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How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

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How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:54 pm

I'm curious to hear how long people have been playing, and how they feel they have progressed. I've been playing about 5 weeks now. I can almost play a couple songs that I failed miserably at just a few weeks ago. That really isn't saying much, though, as they still don't actually sound too good yet when I do manage.

If you've been playing awhile, do you find there are some songs that are just beyond your limit? I find that some fret positions just don't work for me. Like the video for learning that Pink Panther tune. There's an odd thing with 2 strings on 2 frets at the same time, and my paws just plain don't contort that way. Not even close. I'm not sure if they'll stretch out eventually, but if not I guess I'll never be able to handle that song, or others like it. It's hard being a dog with short paw toes.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  AndreTheBass on Mon Sep 24, 2012 5:11 pm

i have been playing around 4 years, time goes fast.
well i have made lots of progress the last year. and now that i got my Sterling i find myself playing songs i couldnt play a few weeks ago.
i still find slapping difficult but that is mainly because i dont know where to start exercising. i cant improv with slapbass..

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Mon Sep 24, 2012 6:53 pm

I would like to learn slap bass, but I have not even considered trying it yet. I want to be able to play bass before I turn all snazzy. I do not know when that will be, though.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  ThreeLetterSyndrom on Mon Sep 24, 2012 7:30 pm

Something like 2 or 3 years now. I honestly don't remember. I've been mostly based in piano playing, though. So I'm probably about as good as someone who's been practising significantly for a year. I like to think I'm alright. I'm good rhythmically, a lot above average compared to piano players, not so sure about bass players. I do a lot of slap, plucking like Dman does. I have only learnt a handful of songs, since I don't play in a band anymore.

I quite enjoy where I'm at currently, but I'm not really band material. Or at least not in a conventional band with conventional players. Because my rhythmic style is somewhat unconventional. And I have a hard time conforming to melodies. I don't like pieces written in major.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Mon Sep 24, 2012 8:01 pm

My timing needs work as well. I need to find a metronome. I also tend to learn whatever strikes my fancy. I would likely never end up in a band(Who would want a dog playing bass really?) so I can learn as I like.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  ThreeLetterSyndrom on Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:53 am

If you're good, I'd definitely have you in my band. Razz

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Tue Sep 25, 2012 12:14 pm

ThreeLetterSyndrom wrote:If you're good, I'd definitely have you in my band. Razz

I am good at catching tennis balls, eating, and sleeping in the sun. Very Happy The bass, not so much just yet.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Stryfer on Sun Sep 30, 2012 12:13 pm

Ok, let's see - from the top:
I've been playing for 6 years now and I feel I've progressed quite well. I'm doing a lot of my own stuff now and I've begun to feel a certain freedom when playing. Like I can do pretty much whatever I want out of reflex.

Fret positions will come in time. I'd suggest you find songs that will demand soem finger stretching to perform and practice them slowly. In time, you'll train your hand to take up seemingly impossible positions.

As far as learning songs goes, I have to say I'm running more and more into ones that are just beyond my limit. However, that's because I keep looking for challanges. There's a large amount of simple songs our there, but they don't have anything to offer. On the other hand, the challenging songs were played by real pros using a lot of skill and most of all - a technique or style specific to them, so I need to adapt.
An example would be two frets on two strings. I haven't checked the pink panther tune, but if what you're talking about is two frets right below each other where only one finger is used to cover them both, I can't do that either. I use two fingers for the two frets and that suits me fine.

Improving on slap may seem difficult at first, but once you realize that it's just slaping a tone and popping the octave, with a little hammer-on or dead note adde, it becomes easy. Start by just taking an octave and playing various rhythms, combination of slapping and popping, then add another octave and build from there. Another good starting point is learning several of the old RHCP songs, that'll give you plenty of movement as far as slap goes. I found Blackeyed Blonde especially fun.

