Monthly Archives: December 2014

Hindemith – Elementary Training and the Bass Sonata

In addition to taking bass lessons, I also signed up to join the SBL Academy. This is an excellent (and large) community of bass players who work together to improve their musicianship. In addition, the SBL folks have an amazing amount of courses, lessons, interviews with professional bass players, etc. It has been worth it for me to join this community.

One of the threads in the SBL campus (the name they give to their forums) is around a recommendation to go through Paul Hindemith’s Elementary Training for Musicians. I am joining in that thread and doing the exercises in that book. I mentioned this to my bass teacher and he expressed his disdain for Hindemith based on having to play his Sonata for Double Bass. He said that there is a part in the piece that is unplayable and can actually cause physical harm to bass players.

I did some searching on the web and found this article. Apparently there is an unplayable part in the piece as published but it turns out this was a misprint. I’ll have to ask my bass teacher about this…