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beginner tips

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by thadg, Jun 1, 2007.

  1. thadg


    Mar 21, 2007
    I bought bass for dummies, theres a bit of theory in that and is hard to understand at times. It seems like i've been doing more reading than playing. Should I get a teacher or another book, or play tabs. I'm pumped to play but i really gotta work on technique. What are some good tips for me?
  2. doctorjazz


    Oct 22, 2006
    Wilmington, NC
    Don't be scared of the theory. It will help you understand what you are doing on the bass, which will in turn help you understand why you are doing it. That, to me, is just as important as technique.
  3. thadg


    Mar 21, 2007
    I'm not, it's just hard to understand and have questions to ask and the book doesn't answers questions well. Like chords and scales. I get scared when reading it.
  4. Coelho


    May 10, 2006
    Astoria, NY
    Instruction is always a good thing. Practice too.
  5. I suggest learning to play finger-style first, instead of learning to play with a pick, which is what I did when I started playing. It is so much easier to go from playing with your fingers to playing with a pick than to playing with a pick to playing with your fingers, in my opinion.
  6. Sarbecue Boss

    Sarbecue Boss

    Jul 9, 2006
    Avoid tabs, if you want to learn a song learn it by ear
  7. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    So many times (and not just bass) I'd read about something that I had no clue what they were talking about, but when someone explained and demonstrated it to me, I instantly got it. Meaning there's no substitute for a good teacher.
  8. Get a tescher, i got a book and tried to learn bass but decided to go to a teacher of a month of going nowhere, what i tried to learn in a month i learned in a week
  9. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    + 1 on the previous two posts.
  10. All you have to do is pick up the bass and just play. doesn't matter what it sounds like, just as long as you can make some noise, you are on the right track. Then when you know what sounds like what, then just try to piece things together. it's all in your ear. play "Bad To The Bone" by George Thoroughgood. Easy song to pick up by ear; only 3 notes, and that will give you a good groove to play with.

    here's a challenge: try to play the same notes somewhere else on the neck. (Hint: Octaves)
  11. WillPlay4Food

    WillPlay4Food Now With More Metal! Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2002
    Orbiting HQ
    Same here. I'm back in instruction and as I expected, my learning rate has increased again compared to going it alone.
  12. Torch7


    May 7, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    I got bass guitar for dummies, because my schedule didn't allow for an instructor.

    If you can go instructor route, it sounds like most people highly recommend it.

    Remember people learn differently, so experiement with what works for you.

    Also if you have any questions about concepts in the book feel free to contact me. I'm still fairly new, but if I can answer your questions I would be more than happy, to do so.
  13. Yngwie 4String

    Yngwie 4String Inactive

    May 3, 2007
    Auburn Nebraska
    BUY A BOOK OF SCALES. Start with C major. LEARN IT. The more you learn scales the better you will become, and your technique will be forced to improve. Its also rewarding to learn scales because once you learn one you can freestyle within that scale, and create music that is in that key which means it will sound good no matter what. Also try to learn standard notation.

    C major

    E: 8, 10; A:8, 9, 11; D:8, 10, 11 (Then play it in reverse evenly).
  14. Whoa there - you are scared when reading a book?

    If that is the case you need to work on that part. There's nothing to be scared of. It's just a book. Read it and learn it at your own pace. There is no deadline or pressure to have it done.

    If you have questions you can ask here on TB but be prepared for many conflicting answers.
  15. Torch7


    May 7, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    +1 The book you already have is a very good resource. Slow down, and learn the scale patterns. Like mentioned above, One at a time.

    The book has a bunch of great play-a-longs that re-enforce the concepts. Play them slowly as well until you get them down.
  16. Work with a metronome while practicing your major and minor scales. Playing in time is almost more important than playing the "right" notes.
  17. +100. And, like thadg, I've noticed that books don't respond to questions very well; they just lie there like, well, books. So ask here. And don't forget that there are other books for beginners, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. What one explains poorly another does well. (I have the Dummies book, and I've checked out The Complete Idiot's Guide from the library. Unlike real life, when the dummy doesn't help the idiot does.)

    If you can get a teacher,you'll amaze yourself with your progress. Really.

    And Torch7 is right. Be patient. Accuracy and precision are worth much much more than speed, especially here in the beginning.

    If you've got the time and inclination, you might try a theory class at the local JC.

    And don't forget to have fun!
  18. Yngwie 4String

    Yngwie 4String Inactive

    May 3, 2007
    Auburn Nebraska
    Learn standard notation, I just started to learn it myself, and its not that tough. The benifits are well worth the work. I will say this though, learning to play an instrument well takes a lot of work and time. If you are not willing to put in a lot of time and work, then take your bass back to the store, and get your money back. Im not being a jerk Im just telling you the truth. If you do not have determination and desire then youve got nothing. I hate going to ppls houses, and they got a guitar or bass they nvver learned how to play, it ******** me off, dont be one of those people.

    Ill help you learn in any way that I can, send me a message on myspace (my page is linked below). I get a computer for 1 hour a day during the week, and I have nothing else to do, so Ill help ya out. :bassist:
  19. Before learning the scales, it's best for you to learn the patterns. Then once you have a scale pattern down, you can literally play in that scale in any key you choose to.
  20. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jan 16, 2021

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