#1
Hi,

So i've been playing guitar for many years, and I've gotten to a level where I can attempt to play things like Protest the Hero and bands like that. Right now I'm playing in a jazz/funk band, but this band that plays more music that I really love (metal, hard rock, post-hardcore) invited me to come and play bass guitar because they like my musical ideas and already have two other guitar players.

So my question is this, would it be really detrimental to my playing to go and learn bass guitar at the same time? And I'd also like to know if my playing of electric guitar would help me at all with bass playing?
#2
You could always just play bass as if it was a guitar that's deeper and has bigger strings and frets.
Quote by aldo47
(i thought hot strings would make me finger faster.)
so i tried to set my strings on fire by putting a lighter on the high e string n it cut it so wtf??!!? i passed the lighter rrly slowly by it for less then a sec n then it snapped...
#3
To answer your first question:
I don't really think it would, if you kept consistently practicing both. Organizing it all so that you don't end up spending little time on one instrument is pretty important. Just look at the the two instruments equally.

And for the second question, sure it can help. Fretboard knowledge, fretboard technique, etc. Obviously, they're both different instruments, and each have different ways of approaching it, but the knowledge can be transferable.

Just don't make the same mistake I did when i took up singing. I spent way too much time singing and just noodling on the guitar, that my skill on the guitar has gone down the drain. Now I'm spending my time getting things back up to par!
DANNY

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#4
The two instruments are highly complementary. It's not like taking up, say, saxophone, which involves totally different disciplines - there's no strict differences, only a heightened importance of rhythm and timing. In fact, you'll discover that learning on either can greatly improve your skill on the other.

I've never understood why bass is considered a different instrument.
It's a type of guitar, that's all, tailored to provide lower notes.

Both me and my other guitarist regularly play bass with various local bands and at our jam night, both out of necessity and simply because it's good fun. I've never practiced bass in my life, but I could give most of the bass players round here a run for their money (though believe me, you can spot a non-bass player a mile off after a two hour set - just look for the grimace of pain on their face). I've even played the odd tune on our bassist's upright at acoustic gigs, though that's a significantly different experience....


For any competent guitarist to call themselves a bass player, all they need is to spend a few hours figuring out a comfortable right-hand techniquue, and if possible to put aside time picking out basslines in their favourite songs and jamming along. Don't underestimate the importance of good timing/groove though - for those new to bass I always recommend watching the bass drum skin, and making sure your main notes fall right on the beat.
Last edited by kyle62 at Mar 29, 2009,
#5
Do it. It will be another experience for you. Don't let Guitar slip though. Stay in both bands, that way you'll manage to keep both up to scratch. Being in two bands of different styles will be fun, i reckon.
#7
yeah i think i'm gonna do the both method. It will also help because i have attempted to play the trombone for band class (you need a "concert" instrument to take the class) but it makes me want to shove my head in a meat grinder. Now i guess i could just play bass with a buddy fo mine
#8
Hell no, more than one instrument will only make you better at both,
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#10
yeah.
if you're already good at guitar, you shouldn't have to worry too much about callouses from the heavier strings.
just be aware that your fingers might be put through a little more pain than usual.
#11
Quote by njm0830
So my question is this, would it be really detrimental to my playing to go and learn bass guitar at the same time?


Definitely not. It will increase your musicianship as a whole.
Quote by njm0830
And I'd also like to know if my playing of electric guitar would help me at all with bass playing?


Yes it will help you pick up bass faster because the physical movements are very similar.
Quote by kyle62
I've never understood why bass is considered a different instrument.
It's a type of guitar, that's all, tailored to provide lower notes.


It's considered a different instrument because, a) because physically it is, and b),more importantly, it requires a different playing style. Guitar players do not automatically make good bass players and the same is true vice versa. The bass has a different music role in the band. It bridges the gap between more rhythmic and percussive playing and a more melodic style. It provides a richer and fuller sound and helps move the song along.
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#12
Quote by Baba O'Riley
Definitely not. It will increase your musicianship as a whole.


Yes it will help you pick up bass faster because the physical movements are very similar.

It's considered a different instrument because, a) because physically it is, and b),more importantly, it requires a different playing style. Guitar players do not automatically make good bass players and the same is true vice versa. The bass has a different music role in the band. It bridges the gap between more rhythmic and percussive playing and a more melodic style. It provides a richer and fuller sound and helps move the song along.
That's it though- it's just a different style of guitar. On the same grounds you could argue that a classical nylon-strung guitar and an Ibanez RG are two different instruments....

If you gave me a classical guitar, I could play it - but other flamenco guitarists wouldn't be that impressed. But given a bit of time I could improve at it, certainly a great deal faster than say, a trombone player.
Bass playing is just a different style of guitar, and like most styles it has its own specialised equipment and techniques... being good at one style doesn't always mean you'll be good at another, but it helps you become a better player.
#13
That's it though- it's just a different style of guitar. On the same grounds you could argue that a classical nylon-strung guitar and an Ibanez RG are two different instruments...


A better analogy would be a contrabass and a fiddle. Sure, they sound different and are played differently, but it's the same thing...
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#14
Quote by kyle62

Bass playing is just a different style of guitar, and like most styles it has its own specialised equipment and techniques

You are simply incorrect, sir.

To the OP, absolutely pick it up, but don't be shocked if you can't keep up with metal bass as well as you can on guitar. I have made the opposite switch (Bass==guitar) and it still takes years to get to the same level. The other thing you need to be careful of it making sure you know your place in a band has changed. You don't want to be like the bassist in Manowar.
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#15
That's it though- it's just a different style of guitar. On the same grounds you could argue that a classical nylon-strung guitar and an Ibanez RG are two different instruments....


The general consensus of the bass forum is that it's a somewhat different instrument, based on its history. The bass guitar is a direct development from an upright double bass, which have been styled after guitars (because guitar shapes tend to be ergonomically suited to being held or rested on the knee). The first bass guitars - the 'Precision' bass - was called that as an advertising idea because it was considered more accurate in pitch than a double bass, because it was fretted and thus was a more 'precise' way of playing in the bass register.

Sure, the two instruments have grown together, but more a case of parallel development than actually being identical. Until whoever it was came up with the idea of a seven string guitar, and now they're breeding. :P

In response to the thread - it really can't hurt. Learn to play the bass with a pick, and fingerstyle - it'll help develop potential new techniques for the guitar. You might even come to prefer it. Just remember that it's role in the song is different even to playing rhythm guitar - the drummer is more important to you than what the guitars are doing, rhythmically.
#16
Quote by troyponce
You are simply incorrect, sir.

To the OP, absolutely pick it up, but don't be shocked if you can't keep up with metal bass as well as you can on guitar. I have made the opposite switch (Bass==guitar) and it still takes years to get to the same level. The other thing you need to be careful of it making sure you know your place in a band has changed. You don't want to be like the bassist in Manowar.

Haha, I disagree. It's an intereesting topic of debate though, I must admit.I've never owned a bass or practiced the instrument, yet I've done gigs with bands on bass loads of times.
#17
Quote by kyle62
Haha, I disagree. It's an intereesting topic of debate though, I must admit.I've never owned a bass or practiced the instrument, yet I've done gigs with bands on bass loads of times.


I've seen lots of good guitar players do the same thing. You can call it snobby, but it's pretty easy to identify because they don't play bass the way an established bass player would. They, like you, treat it more like a second (or third) guitar rather than a second drummer. Good bass players of course gets melodic, but they tend to lean in more in the drumming mentality. That's not a completely accurate way to put it, but it's the closest I can figure.