Review: Three New Hal Leonard Books for the Bassist in All of Us

Whether you’re a bona fide bassist or a guitar player who dabbles in bass, I won’t tell.

What I will say is, here are three new books from Hal Leonard that will fine tune your way around the low end.

Essential Bass Guitar Techniques: Chris Kringel pieced together 21 separate lessons into one book that will help define your playing style as a bassist. The book starts off with simple right-hand plucking concepts and ends with complex two-handed tapping techniques.

Packed in between are lessons on picking, fretting, slapping, muting and harmonics. Each lesson includes pictures, TAB, musical notation and recorded audio examples to get you the right track. $19.99

Best Bass Lines Ever: This is volume 46 of Hal Leonard’s "Bass Play-Along" series. It contains TAB and musical notation for eight songs; “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson, “Hysteria” by Muse, “Longview” by Green Day, “Roundabout” by Yes, “Sweet Child O' Mine” by Guns N’ Roses, “Taxman” by the Beatles, “Under Pressure” by Queen and “YYZ” by Rush.

The book comes with a link and access code to Hal Leonard’s My Library, where you’ll be able to download or stream a play-along track with or without bass accompaniment for each song. $17.99

Paul McCartney: Also from Hal Leonard’s "Bass Play-Along" series, this book offers TAB and notation following Sir Paul’s career with the Beatles and as a solo artist. The nine songs featured in this book are “Band on the Run," “Hey Bulldog," “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)," “Live and Let Die," “Maybe I’m Amazed," “Penny Lane," “Rain," “Silly Love Songs” and “With a Little Help from My Friends.”

Not only does the "Play-Along" CD have backing tracks with and without bass, it also works with Hal Leonard’s "Amazing Slow Downer" software. The free software allows you to slow down or speed up audio examples as you get them under your fingers. You also can modify the pitch to avoid tuning down or playing in uncomfortable keys. $17.99

You can't believe everything you read on the Internet, but Billy Voight is a gear reviewer, bassist and guitarist from Pennsylvania. He has Hartke bass amps and Walden acoustic guitars to thank for supplying some of the finest gear on his musical journey. Need Billy's help in creating noise for your next project? Drop him a line at

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