So I'm starting a metal band. So far I've got me (guitarist) and long time friends (guitarist) and another friend (bassist) who I met earlier this year. My problem lies with the bassist. We jam on a daily basis so getting him to jam isn't hard.When it comes to our aspirations we're pretty spot on with what we wanna do. He seems dedicated and that is a really good thing.

The thing is his playing is sloppy. He tends to rush things and just jump in and out of rhythm. He says he notices when he goes out of time but yet he still does it. I'm pretty sure he has used tabs and nothing else when it comes to learning music, so I've been trying to convince him to start using his ears when it comes to learning some cover songs. Another thing is that I pretty much have to show him every riff I bring in because he doesn't try to figure it out the riff on his own or come up with his own piece.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is I don't want to kick him out of the "band" but I want to help him get better. We're currently looking for a drummer and I figured that would help with the rhythm issues. I'm willing to help him become better but I don't know where to start. According to him he has taken theory lessons but I guess he just doesn't know how to apply it. Should I show him the pentatonic scales and just try to do some small improv with that or what? I'm not a bassist so it's not something I know much about. I was thinking of just doing some finger exercises that way we can work on playing together in time and at the same time improve his accuracy.

Oh and just a side question are hammer-ons and pull-offs common in bass playing?
Try and get him a metronome, first and foremost. Or one for the band or something like that.

As far as bass theory goes, I'm totally clueless.

And thirdly, hammer-ons and pull-offs are not really that common on bass. You might see the occasional band doing that.
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Quote by strat0blaster
Why don't you just all jam and see what comes out

That wat she said!!!!!!!!!!!

Watch Jason Newsted pisses off James Hetfield on YouTube.
Sit him down, Talk to him man to man, and just tell him seriously he needs to improve on his playing/ hes not up to par with the whole band. He may take it well or might not, but atleast it's better than not saying anything at all, right? I too don't know a lot about bass so I'm not sure about the whole pentatonic scale on a bass thing. Best advice there, would be to find somebody familiar with a bass to give him pointers and such.

EDIT: The metronome is also a very very good idea
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Last edited by job153 at Mar 19, 2009,
Get a drummer with good timing. He'll sync with the drummers timing... hopefully. Tell him to work on his timing at home. Also sounds like he needs experience with playing with others so give him a chance.