Timing is, of course, the most important thing. However, it doesn't matter much if your rhythms are weird as long as their in time. Then it's the other musician's job to see if they can figure out what strange sorcery you're concocting Smile If you think it works, it probably does, they just don't see it.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Tue Oct 09, 2012 6:17 pm

Stryfer wrote:
An example would be two frets on two strings. I haven't checked the pink panther tune, but if what you're talking about is two frets right below each other where only one finger is used to cover them both, I can't do that either. I use two fingers for the two frets and that suits me fine.


An example on the frets I can't do is this tab for the RHCP...

G--6-----4-------4------------------6------4-------4-----------
D--4-2-2---2-------2-4-4-4-6-4-6-4--4--2-2---2-------2-4-4-4-4-
A------------4-2-------------------------------4-2-------------
E--------------------------------------------------------------

See how it begins with that 4th and 6th fret on the D and G at the same time? A dog simply can not do that.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Pippynip on Tue Oct 09, 2012 10:05 pm

Yeah, you just need to build up paw strength in order to do that. Soon enough you'll be able to play Seven Nation Army like that... Very Happy

Code:

G-------7---------------------------------
D--9--9-5--9-7-5---4---------------------------------------
A--7--7----7-5-3---2-------------------------------------
E--------------------------------------------------------------

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Stryfer on Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:24 pm

Exactly as Pip said, practice.
If you have

--6-
--4-

Use your index on the 4 and pinky on the 6.

Here's a good exercise though and something you will need to get down for slapping - instead of grabbig the fifth (6th fret in relevance to the 4th fret), try the octave, which is the same, just a string below. It's like this:

--6-
----
--4-
----

Once you get that down, and you'll have to get it down eventually, the rest is easy. Just take it slow and easy Smile

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:01 pm

I have a couple of questions about your responses. First, what is the farthest apart positions will ever be? For example, I've seen this...


G--6-
D--4-
A----
E----

Strings beside each other, 2 frets apart. Then I see you have this...

G--6-
D----
A--4-
E----

2 frets apart, 2 strings apart. Would there ever be something like this...

G--6-
D----
A----
E--4-

2 frets, 3 strings apart? Or like this...

G--6-
D--3-
A----
E----

3 frets apart on 2 near strings? What about 3 frets at a time?

G--6-
D--5-
A--4-
E----

I guess I'm wondering just how complex it will get on a bass. My next question is, when you're playing these multi-string and multi-fret notes, what technique do you use to pluck the strings with your right hand? Getting my paw used to plucking more than 1 string at a time has been clumsy. Thanks for all of the insight so far. Dogs appreciate helpful humans. Smile

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  MetalJacob on Mon Oct 15, 2012 5:22 am

There's really no limit, it will be as complex as you want. It could be:

G--4-
D--3-
A--2-
E--1-

or even:

G--5-
D--4-
A--2-
E--1-

If you have larger hands, you can do more things. That does not mean that smaller hands are extremely limited though. As for plucking hand technique, I literally just have one finger per string and pull at the same time. Sometimes I'll do a sort of "sweeping" technique where I take one finger and just slide it across how ever many strings needed to be play and so the higher strings get played first. You'll come to see that with time these questions aren't set in stone anywhere and everyone has their own ideas. Anything you do that feels comfortable will work and often times you can combine all the different techniques to get different sounds.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Stryfer on Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:15 am

The biggest distance I've covered (though I admit I can't really keep both notes down at the same time for more than a moment) is:

G --6-
D ----
A ----
E ----
B --2-

As for playing multiple notes, as MetalJacob said, anything works as long it's comfertable. I use 4 different techniques based on the sound I want, so there really are no hard-set rules.

