A little update on the Bass Guitar

I am amazed how well I have "stuck to it" since I bought the bass. So, I thought I would give a little bit of an update!

I do not get a lot of time on it, but I try to put in 15 minutes a day. There can be a few days that go by that I do not touch it, but I get 15 minutes in about 85 percent of the time. Sometimes I get thirty minutes or more.. but that is pretty rare.

I know I am starting off with a bad habit and am limiting myself. I am not really learning "music". I am learning to memorize bass lines by tablature. I do not learn a lot of music theory that way, but I get the enjoyment of playing. That is (after all) why I decided to play the bass. I just wanted a way to have some fun and relaxation - not to become a world renowned bassist... So, is it a bad thing that I am not learning all kinds of theory? I don't know... But I sure enjoy playing what I do know!

I have taught myself all kids of little bass lines that consist of 3-5 notes played in a sort of rhythmic pattern but I wanted to find something a little bit more involved. I found this Google Video called Bass guitar teacher gets funky! (Dial up users beware. It is a Google Video and takes a few minutes to load up - but is worth it!). It appeared this guy was having a lot of fun playing, and I wanted to play something more like that!

I searched out and found the tablature for "A Forest" by The Cure. It is a pretty easy little bass line, but one of my favorite songs... It only took me a day or two to "get it".

Not long after that, I found (what I believe to be) the best bass players web site around. It's called "Active Bass". I found the site a little hard to get used to at first, but I think that has to do with the unbelievable content on the site!

I played around on the site a bit, and searched around the "Lessons" area. I found something I liked called "! + Coasting" to try.

(Click the link and on the page you can play the song in MIDI format - Turn off the extra "track" by clicking on that checkmark. Set the "Tempo" to 130, and the "Sound" to electric pick to hear about how I sound when I play it.)

I LOVE how it sounds, and I LOVE how it plays! I really get into it at times! I have actually modified it just slightly (and by accident) because while learning it I lost my tab sheet, and ended up trying to fill in by memory. I ended up learning a version that contains a wrong note or two. I think my family may be getting sick of hearing it (I overheard Jonathan, and Rebecca humming it yesterday) so I decided it was time to return to Active Bass and search out another Bass Line or two to work on.

I found quite a few. I am not going to post them all here, but I did find one (which is actually a series of three separate bass lines) that really interested me. They can be combined to make one large bass line.

(You can listen to these as well!)

All totaled there are nineteen measures. If I use ! + Coasting as an example, I had those 6 measures down pretty good in about 2 weeks. At this same rate "Alright Sad Type Bits 1, 2 and 3" should take me about a month and a half to get down...

So, I guess we'll just have to see how it works out..


1 comment:

  1. Hey Dave!

    I read this post with interest. Just before my band “disbanded” last winter, I was lobbying hard for us to work up an all guitar version of The Cure’s “Close to Me.” The remixed version that’s on “Galore” has, in my opinion, one of the greatest grooves of any song ever. Here’s an unsolicited practice tip – never sit in front of the T.V. or computer without you bass. ;-)

    Good Luck!



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