Newbie song question - Numb.

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by LocoEnElCoco, Jun 7, 2021.

  1. LocoEnElCoco


    Jun 7, 2021
    Hi. I am a real noob at bass and have only been playing a few weeks, so please go easy.

    After doing a few exercises and getting the fingers a bit stronger I decided to pick an easy song to learn. So I went with Linkin Park - Numb as when I searched the tab and videos it look(ed)s like something that I could learn quite easily as opposed to lots of other songs I like.

    Anyway I have a question regarding the tab and the song. As it appears it is not as easy as i thought (at least to play it right).

    So I found this play along with tab.

    I do not know if my ears are just bad but the 3rd note in the tab doesn't sound right to me (the 1st fret on the A string). For those that know the song what do you think?
    Though I have also seen it tabbed exactly the same way somewhere else

    I had a look at a live video of a performance of the song by Linkin Park and although I cannot really see the bass player playing the song. He does have a 5 string bass.
    So I was wondering if I can even play this song on a 4 string? (*I also note that there is also a 5 string bass play-along with tab on Youtube too).

    Then I found another tab play-along of this song on another music site and it is played in a completely different way - with different notes too (not just the same notes but on different strings).

    Anyway this might be simple for most of you guys. But now I am a little confused as there seems to be several versions of the song tabs but using different notes and some sound strange.

    Is that because it is a 5 string bass song and all but one of those is tabbed and played on a 4 string (which is what I have got).

    Thanks for any help.
  2. WrapRough


    Jan 26, 2021
    Looking at sheet music ,the chord progression is F#m, D, A, E, which is the key of F#m.
    Mushroo and LocoEnElCoco like this.
  3. Mushroo

    Mushroo Guest

    Apr 2, 2007
    The bassist in that YouTube video is tuned C# / G# / C# / F#.

    If your bass is tuned E / A / D / G then you'll need to put your fingers on different frets to play the same notes. For example if the correct note is C#, on your E / A / D / G tuned bass, C# is at the 4th fret of the A string (or the 9th fret of the E string).

    Since you've only been playing a few weeks, my advice is to stick to easy songs in standard E / A / D / G tuning. Don't worry about non-standard tunings just yet (is my advice) until you've learned all the notes in standard tuning.

    And when you do eventually get around to learning songs in non-standard tunings, you have two choices: 1) match your tuning to their tuning, so the frets are the same and you can use TAB; or 2) stay in standard tuning, which means you need to know what the notes actually are, so you need to learn songs by ear or by sheet music, not TAB (since the fret numbers won't match).
  4. LocoEnElCoco


    Jun 7, 2021
    Thanks for the replies. I actually hurt my forearm in an MTB incident so have not been able to play for almost the whole of the previous month. Though I will be getting back on it soon. Damned, I can hardly believe it is August 2021 already. :(
  5. Malcolm35

    Malcolm35 Supporting Member

    First tab is a quick way to play a song, however, if the tab was written for a five string and you have a four string good luck.

    Short answer, the notes you need will not be at the same location on both instruments.

    Short answer number two; the song could be played in another key. If the original tab was written for the key of C major and you now are looking at the same song, but, for something besides C major - the notes will be different and located at a different location.

    If it was easy every body would be a musician... hang in, it'll come.

    Recommend some time with the getting started string in the general instruction sub forum.

    Happy trails.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2021
  6. fearceol


    Nov 14, 2006
    I hope you don't mind me suggesting (as Mushroo did at the end of his post above) that you use tab VERY sparingly, if at all. Instead listen closely to a song and try to play along using trial and error without tab.
    Training your ear in this way is one of the most beneficial things you can do. It will hold you in good stead no matter what course your musical journey takes. Yes, it can be slow and frustrating at the start but like all things that are regularly practiced, it improves over time and is well worth the effort you put in.
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2021
  7. Mushroo

    Mushroo Guest

    Apr 2, 2007
    Sorry to hear about your accident! I hope you are back to full strength again, soon. :)

    I realized that I never answered your exact, specific question:

    The 3rd note of the song is A.

    Because his A string is downtuned a half-step to G#, he has to fret at the 1st fret of his G# string, to play the note A.

    If you are in standard EADG tuning and want to play the note A, just play the open A string. (Or, fret the 5th fret of your E string.)
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