Hey guys, is music theory important? And if so what is the best way to learn?

I am a bass player and have been for just under 4 years, I'd like to think I am pretty good. But I know squat about theory... And it does bother me that I don't know how to play in D or if my friend says "will sound better if you play that in F"

Any advice?
Last edited by The9 at Jun 23, 2011,
This belongs in musicians Talk

But it makes you better.
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Last edited by Metallicuh at Jun 23, 2011,
Music theory is important to improvise with.

Less so if you're sitting down and noodling about trying to make a song. It'll help you get to that song a lot faster though.

musictheory.net is a good place to start.
If it bothers you, learn it. It applies to all instruments, so if anything, your potential benefit far outweighs the effort.

Learning it isn't hard, too. Sure, you won't be able to pick it up and know everything in a day, but it isn't quantum mechanics. If you learn it and put in a lot of effort, you can probably cover most of the essentials in a week or two.
Yeah i have been playing for 6 years and only started taking theory really seriously towards the end of college and at the start of uni, it is pretty important, as you can get by with learning by ear or whatever, but learning theory makes things a lot easier, and opens you up to more opportunities.

Also, considering you have been playing for a little while you probably have developed a decent ear, although your technique might be a little bit wrong and it might be hard to get out of bad habits.

Think of that next time you are not allowed to laugh.