhy Sharon LOVES her new RKM fretless bassWhy you should check out Steel Caster guitars.How to navigate the NAMM numbers system.Why the Neural booth was a disappointment. The importance of recognising craftsmanship in musical instruments. And much, much more!
You might know Daisy Pepper from her SBL LiveClass workshops, or from her ascent to bass stardom via her Instagram channel (Daisy currently has more than 55,000 followers). In this episode, we sit down with Daisy to dive into all things rock, including how she got started, how she deals with haters online, and her awesome collaboration with Spector.In this episodeThe bands Daisy listened to during her emo phase.What makes her Spector bass rock.How Ian grew up on Guns N’ Roses.Why Darkglass pedals just kick ass. How else to tap into some classic rock tones.And much, much more!
Best known for his stints with Vernon Reid (Living Colour) and Dave Fiuczynski in Screaming Headless Torsos, Steve Jenkins fits into a diverse range of musical situations that have run the gamut from face-melting prog-metal to experimental microtonal jazz-funk. In this episode, we sit down with Steve to uncover more about his story, how music has shaped his outlook on life, and why he’s recently switched up his Fender Jazz for a 6-string Dingwall?!  In this episodeWhy Steve could never play like Matthew Garrison.What he learned from guitarist David Fiuczynski. How he broke free from other people's expectations.Do you really need an AARP card to play a P Bass?And much, much more!
Put simply, pickups capture the vibrations of a string and turn it into an electrical signal, but there’s a whole world of minutiae regarding magnets, windings and pole pieces that can drag you deep into anorak territory! In today’s episode, we’re shedding some light on the different types that are available, and the advantages and disadvantages of each one.In this episodeSeries vs. Parallel explainedWhat’s the difference between a soapbar and a humbucker?What's a pickup pole? And why is It important?Active vs. Passive pickupsAnd much, much more!
Nothing feels better than actively engaging with your bass teacher and other SBL students. That’s why we’re super excited to announce a brand-new addition to Scott's Bass Lessons. In today’s episode, Ian Martin Allison and Sharon Renold answer all of your burning gear questions and reveal the launch of the most exciting program to ever hit SBL. Drumroll please!In this episodeWhat’s your bass story?Get ready for a BIG announcement.Sharon unravels her experiences at Berklee.What to expect from an Ian Allison solo album.And much, much more!To learn more about our new program, LiveClass, head here: https://sbl.link/423jQ1Z
In our latest episode of our series ‘Behind The Bass Lines’ with none other than Michael League, bassist of the Grammy-nominated band Snarky Puppy, we go over his history of basses and how he found his way to the PBass, some of his most iconic solos, his take on effects and gear and so much more!
As we wave goodbye to 2023 Scott & Ian take the opportunity to go back and look at their personal ups and downs of the year, and dive into our favourite bass gear. Join us in this special episode where we unpack what's happened in the bass world over the last year, and give you a sneak preview of what’s to come for SBL in 2024.In this episodeHow Scott approaches goalsettingWhy it is a great time to be a musicianScott & Ian’s successes and failures of 2023Scott & Ian’s goals for 2024What’s in store for SBL next year
It may not be at the top of your to-do list, especially if you’ve only heard it in Starbucks, but if you want to become a better bass player then learning some jazz can give you musical superpowers. In today’s episode we walk through some of the key hacks that will take your bass playing to another level. In this episodeShould Scott test drive a Cybertruck?How jazz can give you musical superpowers.Why Ian still has flashbacks over a C Blues.How he got his walking bass lines together.Why you should check out the SBL Jazz Accelerator.And much, much more!
If you crave pedal power it can be tough deciding where to begin - let alone where to go from there. There’s an astonishing array of stompboxes out there; despite the rise of more affordable multi-effects units, but what do they all do? Will they improve your sound, or just turn it to mush? In today’s episode, we examine the secrets behind our own effects setups, and round off the whole shebang with a delve into our gear of the week!In this episodeWhat’s on Scott’s pedalboard?How Ian got to grips with the HX StompScott’s go-to looper pedalStompboxes vs Multi-FX: The pros and cons.And much more!
In today’s episode, Scott offers insight into the final track from The Devine King Project, Vol. 1. Lost Polos is home to a lively syncopated Latin rhythm with a driving groove and some intriguing options when it comes to the bass line.In this episodeScott breaks down the track Lost Polos.And how he honed his Latin chops.His love of Funkifying the Cláve by Lincoln Goines.The inspiration he took from Rocco Prestia.Where you can find the FREE album eBook.And much, much more!
Looking to get the bassist in your life a gift this Christmas? If you're on the hunt for stocking fillers or the budget is tight, then this episode is the perfect place to start. We've put together a list of low-cost Christmas gifts, all of which have been handpicked by Ian! Included is everything from last-minute buys to handy tools and gig bag essentials! Gifts that are guaranteed to see use, unlike that jumper that's never left the closet.In this episode:What to buy the bassist who has everything.Sharon reveals her alternative tree decoration.Ian names his three favorite cable companies.And who sent him a drawing of Admiral Ackbar?And much more!
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Comments (8)

David MacDonald

I believe Traynor makes not only a 100w, but also a 200w and 300w Amp.

Jun 14th
Reply

JV F

how are the aluminum necks attached??

May 5th
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Jeff Strange

A wonderful perspective on playing in a band. Getting over the silly stigma opens so many doors to skill development and enjoyment. Thanks Ian. You articulate your topics so well. Jeff.

Aug 11th
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Jeff Strange

Great discussion! Thanks.

Apr 14th
Reply

Jeff Strange

Great show. Ian, you're enthusiasm is infectious! Thanks for sharing. #AmericasBassDad, #DroppinKnowledge

Feb 11th
Reply

Jeff Strange

"I was just filled with wonder". Yes, I was too. Love these episodes with Scott & Ian.

Feb 3rd
Reply

Jeff Strange

These chats are awesome! hats off to Scott and Ian.

Nov 30th
Reply

Jeff Strange

Great, insightful discussion from the power duo! Thank you for these.

Nov 20th
Reply
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