Ok so i need to learn stairway to heaven for in a couple months when we perform it and i can't for the life of me hear the bass part in the song so that i can get the timing down for the tabs i have. Does anyone have any ideas?

i've never actually played it on bass...but, have you tried EQ'ing the right frequencies in an audio editor? Boost the frequencies between 43Hz and 110Hz and drop most of the other frequencies. These are in the range of a low F to the 2nd octave A on a 4 stringer. Below is a portion of a frequency chart I did in javascript. I use it to determine which frequencies to EQ when i'm learning new cover material: <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=2 align=center border=1><TBODY><TR><TD style="FONT-SIZE: 18px" align=middle colSpan=5>Frequency Chart</TD></TR><TR><TD>Octave</TD><TD>Note</TD><TD>Semitone</TD><TD>Bass Guitar</TD><TD>Elec. Guitar</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>0</TD><TD align=right>41.20</TD><TD align=right>329.63</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>F</TD><TD align=right>1</TD><TD align=right>43.65</TD><TD align=right>349.23</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>F#/Gb</TD><TD align=right>2</TD><TD align=right>46.25</TD><TD align=right>369.99</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>G</TD><TD align=right>3</TD><TD align=right>49.00</TD><TD align=right>392.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>G#/Ab</TD><TD align=right>4</TD><TD align=right>51.91</TD><TD align=right>415.30</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>A</TD><TD align=right>5</TD><TD align=right>55.00</TD><TD align=right>440.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>A#/Bb</TD><TD align=right>6</TD><TD align=right>58.27</TD><TD align=right>466.16</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>B</TD><TD align=right>7</TD><TD align=right>61.74</TD><TD align=right>493.88</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>C</TD><TD align=right>8</TD><TD align=right>65.41</TD><TD align=right>523.25</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>C#/Db</TD><TD align=right>9</TD><TD align=right>69.30</TD><TD align=right>554.37</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>D</TD><TD align=right>10</TD><TD align=right>73.42</TD><TD align=right>587.33</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>D#/Eb</TD><TD align=right>11</TD><TD align=right>77.78</TD><TD align=right>622.25</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>12</TD><TD align=right>82.41</TD><TD align=right>659.26</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>F</TD><TD align=right>13</TD><TD align=right>87.31</TD><TD align=right>698.46</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>F#/Gb</TD><TD align=right>14</TD><TD align=right>92.50</TD><TD align=right>739.99</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>G</TD><TD align=right>15</TD><TD align=right>98.00</TD><TD align=right>783.99</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>G#/Ab</TD><TD align=right>16</TD><TD align=right>103.83</TD><TD align=right>830.61</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>A</TD><TD align=right>17</TD><TD align=right>110.00</TD><TD align=right>880.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>A#/Bb</TD><TD align=right>18</TD><TD align=right>116.54</TD><TD align=right>932.33</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>B</TD><TD align=right>19</TD><TD align=right>123.47</TD><TD align=right>987.77</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>C</TD><TD align=right>20</TD><TD align=right>130.81</TD><TD align=right>1046.50</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>C#/Db</TD><TD align=right>21</TD><TD align=right>138.59</TD><TD align=right>1108.73</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>D</TD><TD align=right>22</TD><TD align=right>146.83</TD><TD align=right>1174.66</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>D#/Eb</TD><TD align=right>23</TD><TD align=right>155.56</TD><TD align=right>1244.51</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>3</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>24</TD><TD align=right>164.81</TD><TD align=right>1318.51</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>

The bass starts after about 55 sec, at the same time as when he starts to sing. The bass is very low, and the tones are very long, that's why they are difficult to hear, I think. If you still can't hear it. Then just listen to the guitar. The bass change tone, when the guitar switches chord.

