AH to many insturments, I need some help

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by MR.Smash, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. MR.Smash


    Jul 9, 2005
    Elmira, On
    (skip to the question if your not interested in the story its down there)

    Ok heres the story, I'm an acomplished drummer I've been playing for 2 years, I've played in a band the last year after, concert band, blah blah all that crap.... now I have chosen music to be career so to speak (teaching, recording, whereever it takes me because I love it) But to truly understand the music you create/play/listen to I believe you should understand at least the fundimentals of each insturment....
    I'm currently in the process of learning 5 more insturments besides drums, (BASS, Guitar, Steel drums, Piano(theroy), Viola) now although the guys in my band are no less then amazing they simply dont have time to teach me what i need to know so as i did with drums im finding ways to learn myself. The most imidieate inturment im learning of course is bass.
    .......I need help
    it has recently come to my attention that most things tabbed anywhere are infact wrong, my problem is i rely on tabs to learn material for the bass, this is a habit that i need to break.

    MY QUESTION IS (or rather request for advice is)

    How do I go about learning the notes of the fret board?

    I did a search and i came up with this fret2fret thing that sounds absolutly rediculous, as a drummer even im dis-inclined to believe that only 5% of the Guitarests/Bassists actually know the fret board

    anyways any information, links, pics, diagrams, theroy lectures.... would be greatly appretiated
  2. bonscottvocals


    Feb 10, 2005
    Upstate NY
    Play the note and sing it at the same time. Start chromatically, by playing the bottom string (closest to your face when holding the bass), and plucking the E and sing the note "Eeeeh". Then fret the first fret and sing "F", and keep going all the way up the board. Then do the same on the next string and so on.

    You can also lay out a tab map yourself of all the notes or use this one: http://www.guitarnoise.com/faq.php?id=128.

    Lastly, you'd be surprised at how many players don't know the frets and couldn't 'spell' a chord for any amount of money in the world.
  3. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    First learn the chromatic scale. Should be plenty of info on the web with a search. Once you understand that you will understand the fretboard. You will also understand a piano keyboard and see how it's laid out.
  4. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    Well, I just did a search and didn't see any really good explanations so:

    All the notes in western diatonic music are -
    A, A#/Bb, B, C, C#/Db, D, D#/Eb, E, F, F#/Gb, G, G#/Ab, A

    The notes with a slash like A# and Bb are the same note. They have different names for a reason that's not important right now. Each note is a half step from the one next to it. So A# is a half step above A. Notice that there is only a half step between B and C, and between E and F. Anyway, that's how a fretboard moves. So the E string is F at the first fret, F#/Gb at the second fret, G at the third fret, etc. Each fret is a half step. To learn the fretboard that's the place to start. After that learn the major scale and the circle of 5ths/4ths.
  5. Can you read music? If so a good way to learn is to just jump in a start reading/associating notes on the staff with their position on the fretboard
  6. Correlli


    Apr 2, 2004
    New Zealand
    Go up and down each string saying the name of each note.

    Do this to about 60 bpm. Spend about 10 minutes a day on it.

    There's no real secret to learning the notes. It's just repetition. Doing something over and over and over... And each time you do it, you get a little bit better at.

    Each person is different though. People learn at different speeds, on different things.
  7. westland


    Oct 8, 2004
    Hong Kong
    All this scale practice will get you there ... but I think a more interesting way to learn notes is to do walking basslines to accompany a 12-bar blues, and transpose to each of the 12 keys. What this will give you is knowledge of he root, and five of the most important key center notes heuristically linked to each other in your mind. It will get boring, but not nearly as boring as scales.
  8. Also recall the positions in your mind when you're away from the bass. Just run through a string now and then when you're not doing anything else. It helps to envision the position of the note as an actual place on the neck, rather than just thinking, "fifth fret, G string: C."
  9. MR.Smash


    Jul 9, 2005
    Elmira, On
    yes enharmonic notes, i have up to grade 1 theroy done already, so basicly your saying that notes start from say E or D according to what sting it is, and run down the neck in half steps?

    thanks for all the help by the way
  10. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    That's it (though toward the body is actually up the neck). The first fret is a half step above the open string and each fret is a half step from the next. So on the E string it goes E, F, Gb, G, Ab, A, Bb, B, C, Db, D, Eb, E. The E at the 12th fret is one octave above the open E. That same note can be found at the 7th fret on the A string and the 2nd fret on the D string. Standard tuning is in 4ths so you have E A D G. The A at the 5th fret on the E string is the same A as the open A string. And The D on the A string is the same as the open D string etc. Most notes can be played in several places on the fretboard. A piano keyboard also moves in half steps if you count both white and black keys. Just the white keys are C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C. That's why the black keys are grouped the way they are, because there is no black key between B and C or E and F.
  11. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    One thing that will really help you with the fretboard (standard tuning) is learning the circle of 4ths. If you know it well enough you can quickly work out notes from knowing the note on the E string. Simplified with flats it goes C, F, Bb, Eb, Ab, Db, Gb, B, E, A, D, G, C. You can see that the open strings are E A D G. If you go to the 5th fret you start from A and it goes A D G C. Memorizing this circle is not hard. Just remember the word bead and then G, C, F. After F it repeats but it's all flat. When you get to Gb you then go to Cb which also happens to be B. To see it easier draw a circle and put a mark at all the clock positions. Now put C at 12 o'clock and go around counter clockwise adding the rest of the notes. Put F at 11 o'clock, Bb at 10 o'clock etc. When you move around this same circle clockwise you are moving in 5ths. You don't have to do it in those directions but I find it makes more sense later on. Anyway, lookup the circle of 5ths and you'll see what I'm trying to describe.