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ProfJames

Newbie wanting to learn bass guitar

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Hi All

Thank you for letting me join. I play sax but want to learn to play bass. I am a complete novice. don't own one and want advice,

Would appreciate your help

Edited by ProfJames

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Congats and welcome aboard! I'd advise to start from the bottom and work your way up. Bass can be as easy or hard as you want to make it but most of all have fun....get with a good drummer as well and listen to what he does and work with him.

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Welcome aboard!

There are lots of useful threads here. This one may help... [url="http://basschat.co.uk/topic/8009-buying-your-first-bass/"]http://basschat.co.u...our-first-bass/[/url]
For what it's worth, I'd buy an Ibanez SR300 to start with. It depends on what you find comfortable; some people don't like the thin necks. Alternatives: Yamaha make good instruments. Intro-level Peaveys are generally decent. Westfields are OK for the money. Vintage (brand) basses by John Hornby Skewes are good.

I'd guess you can already read music. That will definitely help. Finding a teacher is often the best thing to do; simple Google search is probably the best way to do that.

There are lots of resources online. This is good: [url="http://www.studybass.com/study-guide/"]http://www.studybass.com/study-guide/[/url]

I'd definitely buy a book or two, as well. If you can stand the writing, Bass Guitar For Dummies is not bad. There are others.

When you come to buy leads: Always buy instrument-quality cables (they should be labelled on the cable insulation). Other leads will buzz.

Good luck!

Edited by alyctes

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[quote name='alyctes' timestamp='1451853248' post='2944101']
When you come to buy leads: Always buy instrument-quality cables (they should be labelled on the cable insulation).
[/quote]

....... but only to connect your bass to your amp. Use a proper Speaker lead to connect your amplifier to a speaker cabinet or to loop speaker cabinets.

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Hi and welcome. You couldn't have come to a better place! I am a sax player too and have been playing bass for about 2 years now.

For your first bass, it really does depend on your budget. Various manufacturers mentioned already and I would personally give Yamaha a close look as they make really good quality basses throughout the range. Also worth looking at the Harley Benton basses on the Thomann.de website. The vintage series J basses are seriously good value for money at only £100.

As for learning, well I am entirely self taught through books (the Hal Leonard Complete Bass Method is a good starter); online resourses such as Talkingbass.net and Scottsbasslessons.com and Youtube. Your existing musical knowledge will certainly help. Your learning style might suit getting a decent bass tutor for one to one lessons though so have a look around locally if thats your bag.

Most of all though have fun doing it. Good luck.

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Hello and welcome ProfJames

Yes, get yourself a bass asap
Try out as many as you can first,and go for what's most comfortable to play
Lots and lots of online lessons Scottsbasslessons are good as RickyV says

Maybe try out a local tutor too - just to get you on the right track, and before you develop as many bad habits as I did ;)

EDIT: You don't say where you're based, but an excellent tutor who is local to me, Jon Caulfield in Cardiff
Does a free first lesson, which is great, cos he can asses where you're at and what you need to work on, before you start spending loads of money on lessons & gear. Maybe some tutors local to you offer a similar sort of thing?

Edited by Marc S

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Welcome aboard Prof.

For a useful starting point you might want to post your location to see if there are any BCers near you who will give you a few pointers. As a Sax player you'll already have a good starting point in regards scales so good luck...

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Hi

Like to throw in a few suggestions Bass wise

Best deal by a country mile is the

Yamaha BB424 ...really nice starter bass and i know a few guys on here use it as a gigging bass ..yes its that good (£275)

not a fan of the cheap Benson and Hedges ..heard both good and bad reviews plus if your buying from internet you dont get a chance to see what your actually buying..few guys have been really surprised by the quality but also reviews saying it was badly finished and set up like a dog ...

