Learning how to play bass guitar is something that is so much fun. Today I’d like to share with out a few tips on how to get started on your path as a bass guitarist.
When first starting out bass can be a pretty daunting instrument. It’s pretty large, especially if you have small hands. For the first few days it’s a good idea to get used to holding your bass guitar correctly and just practise plucking and fretting notes. My video on bass guitar techniques will show you how to do this.
Once you are comfortable with the basics it’s time to start learning the notes of the fretboard. To begin with learn the names of the open strings. An open string is when you play a string on your bass without fretting any notes.
The names of the open strings are E, A, D and G. E being the thickest bass string and G the thinnest. An easy way to memorize this is “Every Adult Dog Growls” or you can come up with your own phrase that reminds you of the letters.
The next step is learning the rest of the fretboard. Having a bass fretboard diagram can be really helpful. You can find one here on my bass guitar notes article.
It’s a good idea to also pick a song you like that sounds quite simple and begin learning it. A quick to do this is to search for the song title plus the word chords in a search engine like Google. E.G “Let it be chords”.
Then by using your fretboard diagram you can play the root notes of the songs chords on your bass. A root note is simply the basic letter the chord has. You also need to look if the chord is sharp (“#” symbol) or flat (“b” symbol) as these are different notes on your bass.
Rhythm as a bass player is also really important. A good way to practise this is to mute the strings on your bass by laying your fretting hand over them. Next put on an album you like and just practise plucking the strings in time with the music. Tapping your foot to the beat can really help.
Due to muting the strings you don’t need to worry about playing the right notes and so can focus 100% on playing in time with the music. This is great when you’re just starting out before you know how to play bass guitar very well.
I hope these few tips and ideas have given you something to get started with on your path to learning bass. Knowing how to play bass guitar is a skill well worth developing. With consistent practise a little bit each day you can quickly make a lot of progress. So be sure to pick up your bass daily and spend some time practising.
P.S If you would like more bass tips check out my bass guitar advice article, which features 5 quick tips for beginners.