I will be explaining on how to begin to understand bass. this is my first instructable, so be nice! I will not be using tablature teaching. so if you wanna learn fast, go somewhere else. and im sorry i dont have a camera...:(
Step 1: Materials
Sorry, this will be like a science experiment listing.. so ya
Materials Needed Are:
1) 4 string bass (i dunno 5 6 or 8)
2) Bass Clef Music that you would like to learn
3) Chromatic Tuner
4) a little patience.
Step 2: Getting Familier With Your Moozic.
Hokay. so the first pic for this is the Bass Clef, if you got anything other than that, you cant learn it in this.
The second is the staff. dont think of gandalf. This is how you will read your music. yes, i said read, no tabs
Step 3: Muzic Theory, Its Boring, But a Nessicary Evil
You are going to hate this but i am not going into the actual bass playing for a while, so boo hoo.
The musical alphabet has the letters A B C D E F G.
FLATS AND SHARPS
There are Sharps (#) and flats (b). a Sharp Brings the note up half a step, a Flat Brings it down. There is Ab A A#=Bb B B#=C C#=Db D D#=Eb E E#=F F#=Gb G G#=Ab, there are no B# Cb E# or Fb. These notes are not commonly used: G# F# D# A#, but you will see their equivilent b
DOUBLE FLATS AND SHARPS
occasionally you will see a Abb or G##, that is just some idiot putting a different version of the note.
The lines on the bass clef (see step 2) are remembered as this: Good (G) Boys (B) Deserve (D) Fudge (F) Always (A) (bottom line to top line)
The spaces on the bass clef are remembered as this: All (A) Cows (C) Eat (E) Grass (bottom to top)
Take a look at the beginning of your music. See after the clef and after all the Flat signs, you will see numbers or a C or a C with a slash through it, dont fret (no pun intended) this is the Time Signature.
Written like that is the most common. it is also written as
C because its common time the C with a line through it means Cut Time, which is usually a march (why the hell are you playing a march on an electric bass?!?!) and everything is divided in half
This means there are 3 beats in a bar
BARS AND PHRASES
A Bar is in your music like this 1- - - - 1 (hyphons mean the amount of beats) in 3/4 time its 1- - -1 and cut time is 1- -1
Phrases are Four bars. with a wind instrument, you suck if you cant play a phrase in one breath in most tempos. when the music ends :( there will be a double Stop (first pic) sometimes above the double stop there will be an upside down boob-looking thingee
This means hold note until conductor signals to stop.
in your music there will probably be a few flat or sharp signs. this is a key signature, and im not going to list all bloody 36 of them, just google bass clef scales. these tell you that the note that the b or # is on will be b or #
Sometimes the music doesnt obey the key signatures, this is an accidental, it changes the note to a flat natural or sharp natural signs are weird, but its the sign i didnt tell you about :D
Whole is just a Blob, with a hole in it (full bar)
Half note, whole note with a stick on the side (half bar)
Dotted Half note is a half not with a dot to the right. (one beat less than a full bar)
Quarter note, a blob (no hole) with a stick on the side (1/4 of a bar
Dotted Quarter, quarter with a dot to the right. lasts one beat longer than quarter
8th note, blob with a stick and a squiggly thing on the end, 1/8th of a bar
Im not going any farther
notes that arent on the staff, figure them out urself. sorry. all music goes in the pattern abcdefg
a double stop with 2 dots in front of it.
Step 4: GUITAR WOO!!
That took forever and was painful.
Now we will grab the bass!
hold your horses, we will not be playing yet.
If you have a chromatic tuner just pluck the G (closeset to your lap this string AKA 1st string) and tune it
then the 2nd (D) String
then the 3rd (A) string
then the 4th (E) string
And now you are in tune
We are started on the E
Open G (haha g-string)
now you have your octive!
woo, its pretty much the same for all strings
but thats the easy way.
Play the guitar with your thumb resting on the top pickup, and play with your Right index and Middle
(same for leftys)
For fingering the fretboard, use the tips of your fingers, and no thumbs allowed! keep the thumb on the back of the neck.
No picking until you get good enough to get your own style.
Warning on the picking and fingering hands. YOU WILL GET BLISTERS UNTIL YOUR HANDS HAVE ENOUGH CALLOUS, these hurt like hell, no pain, no gain, and there is no such thing as playing too much! so have fun
You are now able to play a bit of bass, you are not pro! keep practising and someone write an instructable on how to play slap