Beginning Bass Playing

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 41,490
    Professional bassist Percy White demonstrates beginning bass guitar playing.

    Percy White

    Percy White is a professional bassist living in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. He is originally from Philadelphia, Pa. He started playing bass when he was 10 years old after trying unsuccessfully to play guitar. As he puts it, "It just made sense. The bass has four strings and I have four fingers to play them with." He started playing by ear but after hearing Stanley Clarke he realized that he had to take lessons and so he did. After graduating high school, he joined the U.S. Navy's Nuclear Engineering Program but his musical education also continued with his study of jazz and music theory. After serving in the military, White moved to Chicago to begin an engineering career that was short lived due to his love of music. He began taking bass lessons with Nick Schneider (former bassist for the Tonight Show Band) After playing in numerous jam sessions, he began his career as a full time musician. He played with notable jazz artists like Ramsey Lewis, Oscar Brown, Jr, Roy Ayer s, and Ronnie Laws. He has jammed with Buddy Guy at his famous blues club in Chicago. White has been a founding member of two rock bands, two blues bands, one latin/jazz band, and one contemporary jazz group. He has played for the Chicago City Colleges Jazz Band, and was a winning member of the 1996 Chicago Blues band competition. In 2000, White relocated back to the east coast to broaden his musical experiences. He shares his musical knowledge by teaching privately in the DC area. After one of his outstanding performances in DC, White was asked to audition for the 257th Army Band and he recently joined the ranks of the elite performers of the Nation's Capital Army Band. White feels it's an honor to serve his country through his musical talents and is glad to have the opportunity. Although his full time occupation is being an application engineer for a worldwide water treatment company, White can still be seen playing in the Washington, DC area at least five nights a week doing what he has been doing for the last 30 years.

    Percy White: Hello and good morning and good afternoon. My name is Percy. I am a professional bassist. I am here to show you different things on how to play electric bass from picking up the right bass, playing and technique and so forth. I will give you little bit information about myself. I have been playing bass since I was ten, which means I have been playing for a long time. I am originally from Philadelphia, started playing base, well, I start up playing guitar and then realized that I didnt have the dexterity so I want to be playing bass which made a lot more sense to me and I have been doing it ever since. I have played in large bands, small bands, jazz, combos, rock, blues, funk, Reggae, gospel. I currently play for the Army Band in DC and I have done several recording projects, jazz projects, rock projects, you name it, I have done it.

    So, I am going to show you basically some techniques. Ill show you how to develop good playing form, how to pick out a good bass and to do all the things that you need to do to be own call, first call, well rounded bass player. Hope you enjoy it.