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Internet Tabs

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Matthew Bryson, Apr 7, 2003.

  1. Matthew Bryson

    Matthew Bryson Guest

    Jul 30, 2001
    Why is it that internet tabs suck so badly? Every now and then, I see one that's pretty close, but usually they are either a little off in a few places, way off with maybe only one (close to) correct riff, or sometimes completely off with nothing that even relates to the song. My question for the day is: Why is this? I've got a few theories and I suppose more than one is probably true. Is it that I just don't know how to read and play tabs? Is it that those who can actually play a given song correctly have put in enough work learning to play their instrument, and learning to play that song, that they don't care to "give it away" to somebody that searched for a tab. Do some people go to tab sites and "update" the tabs that have been posted to make them even worse just to mess with tab dependant crowd? Are the people that post these tabs all in their early teens with weeks or months invested learning their instrument and developing their ear, so they actually believe what they post is the correct bass line as it was played on the original recording? Is it that the tabs on the web aren't that bad and really it's my ears and my lines that are screwed up? Is it that they intentionally post a riff that is close but not perfect so that a person can figure out the correct riff and all the variations of it? Is it record company executives and Lars Ulrich sabotaging all the tabs because it's all copy writed material. Why exactly is it that internet tabs are consistently wrong?
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Because the people who use tabs are generally inexperienced and unskilled as musicians - the best musicians realise that Tabs are always going to be inaccurate and don't bother with them.
  3. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Moving this over to the Tab area.
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    But this is not aTab Request as such - but rather a general discussion about what is happening on the internet.....:confused: - that is why I replied as I did in OFF Topic - I wouldn't necessarily have given the same reply in a different forum.
  5. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs

    haha...that made my day....i dunno why...but i found that pretty funny.....

  6. NV43345


    Apr 1, 2003
    I have been playing bass for 33 years, and i dont read music, What i do is listen to the song over and over and over, and try and figure it out on my own
    and then look at the tab to see how close i am
    compared to the tab. The only time
    i use internet tab is when i cant find it in a book, there is not a whole lotta bass tab books out there.
    I like the published version better, cause it has the lyrics, so if you want to work on a part you cant
    figure out, you can go right to it. The internet tab
    i compared to the published version's i have found to be accurate. just played differently, open string "vs" closed position, so there is a difference in that.I recently had to learn some mellisa etheridge songs and merideth brook songs, that there was no bass tab to, so i tried to figure them out as much as i could by ear, then looked at the internet guitar tab to get the key changes, i nailed
    those songs and had them down cold for band rehersal. i have tons of bass tab books if there is anything anyone is looking for let me know.
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    That post is self-contradictory - so :

    "there is not a whole lotta bass tab books out there. "

    but :

    "i have tons of bass tab books if there is anything anyone is looking for " :confused:

    And it doesn't answer the question asked, in any way!! :rolleyes:
  8. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    You've been cheated Bruce! Now it looks as if you were making anti-tab comments in the Tab forum! :eek:

    I say move this over to Misc or GI, so we can speak openly and objectively about tabs (which, let's face it, the rules of this particular forum prohibit).
  9. NV43345


    Apr 1, 2003
    As i stated i have been playing for 33 years, when i see a bass tab book for sale i grab it, so i have alot of books that are out of print. some of the books that ,go out of print: like the warner brothers books with the spiral spine so they lay flat on the music stand,or table. By saying i have alot of books i am only trying to share with fellow bass players.And
    i am sure most bass players that are looking for tab books realize, we are out numbered by guitar tab books. example, RUSH vapor trails, only guitar tab published. That is what i meant when i stated there are not a whole lot of bass tab books out there for us.If we stick together we can share.And i did answer the question, by saying, the internet tabs i compared to published ones i found later, were accurate, exept for the differences stated.
  10. I do exactly the same thing.
    I very rarely rely on internet tab.
    It's generally only good for pointing you in a direction.

    Other then the Bass music specific books, I've been
    picking up different Guitar Magazines for years,
    solely for the 4 to 6 fully transcribed bass tab songs in each issue.

    I've had to start a database to keep track of the
    760+ pieces of copyrighted/published Bass sheet music I've managed to collect so far.

    I'm willing to share.
  11. NV43345


    Apr 1, 2003
    originaly posted by bruce:Because the people who use tabs are generally inexperienced and unskilled as musicians - the best musicians realise that Tabs are always going to be inaccurate and don't bother with them.

    bruce: nothing could be farther from the truth.
    I look at tab as another tool in the tool box.
    I just purchased "the bass tab white pages"
    a tab book with 200 songs, and i compared it to
    the song "smooth" by santana that i found on
    this web sites tab area, and it is 100% accurate.
    bass players who post tab, take pride in there work
    and want to share. :spit: :bawl: :eek:
  12. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Yeah, but that's the nature of the beast.

