Howdy doo... New member here ... A little about myself ... 31 years old .. always been a fan of the bass. I grew up in music .. piano from 5 - 12, trombone, baritone, bass trombone, and tuba all through middle school and high school. I tinkered around with a bass some in college, my roommates .. caught on pretty well just learning a few songs but never learned the strings and notes ... Decided last year that I'd get one and learn .. for now just got a cheap wal-mart $100 bass ... Was going to teach myself back then, never got around to it .. I pulled it out last week and decided to start learning .. I caught on pretty quick again, got it all tuned up .. teaching myself scales, cords .. all major scales for right now .. I can play a few songs - Sweet Home Alabama, and Cream - Sunshine of your Love. I learned bass tabs .. and still can read regular music real well. Anyways ... that's about me .. I've already started to not like this particular bass .. the volume control and output is very poor .. it doesn't have much tone either. I'm learning now with a felt pick that I picked up .. any objections against that? I know a lot about music is personal preference .. what I like .. and how do I like to do it .. felt pic just has a better tone than a plastic one .. and I'm not that good yet with playing with fingers .. My question is .. when should I start worrying about getting a new bass first of all? I'm not playing with a band .. just at home learning .. I want to keep it up and get in with a band at some point .. What's the best way to start learning? Am I doing it right? Learning notes, scales, cords first? Playing some of the arpeggios in the scales... etc? I feel like I've caught on pretty good .. I've only been playing / practicing for about 10 - 15 hours total and know most all the major scales, cords, apreggios... etc. I'm also having trouble muting the previous string when doing these scales .. any tips on that? What are some good songs to start learning? I'd like to for now get into a cover song band sometime .. that would play in small clubs on the weekends type deal.. Thanks everybody Any and all help and info would be appreciated!