“In the Practice Room” Bass Guitar No.1!

Replacement + Position Shift Fingering Exercise on Root 4th 5th in each position

This fall I switched back to standard 4ths tuning on my bass guitars. I had been playing bass guitar tuned in 5ths (an octave lower than cello) for the last 7 years!! So it’s been a totally mind bender to relearn the fretboard in 4ths. 🤪 Transitioning back really makes me appreciate all of the great things about a 4ths tuning system. Truth be told, I hadn’t been practicing bass much in the past 5 or so years, I’ve mostly been focused in on cello. But! Changing my tuning back to 4ths is forcing me to practice 😁 So! Every time I practice, I create multiple exercises and then work on it until I have it in the hands. Sometimes it is hyper focused on a certain technique or theory, but other times it is free spirited. This one came out of pure improvisation, and it is a finger twister! The concept is to play Root 5th 4th in the hand (ex 1 3 1) then Root 5th 4th again but as a 1×2 extension where 2nd finger replaces 3 (or stays put if already extended) in order to shift up a position to play the 4th on the lower string with your 4th finger (1×2 / 4). Then you are a up in the next position and can start the climbing cycle all over again! The key to this exercise is to lift 1st finger off the board when you are on 2nd finger and about to shift up, leading with the 4th finger. Good Luck!

You can purchase the sheet music for this exercise above and hear my play through the exercise (1) slow and staccato and (2) trying it out a little faster in the Instagram post below!

#bassguitar #etude #bassguitarexercises #bassguitarlesson #musiclessons #musicexercise #fingeringexercise #inthepracticeroom #briangrimmcellozone #cellozone #briangrimm #remoteteaching #remotelessons

“6 Ways to Improve Your Bow Grip”

Whether you are one of my students and we are currently working on your bow grip, or you are someone who has difficulty controlling the bow and feeling comfortable with your grip, or you are another cello teacher looking for additional exercises to send to your students for bow grip help – this video is for you!! Here are 6 ways to improve your bow grip. So grab your bow, tighten it up and join me in the #CelloZone for this #TechniqueTip#PlayAlong video!

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Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, I am unable to perform live, which has significantly hurt my income. In the mean time, I am putting more effort into online lesson content, in hopes to help as many aspiring cellists as I can. If you learned something valuable from these exercises or they helped you with your technique, consider making a one-time donation. Your contribution really helps me to continue producing content and putting energy into this project.

If you don’t take private lessons from me, but consistently come back to my site on a regular basis to learn helpful tips about how to practice, work on healthier technique, and discover music theory on your instrument… please consider making monthly donations! It will help me to continue providing quality online lesson content.

If you clicked on this tab, you are my hero! If you want to help me sustain quality online lesson content, please consider making a yearly donation! Your donations ensure that I can afford to spend the time to produce this online lesson material.

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I put a lot of effort into my online lesson content, so I really appreciate your support! <3 BCG

Thank you so much for helping me do this! It really goes a long way and your support means a lot. <3 BCG

Thank you so much for helping me do this! It really goes a long way and your support means a lot. <3 BCG

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TIMESTAMPS

@00:00 it begins…
@00:23 intro and helpful tips
@02:07 EXERCISE 1 – Bounce the Ball
@02:48 who dat?!?!
@05:05 EXERCISE 2 – Wave Motion
@07:25 EXERCISE 3 – Placement of Thumb
@08:24 Traditional Flat Thumb Style
@09:15 Modern Hooked or Bent Thumb Style
@12:05 Wrist Tips
@13:41 Waterfall Fingers
@15:05 who dat again?!?!
@16:01 Placement of other Fingers
@19:03 EXERCISE 4 – Bow Circles “Pool Stick”
@19:31 DO NOT USE “pointy from behind” pokey grip
@20:14 Lean In, pouring water from a pitcher
@22:11 EXERCISE 5 – Down Wrist, Up Wrist
@23:28 Wave / Energy Principle
@25:11 Train Wheel Imagery
@25:33 EXERCISE 6 – Open String Whole Bows
@25:59 Ellipse or Oval Bowing
@27:28 REVIEW
@29:53 discussion of multiple bow grips
@32:16 whhhhhaaaatttt???!?!? who dat again, again!?


