Bass Guitar Secrets is a multimedia eBook package for people looking to learn the bass guitar from the comfort of their own home. Bass Guitar Secrets (or BGS) is taught by Alex Sampson, an extremely gifted bassist with an engaging and inspirational writing style. He is easily able to explain and demonstrate bass concepts and theory, which Bass Guitar Secrets has a lot of.
Bass Guitar Secrets also has good value. When you compare the cost of the download version of the course and a couple 30-minute private lessons, you’ll come out farther ahead with Bass Guitar Secrets every time.
Some people might be turned off by the over-the-top sales pitch that BassGuitarSecrets.com employs, but if you can get past that, you’ll find Bass Guitar Secrets a good resource for bassists that are just starting out, or have been playing for a while.
Screenshots of the the bonus software that comes with the BGS course (note that the bonus software included with BGS is not a significant part of the course material).
The main component of Bass Guitar Secrets are the two large .pdf files (We reviewed the downloadable version). The first .pdf contains 102 pages and the second .pdf contains 151. Unlike many hastily thrown together eBooks out there, they don’t pad their page count with gigantic font size.
The lessons are well-illustrated with charts, tablature and necessary music notation. Throughout the .pdf files you’ll find icons that indicate when you should play an accompanying sound file. I'll stop right here to say that many people aren’t all that good at organizing files and folders on their computer, (such people might find the print-version of the course might be a good idea) so it’s important to know that you should be at least decent at locating folders and files on your computer if you get BGS. We would’ve liked a smarter eBook that automatically played the sound files, but this way works too. (Maybe in the next version…)
If you can look past the marketing hype of Bass Guitar Secrets, you’ll find a very solid bass curriculum. Its potential and effectiveness however, are somewhat lessened due to the lack of video instruction...
If you want an idea of the kinds of bass lessons covered in these books, this list will give you a good idea: (note that this is an incomplete list of the topics covered)
All About the Bass Guitar
Basic Tools You Should Use With Your Bass
Bass Guitar Tuning Methods
How to Properly Hold the Bass
How to Develop Hand Speed, Strength, and Technique
A Bassist’s Role
The “Golden Rules” of Bass Playing
How to Read the Musical Alphabet
Vital Note Equations
Intervals and Scale Degrees
How to Master the Fretboard
The CG-X Method to Groovy Bass Playing
Psychological Approaches to make Your Grooves Irresistible!
Developing Groove Mastery
The Secret “Groove-Suck” Method
Flavors of the Bass Groove
Ways to Come Up with Riffs and Fills for Your Songs
The X-Factor Revealed
Now, on BassGuitarSecrets.com they do mention you’ll receive lifetime product updates which they are supposed to put out from time to time. However, we have yet to discover if they actually do perform these updates. Yes it sounds like a nice feature, but you won’t likely be able to make use of them if you progress past their usefulness.
Besides the cord lesson books and audio, Bass Guitar Secrets comes with several “bonuses”. They might just as well been called supplemental material, as they are meant to be learning aids to be used alongside BGS. Below are quick descriptions of these bonuses.
eBooks: A couple short training .pdfs that are included are the 49 licks and riffs eBook (9 pgs.) and the Insiders guide to Chord Mastery (22 pgs.)
Groove Station: Software that allows you to lay down drum tracks for you to play with. The track loops were really short, but you do have the ability to string a bunch of them together if you can manage through the awkward interface. Sound quality was great however.
Metroplus: Combines both a bass guitar tuner with a metronome. Pretty decent metronome, but nothing to write home about.
Fretboard Genius: Contains 3 games that teach you (or allow you to practice) naming random notes on the bass guitar, locate scale degrees, and complete major scales. Definitely worth trying once you have advanced a little bit.
JamBox: Nifty software that allows you to play along with a whole bunch of professionally recorded tracks. Probably our favorite bonus of the five.
Note: The software included in the package also has video tutorials you can watch if you can’t quite figure them out.
Another bonus feature of sorts is the BGS private forum, where you can meet and interact with other aspiring bassists. It’s also where you’ll get the private mentorship deal with Alex or one of his associates.
Bass Guitar Secrets offers a feature that very few online lessons do – personal coaching. To be more specific, customers of BGS get access to a private forum where you can upload samples of your playing and Alex Sampson (or one of his associates) will offer advice on your playing. It’s definitely a useful feature to have the input of other bassists as you learn.
BassGuitarSecrets.com has an email ticket system in place, but unfortunately you have to register to be able to create support requests. Though it can be a little hit-and-miss, we liked their live chat feature much better and have been pretty successful in contacting their customer support with questions.
Bass Guitar Secrets is available in 3 different formats explained below.
(1 You can get it as a professionally produced hard-copy package with Audio CDs, printed manuals, and extra software. The advantage of this option is you don’t need a computer to access your lessons. The price is $97 if you get it at their reduced price.
(2 You can order everything one on CD-ROM for $59.95. We don’t suggest this as a good option unless you are on dial-up or possess a very slow internet connection. If so, it might be worth it.
(3 This option allows you download the entire course as a digital download to your PC or Mac. It’s the most cost-effective option at $49.95 and you’ll be able to download the course to your computer within a matter of minutes.
You can pay for your purchase with many popular payment methods including PayPal and eCheck. Any purchase you make is guaranteed with a 12-month 100% money-back guarantee, which is spelled out very clearly on their site. If you don’t like it, you don’t pay for it. Just a simple email is required to claim a refund.
If you can look past the marketing hype of Bass Guitar Secrets, you’ll find a very solid bass curriculum. Its potential and effectiveness however, are somewhat lessened due to the lack of video instruction, but doesn’t diminish the quality lessons, audio examples, bonus features, and software also included in this package. If you are the type of person who really needs a more interactive style of learning, we recommend that you also pick up the inexpensive Guitar and Bass, which brings a more interactive style to the table for beginners.Official Bass Guitar Secrets Website
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Publisher: Bass Guitar Tips
Price: $49.95 (CD-ROM Version)
Suitable For: Beginners-IntermediatesWebsite Compare
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