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"Muting" open string notes?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by nachothrash, Mar 16, 2014.

  1. nachothrash


    Mar 16, 2014
    Hi everyone!
    I bought my first bass about a month ago
    I've been a guitar player for several years, so my left hand fingering and right hand speed are quite developed.
    The thing is, I can't properly mute open string notes while playing certain riffs

    For example:

    Strike of the beast (Exodus) 197 BPM
    While playing that, the E notes keep ringing and I just can't realise how to properly "kill" them.
    Any tips or videos regarding this?
    Please keep in mind I play with a plectrum
  2. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Mute it exactly the same way you'd mute while playing guitar.
  3. zontar


    Feb 19, 2014
    Use one or two of your picking hand fingers (Like the ring finger & pinky) or the side of your hand opposite your thumb or the lower part of your thumb or the heel of your hand or a free finger on your fretting hand.

    Depending on how you hold a pick and position your hands some of these could work better than others.

    I mostly use my fingers to play and if I need to mute an open string I use either a free finger on my fretting hand or my picking hand thumb.

    With a pick I would use any of the above that felt most natural while playing.

    Experiment & practice.
  4. nachothrash


    Mar 16, 2014
    Maybe I didn't explain myself well
    While playing that same riff on my guitar I'd simply palm mute every single open string note by placing my right hand over the string WHILE hitting those notes, so when I move up to the upper string there is no sound to mute. Doing the same thing on bass just doesn't sound right. I must hit those E notes and THEN mute to avoid the string from ringing, but I just don't know how
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  6. nachothrash


    Mar 16, 2014
    Using a finger from my picking hand seems impossible to do when moving to an upper string, and I can only slightly mute the sound of the string when using the side of my hand opposite my thumb
    Using a free finger from my fretting hand works fine if I have to move to a lower string, but not to an upper one
    I guess you can't use your picking hand thumb when using a pick, can you?
  7. Practice through trying different hand positions

    Rh pick muting can take a bit of trial error

    Slow things down and work it so you can nail it with reliability then work it back up to speed
  8. Code:
    Strike of the beast (Exodus) 197 BPM
    I tried playing it. Unfortunately, I couldn't quickly do the 8p5-2.

    Anyways, anytime when I go for the D-string, I quickly lay my hand against the E-string, then rock my hand off when I play the E string again. My left hand 1st finger also just touches the A-string to keep it muted.

    I also noticed it's also played in Drop-D in some live versions on Youtube, also the bass player is using fingers:
    Strike of the beast (Exodus) 197 BPM
    I can only assume you're going for the original version.
  9. zontar


    Feb 19, 2014
    I know you can't use all the options I suggested--I was just going through a list in my head of how I have muted open strings.
    If any of them work, great.
    If not--well I tried.

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