instagram: @bgcellozone https://www.instagram.com/bgcellozone/
facebook: @cellozone https://www.facebook.com/CelloZone/


#CelloZone #BowGrip #CelloClub #CelloLessons #Cello #Violoncello #PlayAlong #RemoteLessons #Music #MusicLessons #CelloLessons #BrianGrimmCelloZone #TechniqueTips #CelloTechnique #CelloClub

1/7 | Celebrate Shackelford’s Last Jam & Kate’s BDay tonight @ the Mason Lounge

9pm – 12am No Cover | Five Points Jazz Collective Live at the Mason Lounge

416 S Park St, Madison, WI 53715

After 7 years of keeping the time in-line at the Mason Lounge every Tuesday night with the Five Points Jazz Collective, our drummer Eric Shackelford is stepping down. Come join us tonight to celebrate his seven years in service of the groove! Also, we’ll be celebrating the birthday of our fearless bartendress, Kate!

Eric the Shack-man pictured here staring a hole through your soul. The camera lens was injured in the taking of this photograph and was later re-tired. (photo by Matthew Norman)

It’s been so much fun playing bass in the Five Points Jazz Collective with Eric at the helm of the pocket. Famous for his “buh-da-dun dun dun, _ duh-nunt!” endings and exciting solos, Eric has been the bedrock of the the Five Points sound for 7 years! In that time, Eric and I have developed what I would describe as an effortless groove. It’s easy and it just goes… You don’t have to think about it or calculate, you simply play. And for me, that’s when it’s really fun. If I ever throw a funky surprise at Eric, he’s ready to catch it and throw it right back at me. And when it’s time for a drum-and-bass-trade during solos, I know things are gonna get interesting because of his careful listening and conversational style. In fact, some of my favorite memories during my time with “the Tuesday Night Squad” have been those drum’n bass trades!

Drawing of Eric Drumford’n Sons on New Year’s Eve 2020 by master John Ribble, Crawdaddy of Five Points violinist Rin Q Ribble!

A versatile drummer, Eric also plays heavy in the blues trio Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo. It’s actually not common nowadays to play with a Jazz drummer who can bust out a solid blues style. Well, Eric’s got a whole bag of blues baby. I’ve always enjoyed hearing the blues side of jazz come out in The Shack’s playing. Sometimes just for a chorus during a solo, always in good taste.

One of my favorite memories playing with Eric and the Five Points Jazz Collective happened this past Fall 2019, when we collaborated with Music con Brio at the Barrymore Theater (pictures below). It was a crashing together of worlds for me, because I also teach cello at Music con Brio! Eric did such a fantastic job playing fun drum beats to fit the children’s songs and the kids had a great time. The cello group’s favorite moment was performing the surf-rock edition of “Drunken Sailor”!

Eric has the unique gift of an experienced drummer who know’s how to play-the-room. It’s a rare thing indeed for a drum set player to keep the volume at a low, manageable level yet also hold up the energy and create an exciting group sound. The Shack-man has always found the sweet spot at the Mason Lounge and never overplays the room. Quite a feat! This is but one of the many reasons why Eric will be leaving some big shoes to fill for the next drummer of the Five Points!

We tip our hats to you Eric and raise a glass… or two or three. We’ll miss you and your drumming at the Mason Lounge each week. It’s been a blast and we cherish the friendship & music we’ve created with you over the last 7 years!

We wish you the best!
from solid-blue-Brian, the Five Points Jazz Collective & The Mason Lounge


9/20 | Musique Concrète élégie “They’re Still Here” by BC Grimm now available for download, honoring loved ones who’ve passed


They’re Still Here” Liner Notes

Composed, Recorded and Premiered in August of 2018 by BC Grimm (b 1986) for the 2018 Madison New Music Festival. All instruments performed by BC Grimm. Available for Download on September 20th, 2019 to mark one year since Grandma Joyce’s passing. This release is also in remembrance my Grandma Nerren who passed away this summer, her 97th birthday would have been on September 17th. Much love to both my Grimm and Nerren families.

