FAQs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Here you’ll find answers to frequently asked questions. The questions are categorized for an easier search. Please don’t hesitate to contact me in case you have any further questions.

General questions

Where do the lessons take place?

The lessons generally take place in my classroom in Karmarschgasse 45, 1100 Vienna. Subject to availability and a surcharge, I can also come to your place to teach (limited to Vienna). For further information click here.

Do I always have the lesson on the same week day?

That’s completely up to you: We can either arrange a fixed day each week or every second week – or we will just schedule our classes flexibly from lesson to lesson. Of course, a fixed day has the advantage of prior reservation, so I’m certainly available for you on that day.

How frequent are the lessons?

That depends on whether you’d prefer to have regular lessons or rather only take an occasional lesson one at a time – it’s up to you. It also depends on your goals and expectations: Particularly beginners are strongly advised to take regular weekly lessons because especially when beginning to learn to play an instrument, there’s a risk of adopting false and disadvantageous postures and habits. If you take regular lessons I can recognize these and help you avoid that risk. Once you have attained a more sophisticated level of playing, the lessons may take place in larger intervals – as long as you practice regularly at home.

How long does a lesson last?

A lesson lasts 50 minutes. I advise you to be on time, so we can really use the time provided.

Can I cancel an arranged lesson?

Yes, generally that’s no problem. However, please cancel at least 24 hours in advance, so that no cancellation fee applies. If you cancel at shorter notice, I’ll have to charge the lesson anyway.

How much are your lessons?

Of course, the first trial lesson is free of charge. After that, there are several possibilities: If you take single lessons, they have a fixed price. If you decide on a block booking for several lessons at once, you’ll get a discount on the single lesson price. The price list can be found here.

Which payment methods do you accept?

I offer two methods: Either you can pay in cash or you may transfer the money to my bank account in advance – totally up to you!

Can I get a free of charge trial lesson?

Yes, of course! Simply write me an e-mail or call me and we’ll arrange it! My contact details can be found here.

Do you also issue gift certificates for lessons?

Yes, certainly! You can choose the number of lessons and I’ll send you a voucher upon receiving payment. If you’d like to surprise someone special, please let me know – I have quite a few good ideas on how to make the present a special treat…

Which styles of music do you teach?

I teach all popular music styles and Jazz in all its variations.

Do you also teach music theory?

Yes, I offer specific Jazz and classical music theory classes to students who are interested. Generally I also integrate practical music theory in my regular lessons, matching the specific subject matter of the lesson.

Due to logistic constraints, I won't be able to bring my own instrument to the lessons. May I use one of yours during the lessons?

Sure, no problem! You may play one of my basses during the lessons – naturally free of charge! Due to its size, most upright bass players rarely take their own instruments with them. Also, if you’re playing bass guitar, it might be inconvenient to carry your instrument to school or work in case you come to the lesson directly afterwards.

Questions for beginners

- I don't own a bass yet. May I have a trial lesson nonetheless?

Yes, of course! You can try my basses in the trial lesson – naturally free of charge. I would even advise you to consult me before buying an instrument of your own. Not only can you take your time to try out the different basses I have available, I can also tell you all about the advantages and disadvantages of different basses and help you find the most suitable one for your needs and expectations.

I'm not sure at all if the bass is the right instrument for me. Can I just come by and try out both of these at your place?

Yes, sure! Just contact me by e-mail or phone and arrange a free trial lesson. You can take your time to try out all my basses and have a cup of tea or coffee while I answer all your questions about the instruments and my lessons.

Is there a minimum age for starting to play?

There’s no age limit for playing bass. It’s rather a question of body height and the size of the hands, but there are special short-scale basses which are made specifically for young bassists. More information can be found here. In case of any further questions, just contact me by e-mail or phone!

I can't read music – does it still make sense to take lessons with you?

