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The SBL Podcast

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.
289 Episodes
The hate that some bass players have for jazz can transcend space, time, and the laws of nature. We get it. It can feel like your band mates are speaking another language, and you feel kind of left out. But, with practice, learning some jazz can give you musical superpowers. In this episode, we’re here to reveal why you should take the leap!In this episodeScott’s worst EVER audition story.Why all the best musicians play jazz.How it can be a bass player’s best friend.Should non-jazz musicians ...
In today’s video, we asked Michael League to dig into his earliest influences and name the bass lines that helped define his career with four-time Grammy Award Winners Snarky Puppy. There were a few things we agreed on:Bootsy Collins belongs on every top 10 list.Your drummer is your best friend.David Hood is a bass guitar genius.Everything else was up for debate. Well, almost everything…In this episode:Michael names his favorite bass line of all time.And the British rock band he idolized...
A few months back, we got into the argument that all bass players get into – what are the coolest, grooviest bass lines of all time? After hours of heated debate, we decided to get Nick Campbell to help make that decision for us.In today’s podcast, Nick Campbell reels off the bass lines that shaped his sound. It’s the perfect way to introduce yourself to the worlds of Rocco Prestia, Ray Brown, James Jamerson and Colin Greenwood.In this episodeWhy Nick is a huge Radiohead fan.The first time he...
So which is better – a long-scale or a short-scale bass guitar? If you’ve ever wondered which is the right scale length for you, you’ve come to the right place! In today’s episode, we’re taking a closer look at the key differences between short-scale and long-scale basses, the pros and cons of each, and we’ll give you a few recommendations of short-scale basses to check out for yourself. In this episodeWhat is a short scale bass? Who plays one?Which is better, short-scale or long-sc...
Chris Chaney’s contributions to the bass world often go overlooked – but there’s genius in his bass playing if you know where to find it (take his game-changing bass lines with Jane’s Addiction for instance). Today’s interview is the perfect way to introduce yourself to some of his most mind-blowing rock riffs – and find out exactly what makes them true genius.
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?W...
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 ...
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 gi...
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 Sco...
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 m...
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://sb...
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 Clif...
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 K...
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 ...
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 pe...
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 p...
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 i...
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 ...
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!
Comments (8)

David MacDonald

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

Jun 14th


how are the aluminum necks attached??

May 5th

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

Jeff Strange

Great discussion! Thanks.

Apr 14th

Jeff Strange

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

Feb 11th

Jeff Strange

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

Feb 3rd

Jeff Strange

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

Nov 30th

Jeff Strange

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

Nov 20th
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