Monday, July 25, 2016

Music Education Monday: Master classes
with bassist Abraham Laboriel

This week for Music Education Monday, you can check out a couple of master classes with the veteran bassist Abraham Laboriel.

Since graduating from Berklee and beginning his career in the early 1970s, the 69-year-old Laboriel (pictured) has played thousands of sessions, working on TV and film soundtracks and with top names in jazz, rock, pop, and contemporary Christian music including Al Jarreau, George Benson, Andy Summers, Barbra Streisand, Billy Cobham, Dave Grusin, Dolly Parton, Donald Fagen, Elton John, Freddie Hubbard, Herb Alpert, Herbie Hancock, Lalo Schifrin, Larry Carlton, Lee Ritenour, Michael Jackson, Paul Simon, Quincy Jones, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, and many others.

The first video, titled "Beginning Funk Bass," was recorded in 1994 and is pretty much what you'd expect from the title, with Laboriel demonstrating various funk grooves and licks and discussing the concepts and techniques used in them.

The second video is from 2014 and captures a relatively informal session, in which Laboriel plays, talks a bit, and takes questions. Although this class was presented originally for an audience made up primarily of church musicians and does feature some discussion specific to that context, many of the bassist's insights nevertheless can be applied to any genre.

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