[About the Work]
Those who have passed away continue to pop up in the everyday moments of our lives. This work explores the modern dichotomy of navigating grief and mourning whilst carrying on with your work day and life obligations. You’ll hear field recordings of my day-to-day experience fused with instrumental composition and sound design. These “scenes” reference and even recreate real life moments I had in 2018 while in the wake of a series of close friend and family deaths. Many scenes are embedded with inside jokes or nods to the loved ones who passed. In addition, some scenes imagine what may be taking place for the dying at the transition between this world and the next. I felt that I didn’t give myself permission to truly process my grief publicly when this was all happening – how many of us are quietly carrying around these feelings at the same time?

A month after the premier of this work, I felt like I’d had a chance to process and contextualize my feelings and was scheduled to perform the piece a second time on 9/20/2018. Ironically, that was the day my Grandma Joyce passed away and the themes of this piece played out in front of me once again, in real time. I received “the call” right before leaving for work in the morning and had 3 jobs to work that day… run to the next run to the next run to the next. But on that day, I told everyone of the news I’d just heard and what I was going through internally. It helped me to get through that day without breaking down. I just couldn’t believe it had happened again, like clockwork. I’d like to thank Taralie Peterson, who performed a set of free improvisation as a duet with me that night. It was the first time that whole day I was able to let out and explore my feelings about my Grandmother’s passing.

[Dedications]
The 2018 composition, recording and performance of “They’re Still Here” is dedicated in loving memory to Patrick Kelly, Ross Sutherin & Brian White-Stout and to the Grimm, Sutherin, Kelly, Morrow, White-stout & Brethauer families. I’d like to dedicate the 2019 public releasing of this music to my Grandma Joyce & Grandma Nerren, and to my Nerren and Grimm families. Both grandmas passed away in the last year since the making of this piece. I miss you both very much and think of you often when I play cello now.

[Album Art]
A special heartfelt thank you to one of my Art heroines growing up, Aunt Jean (daughter of Grandma Joyce) who made the Album Art for this release. I’m so glad we were able to collaborate on this special project.

[On Listening]
“They’re Still Here” is meant to be listened to and contemplated in one continuous sitting. Therefore the movements haven’t been separated, to facilitate the best listening experience (as it was performed live).


PROGRAM NOTES

[00:00] SCENE I “Passing of a Friend, The Work Day Begins”
Tenor Viola da Gamba with field recording

[02:31] SCENE II “News Cycle On Fire: Rbt. Mueller’s Lonely Russia Probe”
Gaohu Cantonese fiddle with foley, field recording, 1940’s radio broadcast, singing bowls, violoncello, dizi flute, bawu flute, xiao flute, sheng mouth organ

[04:25] SCENE III “Do I Tell The Children? No, Teach On.”
Violoncello with field recording, pipa lute, tenor viola da gamba, contracello

[06:27] SCENE IV “Fluorescence Hums The Harmonic Order of Nature”
APC40 (electric hum in Just Intonation)

[10:31] SCENE V “Morning Routine, Scrambled Brains”
Field Recording with foley

[13:00] SCENE VI “A Call With My Brother, Wise Counsel”
*Sarangi-Cello in pipa tuning with claps, cajon, Tyler’s motorcycle

[14:55] SCENE VII “Ask The Corn Spirits”
Bawu flute with gaohu fiddle

[17:28] SCENE VIII “Hermie’s Chimes, They’re Still Here”
Guqin Zither (tuned to Hermie’s chimes) with pipa lute, gaohu fiddle, dizi flute

[21:07] SCENE IX “Funeral Grave”
solo Violoncello

[22:22] SCENE X “Temple of Ancestors”
Sarangi-Cello in pipa tuning with pipa lute, synthesis

[24:29] SCENE XI “Transfigurations”
Guqin zither with pipa lute, Russian folk harp, singing bowls