Yes, certainly! Reading music notes is generally not that hard and can be easily explained. Although reading music fluently takes quite some practice, it’s not strictly necessary for bass lessons. So if you’re happy with knowing just the basics of reading music, that’s also ok. I’ll just teach you enough of it to be able to follow the lessons, and that’s not complicated at all – promise! 🙂

How much does a (new) bass cost?

That depends on several different factors, such as your goals and the style of music you’d like to play. Will you also need an amplifier or are you satisfied to practice only with headphones at first? I’m happy to explain the important facts during our first free trial lesson and give you advice on how to find a (new or used) instrument that’s worth its price.

Which equipment will I need as a beginner?

That depends: If you play an upright bass, you’ll only need the instrument itself and a few minor things, such as a tuner. With a bass guitar, in addition to the instrument you’ll at least need some further basic equipment: strap, cables, amplifier and a bag for transport. Of course I can show you all the things and give you advice on how to get them in the easiest way.

Is it recommended to start off with lessons or can I simply learn the basics myself?

Especially in the beginning it is very important to have a competent teacher with a successful method in order to avoid adopting false postures and a disadvantageous technique. It is much harder to get rid of these impairments later on than to prevent them in the first place. That’s also one of the reasons why self-taught musicians often stay “stuck” on a somewhat elementary level. Also, you’ll progress a lot faster if you have the proper guidance in addition to regular practice at home.

What's the advantage of bass lessons with you compared to lessons at a regular music school?

The biggest advantage is flexibility. Since there’s no requirement of a fixed schedule, my lessons might also more be attractive for rather busy people. Furthermore, there is no specific curriculum which has to be fulfilled, so we can work on your individual goals and play only the kind of music you like best.

I can only practice at home at night since I'm working full time. How can I do that without upsetting my neighbors?

With a bass guitar, a cheap headphone amplifier is the easiest solution to this problem. But there are also a few ways to tone down an upright bass so that its volume is low enough not to disturb your neighbors.

Questions for advanced players

I'm thinking about studying bass at a music academy – can you help me prepare for the entrance examination?

Yes, I’d love to! Due to my years of experience I know exactly what’s important and which mistakes to avoid. Also I can be of help concerning the selection of the repertoire you are preparing, since I know the terms of admission for most relevant institutions in Austria. Furthermore, I can support your preparations for the Ear Training Test and simulate the exam situations so you know what to expect there. Just contact me by e-mail or phone and arrange a free trial lesson where you can enjoy a cup of tea or coffee while we plan your preparations.

I've been playing bass for some time - but I feel somehow there's no more progress. Can you help me?

Yes, of course! That feeling can have different reasons, either you have reached a level of playing that you can’t improve without external support or your theoretical knowledge needs polishing, or maybe you’re just in need of creative input and new inspirations for your musical productivity. To find out the reason in your specific case, contact me by e-mail or phone and arrange a free trial lesson where we can assess your situation in detail. Once we have identified the problem, I can help you with individual improvement strategies in order for you to be able to reach your goals.

I've been playing bass for some time - but I don't really know any music theory. Can you teach me in an easy way?

Yes, certainly! I’d suggest you contact me by e-mail or phone and arrange a free trial lesson where we can evaluate your present knowledge in that field. Then I can teach you starting from your individual level and guide you towards your goals. Of course I will illustrate all theoretical issues with practical examples so that you can directly try out the things you’ve learnt on your instrument and make use of them immediately.

I'm playing bass in a band and we're planning to record our first album, but I'm not satisfied with my bass lines. Do you also coach bands?

Yes, I’d love to coach you and your band – if you need professional help with improving your bass lines or support with songwriting or composing, you’ve come to the right place. Also I might be able to help you develop new ideas for your musical career and give you advice in band related business issues.

I've been playing bass for some time and would now like to improve my improvisation skills. Can you support me with that?

Yes, be it classic or contemporary jazz improvisation or learning how to improvise rock and pop solos using chord sequences – I can explain the theory and harmonics and show you the best ways to approach this complex issue. In this process, I value maximum freedom and creativity. Of course, I can also help you create bass lines for your own songs. For further information about specific band coachings click here.