And we’re done! Bass Rock Path completed!
So, after 3 weeks with the Fender Play app, I’ve completed the entire Bass guitar (Rock) path. So, what are my thoughts? What have I learned? And where to from here?
I think the Fender Play app is a brilliant way for first time guitarists to learn the basics (and some not so basic) guitar skills- enough that they’re more likely to keep playing, rather than giving up after a few months due to the lack of progress. As persisting with the courses and lessons, has resulted in drastic improvements in my playing! And that’s only after 3 weeks! Imagine where I’ll be after a few more months of persistent practice!? So, I think Fender has definitely achieved their goals of getting first time players playing so they’re more likely to buy more and more Fender gear in the future. So, that’s check mark checked!
However, is the Fender Play app a subscription based app which you’d want to keep forever? I’m thinking not. To be honest with you I’m starting to regret paying for the full year in advance. Reflecting back now, and also projecting forward to how much use I’m going to get out of the app in the upcoming months….. Now that I’ve finished the Bass rock path, I think my usage of the app is going to dramatically drop-off in the foreseeable future. Yes, there are songs in the songs tab which you can dive into, but the library isn’t vast by any stretch (when compared to other platforms). And the other features of the app aren’t going to grab your attention for long either. So, if I had a ‘do over’, I’d probably elect the month by month payment plan, and monitor my usage over the next months to decide if I’d cancel the subscription after 3 months, or after 6 months. And then get another subscription based guitar app, like ‘Ultimate Guitar’ which has way more songs in their song library. And the benefits you receive with the year subscription, rather than month-by-month, most of the benefits are a moot point as paying for 10 months when you get 12 months of membership isn’t a factor if you only keep the app for 6 months or less. And the promise of receiving 10% off all purchases from the Fender store (a feature of the year subscription), the fine print states that this offer is only valid for US residents, so yeah, basically there’s no real advantage of paying upfront for a full year’s membership. My advice, go month-by-month.
What I’ve learnt?
So, although the Fender Play app might not be a product that you’d keep forever, but the app has served its purpose in getting me more invested and attached to my Fender guitar! After completing all 5 levels of the rock path, I’ve now learnt things I’d never thought I’d be able to master! And it has changed my own mindset in what I’m able to achieve! Previously I’d be thinking that I’d never be as good as other bass players, as I’m blind and surely that puts me at a disadvantage. But now that I’ve gone through all the basics, understand all the core fundamentals, and have been exposed to some pretty tricky/advanced techniques, I’m actually pretty confident that I’ll be able to keep improving and honing these skills as long as I keep investing time to practice what I’ve learnt. So, if I can do it, I think anyone with a bass guitar of their own and armed with the Fender Play app can also achieve it! You just have to commit to it. So that’s pretty cool right? You can be great, just as long as you want to be great and invest the time to become great i.e. practice!
Where to from here?
Well, aside from the Bass rock path, there’s also a Bass Funk path- from a cursory glance at Level 1, the technique courses are all the same as the rock path, except for the songs that they teach you. And I’m presuming that as you get into more advanced levels they will teach you funk only techniques like slapping and popping. So, I’ll explore that next.
One great feature of the Play app is the ability to ‘Heart’ courses which you enjoyed and would like to re-visit in the future. As in your ‘More’ tab, there is a section called ‘Favourites’, where you’ll find all your ‘Hearted’ courses. So, I’m definitely going to go back to these lessons to practice all the key techniques which will require more practice and revision to master.
And there’s also a ‘Skills’ tab, I’m thinking here is where they upload any additional skills which they hadn’t previously taught you in the Paths section. For example, after completing the Rock path, I was a little disappointed that they never covered off the technique of ‘Slides’. But low and behold, how to perform slides on your bass is covered off in the skills tab section. So maybe here is where they upload new skills or add new skills after special requests from users- so as time goes by perhaps there will be more content here.
And to get the maximum usage out of the app, I’d really like to get my wife into the Play app as well! As she’s already a very good Acoustic guitar player, but there’s always room for improvement and in the Acoustic path there’s so many more genres to geek out on! So, that’ll be added life to the Fender Play app if we could get a second person interested in using it. And we have an old Electric guitar lying around, so I could perhaps see how far I can progress through the EG levels, before things get too complex for me. And if we’re circling back to the easier 4 string instruments, we also have a cheap Ukulele lying around, so perhaps I can spend some time seeing if I can play something on the Uke by embarking on the Ukulele path. so, with these little plans, I’m sure I can milk a few more fun filled months out of the Fender Play app! And of course, there’s the song library, so we can play around to see if there are any songs which may pique my interest.
So yeah, I’ve pressure tested the Fender Play app, and I think it’s a fantastic product! I’ve gotten what I wanted out of it, and if you’re serious about picking up the guitar (in all its forms), I think you ought to try out the Fender Play app. it’ll transform you from being borderline giving up, to an avid player! It’ll transform you from being an average player, to a great player! And it’ll transform you from being a great player, to the greatest guitar player the world has ever seen! Just as long as you PRACTICE!!!!
So, to learn more about the Fender Play app, just click HERE! Happy playing everyone!