About the Jazz Newbie and this blog

A warm welcome to my adventures as a Jazz Newbie! I play the electric bass, and I am diving headfirst into the world of playing improvised music. On this blog, you will be able to follow me and my experiences making this transformative journey. A Jazz Newbie is starting this journey, who will be ending it?

The author playing bass

My past

Music has played a major role over my entire life. Although Jazz had been a mystery to me for the most time, it had somehow always been included in one way or another.

In my childhood home, there was a painting of "Satchmo", as my father calls him. My father has also a nickname, it's "Benny", not only for being a "good man", but in particular for playing the clarinet, albeit mostly in other genres than Jazz.

Music had and has a pervasive presence in my life. Over the years, I've had some DJ-jobs in mostly alternative discoteques here in Eastern Bavaria. Making people dance makes me happy. Dancing myself makes me happy. Listening to all kinds of music makes me happy.

And it does not need to be loud. With my aged life seems to come more aged music (although I have learned that Jazz does not need to be aged).

Now I play the electric bass

When I started playing bass five years ago, I was already 44 years old. Playing an instrument, especially the electric bass, had always intrigued me. Becoming a dad made me think about what I wanted to share with my daughter, and it was immediately clear that I wanted her and our recently born son to enjoy music in a similar way that I do. In fact, not only as passive listeners but also as active players. There had to be an instrument in our household, and it had to be the bass. A cheap bass was quickly found and used, to play some of my favorite rock and pop songs.

Since then, I had so much fun, I even made some videos and put them on youtube@strollingbass. As for so many other musicians, Jazz eventually crossed my path and Jazz has so much to teach that I first got curious and then got stuck. I live in Eastern Bavaria, near Burghausen, which gives me lots of opportunities to go to jam sessions and concerts. Now Jazz is also a part of my daily playing routine, but I feel that I haven't even scrached the surface.

The future

Playing improvised walking bass lines is so much fun that I want to explore Jazz and improvised music in general as deeply and extensively as I can.

I have heard that it takes around ten years to become a fluid and proficient improviser. Currently, I am in my first Jazz-year, and so this blog begins. I will try to provide that information I wish had available when I started. A new blog post will be published here regularly, approximately every other week.

Come, follow my progression, the failed and the successful attempts - they promise to be both entertaining and informative.

Let's be honest, Jazz is not the most accessible music genre; I certainly felt a "defensive shield" around it. But here I am, saying that it's certainly more approachable than I've always thought.

I will talk a lot about playing the instrument. In my mind this always includes singing, because your voice is an instument you can "play".


Music and Jazz are my hobbies; I am not a professional musician with systematic education. Things posted are my personal opinion, and you might have heard them somewhere else already - just not from my personal point of view.

German is my native language; there could be some bumps here and there in my English posts.



My Story



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