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Having problems understanding sharps and flats?

I often get asked when is a note called a sharp and when is it called a flat.  I explain the answers in this bass concepts video. 

There is also a free pdf with a list of key signatures and more information to accompany the lesson. 

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    • By Baloney Balderdash
      Do you have a favorite tone that you consider your's, and if that is the case how would you the describe it and what are the main contributes to it?
      Not sure if this is the correct sub forum, one could argue it'll fit as well or better in some of the other, but well now it's here, if a moderator feels that it is better placed somewhere else feel free to move it.
      How I would describe my tone would be twangy, like it got some of that Fender Bass VI vibe going for it, or one could maybe describe it as a more twangy and polite version of the classic 80's punk P bass tone, like for instance JJ Burnel utilize, as it also got a fair bit of bite, snap and punch to it and is mildly overdriven with an Orange amp type low gain overdrive that got that signature grinding clanky character to it.
      I achieve it with my main Ibanez GSRM20 neck + GSRM20B mahogany body Mikro Bass with just an EMG Geezer Butler P pickup installed, wired directly to the output jack socket, tuned to F# standard, as in 2 half steps above regular 4 string E standard tuning, and string accordingly with  gauge .095 - .072 - .054 - .040 strings, which gives a very balanced tension, always run through a 1 octave up effect mixed with clean signal, delivered by a customized toneprint in my TC Electronic Sub'N'Up Mini, to give an effect similar to that of an 8 string bass, with pairs of respectively bass and octave strings, only the octave up is mixed a bit lower than it typically would on a real 8 string bass, but before that a TC Electronic SpectraComp at the very beginning of my signal chain, right after the bass, also with a thoroughly customized toneprint, adding some snap, bite and punch, then after the Sub'N'Up going into a Boss LS-2 with 1 of the parallel effect loops got the before mentioned Orange amp type light overdrive in it in form of a Joyo Orange Juice, which adds some light grindy grit and a good deal of snap and bite, mixed with the other parallel effects loop of the LS-2, where an 8 band graphic equalizer resides, then after that some additional EQ'ing, mainly boosting the lower and upper mids, again emphasizing punch, snap and bite, then a subtle plate reverb, and finally a faux, EQ based, cab sim, utilizing the bass specific full parametric equalizer model in my Zoom MS-70CDR, basically just rolling off a good chunk of upper treble frequencies, before going into an EHX Black Finger, tube driven optical compressor, though with the compression dialed in so that it practically never reaches threshold, just adding a beautiful touch of tube coloration warmth and slight compression, really acting primarily as a tube preamp stage then a compressor, making it all sound a bit more focused and just rounding off the upper most harsh edges, through without in any possible way affecting playing dynamics or dulling my tone in any possible way, basically retaining all it's snap and bite, just keeping it from sounding unpleasant, and then as the last point in my "ampless" setup going into an Art Tube MP Project Series tube preamp with the 40Hz LPF engaged, again helping with focusing my tone (unlike the Black Finger, which run it's 2 preamp tubes at proper high 300V plate voltage, the Art ustilizes a starved tube plate design, I think around 70V, but I like what it does, and the tube in it is definitely not just for a gimmick, changing the cheap horrible Chinese stock tube it came with out with an EHX 12AX7EH one, same as in my Black Finger, made a huge different for the better on it's tone).
      That's more or less roughly how I get my basic main clean tone.
      However I would also consider my high gain distortion tone a main aspect of "my tone", which is basically the same as above, but with another Boss LS-2 being placed right after the first one, having a Mosky Black Rat, RAT clone, set to vintage (silicon I assume) clipping mode, with the gain knob up fairly high and a relatively dark tone, placed in one of the parallel effect loops, blended with the other parallel effects low where another Orange Juice overdrive is sitting, sort of set to a lower medium gain stacked into a Boss MT-2 Metal Zone, which has the gain knob set close to the minimum position, which together with the fact of the Orange Juice overdrive stacked into it helps with it not getting into the fizz territory that the Metal Zone otherwise is infamous for, the Orange Juice also bringing it in a more crunchy and grindy direction, together contributing to bring in some high end and a more focused shaping of the mids, and actually overall having a big say in making this cross-fusion high gain distortion tone exceptionally well articulated and defined, despite it the otherwise being absolutely massively ballsy, monster heavy, roaring and growling, with a quite prominent super raunchy fuzz like quality, basically preventing it from turning into just one big indistinguishable monolithic shapeless sludge of a blurry mess. 
      In some way you could say that my high gain distortion tone is somewhat in contrast with my clean tone, but I actually find they compliment each other well, despite one would properly expect something less heavy and massive, somthing in a more biting and clanky direction, somewhat more in line with my clean tone.