Squire ...some really good squires available for the money ...i ve played a few belters but also a few dogs... if you can take someone who knows along to the shop even better

second hand market is also good ...if you can stretch a little bit a nice Fender made in Japan is an excellent choice ..i bought mine from a guy locally and he was practically giving it away(£375 but condition was mint for a 22 year old) and if i was to resell i would definitely get my money back

saw an old Tokai(from the 80s) on sale on this website ..think it was £400 ...you would not be able to spend a better £400 on anything ... re sale on this bad boy would defo get you your money back seen these on flea bay for well in excess of £400

its all about budget and if you can stretch to decent second hand its more a money back guarantee if you decide to re sell.....

cheers

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[font="helvetica, arial, sans-serif"][color="#282828"]As for learning, well I am entirely self taught through books (the Hal Leonard Complete Bass Method is a good starter....as recommended by RickyV [/color][/font]



This is a most excellent choice of book ... i think the complete version (was split into 3 books) is available from amazon for around £12

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Hi All

Thank you for all of the recommendations and help! I am based near Windsor. Have several saxophones - tenor alto and soprano. Just had eighteen months out due to damaging my hand badly so have forgotten more than I can remember! Not good at reading music but will pick up with my sax tutor next month.

Yamaha make great horns too so I will look at them. I am keen to go with an accoustic bass - purely preference - rather than electric. What about 4, 5 or 5 string choice? Recommendations please?

This is a great friendly forum and I value all of your comments and feedback, thank you. Much appreciated. Budget from £100 to about £400 I woould hope!

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Sorry my knowledge of acoustic bass is up there with the chocolate fire guard

4 or 5 strings ...my preference is 4 strings... for a beginner i would say go 4 ...most books(beginner) are geared towards 4 string
but if you really want 5 strings then jump right in ...5 string is an extra string(giving extra lower notes) usually tuned to a Low B

5 string acoustic wouldn't give you as much choice as the 4 string....

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[quote name='BeeBop' timestamp='1451928698' post='2944698']
Sorry my knowledge of acoustic bass is up there with the chocolate fire guard

4 or 5 strings ...my preference is 4 strings... for a beginner i would say go 4 ...most books(beginner) are geared towards 4 string
but if you really want 5 strings then jump right in ...5 string is an extra string(giving extra lower notes) usually tuned to a Low B

5 string acoustic wouldn't give you as much choice as the 4 string....
[/quote]

Thanks BeeBop. Being a complete novice helps! I would think that there are more books relating to 4 strings than 5, but please correct my assumptions! I will certainly take a lesson or two but is there any real reason to learn 5 string rather than 4?

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Most folk i know or knew played 4 string

5 string is a regular 4 string with an added thicker string ..giving you extra lower notes


[b] 5-String Bass Tuning[/b]

The most common standard tuning for a five-string bass from lowest pitch to highest (thickest string to thinnest) is:
B – E – A – D – G (E-A-D-G is regular 4 string)
This tuning has one lower pitched string added to the standard 4-string tuning giving you 5 lower notes.
if your looking for the extra notes it gives you a little more bump (lower end) ....
its very much a personal thing ...personally I like 4 string my P Bass gives me all the bump i need...most folk start on 4 string and then decide to move to 5 strings after getting to grips with the 4 string ... i would say its also a little easier to learn on the 4 string....and as mentioned most books ...youtube clips are geared towards the 4 string player ...but thats not to say there isnt a wealth of five string stuff out there ...the 5 string is popular but not as popular ...
dive in try a few and see what you like ....try as many bass s as you can get your hands on this is always good advice

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[quote name='ProfJames' timestamp='1451929433' post='2944709']
Thanks BeeBop. Being a complete novice helps! I would think that there are more books relating to 4 strings than 5, but please correct my assumptions! I will certainly take a lesson or two but is there any real reason to learn 5 string rather than 4?
[/quote]

I would definitely start with a 4 string. All your learning resources out there are going to be based on 4 string basses. Get the basics right first is what I would say. I am relatively new to this as well tho so what do I know?!!

