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Bass Guitars: Learning, Playing, Showing Off!

FoolishMortal

Contributor
@Toothpick started a guitar thread and instead of bogarting his thread, with encouragement from @SharpieB , I'm starting this one. Let's talk strings, tutorials, scales, tips and tricks!

I had a life-changing experience last year and as a result, I resolved to do things that I've wanted to do. You never know when you won't be able to do such things - your someday might not show up.

So I went on Nextdoor and asked if anyone had a crappy bass guitar gathering dust in a corner. I didn't get much traction and I was resolved to buying a used one, but then I got a PM from a nice lady offering a Squire P-bass. I met her at Raley's, asked some really dumb questions and thanked her profusely. I had a bass to play with! Shortly thereafter, I found a Fender 25W bass amp on Craigslist and I was set.

I practiced for a while using YouTube videos, but I was all over the place. Doing that certainly introduced me to a lot of concepts and approaches, along with some light music theory. I just realized that I needed a more focused program if I were to have any chance of actually learning enough to play through a song.

And, as luck would have it, I have a buddy who has been a life-long musician. He's a teacher by day, but has a tiny room set up as a studio in his house. We hadn't talked in a while, but we reconnected and then we started talking music. I got to jam with him once - which was more of a teaching/learning session - and then the holidays hit and then this COVID mess.

I really lost momentum, but I'm hoping to get back to it, especially since I now have two bass guitars. I bought the BassBuzz online course because I enjoy Josh's approach and humor; there's no pressure and he makes it easy to ramp up. I just need to be able to dedicate the time.

What's your story with the bass?

Here's my kit:
  • Schecter Stiletto Stealth 4 (gift from SWMBO for my birthday last year)
  • Fender Rumble 25 bass amp
  • Dean AXS A/E (gift from SWMBO's parents)
Schecter_Fender.jpg
Dean_AXS.jpg
 
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I have a bunch of basses but here is one of my favourites.

From Jason Newsted of Metallica. Played by him for years early in his Metallica career. Signed on the back of the headstock and he included a nice letter in 1995.

It’s a 1980 Fender Jazz and it is a pretty crappy sounding and playing bass. Basically a decoration in my basement but I love it. 👍

E7BBF14E-2A1C-437D-995D-4D9F05C4E637.jpeg
 
I have a bunch of basses but here is one of my favourites.

From Jason Newsted of Metallica. Played by him for years early in his Metallica career. Signed on the back of the headstock and he included a nice letter in 1995.

It’s a 1980 Fender Jazz and it is a pretty crappy sounding and playing bass. Basically a decoration in my basement but I love it. 👍

View attachment 1156271
Maybe this is why they turned his bass down to zero in the mix on ...AJFA.
 
My brother was a superb bass player. Back in the 80's his weapon of choice was an ARia Pro11 SB 800 in translucent red, like this.

Aria-Pro-II-SB-800-Padouk-Red-4-String.jpg


He's one of those musicians who is I thinks it's called, pitch perfect, and self taught, can play from hearing once etc. He took the school band from playing just poor covers to a real gang of soul and funk heads. His chubby fingers can still give it some now but not for as long.
 

emwolf

Contributor
I've always wanted to learn the bass. I am a life long piano player and I played trombone through school. I bought my oldest girl a bass because she wanted to be a rock star. I didn't tell her that you never sell an instrument, so I was crushed when I found out later she pawned the bass. My youngest got the message and she has her violin and a keyboard she still has and uses even though she doesn't live at home any longer.
 

FoolishMortal

Contributor
I've always wanted to learn the bass. I am a life long piano player and I played trombone through school. I bought my oldest girl a bass because she wanted to be a rock star. I didn't tell her that you never sell an instrument, so I was crushed when I found out later she pawned the bass. My youngest got the message and she has her violin and a keyboard she still has and uses even though she doesn't live at home any longer.
If you're still breathing, there's still time!

With your background, you have way more understanding of music theory than I have, so it would be a matter of learning the technique. And if I can learn enough to sound okay, so can you!
 
Started playing ukulele when I turned 40. Joined a ukulele group where the only other instrument was a bass (or bass uke, but same tuning as a standard 4 string bass, but an octave higher).

Started to play the bass when the usual bassists weren't available. And I thought about getting my own bass. Mentioned it to a friend who said he had one he didn't use and didn't have time for, so I could have it if I wanted it. It's an Aria Pro II from the 90's

This was in December, and I have been trying to reach myself from YouTube. I have learned some theory by playing uke, and have got familiar with the bass fretboard. I will have to start lessons once things open up again.
On a not unrelated note, does anyone have YouTube channels to recommend?
 

FoolishMortal

Contributor
Started playing ukulele when I turned 40. Joined a ukulele group where the only other instrument was a bass (or bass uke, but same tuning as a standard 4 string bass, but an octave higher).

Started to play the bass when the usual bassists weren't available. And I thought about getting my own bass. Mentioned it to a friend who said he had one he didn't use and didn't have time for, so I could have it if I wanted it. It's an Aria Pro II from the 90's

This was in December, and I have been trying to reach myself from YouTube. I have learned some theory by playing uke, and have got familiar with the bass fretboard. I will have to start lessons once things open up again.
On a not unrelated note, does anyone have YouTube channels to recommend?
You betcha. :)

 

Owen Bawn

"Ask me about a fluffernutter"
I sat in with my cousin's band to cover for a sick bassist at a wedding one time in Ireland years ago. The bassist told them he was too sick to play about an hour before the wedding. I've fooled with a bass, as most guitar players have done, but I'm certainly no bass player. I did the best I could and at least no one died.

But I'll never forget the band's front man introducing me- he explained that the bass player had taken ill and that "We were lucky to have a bass player all the way from America to fill in for him. I want yiz all to welcome Mister Jaco Pastorius!" Only he mispronounced and dragged the name out (on purpose) to say "Jack-O Pass-toe- ree-yuss." Of course, none of the guests knew who Jaco Pastorius is so they were calling me 'Jacko' all night long. If I hadn't been feeling the pressure not to ruin the band I would have had a great time.
 
Love playing bass. I have three electrics; my daily driver is a Spector with EMG P & J pickups. Also have a vintage G&L 1000 and a fretless Fender Jazz.

Lots of opportunities to play out by participating in church praise & worship bands. Also play upright bass. I’m missing our bluegrass jams that are on hold due to C/V 19.
 
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