What is your most difficult challenge in playing bass.

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Neil Folkard, Mar 5, 2020.

  1. FenderB


    Mar 28, 2016
    Findlay, Ohio
    The same problem I have with learning a song on the drums...fills. Kill me every time.
  2. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    Huge hands can make certain things tough. I can’t really play fast on a J width neck - the strings are just too close together. As I’m working 5’ers into my gigs, the tighter string spacing on those is something I’m having to get used to.
    JeezyMcNuggles likes this.
  3. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Finger speed (plucking hand) while staying in rythym.
  4. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Yup, I need big necks and wide spacing myself
  5. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    That one's easy. Set your amp flat, and play. That sound, is your sound.
  6. Ostie


    Aug 1, 2018
    Mid MI
    Playing the bass well is my biggest challenge.
  7. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Everytime my volume is perfect, my drummer gets too loud, and my guitarist turns up too. Hahahaha. I can drown a fish :) I never get past 1 o'clock on my master. But I can. That's all a joke by the way. If you didn't get it. But, I could drown a fish. There's never been an instance where I couldn't hear myself...ever.
    Neil Folkard likes this.
  8. Govner22


    Jan 19, 2013
    The opposite of having enough time to play - being able to put my bass down and rest so my tendinitis subsides.
  9. Sav'nBass


    Jan 18, 2009
    Virginia Beach
    For me it is singing and playing.. playing fast .. and soloing.. improvisation ..

    I was one of those guys that started late.. and never got the proper foundation .. I bought my first real bass in 1978 when I was 22 .... and I still have it .. but I never took the time to learn what I later found out was the basics.. I just learned songs .. I never knew the difference between major and minor.. I never learned arpeggios.. intervals.. none of that basic theory stuff.. I played like that for about 4 or 5 years.. then I stopped playing after I got married and started a family .. I sold all my gear except my bass.. and I would pull it out every now and then but nothing even remotely serious .. I picked it up again in 2001 after moving to Virginia in 2000 playing at my church. When I first started to play again, the first 4 or 5 years or so .. I was again just learning songs.. Even reading the chord chart.. I didn't really understand it.. but I knew it was something like D G C ... but I had no idea that was a II V I progression .. I would just listen to the music and pick out the bass part.. That all changed around 2005 when I started to play with other musicians .. Early on I bought books and stuff.. but I could never get into them.. I found out later that I most likely have adult ADD .. and would have probably been better served by getting lessons in the beginning.. Over the past 11 years .. especially since I discovered TB.. things changed.. I started to learn more and be able to find out things that I was missing.. and Scott's Bass Lessons helps too.. I met a few pivotal influences musically that pulled the chain that lit the bulb.. and now.. at 65 .. I struggle sometimes to not beat myself up because of all the time I wasted.. because now I have 65 year old fingers.. :roflmao: but my playing has improved steadily .. I just struggle with soloing .. and I practice scales and arpeggios .... and listen .. and do technique stuff to help with that .. and they are getting better.. I am a better bass player than I was last year .. so I am ok with that .. and the singing and playing.. I have accepted the fact that I may never get but so fast .. but I realize that with practice I can get a little faster tomorrow than I am today .. and I am grateful.
    Blueinred likes this.
  10. Fat Freddy

    Fat Freddy Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2016
    Albany NY
    The first bit....
  11. roccobass

    roccobass Still funkin’ in the free world.

    Jun 25, 2014
    Tapping. It is an ongoing issue for me. :(
  12. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    My biggest challenge is playing with my eyes open. I’m so used to playing with them closed, it really helps me zone in on the timing. I have no problems playing all over the neck in this fashion with a glance at the neck here and there.
    The thing that bothered me about this is it was almost like missing half the gig. I had no clue what’s going on off stage. Now I don’t gig with bands, I just do some local studio work.
  13. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    I think the fastest parts are only 1/8 notes. Take some time to slowly warm up. That might help with dexterity if that’s the cause. Maybe something less intense like dust in the wind?
  14. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    Try closing your eyes. It helps me with that big time.
  15. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    The key is how to find or create a groove. The rest means nothing if you have Ltd feel.
  16. Ryno1330

    Ryno1330 Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2020
    Trade ya.
  17. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    One thing I put an awful lot of work in was getting eighth notes to sound exactly alike finger style. This was back when the police were big and a lot of tunes had the eight note thing going on. Zoning in keenly on Sting started me on that path. Feel, timing and decent tone should probably be your priorities. And play clean well defined notes when practicing in slow motion if necessary.
  18. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    I got a drill attachment for that. Makes it a breeze. Before that, changing strings was a miserable painful experience. Using a drill makes the job go very quickly.
    RoaDan likes this.
  19. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    If you have great taste, speed doesn’t matter as much. Hope that’s helpful.
  20. Blueinred

    Blueinred 21st century Genz-Benz guy Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2009
    Greater Cincy
    Being a five string player, figuring out how a cat played a run on a four string using notes lower than open low "E" without drop tuning. Or....................maybe he did detune.

    Like this song. How does he get that low "D" he plays........especially the riff that starts the instrumental section? I can play it on five string no problem, but how did he do that? Detuned I guess. There's other tunes like this.

  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Sep 27, 2021

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