About six years ago, I sat down in front of Finale and made a whole bunch of MP3 practice tracks for various pieces I was either working on at the time or using in my bass lessons. I liked the “pitch plus rhythm” aspect of practicing in this way, and while I could always do this sort of thing wither by playing MIDI files directly or (with much more flexibility) use something like Finale, I really wanted to be able to load these tracks on my iPod (probably an iPod Video at the time… how times have changed) and therefore not be dependent on lugging my computer around to use for my own practice or for lessons.
I ended up loading them into my iPod as a playlist and then just carrying around a couple of speakers. This was a good practice and lesson setup. I would also give these tracks to students and tell them to load them up in similar fashion, and to practice with one earbud in and one earbud out.
Soon after starting this blog, I thought that it would be a good thing to put these files out on the web, but I was using Blogger at the time and the size of the files (225 MB, plus another 250 MB of scale files) was prohibitive. Fortunately, a service called Odeo was around and worked kind of like YouTube for audio. It allowed for direct downloading or playing online. I spent a lot of time one summer uploading and correctly tagging all those files.
A word of caution whenever you’re looking to store something online: if it’s a free service, don’t expect it to be a long-term solution! That was the case with Odeo, which disappeared a few years ago (incidentally, the guy who started it had initially started Blogger, which was later bought by Google, and after Odeo he went on to found a little company known as Twitter), and I haven’t had the time/energy/patience to try to figure out a way to put it up online again.
I have decided to just dump them all as big zipped archives on RapidShare. Feel free to use them as you like: