Marking the twelve days of the festive season, The Strad presents quotes from the archive. Here, double bassist François Rabbath gives advice on sound development


Photo courtesy Twin Cities Bass Camp

In the following extract from an article on double bass technique, François Rabbath offers a final note for teachers

‘When any professor tells a student to do something, they have to explain why, because it will open the student’s eyes and teach them new things. When I see somebody play, I know immediately what to say to correct whatever is going wrong. Many players are only using ten per cent of their potential as musicians. Open their eyes and show them a way to use everything they have; teach them how to move their bodies to achieve the right pitches and sound. The bow and the student’s arm are one; the student is the bass. Students cannot develop their sound without having that image.’

To read the full article in The Strad October 2015 issue, in which François Rabbath introduces his crab fingering system and left-hand pivotsclick here to log in or subscribe. 

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