1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Is it just me?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Listen, May 19, 2002.

  1. Listen


    May 19, 2002
    Is it just me? Or is guitar way easier to play than bass. On electric guitar, I can play so much more stuff, and with ease. I'm still gonna stick with bass,it's got that berry white thing to it.:D
  2. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I'm pretty sure the rest of us are all playing bass because IT'S easier than guitar.
  3. I play bass because I play bass better than a guitar. I feel like I'm about to crush a guitar if I strap it up.

    I'm 9'10" 550lbs.
  4. Listen


    May 19, 2002
    im only 135 and 5'7"
    but those guitars are like toys to hold
  5. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Bass is easier to play than guitar, IF you have the feel of the bass line. Some guitarists don't have a clue about that, but WE do, don't we.
  6. Eventhough it might be easier to play bass than toplay guitar for many of the people on TB, I dont play bass because is easier than guitar. before having played a guit I always wanted to play a bass guitar.. because of its sound, and besides, the fact that it is more playable with fingers than an electric guitar called my attention from the beggining..

    BTW I think that guitar is easier than bass.. the reasons are obvious, the overall size of the instrument (including strings, space between frets, etc)..
  7. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    Do I have to got through this all over again. The Guitar has 6 strings, the bass has 4. The bass is easier.
  8. Stupidnick


    Mar 22, 2002
    ...my room...
    yes joe.. your correct.. and basses should only have 4 strings... 5 strings are of satan :D
    and so are 6 string basses... if its above 4 string its out of the bass clef.. so therefor it cant be a bass :D and guitar players.. they got soo much more attention..
    *throws computer*
  9. DOnt you think that grooving as you do on your bass but on a 4 string guitar would feel like playing with a 5-year old toy?

    And if all basses had 6 strings they would definately be more difficult to be a bass player.

    Maybe some styles of music are easier on bass, like hard rock or classic rock or whatever, but i don´t think that it´s easier to play reggae on bass than it is on guitar.
  10. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin

    The only reason I even picked up a bass is because my sausage-like fingers couldn't manipulate those six teeny-tiny, little strings. Bass is way easier to play than the guitar!
  11. The bass, technically, is easier to play, but, IMO, is much more demanding physically. It's heavier, larger, and because the strings are larger, they tear up your fingers quite a bit easier than guitar strings do.

    Right now, I'm actively learning both, and I have to practice guitar before bass, because if I practice my bass first, my fingers are usually "cut up" bad by the time I'm done. Maybe I'm just crazy though. :)
  12. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    The level of musicianship required to play either instruemtn at a high level is the same. Both instruments have different demands, however.

    As a guy who plays jazz, I gotta say bassists have to be on the ball way more than a guitarist. In a jazz rhythm section, the guitarist can stop playing and voila! it's a bass solo. The bassist, on the other hand, must know where s/he's at in the music at all times. The bass is not a very forgiving instrument to people who can't follow a chord chart, believe me.

    Whether it's a 4 string or a 6, The number of strings is irrelevant. you're still dealing with a 12-note chromatic scale. Some people would argue that a 4 string is harder to play because it requires more position shifts. Shifts in position require a good muscle memory and a good control over dynamics, something most non-classical musicians ignore because they're so conditioned to hearing everything cranked to 11 all the time. Plus, bassists hardly have the benefit of having effect boxes to color their sound. No way. Our hands are the ultimate tone and volume control.

    In order to compare the difficulty level of both instruments, it is helpful to think of a technique that is possible on both instruments and evaluate what skills are needed to pull it off on each instrument. For instance, It is possible for a guitarist to play a bassline and comp at the same time. This is also possible on the bass, but could a guitarist just pick up a bass and do it? The bass, for a start, has a different scale length, thicker strings and a heavier body. The physical effort required to play the instrument is greater, the palette of subtle things we can do to make the bassline our own contains as many colors as a guitarist's
  13. Apples and oranges people. To be proficient on either takes dedication, but the role each plays in music is totally different.
  14. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Nice try Will, but your soliloquoy on the virtues of one over the other is useless! Useless I tell you! Neither bass nor guitar are hard. Triangle my friend. Triangle is the calculus, the nuclear physics, the organic chemistry of the instrument world. Why, it's harder than a priest at a jamboree. You have the wand thingie thing-a-ma-bobber that you strike it with. You've got to keep track of that. Then there's the triangle itself. Don't forget about that. There's just so much involved. I can't get into it now, but trust me. Please.

