…we will return to our regularly scheduled post after a word from our sponsor…

happy new year 2015“Happy Belated New Year, everyone!”

I can’t believe that this is my first blog post in 2015. Where did the month of January go? Did it take me this long to recover from the usual December indulgences of too much food and merriment resulting in not enough sleep? Could I blame my online absence on that nasty flu bug I picked up earlier this month? I really don’t know–but today I realized that I want to find out how everyone in my blogging world is doing so far this year.

So–how are you? What have you been up to since we last connected? Keeping busy? Out of trouble? Are you smack-dab in the middle of winter as we are in Atlantic Canada right now?

This week we got walloped by the same storm that  made travel and commuting miserable for people all along the eastern seaboard of the US and Canada. Lots of snow, high winds, cold temperatures, and did I mention, lots of snow? Lots and lots of snow?

No point in complaining too much, though, as what good would it do? Winter is winter and in Atlantic Canada that means we know to expect snow and wind and cold temps. But we also know that spring will arrive again, in due time, and with it will come robins and sparrows and green grass and new leaves on our trees. I’m looking forward to it already.

….and now to return to our regularly scheduled post….

012ffe259be0a693a77e64c3eac72780f4cac37c67It’s All About That Bass–or in this case, it’s all about that bass guitar, thus the picture.

“Has a rocker moved in with you, Sylvia, or have you fallen off your rocker, perhaps?”

Good questions, both of them.

But no, no rock star has moved in, and although I’m not 100% positive, I think I still have at least a tenuous hold on my sanity.

“Then why do you have an electric bass guitar and amp sitting in your living room,” you ask.

The answer is–I’m trying to learn to play it. So maybe I’m not as sane as I think I am.

Imagine–learning to play a bass guitar at my age! Isn’t it enough that I’m learning to play ukulele?

Apparently not.

I’m in what our four group members loosely refer to as ‘a band’. And, as in most bands, a bass guitar is an integral instrument to have in said band.

My brother is our main bass player–and an excellent one he is, helping us keep the right beat to the songs we play. But along with bass guitar, regular guitar and an upright bass that he lovingly calls “Big Bertha”, my brother is also learning the banjo….see where I’m heading with this run-away train of thought?

If he is learning banjo to play on certain songs in our limited repertoire, who is going to take over the role of bass player?

Who indeed….well, my sister-in-law is willing to play bass on some songs, when we don’t need her on lead guitar or she isn’t playing mandolin or fiddle…and the other member of our ‘band’–my sister, is definitely needed on guitar when the other band members play different instruments…so…

So that leaves me–ukulele and percussion player…simple percussion using a tambourine, shaker eggs or rainstick, mind you, and now, apparently, a sometimes-bass-guitar player.

If anyone had told me last year that I would be spending several hours a day practicing ukulele and bass guitar I would have scoffed at the idea…if I knew how to effectively scoff–but scoffing is, I’m afraid, one more of the many skills that I have never mastered.

So here I am, alternately studying YouTube videos that tout ‘easy-to-play bass guitar lessons for the absolute beginner’, and then trying to adapt the ‘easy-to-play’ lessons meant for people who have foot-long fingers and ginormous hand spans, like the instructors, for a person who long ago realized that she has short, stubby digits and a teeny hand span.

I can’t reach from fret to fret using individual fingers without moving my hand along the way, but that’s okay, I think. My brother–a perfectly fine bass player–uses two or even three fingers on each fret to produce the sounds he likes, so that’s encouraging to me. As long as I remain motivated and determined better words than stubborn and pig-headed? and spend time every day practicing this new-to-me instrument I’m sure to make more progress than if I spent the same amount of time trying to grow longer fingers.

So for me, for now, it’s All About That Bass Guitar.

Note: All About That Bass is a pop song by Meghan Trainor that has led to numerous parodies and versions of it being recorded, including a jazz one that features upright bass player Kate Davis (not sure how long her fingers measure although they look to be pretty long compared to mine–sigh).

Thanks for dropping by, and please–don’t be a stranger.


9 thoughts on “It’s “All About That Bass” (Guitar)

  1. Welcome back, Sylvia! Most impressive that you’re taking up the bass! Sounds like alot of fun even with all that winter going on!

    1. Yes, learning to play bass and ukulele is proving to be lots of fun and is probably good for my gray matter. We’re in the middle of another winter storm today but I’m cozy and warm inside, so can’t complain. Thanks for dropping by!

  2. Sounds like fun. Good for you! All I’ve been doing since Christmas is knitting “collar scarves” and putting together a jigsaw puzzle. Oh yes, I do some housework (dirty word) in between. None of that is at the top of my list for fun.

  3. Sylvia, I’m glad you’re back. I had the flu over the last two weeks, and it was a bad one! I finally got back to art class today. Learning something new is important, especially as we get older. Not that we are getting older. Keep on playing that bass. What is the name of your band? You must have a cool name! – Maureen

  4. This is awesome! You are very talented to be able to learn two instruments at once! It’s great that you are in a band, too! It sounds like a lot of fun! We missed out on the snow in Philly and I was sad about it, if it’s got to be winter than let it snow!! I am excited for spring though I won’t lie! Happy new year, have a great time practicing your new bass!

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