Well it's been abotu a year (Fretless worries)

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by werbo1, Jul 10, 2005.

  1. Well i got my five string fretless just abotu a year ago.

    Im still not getting the feel for it.
    I'm perfectly fine while looking at th eneck (it has lines) but iw ant to be able to play without looking. My ears have been getting better, and i know i haven't been playing my all on it (I do musicals and use a fretted for the material) but i want to be able to feel comfortable on this instrument.

    Any advice to help me feel mroe comfortable on this?
  2. a. meyer

    a. meyer

    Dec 10, 2004
    portland, oregon
    practice in the dark.
  3. BuffaloBob4343

    BuffaloBob4343 Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2005
    Buffalo, NY
    Awesome idea!!

    I'm going to try that!
  4. JohnBarr


    Mar 19, 2004
    Central NY
    Or try the opposite: play in front of a mirror and watch your hands in the relfection. I've done that when I can and it definately helps.

  5. Dasein


    Jun 19, 2005
    playing and watching tv has helped me so much. i've gotten my bass memorized from doing that. i could easily find the 5th fret in complete darkness with my bass on the other side of the house. seriously.
  6. Challenge yourself...if you play musicals, then you do plenty of rehearsals...take the fretless to a rehearsal and SWEAT!

    I played my 1st fretless gig (a church service) after only having my bass (an unlined one, mind you) for only 2 or 3 months.

    Here's another practice tip. Record yourself playing your fretted bass...and then practice by doubling it on your fretless. Since it is your playing that you are copying, it will be comfortable and easy to you and the only thing you will have to work on is the intonation aspect.

    S-T-R-E-T-C-H yourself....

    have fun.
  7. Xanaptabil


    Jul 18, 2005
    Tempe, AZ
    A year? Fretless bass is to be rated in difficulty with any other "real" instrument, i.e. violin, cello, double bass.

    Playing fretless blind is a massive achievement. Understand the goal and find out if you are really up to the task.

    I'm finding much of real playing is determing how much you really want to put into this.
  8. You don't give us many clues about what you are playing, and that could make quite a difference.

    I started to learn fretless by playing in only one key, in one location, and did not move on until I was happy with my intonation on all the notes in that key. Then I moved on to another key. There are still parts of the fretboard that I struggle with, like about fret ten and above, but at least I know what I am doing below that.

    If you are trying to jump all over the fretboard, without learning the positions of the notes, that may be the cause of your discontent.
  9. bonscottvocals


    Feb 10, 2005
    Upstate NY
    The mirror suggestion worked for me. I get surprised when guys have to stare at their fretboards all night and can't play in the dark. The suggestion of memorizing locations for certain keys is excellent as well. I like to get a song down in one location and then move around, trying to include places where the intervals might take me into different patterns.

    Not to brag, but I didn't have a problem with fretless, and the one I play has no markers. It probably has to do more with muscle memory than anything, but I spent 30 years on fretted instruments first.