    I like discussions regarding the ease of one instrument over another. I find them constructive.
  15. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    What's harder to play, Jaco's stuff or Johnny Ramones? The guitarist fromBlink 182's stuff, or Geddy Lees? Eddie Van Halen or Sid Vicious? Mike Nesmith or Danny Partridge???

    In all honesty - I do believe that if one plays the absolute minimum required to get away with seeming like a musician, the bass is easier - ya don't HAVE to learn any chords, you can play the root and all whole notes and get away with it. Guitar you'd have to at least learn a chord or 2 and be able to reposition your hand quickly. Beyond that it's totally subjective. To be truly great bassist is equally as challenging as being a really great guitarist, and I think it's impossible to say whether one is easier or harder than the other. Is it easier to ride a bike or drive a car?
  16. Listen


    May 19, 2002
    I agree, if you screw up playin bass, sometimes it throws everyone else of, and it can ruin whatever your playin
  17. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Loser!! the chicken egg thing is far harder than the triangle. You need to know which way to hold it, AND which direction to shake it in. You also need to be aware of which came first, the chicken or the egg, WHILE still trying to keep a beat! If that wasn't enough, the egg is an OVAL, NO HANDLES!!! Good luck with that, my triangle clanging friend! If the triangle is as hard as a priest at a jamboree, a chicken egg is a cardinal at a Chuck -E- Cheese's. Damn triangle punk.
  18. not quite Flea

    not quite Flea

    Oct 19, 2001
    To say you play Bass Guitar sounds more impressive when you tell some one who has no idea what one is

    ... coz its not a GUITAR...it a BASS guitar therefore sounds fancy and expensive

    plus, Cords = poos.......everybody knows that
  19. I think it totally depends on what kind of band you are in. I know a guy who thinks bass is really easy because in his band the guitars and drums are so insanely difficult there is no room for complicated bass or there would be no groove to their songs. On the other hand I have heard a lot of bands with really complicated basslines and the guitar just plays a couple power chords.
  20. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    I started playing bass because I liked the sound, and there was an opening for a bassist in the band my friends were starting.

    I have to say that a 4 string is more dificult to play than a 5 or 6 (bass). Thats why I got one. I wrote lines which involved large ranges that involved plaing high on the neck, with a bass tuned down to BEAD, so I decided to get a five, and it is now much easier to play the same pieces. So the string number arguement is invalid; im sure others will agree.

    Now, as far as chording, most guitarist in popular music (includes metal, rock, punk, pop, etc...), play barely more than power chords. MOST . It in my opinion and experience, it is much easier to be considered a good guitarist, than it is to be considered a good bassist.

    To be a good bassist (in most cases) involves being able to create a groove which often involes basslines which in the case of a good bassist takes basically all the same skills as a guitar solo. For some bassist,such as myself, a bassline can become monotonus if played repeatedly the same for the entire song; for these bassist, the only real solution is a bassline which for all intensive purposes, is a song long guitar solo.

    To be a good guitarist (in most cases) on the other hand, involves playing chords for almost the entire song with one creative burst in the entire song. Most solos are just a bassline played on a higher register, with a few techniques used that would not be effective on bass because of its role.

    Bassist often do use chords BTW. Sometimes they are played as a chord, other times they are broken into their individual notes to become parts of a bassline. To be an effective bassist, you should know chords. If you want to argue that since it isnt played with all the notes held, and is instead played one note at a time, then you forget to consider how much more demanding it is to play the bass than it is to play guitar. Try playing the same parts on guitar and bass, and tell me which involes more hand movement, longer stretches, more speed, more hand strength and more stamina. (just to name a few)

    As a bassist who has played guitar for a few rock bands, I have to say that it is not something easily comparable. I will say that I have more dificulty playing guitar effectively, than I do on bass. It is important to note that in the average week, I play about 10 hours of bass where on guitar I play less than 5 minutes.

    Im just getting started though and am willing to leave some areas of this discussion for others. Lets also not forget that it depends on what style playing and music you are looking at. Like someone else said, its apples and oranges. Different strokes for different folks.

    Oh yeah one more thing, this is directed to Joe Nerve. What music style do you play? No offense, but I'm guessing you play the root note the entire song. Do you have a recording of your band for us to listen to?


Share This Page