I'm Jim. I'm from Columbus, Ohio, USA. I favor Yamaha basses and am currently using a TRB5II five-string bass with a Roland V-Bass pedal effect rack. The Yamaha's sound is beefy but short of muddy and the the V-Bass provides some sound dexterity with it's modeling which is just amazing. Combining its effects and sounds with the natural sound of the Yamaha has been rewarding for me.
I love classical, jazz, rock and blues. I write & record my own music in these styles, preferring energetic and bizarre voicings in the jazz world and full (also bizarre) vocal harmonies in the rock world.
My playing style varies with the music, of course. In the jazz and funk worlds I prefer popping/slapping with melodic straight-playing drop-outs thrown in here and there (alternating between popping and regular play within phrasing). In the rock world I try my best to know when to keep things simple and lay the low-end down vs. provide a moving groove - both of which I'm very fond of. For classical I do most of my work with a synth rather than a live bass.
My biggest challenge is walking, which is why my one and only favorite lesson is all about that. I highly recommend that simple set of practice techniques. As with any style, play - play - play.
My 2nd release, "eZen v3.5" is now available! Go to http://www.heil-lager.com/jt/ezen
Last year I lucked into meeting two musicians - a drummer and a guitar player - who just like to jam. No pre-written music, no pre-defined goal, just get together and build grooves and see what comes out. That has been an incredible boon to creativity and listening for me. I highly recommend serious jamming as a practice technique. Structured practice is vital too - don't get carried away with jamming - but the art of listening is very hard to learn and jamming will eventually teach you to listen to others when playing (one way or another).
You may find examples of my work at http://www.heil-lager.com.
I welcome all comments and critiques.