Today was no different…happily!!

My student is learning bass and qualified last year,  but recently took up the 6 string guitar.


Every lesson is different: sometimes I struggle with the formations of chords, and particularly the speed, rhythm and instant reconstruction across six strings with three not-exactly- slender fingertips yet…when that one chord sounds perfect, the swell within this poorly-tuned rib cage rises, momentarily, to meet the kaleidoscopic emotions released within that one down-thrust of emotive expression via this right hand.


I began, tentatively, playing the four strings of the bass, under Gavin’s auspices, many moons ago and have continued to enjoy very much the process and the successes but also the challenge of these journeys…and they are multiple…within the same arena, different styles, different moods, the same charged diversity.
Today was no different…happily!!

Andy ūüôā

Check out the incredible video

Gav’s Music Night¬†March 2016

-My 10th year running mic nights-

click the picture for the video

Gav and Ben


I’ve¬†LOVED¬†tonight.”¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† Kim

“Thanks for a¬†fantastic¬†night you even got simon tapping the table to the rythm well done to¬†all your students,¬†done a great job.” ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† Denise

“I can’t¬†WAIT¬†to perform on the next one!”¬†¬† ¬†Tom¬†

“Just¬†brilliant.” ¬†¬†¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Phil

“The Irish song was¬†OUTSTANDING,¬†wow.”¬†¬† ¬†¬†Craig

“It has helped him loads to¬†have an interest. We all enjoyed it.” ¬† ¬† ¬† Anon.

“I loved it. ¬†Very¬†bluesy.” ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†Cormac.

“Wow…………….¬†LOVE the riffs¬†and soloooooing and celtic / thin lizzy stuff.” ¬† ¬† ¬† David


“You sent be back to my¬†childhood¬†with ‘Rocky Road’.”¬†¬†Dennis

Source: Gav and Emelye

Gravity Defying Plectrum

It took me a few minutes to realise that he hadn’t dropped the pick for a few practice sessions now, ¬†something quite common with strumming patterns when learning pop songs from Oasis to The Jam.


Notice anything unusual?



The best advice to pass on today from my student is that in order to reduce the amount of times the plectrum falls into the sound hole and keep a good grip in general,  use reversible sticky tape.   Recommended for playing strong rhythmic songs.

Thanks Keith!

AS Bass Recording (Journal part 4)


This bass recording shows steady co-ordination, timing, and clarity of notes played over drums, and a synthesiser.      A huge accomplishment in the short amount of time he has learnt to play.

He has a recognised qualification in bass playing which has also been achieved prior to this.

Courtesy of AS for the sample, listen to what can be achieved with practice.

For more on his background and progress check out:

Bass Journal Part 5 (watch this space)

Bass Journal Part 3

Bass Journal Part 2

Bass Journal Part 1

Stimulus Sounds – games for encouraging listening skills – Rhythm

Listening games using the theme of rhythm to encourage children’s speaking and listening skills.


Source: BBC – School Radio – Stimulus Sounds – games for encouraging listening skills – Rhythm