Bass Exercises For Beginners

author: Shredtohell date: 08/04/2009 category: for beginners
rating: 8.5 / votes: 30 
This lesson is basically for any beginners that wants to play the bass guitar. I will cover basic exercises for the fret and the picking hand. 1st, I will cover the cover the picking hand. You can either pick with your fingers or with a pick. If you pick with your fingers you want to alternate between your index and your middle finger, also you can rest your thumb on the pickup closes to the neck to keep your hand in position. If you are picking with a pick, you will just pick (down, up, down, up ect...) all the way through the exercises. Now that this is out of the way here are some basic picking or plucking exercises. (These are in no pacific time, this is just to get your picking fingers warmed up.)
Ex#1.
                                                         4x   
GI-------------------------0-0-0-0-------------------------I
DI-----------------0-0-0-0---------0-0-0-0-----------------I
AI---------0-0-0-0-------------------------0-0-0-0---------I
EI-0-0-0-0-----------------------------------------0-0-0-0-I

Ex#2.
                                                         4x
GI-------------------------0-0-0-0-------------------------I
DI---------0-0-0-0-------------------------0-0-0-0---------I
AI-----------------0-0-0-0---------0-0-0-0-----------------I
EI-0-0-0-0-----------------------------------------0-0-0-0-I

Ex#3.
                                                         4x
GI---------0-0-0-0-------------------------0-0-0-0---------I
DI-------------------------0-0-0-0-------------------------I
AI-----------------0-0-0-0---------0-0-0-0-----------------I
EI-0-0-0-0-----------------------------------------0-0-0-0-I

Ex#4.
                                 4x
GI---------0-0-------------0-0-----I
DI-------------0-0-------------0-0-I
AI-----0-0-------------0-0---------I
EI-0-0-------------0-0-------------I

Ex#5.
               4x                  4x                4x
GI-------0-------I-------0---0-------I---0-----------0-I
DI-----0---0-----I---0-----0-----0---I-------0---0-----I
AI---0-------0---I-----0-------0-----I-----0---0-------I
EI-0-----------0-I-0---------------0-I-0-----------0---I
Now that you got your picking hand warmed up and loose. It's time for your fret hand. I will do alot more exercises with this part. When you play with your fret hand you pretty much want each finger to do it's part. So I will put legends above the tabbed exercise so you know what finger goes where. Also remember that if your picking with your fingers alway alternate between your index and middle finger. If your picking with a pick, always pick up and down. This will help you later down the road.. *Legend are symbols or abbrevation to let you know what to do at a paticular part, when reading tablature. For your fret hand.. (The legend are: i=index, m=middle, r=ring, p=pinky)
Ex#1a.

   i m r p i m r p i m r p i m r p   i m r p i m r p i m r p i m r p
GI-------------------------1-2-3-4-I-2-3-4-5-------------------------I
DI-----------------1-2-3-4---------I---------2-3-4-5-----------------I
AI---------1-2-3-4-----------------I-----------------2-3-4-5---------I
EI-1-2-3-4-------------------------I-------------------------2-3-4-5-I
(Play this all the way up until your index finger hits the 12th fret Ex#1b).
Ex#1b.

   i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p
GI-12-13-14-15-------------------------------------I
DI-------------12-13-14-15-------------------------I
AI-------------------------12-13-14-15-------------I
EI-------------------------------------12-13-14-15-I
Now go back down the neck (Ex#1c)
Ex#1c.

   i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p  i  m  r  p
GI-------------------------------------11-12-13-14-I
DI-------------------------11-12-13-14-------------I
AI-------------11-12-13-14-------------------------I
EI-11-12-13-14-------------------------------------I  Cont.

