Larry Cohen on an audio CD (listen at home, in the car, on the road) goes through an overview of bridge. Description of each part of the convention card along with a lot of Larry's practical overall advice on how to improve. For Intermediate level players. Total running time: 104 minutes (2 discs) 2012 ABTA Software of the Year
This is the back cover, showing the 23 tracks on the audio CD.
This is exactly what I am looking for. And to boot, you even relate it to the convention card which is something I have wanted from my teacher from the beginning (and haven't gotten unless I make a fuss).
In a pioneering effort during the1950's, Morty Rubinow, a teacher at the then-famed but now-defunct Card School in New York, recorded several of his bridge lessons on LP records. A booklet that diagrammed examples was included, so all topics, including card play, could be covered. Larry Cohen has come forth with a related effort, "Talking Bridge" (published privately; two-disk audio CD set; 104 minutes; $19.95).This material is geared to intermediate-level players, and there is no booklet; lacking a visual component,the author wisely limits the discussions to bidding and general tips for improvement. Cohen speaks slowly and distinctly but with enough varied vocal inflection to keep the presentation interesting. Although the author strongly advises two-over-one methods,he counsels to steer clear of using too many conventions. One of the more interesting topics is his evaluation of the relative roles of concentration, logic,math and memory. Don't listen while driving, Cohen warns. His intent is to help you improve your bridge, not crash. A.B.
By Sue Munday (ACBL Bulletin)
Larry Cohen is hands-down one of the world's best bridge teachers. In addition to his many column contributions to bridge magazines and websites, his instructional materials come in the form of books, software and personal instruction (seminars, cruises, vugraph commentary, etc.). He has also provided enough free material on his own website (www.larryco.com) to take a player from newcomer to intermediate without spending another cent (except for card fees, of course).
Talking Bridge is a foray into a somewhat unusual medium--it's an audio CD set. Cohen's clear, calm speaking voice and easy-going demeanor, along with 20 years of teaching experience, make this product work. Aimed at intermediate players, "Talking Bridge" opens with Cohen's emphasis on concentration and logic as the keys to becoming a better bridge player. He then moves to the discussion of the convention card, segment by segment.
Generally, Cohen's philosophical approach to conventions is that less is best (he describes himself as "a three on a scale of one to 10 with a 10 playing every convention known to man") but he doesn't dismiss the gadgets and treatments that some players might want to add, as long as there is agreement between partners and all of the contingencies have been discussed. He closes the audio presentation with comments on declarer play, defense and suggested strategies for improving both, as a bridge player and a partner.
Given his credentials, no one can possibly doubt that Cohen's bridge advice is worth listening to--and often fun as well.
From Frank Stewart's syndicated column, November, 2011: Many good books appeared in 2011, including "The Rodwell Files" by Eric Rodwell and Mark Horton, a mammoth catalog of play techniques for all players, and the "2010 World Championship Book. "For a stocking stuffer, try "Talking Bridge" by top player/writer Larry Cohen. This 104-minute audio CD offers logical, practical advice for intermediates. Cohen wrote about today's deal in his column in the ACBL "Bulletin." At five clubs, ...
just spent a delightful 104 minutes having a chat with Larry Cohen.Well, actually he did all the talking since I was listening to his new audio CD's, Talking Bridge, but it was like Larry was right in the room talking tome. Don't expect to hear about bridge hands or even details on bidding specific hands. In his discussion aimed at intermediate players, Larry provides practical advice on what to play-- advice that we bridge teachers should consider when planning what to teach. To paraphrase Larry, too many teachers are guilty of teaching conventions because they're easy to teach. It doesn't take a lot of work to prepare a lesson with notes for a student to study and memorize, but learning conventions isn't a good use of student learning time. He advises keeping our students' brains less cluttered so they can concentrate on what's really important--taking tricks. Except for serious players who want to spend hours of work with a partner really learning conventions, Larry recommends a simple system using only a few conventions:negative doubles (very important in his opinion), Stayman, Transfers,some kind of Blackwood, weak twos and maybe features. I'm planning to teach a series on the convention card next year,and I'll be sure to review Larry's advice before writing those lessons. I'll also recommend this set of two CD's to my students. It's convenient to use either in the car or at home--perhaps to make housework more pleasant. But don't vacuum--you won't want to miss a thing! Priced at $20 plus shipping,Talking Bridge is available from Larry's website (www.larryco.com) or from Baron Barclay (www.baronbarclay.com). Both sites offer you the opportunity to hear a free demo. Speaking of Larry's website, there's a wealth of articles for bridge teachers and players to use as a resource. Check it out.
2012 Software of the Year