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The Bass Guitar Tutorial Part I

So you want to learn how to play bass guitar. In an experts point view, it would look so easy but in when a beginner picks up a guitar, it would look very intimidating. In this tutorial, i'll be teaching:

Synopsis

1. Guitar holding techniques and how to minimize aches and pains
2. Bass Guitar excercises for you left and right hand

* Chromatic Excercise
* X Excercise
* Spider Excercise

3. Left hand techniques
4. Scales and Modes

Guitar holding techniques and how to minimize aches and pains

Disclaimer: This is how I started learning bass. I will not take any responsibility in any injury caused by misinterpretation of this article. I will not be held responsible for any injuries or damages. Follow these at your own risk.

* In holding you fret bar by your left hand, position you thumb at the back of the fret bar, level to your forefinger to excert a greater force holding your fret bar as you move up and down.
* Allocate each of your finger a space between two frets.
* Once in a while during excercises, shake your hand and massage a bit to relax your hand and relieve stress.
* Clean your fingers... lol... :)

Bass Guitar excercises

Take time to spend at least 5 mins each day to excercise your hands. Excercising your hands develops accuracy. From there, you'll be able to enhance your speed. Don't hurry and speed up these excercises. You should start slowly. You need to develop accuracy before speeding up. You can get a metronome or a drum machine and play with it. Using your metronome or drum machine, you'll get to play your bass with timing.

LEGEND

1 - Forefinger
2 - Middle finger
3 - Ring finger
4 - Pinkie finger

:: Chromatic Excercise

1. Position 1 on the 5th fret on the G string, 2 on 6th fret on the same string, 3 on the 7th fret, and 4 on the 8th fret still on the G string.
2. Move 1 to the 5th fret on the D string, with out lifting the rest of the finger. That means the rest of your finger is still on their original position. Hit the D string.
3. Move 2 to the 6th fret on the D string, with out lifting th rest of the finger. 1 on the 5th fret on the D string and the rest still on th original position. Hit the D string.
4. Move 3 to the 7th fret on the D string. The same thing, with out lifting the rest of your finger.Hit the D string.
5. Move 4 to the 8th fret on the D string. Still the same thing, not lifting the rest of your finger.Hit the D string.
6. Now move 1 to the 5th fret on the A string, holding the rest on the previos position. Hit the A string.
7. Move 2 to the 6th fret on the A string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the A string.
8. Move 3 to the 7th fret on the A string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the A string.
9. Move 4 to the 8th fret on the A string, holding the rest on their previous position Hit the A string.
10. Move 1 to the 5th fret on the E string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the E string.
11. Move 2 to the 6th fret on the E string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the E string.
12. Move 3 to the 7th fret on the E string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the E string.
13. Move 4 to the 8th fret on the E string, holding the rest on their previous position. Hit the E string.

If you notice, your fingers are moving up one by one. After all your fingers reached the E string, try moving down one by one, holding the rest on their previous position. Then repeat this excercise at least 10 times. Once in a while, shake your left hand to relieve stress and strain. Do not force yourself to finish 10 repitition directly. Be sure to loose your hand once in a while to avoid pains and aches.

:: X Excercise

1. Position 1 on the 1st fret on the E string. Hit the E string. Do not lift your finger.
2. Position 2 on the 2nd fret on the A string. Hit the A string. Do not lift your fingers.
3. Position 3 on the 3nd fret on the D string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your fingers.
4. Position 4 on the 4nd fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your fingers.
5. Move 1 on the 1nd fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your fingers.
6. Move 2 on the 2nd fret on the D string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your fingers.
7. Move 3 on the 3nd fret on the A string. Hit the A string. Do not lift your fingers.
8. Move 4 on the 4nd fret on the E string. Hit the E string. Do not lift your fingers.
9. Move to the next fret using the same pattern until you reach on the 12 fret. Then go down to the lower frets using the same pattern until you reach the 1st fret.

You can do as much cycle as you want as long as you don't bleed or injur your finger. Again, once in a while, between cycles, relax your hand by shaking it.

:: Spider Excercise

1. Position 1 on the 5th fret on the D string. Hit the D string.
2. Position 3 on the 7th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other finger.
3. Position 2 on the 6th fret on the D string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your other fingers.
4. Position 4 on the 8th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.
5. Move 3 on the 7th fret on the D string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your other fingers
6. Move 1 on the 5th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.
7. Move 4 on the 8th fret on the D string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers
8. Move 2 on the 6th fret on the G string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your other fingers.
9. Move 1 on the 5th fret on the A string. Hit the A string.
10. Move 3 on the 7th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other finger.
11. Move 2 on the 6th fret on the A string. Hit the A string. Do not lift your other fingers.
12. Move 4 on the 8th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.
13. Move 1 on the 5th fret on the E string. Hit the E string.
14. Move 3 on the 7th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other finger.
15. Move 2 on the 6th fret on the E string. Hit the E string. Do not lift your other fingers.
16. Move 4 on the 8th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.
17. Move 1 on the 5th fret on the A string. Hit the A string.
18. Move 3 on the 7th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other finger.
19. Move 2 on the 6th fret on the A string. Hit the A string. Do not lift your other fingers.
20. Move 4 on the 8th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.
21. Move 1 on the 5th fret on the D string. Hit the D string.
22. Move 3 on the 7th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other finger.
23. Move 2 on the 6th fret on the D string. Hit the D string. Do not lift your other fingers.
24. Move 4 on the 8th fret on the G string. Hit the G string. Do not lift your other fingers.

Again, loose your hand and shake your hand once in a while.

:: Left Hand Excercise

Commonly, the forefinger and the middle finger are used to hit the strings. Sometimes, the ring finger is used depending on the situation. Techniques like triplets, the ring finger can be used.
In hitting the strings, use our forefinger and middle finger alternately. This is very essential. This will help you develop speed easily. You can use a light rubber band and tie your two fingers together. Have enough space for your fingers to move.

Left hand techniques

Scales and Modes

There are lots of various scales and modes that you can use. There was one musician told me that there are about 24 placements for each chord, 24 scales for each chord, 24 exotic scales for each chord and 7 modes that I need to learn. I was shocked upon hearing that since I only knew 4 scales at that time, pentatonic, 7 note minor, 7 note major, and dorian scale. I was inspired about what he said. I'll show you 9 of scales I've studied so far. Here it is.

* Composite 2 Modes
* Enigmatic Scales
* Enigmatic Minor Scales
* Harmonic Major
* Harmonic Minor
* Hungarian Major
* Hungarian Minor
* 7 Tone Major
* Melodic Minor

I have 59 scales available. If you like to have a copy of those, you can approach me. And we'll talk about that.. :) So far, these are the scales I'd like to show since these are the scales I've been practicing for now. I've been playing bass for a year now.
Hope you enjoy!!!. If you want to send some donations, that would be very much appreciated. Just post a message on my contact page. Thank You! Enjoy!
Ian Bert Tusil
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