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String to string intonation

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by mandocaster, Mar 8, 2005.

  1. mandocaster


    Dec 24, 2004
    Houston, TX
    I have noticed with my bass that the G string fingers substantially different from the other three. if I play an A on the G string, and barre across to the D string to play an E, the E is dreadfully flat. There is a similar problem up the neck. The same is not true going from the D string to the A string, or A to E string.

    With a BG the bridge is compensated so that this doesn't happen. Is this just something I have to get used to?
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    That shouldn't be the case.

    Is the bridge straight?
  3. mandocaster


    Dec 24, 2004
    Houston, TX
    It looks straight. The Gstring and the E string both measure 42" exactly
  4. Sometimes when I approach a series of notes that I play on more 1 string my hand position is correct vertically but is a little crooked horizontally. Make sure you tune with a tuner or in tune piano, and then harmonically tune your strings to eachother.
  5. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    I don't know if you have a technique problem or not, but if your bass is in tune and fingerboard doesn't have any HUGE lumps in it, it sounds like you may.
    I'm not sure is this is legit instructional advise, but I was made to do it my instructor. I will preface this by stating I AM NOT A BASS TEACHER so get this approved by someone who is, I am just giving you the idea....
    Because of the line of sight it can be difficult to really see what you're doing with you're left hand without leaning over, which moves your shoulder and causes your arm angle to suffer, which destroys wrist angle, strait on down the line. It is counter productive. When on my own, I was to spend 5 minutes in front of a mirror during each practice to monitor my technique and way discouraged from looking to hard at my left hand, I could move my eyes, but not turn my head or neck..
    (yea, I had my fingers taped together a few times too!)
  6. I notice you say that you barre the note which to me implies you are laying your finger/fingers across two strings like a guitar player. If this is the case, try lifting and moving your finger from string to string. You might find it easier to get a clean sound doing this. Another possibility could be if you are using multiple fingers for this-index on the G string, middle on the D-the middle finger will probably be slightly flat in comparison to the index.

    I don't know if this will help but it definitely sounds like there is a problem of some sort with your technique.
  7. mandocaster


    Dec 24, 2004
    Houston, TX
    A problem with my technique? Never. OK... well, probably so. I haven't taken lessons in 15 years and I am trying to get some technique back after playing BG for ages.

    You have convinced me to look at my technique rather than blaming the bass.
  8. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I barre strings all the time, even with the blessing of my Fancy-taught, Orchestra-playing teacher, and I have never had issues with playing in tune.

    I find that when I do it, that both notes are pretty much equally out of tune :D

    The more difficult technique is to use fingers 1 and 2 or 2 and 3 to "barre" the same sort of thing in thumb position. Unless of course you are blessed to have every finger on your hand the same length.
  9. mazaremba


    Apr 15, 2004
    I know what you are talking about.

    I take lessons with a university professor and before my recital we talked about this. My professor says that because you are holding the bass on the angle you must make sure that you do not come up when you switch strings in the same position. This is a natural thing, so if anything and this has always worked for me, you should try and move your hand more towards the ground when crossing over. BUT NOT TO FAR!

    Good luck

    BTW: I was playing Marcello sonata in a minor and this is a perfect example of a piece were this technique comes in handy.