However, if you want specifics, there are 2 ways flea plays multiple notes at the same time (or chords Razz).
One method I've seen in the song Don't Forget me, is to play them as if he were playing with a pick. He puts his fingers together, like he's holding a pick (sometimes he is and sometimes he isn't) and strums it. Of course, this song has an entire piece in chords.
The other technique he uses is plucking the 2 strings with both of his fingers at the same time. Simply instead of plucking just one note with one finger, he plucks the other at the same time in the same manner he would normally. This technique he uses when adding a chord in the middle of a single note finger pattern, so I'm guessing that's the way he plays that particular line.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Wed Nov 14, 2012 6:54 pm

I just realized I hadn't posted for like a month. I'm in a bit of a rut. Maybe at a wall. I'm finding that new bass lines are either really easy, and thus a little boring, or else impossible mega hard. There seem to be less and less "Just Right" songs. I really want to take some lessons, but they are very expensive here it seems. I haven't found anyone yet who will teach me for less than $30 USD for a half hour. Maybe they just don't want to have a dog as a student.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Pippynip on Wed Nov 14, 2012 10:53 pm

You've reached the glorious stage wherein you dick about with the easy songs, adding fills in here and there, making them interesting to play Very Happy Remember that you never have to copy basslines exactly unless you're in a tribute band, and you should be encouraged at every opportunity to be creative with everything you do.

If you've watched Dman's video on the major scale, now might be a good time to introduce the minor scale.

Also, here's a song that's pretty fun...


http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/m/muse/supermassive_black_hole_btab.htm

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  GusTheBassDog on Thu Nov 15, 2012 4:06 am

I have watched the Major Scale video and worked on practicing that. I'll look over the minors then. I do love Super Massive Black Hole. So for instance, the intro section only has a couple notes per segment. You would say work on filling there? I've looked up tabs for say, Journey(Dogs enjoy listening to some Journey!), and find the basic bass lines to be super simple. Time to fill there, too?

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Stryfer on Thu Nov 15, 2012 11:41 am

The thing about filling up a song is that you have to feel it.
Flea talks about this in this quite lengthy video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_A6JG5UPn4 (this is part 1, so keep following the parts)

To start off, it's not so bad to take a song that a pro player already filled out. This will you give you some patterns and ideas about what you can do. It'll take a while to memorize at first, but then it'll will all turn into routine and you'll start doing it on your own.
Since Pip already posted a Muse song, here's one whit plenty of fill-like moments in the chorus Smile The verse is quite fast, so if you don't have that speed down, you can skip it for now.


EDIT: For bonus points, try and figure out how that fill works into the major or minor scale. It's simple if you understand scales properly and if not, now's the time to figure it out Very Happy

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  akyra on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:41 am

Ive been playing for about ... 2 years now... I think ish. might even been longer! i joined this form a weeks after getting my bass so that's a good indication of how long!


Time flies...

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  akyra on Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:41 am

Wow... actually 3 years... O.O

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  maccaria on Fri Feb 15, 2013 10:14 pm

been playing an entire week now Very Happy started guitar about 18 months ago, decided I like my looooow notes so grabbed a bass last week.

Must say I am loving it!!! cheers

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  DavidM96 on Sat Feb 16, 2013 12:04 am

Im gonna have to do some math to figure this out i think....hmmm.....a little over 2 years now i think. And i must say, its been a blast.
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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  MetalJacob on Sat Feb 16, 2013 4:53 am

Oh yeah, this thread isn't about the dog but actually had an intention. I've been playing for 3 years and don't feel like I've progressed well at all. I mean, clearly, I have but because I'm left handed things like slap and (I think) playing at great speeds has been quite the struggle. Even though my left hand is a master of everything.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  Pippynip on Sun Feb 17, 2013 3:09 am

All threads are about the dog!

Anyway, yeah, you're pretty much in the same boat as me. Except I'm not left-handed. Is it really that much of an issue? If I were to try to slap with my left hand, I reckon it'd be just as rubbish as when I first started with my right.

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Re: How Long Have You Been Playing Now?

Post  MetalJacob on Sun Feb 17, 2013 4:02 am

I just always kind of assumed because other bassist's I know who've been playing as long as me had no problem picking up slap while I can't even really do Dman's first slap video.

Edit: It's really just me making an excuse...I think.

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