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[quote name='RickyV' timestamp='1451933710' post='2944780']
I would definitely start with a 4 string. All your learning resources out there are going to be based on 4 string basses. Get the basics right first is what I would say. I am relatively new to this as well tho so what do I know?!!
[/quote]

And to BeeBop as well

Thank you................I was leaning towards 4 string. Have been looking at this...............what do you guys think?.......

http://www.dawsons.co.uk/fender-kingman-bass-sce-electro-acoustic?gclid=CNWalfztkMoCFWgOwwodm8MGmQ

That is pretty much my budget..............or what else would you recommend?

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Lozz196 had that very same bass so will be able to give you an idea as to pros and cons. From my own experience I found that an acoustic bass does NOT give you the best of both worlds - certainly not as versatile or as loud as an acoustic guitar. Personally I wouldn't buy another.

There are lots of quality low end basses available - certainly more than when I first started playing way back when - some good Squiers, Yamahas and even entry model Musicman Subs in the £200-300 range but you could pick up a really nice Bass Collection Nanyo for half this money (there's a black one available in the "For sale" section for £150) which weigh about 8LBs and gives you the P/J option as well as active models. They are very highly regarded by many.

YouTube as a resource is fantastic and joining Scott Devine's website (even just the free bit) is an absolute must. I found DK Marlowe a useful site too. For learning specific songs Songsterr.com is great.

With the amount of internet resources available learning to play now is far easier than it's ever been - just remember to enjoy it too...

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[quote name='TheGreek' timestamp='1451935846' post='2944810']
Lozz196 had that very same bass so will be able to give you an idea as to pros and cons. From my own experience I found that an acoustic bass does NOT give you the best of both worlds - certainly not as versatile or as loud as an acoustic guitar. Personally I wouldn't buy another.

There are lots of quality low end basses available - certainly more than when I first started playing way back when - some good Squiers, Yamahas and even entry model Musicman Subs in the £200-300 range but you could pick up a really nice Bass Collection Nanyo for half this money (there's a black one available in the "For sale" section for £150) which weigh about 8LBs and gives you the P/J option as well as active models. They are very highly regarded by many.

YouTube as a resource is fantastic and joining Scott Devine's website (even just the free bit) is an absolute must. I found DK Marlowe a useful site too. For learning specific songs Songsterr.com is great.

With the amount of internet resources available learning to play now is far easier than it's ever been - just remember to enjoy it too...
[/quote]

Thank you. Will certainly look at everything that you recommend. I appreciate your comments on the accoustic v electric but I think as a starting place I will try both of the Fenders - SCE and CB-100 - and as many of the ones recommended in the previous posts.

Your experienced advice is much appreciated. I shall look at the Nanyo in this site as well.

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Hi All

How good is Sigma? I believe they were owned by Martin(?) in the past. I have Martin saxophones which are excellent. This model in particular.......
http://www.richtonemusic.co.uk/products/sigma_bmc-1ste_acoustic_bass.asp

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Another question please.......what is a resonator guitar? As in......http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/RESONATOR-BASS-GUITAR-and-CASE-Acoustic-Electric-BLONDE-4-String-DOBRO-BLUEGRASS-/281890152963?hash=item41a1f66203:g:kncAAOSwiwVWTot~

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Hi guys

Thanks for all of your advice. Much appreciated. I have had to stop playing sax because of carpal tunnel problems so I have bought two bass guitars! I bought a Takimine 512C semi acoustic bass and have also just bought a Traben Array 4 string bass, Any comments? Both second hand off eBay. Had a first lesson last week as well. Just trying to fit in practice time is the tough thing to do

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Hi Prof & Welcome,

Congrats on the bass purchases :)

The Takamine is good - I use a cheapish Ibanez semi-accoustic for most of my home practice - where i can work out my bass parts (i play in a tribute band). The acoustic keeps all the volumes way down so I can jam along to an iPad quite comfortably. I also don't need to spend hours rigging my gear up & down..!

As the old saying goes 'Practice Makes Perfect'..

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