In today’s guide, we will discuss how to play a bass guitar. Learning to play the bass guitar is easy, but mastering it takes years. Playing the bass guitar is similar to playing the guitar but is not the same. This article is aimed at helping new players learn the basics of playing the bass guitar. It focuses more on tips rather than instructions.
How to Play a Bass Guitar
Holding the Guitar
The first thing everyone should know is how to hold the bass guitar. It may seem silly to emphasize it here, but many players hold the bass guitar incorrectly making it harder to learn and causes back and shoulder pains. Always use a strap. This allows your shoulder and back to carry the weight and allow your hands to be free. Adjust your strap so that the bass guitar is at the same level as your belly button. Do not slouch when standing and ensure that your feet are flat on the ground when sitting and playing the bass guitar.
Fretting is an important part of playing the bass guitar. It refers to the action of your fingers when they hold down different strings on the neck in order to play certain notes. There are some tips to remember when fretting. First off, long fingernails are a no-go. It gets in the way of holding a string completely down. Hold down the string between the frets rather than on the frets themselves to produce the true sound of a note. If you have trouble holding down the string with your fingertips, try using your finger pad, it helps.
Just like fretting, plucking is also an important part of playing the bass guitar. Plucking can be done with bare fingers or a pick and mostly depends on player’s preference. First of all, your plucking hand’s palm should be facing the bass guitar. Place your thumb on the pickup nearest to the neck to serve as an anchor while your other fingers do the work. Use your index finger and let it roll on top the E string (string closest to you). Keep doing this till the sound produced is in tune and the motion is smooth. Keep practising with other strings and other fingers.
There is more to playing the bass guitar than just this, but I hope that this article will serve as a stepping stone for new players. It’s important to get the basics correct before advancing.