Any bass players here?

Lorenzo1950

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My friend sold me a beautiful Yamaha bass but the two online lessons I viewed are very strange.
While I am learning the fretboard it would make more sense if the diagrams were not reversed.
Is it normal to diagram the strings with the E string on the bottom and the 12th fret to the right?
Maybe I have to practice upside down, backwards or standing on my head while learning this.
There must be a logic to it.
 

supershifter2

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some people that dont know any better string basses and guitars upside down. the E is normally on top then A , D and the famous G string I like to pluck. I have a Fender P bass. I use D'addario .105 flatwounds and a thick felt pick. From top to bottom

E
A
D
G
 

Lorenzo1950

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An online lesson is like looking into a mirror with the instructors right side being your left. It almost seems more reasonable that the student should be standing behind the instructor.
 

TheBeachBoy

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If I'm picturing it correctly, it seems to me they put it that way so you can lay the neck/bass back (strings facing up) to see where you're putting your fingers to correspond with the diagram. I guess that makes sense, but I don't think I've ever seen it done that way.
 

JazzDrumGuy

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E string is on top, then A, D, G, but I've never understood why the bottom string is called the "first" string! Also, for reading tablature and music, the zero fret is to the left with the E on bottom, then A-D-G as you go up. The way you are diagramming sounds right as I understand it.

I played violin starting in 3rd grade thru about 7th grade and hated it. Although I regret forgetting how to read music, for some reason, being able to play a 4 stringed instrument (oddly, violin goes reversed GDAE) has come to me naturally and easily, certainly more easily than guitar. I've been drumming 35+ years and I'm maybe a B-. I've been playing guitar (self taught) for 21+ years and my relative talent level is much better in guitar than drums. Bass wise, though, I can get down and boogie all types of music, and even play fretless. I actually cut an album as a bassist in a reggae band! I do love the bass and to me it's the easiest of the 3 by far, and my best instrument.

Now, I am trying to learn piano and boy, talk about hard! As long as you can groove and keep time, you just gotta keep playing......
 

rhythmace

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Learning by tablature sucks. Youtube made that obsolete. The small E string is the 1st string, because the next 3 strings (making 4) are your basic triad strings. The 5th and 6th are bass strings. You don't just play the bass strings without considering the bass part. Even though the bass is 1 octave lower, you still can't hammer away on the bass strings when you play in a band. I like Scott Grove, for learning stringed instrument fast and cheap. The guy is funny too. Groovymusic.com, I think. Ace
 

biggator

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Imagine that you're leaning over looking down at your hands... you're seeing it upside down - hence the diagrams.
 

pete

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it sounds like the diagram is correct. when i taught myself the fretboard i made a diagram for myself and it should look as if you were looking down at your hand on the fretboard as Biggator wrote.
 

DrumGerry

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The ancients believed that musical notes had gravity. Low frequencies fell to earth and high frequencies floated upwards. Therefore, in order to sustain balance within a melody, and/or the instrument, the fattest strings were placed above the thinner ones, so that everything blended correctly/harmoniously.

The Arab lute, the oud, had 4 strings. Each string represented one of body's four humours (internal liquids that sustained life). Similarly, it was tuned in 4ths, this 'magical' number being representative of God's plan (four seasons, four humours, four elements etc). This convention dates back to Medieval times and was introduced into Western Europe via the Moors - the Arabs refined earlier Greek ideas and their teachings were hugely influential on Christians just prior to the European Renaissance).

So, that's bass tuning 101 in a nutshell...all clear now?
 

pete

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that is how it should be. otherwise, obviously you must reverse it in you head which is a needless step.
 

tris66

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Lorenzo1950 said:
Here it is, I made a copy.
Think of it like this. If you are holding the bass then set it down flat in your lap the notes on the fret board would be in the same position as a printed copy of the picture sitting in your lap.
 

JazzDrumGuy

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When I picked up guitar decades ago, there used to be the On Line Guitar Archive (OLGA) which had thousands of songs via tab. Anytime I needed to figure something out, I'd look it up and boom! For the bass, though, I have a good ear (so I think!) and have learned just from playing it. Oddly, I can easily move around the fret board but have a heck of a time on guitar such as for soloing......

Good diagram above and yes, as noted above, it's like you are sitting, guitar in lap (neck pointed left) and the paper in front of you.......
 

JoePasko2002

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My main bass has just 2 strings, E and A. The darn thing practically plays itself !

bass0.jpg
 

swarfrat

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Yeah. That's normal. My son is lefty, and I sometimes play his u-bass upside down . Takes work but not as much as learning to play left handed after 30 years
 

Lorenzo1950

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Thank you, I think I've got it. Ordered a bass book "Hal Leonard Bass Method vol 1-3." The book had good reviews.
 

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