DB-19 How to Rosin New Bow Hair

This is lesson DB-19 How to Rosin New Bow Hair, and is a continuation of my journal of things I have learned as an adult double bass student.  See the video for a few pointers.

Watch The Video Lesson



Here is what I know about how to rosin a bow. First of all, I use Kolstein “Ultra Bass Rosin”, soft grade. I have tried several other types of rosin, and so far Kolstein is my favorite. I comes in a nice silicone case inside the outer cardboard case which keeps it fresh. I have my rosin for over a year and I haven’t noticed any degradation yet. Before you rosin your bow, if the rosin is new, you can rough up the surface first with some sandpaper.

I just got my bass bow re-haired. It is a Brazilian Pernambuco wood bow that I purchased from my bass teacher and I like it a lot. It is definitely better than the beginner bow that came with my bass! I think it is at least 20 years old, but it is in excellent shape.

Before you start to rosin your bow, first tighten the nut on the bow to about the tension you use when you play. Don’t over tighten it. Also be careful to not put your fingers or hands on the bow hair since the oil from your skin will get on the hair. All you want on the hair is rosin.

Now, hold the bow with the hair side up and put your thumb over the metal piece on the frog where the hair attaches. That will prevent the rosin cake from getting cracked when you apply the rosin.

Begin apply the rosin to the bow hair in short strokes about 3 inches long. I work one area at a time until I can feel the rosin begin to stick. I also work side to side to be sure the whole surface of the hair gets covered with rosin. Once the first area feels thoroughly covered, move on to the next 3 inch section and repeat the process. You might be able to see the rosin on the hair, but I can’t. I just go by feel. Once you are done with each section, go over the whole bow with rosin a few times. If you pull the rosin slowly from frog to the tip and feel some spots where it feels slippery, add some more rosin to those spots.

If you play your instrument and the bow seems to just slide over the strings and/or not give you much sound, you need more rosin. If on the other hand you see all kind of rosin dust falling off onto your instrument that means you have way too much rosin on the hair. If you have too much rosin, you can try wiping the hair down with a clean cloth. Again, don’t use your bare hands on the hair.

Don’t forget to loosen the nut on your bow after you are done playing to take the tension off the hair and protect your bow from damage.

Let me know if you have any questions or comments!

DB-18 Introducing the Roland Micro Cube Bass Amp

This is lesson DB-18 Introducing the Roland Micro Cube Bass Amp, and is a continuation of my journal of things I have learned as an adult double bass student.  See the video for a few pointers about using the Roland amp.

Watch The Video Lesson



My main bass amp is a Gallien-Krueger 700RB-II in a 12 inch Neo combo cabinet, along with another Neo 12 extension cab, which is an awesome amp that has served me well.  But, even with the Neo speakers, it is still heavy!  Recently I began searching for something smaller and lighter that could still put out a great tone and I ended up settling for the Roland Micro Cube amp.  The Micro Cube Bass Amp is battery powered…..it runs on 6 AAA batteries, as well as begin capable of plugging into wall power.  I am so impressed with this amp.  I have been using it during our orchestra rehearsals when there have been parts calling for electric bass and it has been more than up to the task of competing with a 40 piece orchestra and filling up a 300 seat theater space.

This amp includes, not only the standard treble, mid and bass EQ controls that you would expect, but in addition to that there are gain, master volume and FX controls for compression, chorus, flanger, wah, delay and reverb.  Also included is a drum machine with a variety of different rhythm patterns and a tap tempo control.  The complete specs for the amp from Roland are listed below.

Be sure to check out my Double Bass Lessons page for a complete list of all of my lessons!

