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‘Rock and Read’ for Bass by Mike Nichols and Phil Mulford on KR store today

‘Rock and Read’ is a new approach to learning to sight read stave notation with authentic song charts and backing tracks played and produced by top session musicians Mike Nichols and Phil Mulford.

Being able to sight read and write song charts is a really useful skill in any type of music, and it's not as hard as most people think. We use original tunes in the style of top contemporary and classic rock bands to teach you to follow the kind of song charts used by professional musicians. All the tunes have been carefully set up in KR file format. This means that you can change pitch and time (handy for slowing down tricky sections) and loop any desired section or bars.

About the Authors

Mike Nichols and Phil Mulford are both professional musicians with a wide range of experience, including Rock and Pop bands, Touring, Studio, TV work, and Musical Theatre. 

They’ve also been actively involved in music education over the years and have noticed that many students feel intimidated reading music in a Rock setting. Despite achieving a good level of skill in other areas they find it difficult to get to grips with sight-reading, often imagining it to be harder than it really is. This is partly down to the fact that many books don’t show you the kind of charts real bands would use, showing other information such as TAB, which can be unnecessary and misleading. The charts contained in Rock and Read are classic song formats written in a simple easy to understand style.

You will need to put in some hard and sometimes tedious work in order to read music to an advanced standard, but it’s always easier to learn if the material you’re working on is fun to play. It’s much more satisfying to play a real tune rather than an exercise. The tunes here are based on the sounds and styles of many of the top bands over the years, written out in exactly the format you would see in any professional situation.

Your ability to read and write simple but effective song charts is a really important skill if you want to be an effective band member. It can save a lot of time in rehearsal and this allows you to focus on the creative side of playing, instead of having to memorise exactly how the song goes, how many bars the bridge is, or what the first chord of the chorus is. You may only get a chord chart but being able to interpret it correctly and play appropriately is a real skill. If you reach a good level it will open up all kinds of opportunities to play with different people and play a wide range of music.

Rock and Read

To find out more about the Rock and Read - 'Music reading method for contemporary musicans', click here.

As always you can download the free KR Player for iPad here to get access to the 'Rock and Read' KR files for bass via our in-app store.

Watch Mike Nichols in bass action with Joe Brown.