NorCal BASSIX recently held the 2014 Bass Day event in sunny northern California, which featured Michael Manring, Jean Baudin and Damian Erskine. Gathering some of the worlds finest bassists under one roof takes hours and hours of scheduling, preparations and a lot of phone tag. Luckily all the hard work pays off in the end. Those who attended the event, were given the opportunity to learn from the best. Whether it was the jaw dropping mastery of the fretless bass from Michael Manring, astounding tapping skills of Jean Baudin or the unsurpassed theory knowledge of Damian Erskine, I think its safe to say that everyone learned more than they expected from one day of bass.
The biggest benefit of hosting these events, for me, is getting to spend time with these amazing bassists behind the scenes. I was fortunate enough to spend several days with Damian Erskine. As I continuously picked his brain over many cups of coffee, I was most impressed with his knowledge and understanding of theory. I must admit, it can be nerve racking to sit and play with such an impressive teacher inches away from you. Regardless, being put in a one on one situation such as this can do nothing but you make you a better player.
Damian had just finished his second instructional book titled “The Improvisor’s Path”.
This book is packed full of what I feel are the most fundamental goals of theory for bassists. The Improvisor’s Path is a must for any bassist striving to gain an efficient understanding of theory and how to use it. As a bass instructor, I constantly press my students to spend time practicing scales, modes, arpeggios and chordal theory. Erskine’s newest book is a breath of fresh air for the teaching of these subjects. With an included CD, The Improvisor’s Path is a must for everyone.
The Improvisor’s Path is a follow up to Erskine’s previous book titled “Right Hand Drive”‘ which focuses on Erskine’s signature right hand technique.
This book is also jam packed with wonderful lessons focused on developing right hand techniques for bass. So, if you find yourself in that dreaded theory rut, I strongly urge you to order these great instructional books from Damian Erskine and get on the path to theory knowledge.