The Roland Micro Cube Bass Amp is available through Amazon.com: Roland Micro Cube Bass RX Battery-Powered Bass Combo Amp


Specifications


Amplifier Section
Rated Power Output:                        2.5 W + 2.5 W
Nominal Input Level (1 kHz):            INPUT: -10 dBu
STEREO AUX IN: -10 dBu
MONO AUX IN: -10 dBu
Speakers:                                           10 cm (4 inches) x 4

Controls
POWER Switch, TUNER Switch, COMP Switch

COSM AMPLIFIER:

TYPE Switch (OCTAVE BASS / SUPER FLAT / FLIP TOP / B MAN / BASS360 / SESSION / CONCERT 810 / MIC), GAIN Knob, VOLUME Knob

EQUALIZER:

BASS Knob, MIDDLE Knob, TREBLE Knob, FX Knob (CHORUS/FLANGER/T-WAH)
DELAY/REVERB Knob

RHYTHM GUIDE:

START/STOP Switch, TAP TEMPO Switch, PATTERN Knob (METRONOME / ROCK1 /
ROCK2 / BLUES / COUNTRY / R&B / BALLAD / JAZZ / FUNK / LATIN /DANCE), VARIATION
Switch, VOLUME Knob 

Indicators                                              

POWER
TUNER:  TUNING METER
RHYTHM GUIDE:  RHYTHM GUIDE, VARIATION

Others
Connectors:

Input Jack (1/4″ phone type), Foot Switch Jack (1/4″ TRS phone type), STEREO AUX IN
Jack (Stereo miniature phone type), MONO AUX IN Jack (1/4″ phone type), REC
OUT/PHONES Jack (Stereo 1/4″ phone type), AC Adaptor Jack, Grounding Terminal

Power Supply:  DC 9 V: AC Adaptor or Dry battery(*) LR6 (AA) type (alkaline) x 6 *sold separately

Current Draw:   186 mA

Accessories:  Strap, Power Cord, AC Adaptor, Owner’s Manual

Options:  Foot Switch (BOSS FS-5U, FS-6, FS-7), Connection Cable (PCS-31L)

Size and Weight
Width:    296 mm/ 11 11/16 inches
Depth:    207 mm/ 8 3/16 inches
Height:   294 mm/ 11 5/8 inches
Weight:   6.8 kg/ 15 lbs.

DB-16 Musical Scale Modes Matrix

I can never seem to remember all of the scale modes, so since teaching something seems to be the best way to learn I decided to create a musical scale modes chart to help drive this home.

Per Wikipedia, “The modern Western modes consist of seven scales related to the familiar major and minor keys.

Although the names of the modern modes are Greek and some have names used in ancient Greek theory for some of the harmoniai, the names of the modern modes are conventional and do not indicate a link between them and ancient Greek theory, and they do not present the sequences of intervals found even in the diatonic genus of the Greek octave species sharing the same name.

Modern Western modes use the same set of notes as the major scale, in the same order, but starting from one of its seven degrees in turn as a “tonic”, and so present a different sequence of whole and half steps. The interval sequence of the major scale being T-T-s-T-T-T-s, where “s” means a semitone (half step) and “T” means a whole tone (whole step), it is thus possible to generate the following scales:”

Musical Scale Modes Matrix
KeyIonianDorianPhrygianLydianMixolydianAeolianLocrian
C MajorCDEFGAB
G MajorGABCDEF#
D MajorDEF#GABC#
A MajorABC#DEF#G#
E MajorEF#G#ABC#D#
B MajorBC#D#EF#G#A#
F MajorFGABbCDE
Bb MajorBbCDEbFGA
Eb MajorEbFGAbBbCD
Ab MajorAbBbCDbEbFG
Db MajorDbEbFGbAbBbC
Gb MajorGbAbBbCbDbEbF

Ukulele Bar Chords – C major form

This has been helpful to me, having first played the guitar and being used to using bar chords got me thinking it would be helpful to know how to use and play moveable bar chords on the ukulele.  So here is an example of how it works when using the form for a C major chord played in the open position as you move it on down the neck.  I will post some other bar chord forms in the future as I create the charts.

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Uke C Form Chord

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