[27:27] SCENE XII “Schoolyard in Snow; Children Play On”
Tenor Viola da Gamba, APC40 (electric hum in equal temperament), field recordings,
foley

  • “sarangi-cello” (d, g, a, d’) is tenor-violin (normally G, d, a, e’ or G, d, a, d’) tuned in pipa lute tuning with alternating wound and plain gut strings. I use a Nakatani-Kobo bow to help create a ‘sarangi-style’ on cello. The bowed Sarangi of North India and Pakistan is normally tuned to Sa=E (e, b, e’). I have my cello modeled after this tuning but a wholestep lower where Sa=D, where my guruji pt. Sugato Nag tunes his sitar. The sarangi has 3 melodic strings and the cello has 4, so I have tried a number of different tuning schemes and have settled on the Pipa Chinese lute tuning – as it is the most settled and advantageous one I have tried: d wound gut, g plain gut, a wound gut, d’ plain gut or silk. Alternate tunings I have used: (1) d, a, g, d’ (2) d, g, g, d’ (3) d, a, a, d’

3/9 | Michael Zerang (Chi) and Biliana Vouchkova (US Tour) support from Louise Bock Drone Orch. @ ALL

Sat, 3/9 | 8pm $15adv, $20door @ Arts + Literature Laboratory (ALL)
2021 Winnebago St, Madison, WI 53704

Michael Zerang (Chi) and Biliana Vouchkova (US Tour)
support from Louise Bock Drone Orchestra

TICKETS

[from ALLJazz]

” ALLJazz presents renowned Chicago jazz improviser Michael Zerang with internationally acclaimed violinist Biliana Vouchkova for an evening of creative improvisation on Saturday, March 9, 2019 at 8:00PM. A Drone Orchestra directed by Taralie Petersen will open the show.

Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. College/university/high school students receive a $5 discount on either price (valid student ID must be presented at the door – no exceptions). Advance tickets are available online until one hour before the performance. Doors open at 7:30PM.

The ALLJazz Series is sponsored in part by Alchemy and Dobhan Restaurants. Student discount made possible by Grant Samuelsen Real Estate.

About the Musicians

Michael Zerang has been a active musician, composer, and producer since 1976, focusing extensively on improvised music, free jazz, contemporary composition, puppet theater, experimental theater, and international musical forms. He has been a long-standing member of The Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet, Friction Brothers, Brötzmann/McPhee/Kessler/Zerang Quartet, and Survival Unit III with Joe McPhee and Fred Lonberg-Holm. 

Biliana Voutchkova is a thoroughly engaged artist, violinist, composer-performer and improvisor who combines regular performances of major solo violin/ensemble works, new music by contemporary composers often written for her, and her own work with performative, long length formats, real time composition and improvisation. Her constant research as a creative artist spans the widest possible range of sound and movement and extends her sonic, technical and physical capacities evolving into the development of a highly individual artistic language.

Opening will be another installment of the Drone Orchestra hosted by Louise Bock. Featuring guest players Brennan Connors, Brian Grimm, Nadia Chana, Michael Groome, Erik Kramer, Patrick Best, Tracy Peterson, Taralie Peterson, Wendy Maland, and special guest….

10/19 | InDIGenous Jazz Series presents Executive Tea Set + Brennan Connors & Stray Passage @ Wisconsin Union Play Circle Theater

I’d like to start out with some after show thoughts on Brennan Connors & Stray Passage’s recent performance at Cafe CODA…

A big shout out and thank you to Hanah Jon Taylor and Cafe CODA for hosting us last Friday, 10/5 at his newly opened space on Willy Street.  When I first moved to Madison from Indianapolis, I noticed the absence of a true Jazz club.  I had been spoiled by my experiences at The Jazz Kitchen (and a number of other joints) where you knew you could go hear the best local and touring players.  The environment at Cafe CODA brought me that feeling once again.  It’s comfortable, in a prime location, has headroom, plenty of large inspiring photos of Jazz legends, and sounds great.  The space invites you through it’s front lounge, to the bar in the middle, and finally pulls you towards the listening space in the back.  As a patron, you have three options when deciding how close-to or far-from the musical action you want to be.  Congratulations to Hanah (and anyone who helped out) on getting this new space up and running, I hope many successful nights of music come your way!  If you are in Madison and love Jazz, check this place out.

