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I'm about to learn how to play bass.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by I Want To Bass, Sep 28, 2008.

  1. I Want To Bass

    I Want To Bass

    Sep 28, 2008
    What kind of guitar do you recommend for a beginner?
  2. A bass guitar.
  3. ErebusBass


    Feb 20, 2008
    Madison, WI
  4. climb


    May 1, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    Depends on your budget. Try to pick up a Squier Vintage Modified jazz bass on the used market or maybe a used Fender MIM jazz; great bang for the buck, and a tone you'll immediately feel familiar with. 34" scale, 4 strings.

    More important than the bass itself, though (IMO) is the setup. Find out what gauge strings you like (when I just started, I had no idea how much better I'd like light gauge strings than heavy) and what action you like (again, most basses in Guitar Center or wherever are usually set with ridiculously high, almost unplayable action, and it can change the feel of the bass completely).
  5. gizmobltd


    Jun 25, 2007
    Ibanez gsr starter pack. Very good. After two years I am still using my bass from it.
  6. kebbs

    kebbs Modus vivendi

    Aug 30, 2005
    Ottawa, Canada
    +1000 Very important to have a proper setup. Worth the money.

    And yes, I would also recommend SX basses (www.rondomusic.net).

    Good luck, and make sure to visit this forum often. Lots of knowledgeable people here.
  7. mfgl


    Jul 1, 2008
    Altoona PA
    The thing i regret is buying a little practice amp with only a 8 inch speaker and 15w. I wish i had spent double and got something decent, Instead of having to pay double now anyhow and still having this one.
  8. I Want To Bass

    I Want To Bass

    Sep 28, 2008
  9. Growler


    Sep 26, 2004
    For a beginner there are two basic bass "sounds". There's the Fender Precision (aka P-Bass) and Jazz basses (J-Bass). The P bass has a "slightly" bigger/thicker neck and a "mellower" sound while the J-Bass has a smaller/thinner neck and a bit more aggressive sound. By aggressive, don't think "heavy metal distortion" as those sounds are due to effects.

    Fender makes the entry P/J basses in Mexico (Made In Mexico, aka the MIM-P and MIM-J). They're good quality, inexpensive and a great place to start your career. Also, you're guaranteed to find them at your local guitar shop.

    Here's what I did, I personally knew nobody that played bass or guitar, so I went down to a local independent guitar shop that sold basses (not Guitar Center), and found a salesman and explained exactly what I wanted to do, "I want to learn to play the bass, and am interested in the P & J MIM basses." I asked the salesguy to play two of the basses (one P and one J) playing simple scales, I didn't want to hear how good this guy could play, but just wanted to hear what the two basses sounded like. I personally liked the sound of the P-bass, and then he showed me how to hold it so I could get a feel for comparing the neck of the P vs J. I have small hands and it didn't make much of a difference to me.

    Instead of buying one of the "starter packs" I built my own for less $$: I took my MIM P-bass and bought a entry level practice amp (Peavy something...). This is pretty much what is in the starter packs (an entry level bass and a practice amp). I got a 15' cable and a soft gigbag (a bag for your bass with a pouch you can put some sheet music and other small items).

    Lastly, I had the salesguy set up the bass for me (strings 'not too high, not too low') as I needed somewhere to start. Down the road, you'll determine if you like higher or lower string height.

    One other thing: Get lessons. If the shop is good they'll be able to recommend a couple of teachers (or there are teachers associated with the shop). Find a teacher that plays bass as their primary instrument and hopefully has similar interests in music to you. On your first lesson, bring a list of songs that you want to be able to play. Even something easy like Queen's "Another one bites the dust" or Pink Floyd's Money are good places to start. The more you help your teacher, the more he/she can help you.

    Lastly: Be patient, practice and have fun.
  10. Growler, I have to say that was a really great post. Should be made into a sticky. :)
  11. fungihead


    May 24, 2007
    im pretty sure i have a bass that is the exact same model as that, and its great for a beginner, its what i learnt on

    avoid being cheap and buying something rubbish off ebay like i did, it can kill the spark that makes you want to play since you find it uncomfortable to play and boring to listen to

    also try before you buy ALWAYS, basses are like shoes, theres a bunch of different sizes and you have to try them to see if they fit, different people wear different sizes
  12. 80min700mb


    Aug 4, 2008
    The good ol' Squier P.

    I believe it's the essential starter's bass.
  13. hobb185


    Feb 16, 2008
    its a good starter bass that has all round good qualities
  14. Ritter?...maybe to soon...:oops:
  15. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    If you can afford to spent $280 for your first bass, I'd suggest getting a used MIM (made in Mexico) Fender Precision or Jazz instead. You shouldn't have much trouble finding one for that price. Don't forget to allow enough money to get an amp as well.

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