Comprehensive Bass Method


Author : Hein van de Geyn
Year : 2007
Format : Book

Level beginners, intermediate, advanced
  • Very thorough overview of all aspects of Jazz bass playing
  • Well-structured and thought out exercises on all possible technical aspects of bass playing 
  • Includes chapters on the learning process and learning skills 
  • It offers nice philosophical insights from the author
  • It covers so many topics that it might be overwhelming
  • Little attention to the historical context of bass playing


In 2007 Hein van de Geyn, a Dutch bass player and educator, published his ‘Comprehensive Bass Method’. This is by far the most elaborate method in book form. Although, he doesn’t consider it a method as such.1 Van de Geyn looks at it as a way to practice the physical side of Jazz bass playing. But his book offers much more than that. As you can see in the diagram, it covers a wide array of topics and it is the most complete method book so far. This is both an advantage and a disadvantage. The mere size of the book (and the sequel with even more written out exercises and other musical examples) is so impressive that it overwhelms the student with exercises, ideas, advice and theory. As a source it works very well. You can find exercises and advice for almost all thinkable topics. 


It is remarkably that there is relatively little to no attention to the historical context and no examples of other bass players from Jazz history. The book is very elaborate in many ways but at the same time it represents a very personal perspective of the author with many examples of his own playing. 


jazz double bass

in the

21st century

By Tony Overwater