I posted this in the main page but I would like to see more bassplayers respond to this. Somehow I think that our challenges to this are different yet similar to an instrument like the piano or guitar. It used to be that I loved to worship the Lord at home. Singing, no problem, playing guitar, no problem, picking up my bass - big problem. I read everything about how to have great practice schedules, how to set up time, books, etc. Nothing worked. I would like to set up discussions where people can testify about how the Lord solved that for them. Maybe even have a place where people can, if they desire, to give us a description of what they are going through and ask for prayer. I thought of just leaving this in the bass group but I know this can benefit worship leaders and teams of all sorts.
What didn't help was worship leader reminding me to practice then walking away.
I asked Jesus to help me. What really motivated me was when I realized Jesus really desires to hear me play for Him. So when I was picking up my instrument of choice, which is the bass now, it is not a chore.
Sounds to me like bass is not your instrument. You lack passion to play? Do you have difficulties playing or learning your music? Do you play along with recordings and try to figure out parts and licks by ear?
Oh, I love the bass. Like I said, this was a past problem. I'm just trying to help others who may be in the same rut to get out of it sooner than I did. I believe there are other who are struggling and getting frustrated along with their worship leaders.
Wow, Sue, this is a terrific question, and I believe it's something of an issue for all worship team members, regardless of their instrument - even if it's their voice - at some time or another.
Really, for every individual who would ask this question, there is likely a different answer. Nothing wrong with looking at others' solutions in search of your own; but it's most likely something at least slightly different than what worked for one will work for another.
As Dan mentioned; playing along with a CD or something looking for the Bass part "for you" is a great way to get better at your instrument while also eventually being able to find new ways to worship from it.
Beyond that; what is your home schedule like? Do you have time to practice or are you scrambling to "fit it in"? Do you have privacy and quiet to practice, or are you also caring for a screaming pair of twin babies? Are you just simply having difficulty training yourself to take the time to do it?
These all make a huge difference in how you'll need to approach this.
Sorry if I wasn't more help, really need to know what the specific hurdles you're facing are.
I love my Tascam Bass Trainor. But you have to make sure you read the instruction book first. I accidentally plugged my amplifier into the bass jack. Destroyed it. Great gadget. You can cancel the bass player on the track and put yourself in. It's portable so if your stuck waiting for your bandmates outdoors you can plug your bass in, put your headphones on then warm up and tune up and play with the mp3 while you are waiting for them.
Has a tuner, metronome, special effects and mp3 player. And like I said you can cancel the bassplayer and put yourself in the band without being hooked into a computer or a sound system. I have the gadget clipped to my belt.
I tend to agree with Dan. Bass has to BE your instrument. I'm not saying you can't be proficient in others, but so many seem to think that if you play guitar, you can play bass; NOT SO. An interesting bass line is not just playing the root of the guitar chord. Listen closely to early Beatles tunes. Really! McCartney is very melodic, holds the bottom yet does not just follow the guitar. Remember, you are part of the rhythm section. Sometimes more is less. My rehearsal time is just that: MY TIME. I tell my family that I am rehearsing; don't bother me unless the house is on fire and I close the door. Now headphones help solve the volume issue, esp. if you're in an apartment. Bass was always my first choice, even after piano lessons and trumpet lessons. I even learned guitar after bass. If it's a chore, maybe it's not for you?
some years ago I read an autobiography of a famous speaker/singer. At one time in her ministry the Lord tested her to see if she would still sing even if it was just in His company. Jesus loves it when we minister to Him.
A few years back I went to a worship conference where the main speaker brought out the healing power of music itself. I believe the low tones of the bass can bring the soul healing from the Lord. When played with the rest of the team there is much chance to be used to heal. When playing alone for the Lord it can be meaningful much like a violin. This helps in practice.
I play in a ministry rock band. prior to that i had only played worldly stuff. so when i was asked to play onthe worship teem i delt with it in the same way. trully i am just a hack but i love to play. i had trouble dealing wit the worship type music at first. what a responsibility and honor to facilitate the worship of our God. it is my duty to the Lord to learn and practice. it is work and our Lord honors this. the Holy Spirit will empower you. we pray and then we practice. i play by ear (cause i'm a hack) so i have to play over and over many times. when i practice with the teem i find many times that what i played at home is not what i can play with them so i find my pocket between the guitar and drums trust my Savour and play. i pray trust and play
I always had a Bass around for recording, but never became a Bass player until I started playing for the Lord on a Worship team. I started on Guitar, and switched to Bass at our first Church, and began to enjoy the Bass more.
When we switched to a new Church, I just automatically signed up for Bass. I had been struggling to move past being a Guitar player who just "picked up" the Bass. The team had always prayed before Service, but I had never prayed before practice before.
Our new Church is larger, and the talent pool is also larger, so I worried that I would not be good enough. So, I began to pray each time I practiced for my audition. I prayed that Jesus would send the Holy Spirit to help me learn so that I may play well enough to play for His Glory, and help to spread His Word. I began to understand much better, and play better. My audition went well, although I was reminded that I still had a few things to work on. I have been playing for a Celebrate Recovery Service on Thursday nights. When I was told that they had trouble getting most of the other musicians to play this service, I knew it was where I should be.
I still pray before every practice, and privately (as well as with the team) before Worship. I usually pray to the Father that He be with me in my practice, so that I may serve as His instrument, and give voice to His Word. And that continue to grow, and play well so that I may continue to serve in Jesus name.
Now I really look forward to practice, most of the time I have to practice late, so I have to use headphones. I plug my Bass gear into a small Fender BXR 25 which has a headphone jack, and stereo inputs. I play along with our set list for the week as well as CDs I make of songs I still, have to improve on.
I still play guitar on my own, or to record, but the Bass is my ministry, and it seems to be where I am supposed to be serving.