GI-10-11-12-13-------------------------------------I
DI-------------10-11-12-13-------------------------I
AI-------------------------10-11-12-13-------------I
EI-------------------------------------10-11-12-13-I
*How I exsplain exercise # 1. You will do the same for exercise #2 Ex#2. (Just like the last exercise you will go all the way up to the 12th fret and go back down to the 1st fret. Also you finger pattern will stay the same as you accend the neck and decend the neck..)
   p r m i p r m i p r m i p r m i   p r m i p r m i p r m i p r m i
GI-------------------------4-3-2-1-I-5-4-3-2-------------------------I
DI-----------------4-3-2-1---------I---------5-4-3-2-----------------I
AI---------4-3-2-1-----------------I-----------------5-4-3-2---------I
EI-4-3-2-1-------------------------I-------------------------5-4-3-2-I

Ex#3.

   i r m p i r m p i r m p i r m p   i r m p i r m p i r m p i r m p
GI-------------------------1-3-2-4-I-2-4-3-5-------------------------I
DI-----------------1-3-2-4---------I---------2-4-3-5-----------------I
AI---------1-3-2-4-----------------I-----------------2-4-3-5---------I
EI-1-3-2-4-------------------------I-------------------------2-4-3-5-I

Ex#4.

   p m r i p m r i p m r i p m r i   p m r i p m r i p m r i p m r i
GI-------------------------4-2-3-1-I-5-3-4-2-------------------------I
DI-----------------4-2-3-1---------I---------5-3-4-2-----------------I
AI---------4-2-3-1-----------------I-----------------5-3-4-2---------I
EI-4-2-3-1-------------------------I-------------------------5-3-4-2-I

Ex#5.

   i r m p i r m p i r m p   i r m p i r m p i r m p
GI-------------------2---4-I-1---3-------------------I
DI-----------2---4-1---3---I---2---4-1---3-----------I
AI---2---4-1---3-----------I-----------2---4-1---3---I
EI-1---3-------------------I-------------------2---4-I

Ex#6.

   i r m p i r m p i r m p   i r m p i r m p i r m p
GI-------------------3---4-I-1---2-------------------I
DI-----------3---4-1---2---I---3---4-1---2-----------I
AI---3---4-1---2-----------I-----------3---4-1---2---I
EI-1---2-------------------I-------------------3---4-I

Ex#7.

   i m r p i m r p   i m r p i m r p
GI-------4-1-------I-------5-2-------I
DI-----3-----2-----I-----4-----3-----I
AI---2---------3---I---3---------4---I
EI-1-------------4-I-2-------------5-I

Ex#8.

   i m i r m i p r m i p r m p r p
GI-1-2---3-----4-------------------I
DI-----1---2-----3-----4-----------I
AI-----------1-----2-----3---4-----I
EI-------------------1-----2---3-4-I   Cont.

   p r p m r p i m r p i m r i m i
GI-------------------4-----3---2-1-I
DI-----------4-----3-----2---1-----I
AI-----4---3-----2-----1-----------I
EI-4-3---2-----1-------------------I

Ex#9. ( This one is good for streching)

   i m p i m p i m p i m p   p m i p m i p m i p m i 
GI-------------------1-3-5-I-5-3-1-------------------I
DI-------------1-3-5-------I-------5-3-1-------------I
AI-------1-3-5-------------I-------------5-3-1-------I
EI-1-3-5-------------------I-------------------5-3-1-I

Ex#10.

   i m p i m p i m p i m p   i m p  i m p  i m p  i m p
GI-----------9-5-----------I------------10-6-------------I
DI-----9---7-----7---5-----I-----10---8------8----6------I
AI---7---5---------9---7---I---8----6----------10---8----I
EI-5---------------------9-I-6------------------------10-I

Ex#11. (1st use i & m fingers, once your done then use m & r 
fingers then r & p. Try all these out)

GI-----------------------------5---5-6-I-6-5---5----------------------------I
DI-----------------5---5-6-5-6---6-----I-----6---6-5-6-5--5-----------------I
AI-----5---5-6-5-6---6-----------------I-----------------6--6-5-6-5---5-----I
EI-5-6---6-----------------------------I----------------------------6---6-5-I
That's it! Hope you all enjoy this. Like I said above, this is just basic Bass exercises.
More Shredtohell lessons:
+ Building Speed On The Fret Board Correct Practice 04/30/2009
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