Café CODA is Madison’s premier new jazz space! We are dedicated to the presentation of traditional, contemporary and creative music. Café CODA maintains an arts-centric program of musical performances, workshops and master classes available to residents and patrons of the Madison area.

Additional thanks to Paul S Howell for shooting some nice pics at the club!


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Fri, 10/19 | 7:30pm All Ages, FREE

Wisconsin Union: Play Circle Theater

800 Langdon St, Madison, Wisconsin 53706

INDIGENOUS JAZZ SERIES PRESENTS

EXECUTIVE TEA SET

BRENNAN CONNORS & STRAY PASSAGE

Brought to you by Madison Music Collective, Greater Madison Jazz Consortium, Wisconsin Union Theater.

from inDIGenous:

The inDIGenous Jazz Series is presented by Madison Music Collective, The Greater Madison Jazz Consortium, and the Wisconsin Union Theater. Concerts begin at 7:30 pm and are held in the Memorial Union Play Circle at the Wisconsin Union Theater, 800 Langdon St. Each concert is free, all-ages, and open to the public.

The group Executive Tea Set was formed at a time in history just before it was unfortunate to be associated with the word “tea.” After a short time off from regular performances, the group returns to full force with their inimitable style, humor, and grace. Michael, Mark, and Brad are psyched to welcome newest member Paul Dietrich on trumpet. Paul brings his unique panache, and subtle bluster, spurring the band into unknown universes. Their choice of repertoire combines self-described “difficult music” featuring polyrhythmic, multi-modal reading, metric mystery, and high-flying harmonic modulation with “gut-bucket tunes we can blow on”. Original music of a jazz variety carries the day, penned by the members of the group themselves, with occasional masterworks from one jazz luminary or another.

Paul Dietrich – Trumpet
Mark Siegenthaler – Piano
Bradley Townsend – Bass
Michael Brenneis – Drums

Brennan Connors & Stray Passage is primarily an improvising unit focusing on the outside or experimental aspects of jazz. Each performance is dependent on the mind states of the individual musicians, the physical environment of the performance space, and the intense listening and sonic communication that occurs as they play. Their 2017 release Emergence is available on Bandcamp. The breadth of a performance ranges from focused minimalism to fiery high energy music, all while maintaining a sense of narrative organization and compelling ensemble interplay. Their repertoire includes original compositions, a few old favorites, and raw improvisation.

Brennan Connors – Tenor and Soprano Saxophones
Brian Grimm – Electric Bass and Contra-Cello
Geoff Brady – Drums

The inDIGenous Jazz Series is presented by the Madison Music Collective, the Greater Madison Jazz Consortium, and the Wisconsin Union Theater; supported by Dane Arts, the John and Carolyn Peterson Charitable Foundation, the Madison Arts Commission, Janus Galleries, and the Evjue Foundation; and receives promotional support from WORT-FM and Wisconsin Public Radio.

9/20 | CJ Boyd, Taralie Peterson + Brian Grimm, Scaroth @ Communication

CJ Boyd 9%2F20 in Madison.jpg

Thr, 9/20 | 7:30pm  $8  All Ages  Alcohol

@ Communication

2645 Milwaukee St. Madison, WI 53704

CJ BOYD (permatour)

Taralie Peterson + Brian Grimm

Scaroth

In the last 5 years, I’ve had the pleasure of collaborating in various ways with ambient bassist & vocalist CJ Boyd (Joyful Noise RecordingsObsolete Media Objects).  We have a track “Horses” coming out on his yet-to-be-released, mammoth sized “50 states project” (more on that when the time comes!).  Back in 2014, I contributed a track to his fundraiser compilation for reproductive rights: Running Up That Hill.  When CJ came through town in 2013, it was the impetus for Mine All Mine Records + GrimmusiK Records ambient compilation Colias.  I also made an official remix of “slowly by your passing” for his Visions & Revisions remix compilation.  The point being, for someone who is on perpetual tour I’ve managed to collaborate with CJ nearly as much as some of my regular bandmates in town!  Now multiply that by all of the musicians that he is keeping track of on the road, constantly in a cycle of scheduling tours, booking shows, recording albums (sometimes in our local coffee shop bathrooms!), releasing collaborative projects, etc…. this guy is busy!  I am always impressed by the hard work and persistence I see from full time touring musician CJ Boyd.