so I guess it's evident that I've never used that column. here's a corrected version: <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=2 align=center border=1><TBODY><TR><TD style="FONT-SIZE: 18px" align=middle colSpan=5>Frequency Chart</TD></TR><TR><TD>Octave</TD><TD>Note</TD><TD>Semitone</TD><TD>Bass Guitar</TD><TD>Elec. Guitar</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>0</TD><TD align=right>41.20</TD><TD align=right>82.41</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>F</TD><TD align=right>1</TD><TD align=right>43.65</TD><TD align=right>87.31</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>F#/Gb</TD><TD align=right>2</TD><TD align=right>46.25</TD><TD align=right>92.50</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>G</TD><TD align=right>3</TD><TD align=right>49.00</TD><TD align=right>98.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>G#/Ab</TD><TD align=right>4</TD><TD align=right>51.91</TD><TD align=right>103.83</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>A</TD><TD align=right>5</TD><TD align=right>55.00</TD><TD align=right>110.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>A#/Bb</TD><TD align=right>6</TD><TD align=right>58.27</TD><TD align=right>116.54</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>B</TD><TD align=right>7</TD><TD align=right>61.74</TD><TD align=right>123.47</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>C</TD><TD align=right>8</TD><TD align=right>65.41</TD><TD align=right>130.81</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>C#/Db</TD><TD align=right>9</TD><TD align=right>69.30</TD><TD align=right>138.59</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>D</TD><TD align=right>10</TD><TD align=right>73.42</TD><TD align=right>146.83</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>1</TD><TD align=middle>D#/Eb</TD><TD align=right>11</TD><TD align=right>77.78</TD><TD align=right>155.56</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>12</TD><TD align=right>82.41</TD><TD align=right>164.81</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>F</TD><TD align=right>13</TD><TD align=right>87.31</TD><TD align=right>174.61</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>F#/Gb</TD><TD align=right>14</TD><TD align=right>92.50</TD><TD align=right>185.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>G</TD><TD align=right>15</TD><TD align=right>98.00</TD><TD align=right>196.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>G#/Ab</TD><TD align=right>16</TD><TD align=right>103.83</TD><TD align=right>207.65</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>A</TD><TD align=right>17</TD><TD align=right>110.00</TD><TD align=right>220.00</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>A#/Bb</TD><TD align=right>18</TD><TD align=right>116.54</TD><TD align=right>233.08</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>B</TD><TD align=right>19</TD><TD align=right>123.47</TD><TD align=right>246.94</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>C</TD><TD align=right>20</TD><TD align=right>130.81</TD><TD align=right>261.63</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>C#/Db</TD><TD align=right>21</TD><TD align=right>138.59</TD><TD align=right>277.18</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>D</TD><TD align=right>22</TD><TD align=right>146.83</TD><TD align=right>293.66</TD></TR><TR><TD align=middle>2</TD><TD align=middle>D#/Eb</TD><TD align=right>23</TD><TD align=right>155.56</TD><TD align=right>311.13</TD></TR><TR style="BACKGROUND: lightgrey"><TD align=middle>3</TD><TD align=middle>E</TD><TD align=right>24</TD><TD align=right>164.81</TD><TD align=right>329.63</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>

Well, that's because it's keyboard bass, like Bassteban pointed out. It doesn't suck, though. JPJ was (is) a great keyboardist.

I think the point is that John Paul-Jones, who often played organ mellotron, electric piano etc. in Led Zep , was quite clearly playing mellotron at the beginning and so probably played organ bass pedals, which are difficult to tell from BG at low volume.

Pick up the Recorded Versions for BASS songbook for Led Zeppelin III/IV. IIRC, "Stairway"'s music does have keyboard bass written out/TAB'd for electric bass. Or hop down to your local music store, Barnes & Noble, etc & test your memory skills.

Is this for school cause my friend here says she has a few months to learn stairway to heaven for her Guitar Class at the local HighSchool

I've seen many videos of Zep playing stairway, and they've all featured John Paul Jones playing the intro recorder and bass parts on a keyboard/organ. However, in the recording (and possibly live, i couldnt really see), there is pretty decent electric bass from the "if theres a bustle" to the end of the song. That part should be easier to hear, if not try getting one of those tascam practice tools, I think you can boost the bass on those.