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Two strings Question

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by metori, Sep 2, 2005.

  1. metori


    Jul 18, 2005
    I am trying to play a baas line that moves from one string to the other (E to A and back) multiple times. And when I play the Open A string then move back to the E it keeps ringing. So should I just move it to the fifth fret on the E string or what?
  2. Phe


    May 30, 2005
    Oulu, Finland
    I don't know if this is stupid but how about muting the A string after you play it with the rest of your fretting hand fingers? Or learn to mute the string with your plucking hand (in staccatto-style (?))
  3. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I'd move it. I think the fretted A sounds better anyway.
  4. There are two ways you can use to mute when using open strings.

    1. the simple left (fretting) hand mute. Your fretting hand should be able to come down on the open string and prevent it from sustaining that note. Practice playing a quarter note with your plucking hand, and on the eighth note mute the string. Mix it up a bit with all the open strings, then mix it up with a combination of open and fretted notes. With some practice it should become easy.

    2. Right hand muting. This may be a little more tricky depending on what you do with your pinky and ring finger. If you curl them under when plucking, it will take a little more practice as it will affect you plucking fingers somewhat. Basically, as you pluck with your two fingers, anchor your pinky and ring finger on the strings close to the bridge to mute the notes.

    As far as the choice to play open string or fret the fifth, they both sound and feel different to me so I will use them appropriately. It may be subtle but it does make a difference.
  5. metori


    Jul 18, 2005
    I am a beginner at playing bass, I don't know most of that stuff, but I think I will try moving it to the Fifth Fret on the E string...

    Thanks everyone.
  6. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    The answer is to mute the string with one of your hands/fingers. Practice muting by playing very slowly and it'll become easier and more consistent with time. You can't simply avoid open notes for your whole life, even if they are harder to mute.
  7. metori


    Jul 18, 2005
    I am yet to take lessons, and I don't understand how muting works... Would someone mind exlplaining or showing a picture of how palm muting works?
  8. AGCurry


    Jun 29, 2005
    Kansas City
    We're not talking about palm muting here. Palm muting is the technique of resting the heel of your right-hand palm on the strings while playing with a pick or your thumb.

    Muting is extremely important in playing bass, and there are many techniques, but bottom line is you either do it with your left hand or your right (duh). After you've been playing for years, it will come naturally and you'll do it without thinking about it.

    It can vary from simply touching one of your fretting fingers to the side of the string you wish to mute, or the slap method where your right hand comes down on the strings between notes, or...
  9. Muting simply means to stop the string from vibrating, or sustaining it's note. It is very simple to do with a little practice.

    What I mean by quarter note is the down beat of the song. When you are taping your foot to the beat of the music, that's counting a quarter note. The eight note is the up-beat or the notes in-between the quarter notes.

    You can practice it a little slower by doing all quarter notes (or down beats) On the first down beat strike the E string and on the second down beat, bring your left hand down on the E string and stop the string from vibrating, do not fret a note, just stop the string from vibrating. Then do the same with the A string. Try to keep a constant rhyme and alternate between the A and E string. Once you get it down solid, move to quarter notes and muting the string on the eight note (up beat)

    Playing open string positions are common and learning to mute the strings is something you really can't avoid. Not learning proper technique and cutting corners to compensate for the lack of technique will only hurt your playing in the long run. Why? it is far harder to fix bad technique by relearning to play properly than it is to learn to play correctly in the first place.

    Practice, Practice, Practice...... If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. ;)