      Just for reference here's my entire signal chain put to words:
      (*pedals listed in [ red/bold/underline text ] are "always on" effects*)
      4 string 28,6" scale Ibanez GSRM20 neck + GSRM20B body Mikro Bass (equipped with an EMG Geezer Butler P pickup, wired directly to the output jack socket, and strung with gauge .95 - .75 - .55 - .40 D'Addario XL nickle roundwound steel core strings, tuned in F# standard tuning, 2 half steps above regular 4 string bass E standard tuning) ->>
      TC Electronic SpectraComp (always on compressor) ->> TC Electronic Sub'N'Up Mini (always on digital polyphonic octaver, used as an 1 octave up effect mixed with clean bass signal, giving an effect similar to that of an 8 string "octave" bass, with pairs of respectively bass and octave strings) ->> Boss LS-2 [A+B Mix <-> Bypass] (always on, parallel effect loops mixer/switch) ={ [Loop A Send] ->> Joyo Orange Juice (always on low gain overdrive, really primarily used to enhance harmonic content, [Tone] set at about 10:30 o'clock, [Voice] set to boost a wide curve around a 800Hz center frequency about +2dB pre gain stage, always mixed with the Artec Graphic EQ in parallel effects [Loop B]) ->> Joyo Orange Juice (medium gain clanky grinding overdrive, always used with the other Orange Juice behind it stacked into it, and always mixed with the Artec Graphic EQ in parallel effects [Loop B]) ->> [Loop A Return] ->||<- [Loop B Send] ->> Artec SE-EQ8 Graphic EQ (always on 8 band graphic equalizer [100Hz LoShlv= +1dB ; 170Hz (low Q)= 0 ; 280Hz (high Q)= +3dB ; 500Hz (high Q)= 0 ; 800Hz (high Q)= +1dB ; 1.4kHz (high Q)= +3dB ; 2.3 (low Q)= +3dB ; 5kHz HiShlv= -10dB], always blended with the Orange Juice overdrive in parallel effects [Loop A]) ->> [Loop B Return] ([Loop A] + [Loop B] mixed at an about 55/45 ratio) }=>> Boss LS-2 [A+B Mix <-> Bypass] (parallel effect loops mixer/switch) ={ [Loop A Send] ->> Orange Juice (lower medium gain, somewhat grindy type of overdrive, always used staked into the Metal Zone in front of it, together always mixed with the Rat distortion in parallel effects [Loop B]) ->> Boss MT-2 Metal Zone (distortion, always used with the Orange Juice behind it stacked into it, and always used mixed with the Rat distortion in parallel effects [Loop B]) ->> Behringer VP1 Vintage Phaser (EHX Small Stone clone, used in the high feedback and deep sweep mode, always used boosted by the Hotone Trem in front of it, and almost always used mixed with flanger in parallel effects [Loop B]) ->> Hotone Trem (Tremolo with rate and depth at 0, always used to boost either the Behringer phaser placed behind it and make it a bit brighter, or stacked into the Metal Zone in front of it, since it's a few dB above unity gain when engaged) ->> [Loop A Return] ->||<- [Loop B Send]  ->> Mosky Black Rat (RAT clone, in original classic RAT [Vintage] mode, quite raunchy, fuzz-esque, high gain distortion, always used mixed with the Metal Zone distortion in parallel effects [Loop A]) ->> Monarch MFL-22 (flanger, most often used mixed with phaser in parallel effects [Loop A]) ->> [Loop B Return] ([Loop A] + [Loop B] mixed at an about 50/50 ratio) }=>> Zoom G1Xon (Used for an always on 2 band parametric equalizer [Freq=63Hz Q=4 Boost=+1dB ; Freq=200 Q=2 Boost=+1dB], and additionally used for 3 patches (all including the EQ at the end of the chain), which respectively are as follows: Tremolo+VintageCE (Boss CE-1 emulation), chorus patch :-: Plate Reverb+HD Hall Reverb+Tape Delay, prominent reverb patch :-: Plate Reverb+HD Hall Reverb+Tape Delay, extremely thick lush reverb patch, used as a reverb pad effect with volume swells) ->> NUX Tape Core Deluxe (Roland Space Echo tape delay emulation) ->> Zoom MS-70CDR (always on 2 band parametric EQ [Freq=400Hz Q=2 Boost=+1dB ; Freq=1kHz Q=4 Boost=+1dB], subtle spring reverb, and faux, EQ based, cab sim, consisting of a 2 band parametric EQ set as follows: [Freq=10kHz Q=1 Cut=-18dB ; Freq=20kHz Q=0.5 Cut=-20dB], plus a lush Church Reverb model with a line selector behind, making it switchable on/off)
      ->> Band rehearsal/jamming/gigging  // ->> Home practice / Home recordings  :
      ->> EHX Black Finger (always on tube driven optical compressor, dialed in to a quite subtle compression, primarily functioning as a tube preamp stage) ->> Art Tube MP Project Series (tube preamp, with HPF at 40Hz) // ->> Band rehearsal/jamming/gigging ->>  [Effects Return] (poweramp input) of Peavey Solo Special 112 (160W, solid state guitar combo, with the build in 4 Ohm 12" speaker unit disconnected and instead hooked up to a The Box PA 502 PA speaker) ->> The Box PA 502 (full range PA speaker with 1x 15" + 1.7" high frequency tweeter horn)  // ->> Home practice / Home recordings  ->> Behringer Eurorack UB1202 (mixer) ->> [ ->> Sennheiser HD 380 Pro (headphones) ]/[ ->> Behringer Tube Ultragain MIC100 (tube preamp) ->> M-Audio Fast Track (sound interface) ->> Reaper (DAW) ]    
    • By greghagger
      Out of interest, do you have an area of music theory that you particularly struggle to understand?  
      Do you feel that it is holding you back in developing as a bass player too? 
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      Hi everyone, 
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      Also, yes - I understand that fame doesn't mean someone is a better or even good instructor - just curious
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