    Hm... let's see... how bout Misc? I love forum ping-pong. :D
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    But Tabs contain no rhythmic information so there is no way that it can be 100% accurate - you cannot play song just from Tab, whereas it is quite possible to play a song you have never heard, by just referring to the sheet music!

    Besides - have you looked at every website that hosts tab - I have been posting here for over 3 years and there have been countless occasions when people have complained about inaccurate or just plain wrong tab - just because the few examples that you found, were the same as the book you have, does not prove the case or deny the fact that the vast majority of Tab on the net is inaccurate!

    So there !! :spit:

  14. jani_bjorklund


    May 22, 2002
    :D Well, some sucks, some don't. I have tabbed(and submitted) over 600 basstabs to the archives over the years. Some, I have to admitt, are better than the others but as I mainly tabb requests for songs that are either hard to find or hard to play(or hard to realize how they are played) I often ask the one that requested the song to "proof play" the song before I subbmitt it to the archive. I very rarely get any such feedback on such a request. Many bassplayers critizice tabs that others have tabbed but very few are ready to do anything about it or have the capability to correct a wrong tab. Of course I get much mail and most of the mail is from bassplayers that appreciate the work I do. Occasionally I get mail pointing out pointing out misstakes and errorrs and I allways correct things, and on some occasions re-tab the whole song if I so decide. There is also allways an amount of envy, and some bassplayers like to critizice rather than help a fellow bassplayer that's struggling with a specific tune. If there's somebody out there that really know how everythin should be done at every point, I would like him not to just sit on the precious knowledge.
    And of coure a tab contains all the rythmic information you need if you care to read it.
    Her's a tab I made.
    Jan, Finland
  15. I'm a big fan of the powertab editor, it has the tab staff and a standard notation staff so you get the best of both worlds. Plus it plays in MIDI so you can play along to it and usually spot mistakes where it's wrong because it sounds horribly wrong on playback.
  16. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    That's just plain wrong!! So how does Tab show - for example, a 16th note funk groove which is a mixture of eighth and sixteenth notes, that avoids the 1st beat of the bar, with syncopated rests - or notes that tie across the bar - and how long to hold rests etc etc !!?? :rolleyes:
  17. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Tab doesn't show all the rhythmic information, like Bruce said. How about triplets? Quintuplets? And like Bruce said, note lengths. Also, I've never seen any tab show any kind of dynamic or expression markings.
  18. NV43345


    Apr 1, 2003
    Most of my sheet music, includes the tab. So it has
    both and includes the original transcription. I prefer
    to learn a song i like so i always hear the music first. Like i stated before, i play the song over and over and learn all the rythmic parts, and only use the internet tab if i cant find a original transcription.
    And then i compare it to what i have been playing, most times i am spot on. I play ROCK-N-ROLL it is
    not meant to be perfect, it is meant to be fun and make people feel good. I prefer the music books cause they have the lyrics also, where the internet tabs dont.I practice as a musician and i play as an entertainer. I would never be in a situation where
    i had to play a piece just from sheet music.I am always well rehearsed before playing live and always do pre-production before recording. as far
    not reading sheet music, i still pick up the key changes from it, and transcribe it if i have to.
    The internet tab is still a great tool, alot of guys cant afford or find sheet music, but a trip to the local library for free internet access and they can print out there songs that they want to learn,
    you have to remember alot of us could not afford our own pc or afford to take lessons, and some of the schools dont even teach bass.I would like to thank all the folks who put all that tab on the internet, and i am sure i speak for my bass player brothers as well.You guys need to lighten up
    and have some fun.;) So in closing, internet tab is a great tool and we are lucky to have it.Like i said before i like to share with other bass players.And maybe that is the real value.:) :p :cool: :bassist:
  19. Schwinn


    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    IMO, the best thing that could happen to bass and guitar players is the complete abandonment of tabs.

    You should learn to read music! Music notation is the accurate written record of music. I would love nothing more than to search for a song transcription on the internet and see notation, not ****ty internet tablature.
  20. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well in that case the tab is superfluous, as the sheet music tells you everything you need to know and certainly a lot more than the Tab - why pay for something you don't need - waste of money!?? ;)

    Of course I transcribe a lot as well, but would never bother tabbing anything out - just a waste of time - but that was not what the question was about!!

    The original question was why are tabs on the internet so innaccurate and so far, I haven't seen anything to make me change my mind on the original answer I gave!! ;)

    (PS does anybody else notice a correlation between tab users and how well people write and express their ideas? ;) )