CJ still finds time to have a voice in matters of social injustice, whether it’s through social media platforms or directly in his music.  The timing doesn’t always work out when he is coming through town, but I’m glad it did this year! As always, I am excited to spend some time with CJ before/after the show and to enjoy his ambient music stylings at Madison’s new all ages venue, Communication.

Check out CJ’s many records here: https://cjboyd.bandcamp.com/

More on CJ: http://www.cjboyd.com/

CJ and I are both fans of Taralie Peterson’s musical output, including her solo projects as Tar Pet, Louise Bock, and in the dynamic duo Spires That In The Sunset Rise.  A multi-instrumentalist and improviser extraordinaire, Taralie has the rare gift to pull sounds through the void from other dimensions for you to hold momentarily.  This will be our first duo collaboration and I am honored to sit next to her on stage this Thursday.


 

 

 

9/4, 9/7, 9/8 | Shows This Week

JAZZ SEXTET

Tues, 9/4 | 9p-12 $0 @ The Mason Lounge (every Tuesday!)

416 S Park St, Madison, WI 53715

FIVE POINTS JAZZ COLLECTIVE!

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As always, you can find me on Bass Guitars at the Mason Lounge on S. Park ST every Tuesday night, with the Five Points Jazz Collective!  We’ll have the full sextet this week, featuring Charlie Painter on guitar, Trey Grimm on keyboard, Rin Ribble on violin, Kyle Rightley on trombone/euphonium, and Eric Shackelford on drums!  Sure to please with funk, latin-jazz, swing, and blues along side the wonderful selection of craft brew that the Mason rotates on tap.  Warning! Jazz occurs between 9p-12a.


JAZZ, IMPROV, & INDIE ROCK

 Fri, 9/7 | 7p $Tips @ Bos Meadery

849 E Washington Ave, Madison, WI 53703

BOAT PATROL (on tour Jazz/Grass)

LABRADOR, THE BAND (Indie Rock)

BRENNAN CONNORS & STRAY PASSAGE (Free Jazz)

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Built on an improvisational base, Boat Patrol (pictured above) uses a trove of influences and techniques ranging from bluegrass to avant-garde jazz to create extensive musical landscapes and textures.

Boat Patrol began creating music in the fall of 2017 in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.  Avoiding simple categorization, boat patrol explores every nook and cranny of the musical palate with each live performance serving as a unique portrait of the band.  Featuring Cai Mountjoy – bass/madolin/guitar, Daleth Mountjoy – keys/synths, Evan Verploegh – drums/theremin

Labrador. The band. are a mellow, moody three-piece that sounds like the type of estro-rock you might hear in The Bronze on an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Brennan Connors & Stray Passage is a free/outside jazz trio. Performances delve into fiery high energy music, focused minimalism, and raw expression.

Donations suggested.


FREE-IMPROV

Sat, 9/8 |6p potluck 8p music $5 @ The Vault

JACK WRIGHT & ROUGHHOUSING (tour)

HIGH PRIESTS OF THE APOCALYPSE

BRIAN GRIMM (cellos)

Improviser extraordinaire and road warrior Jack Wright and his trio Roughhousing is back in Madison for a show at The Vault!  Roughhousing features bassist Evan Lipson and guitarist Zach Darrup.  Read more about the trio here > Roughhousing EPK. Potluck starts at 6pm – bring a tasty dish to share and enjoy; music starts by 8pm.  Enjoy a night of free improv at one of Madison’s most notorious DIY venues with a trio that aims to strip away the layers of facades that plague the digital marketing age.