Saturday, 10 September 2011

The adventures of Kendra and Rio - Volume 1

Back in May (as you may well recall) Alan got me my early 40th birthday gift, my hearts desire...he bought me my sweet, beautiful Peavey Cirrus BXP 4string bass. I love this thing. I love the sound it makes, I love the sounds I can make it make. Truthfully from the moment it came through the door and I strapped it on, plugged it in and turned it up...I felt like I was at home. As odd as a statement as that is to is the truth. Her name is Rio. Yes, I named my bass - after a Duran song...further more I'm musing between two names for my NEXT bass that I don't even have yet! (China or Chauffeur for those wondering...POSSIBLY Blue Silver but then it would have to have a blue silver body -- don't know if that will be doable -- we'll see). People name their cars...why not my bass? I mean after all  BB King  named his guitar, I figure I'm in damn fine company!

The very first song I learned how to play from start to finish was a Duran Duran song. Of course you're probably musing to yourself  "Of course it was...what else would it possibly be? You are a tad obsessed after all Kendra". And yes...I'll admit it; it's true; but I'm not a stalker so it's okay. The song is called "Serious" from their album "Liberty". It's fairly simple (by comparison to some of the other stuff John as come up with on the bass in other songs) and was a great jumping off point for me to learn. I guess I learned it start to finish in probably 2 days (in total hours probably 3?) and learned to play it full speed from the get go. It's something that works for me, and while I don't anticipate it would work for EVERYONE learning an's what works for me.

I've always been adept at learning music by ear. My sister who was a music major in university (first for piano and later for vocal) has always maintained that the one thing I far exceed her at is playing music by ear. It's just something I can do and do well. Something I've always been able to do, I'd rather sweat and struggle trying to figure something out by ear and get it down and running full tilt than sit...learn to read the music...figure out what's what and go measure by measure, and going through the frustrating process of reading music. Now...I CAN read music; in fact, I can read it quite well; however for whatever reason I find sitting and reading the music boring and tedious. I guess it's because I want to be able to just pick up the instrument and play. I don't have the patience for going through that whole process of reading the music. What's funny about playing the bass is...I feel like I've come home. Almost like I'm not learning to play these songs...more like I've already learned them but forgotten how to play them.

I'm now up to playing 4 songs (3 by Duran - Serious, Safe and All you Need is now, the other is Love Removal Machine by The Cult which truthfully was SO easy (TOO EASY) that I started throwing variations into it on the first time through today just so I didn't get bored before the end of the song - now mind you their music was FAR more guitar based than Duran - however the song...was dirt simple). The first was via video lesson and the other 3 were just by ear alone. I'm not saying I'm ready to get up on stage with John Taylor and play...but I'm not completely repulsed by my playing either, in fact the opposite. Is that arrogance? The fact that I find real potential in my own bass playing? I'm not sure. I don't get to play as often as I'd like, I really need to learn to set a specific amount of time aside per day (even if it's just a half hour) - plug in, turn up and tune out.

In the immortal (and paraphrased) words of Simon John Charles Le Bon....

Play the Fuckin' bass K

One Last Glimpse,



  1. #PTFBK! LOVE the top photo.

    It's not arrogance, it's confidence, and a clear-eyed ability to assess your own ... ability. I know that feeling of coming home, as if this is the thing you've always known how to do, but had temporarily forgotten. I'm so glad you and Rio (through Alan) found each other.

  2. Those were pictures I took myself this afternoon so I could include them. Thanks! :)

    Yes, I am too...I love playing.