#1
I actually have three questions.


1. I play in my church worship band. I normally just play the chord note the lead is playing, staying on beat. However that is boring and drab. What are some simple techniques that I can apply, too make it sound better? Such as scales or something. Remember I'm reading chords (ABCDEFG)

2. I'm completely self taught at bass guitar. However I find myself playing differently than most bass players. I have a Guild B-301, so It has no active electronics and only one pickup. I find that I'm playing with only one finger on my right hand. When I try walking with both fingers, I catch the strings and I get a plucking sound, it just doesn't sound smooth. Is that something wrong with technique? Is walking the strings the only way of playing with the right hand?

3. What are some good quick drills I can do on my 4 string bass, that will ultimately improve my playing skills? I'm completely self taught, so any useful drills that will increase my speed and playing skills will be great. I have school and a part time job, so I get up at 6am and get home at 7pm, so I have a lot time constraints.


Thanks guys!!!
#2
dont focus on technique or theory.. just play

that sounds cliche but there is no better advice
#3
get involved wiht other musicians, they will help you

if that doesnt work you should prolly just quit and focuz on your part time job
#4
in the faq somewhere, there is a guitar pro file with loads of things to practice. might be worth a look
DONT RISK IT, BUY A BASS AMP
#5
Quote by MelodicSlap
dont focus on technique or theory.. just play

that sounds cliche but there is no better advice


Are you kidding? There's ONLY better advice.

1) For the worship band, I've found that in mine the best thing to get away from the root notes is leading tones. Leading tones are basically playing a note that leads from one chord to the next. For example, a chord progression you'll see a lot, is the I to the IV. In that situation, something simple to do would be to play the third of the I chord, leading into the IV chord. For example, if it was G to C, then I'd played a G for most of the first bar, but at the end, say for an eighth note I'd play a B and lead into the C. You could also play an A and the a B and lead into a C, but you kind of get the idea. I find there isn't a tonne of room for very busy scale runs (especially in mine, where we have a vocalist, keys, two guitars, drummer and myself) but when you do have some room within the chord, it's nice to open up with some arpeggiatted ideas. Another tip for spicing it up; a lot of the chords are simple major or minor chords, but when there are more exciting chords, e.g. sus4 or 7th chords, or inverted chords (also known as slash chords, it basically means that a different note is the root of the chord) then observe the difference in notes and play to that. Don't necessarily sit on that weirdy note (like the fourth) because when the bass does it, it sounds a little bit off, but to incorporate it in a little riffy idea is a really smooth way to make it more exciting.

2) Walking isn't necessarily the only way to play the right hand, but it's kind of the basic way. For your issue, it sounds like you just need to smooth out your technique. Work on scales and chromatics to a metronome, from slow to fast and concentrate on smoothing out the right hand and connecting the right hand with your left hand (this may be the issue here, as you're using a finger not previously coordinated with your left hand).

3) For good quick drills look at the Bass Fitness book by Josquin des Pres. It's a book of easy (well, at first, if you don't pay attention ) and fast chromatic exercises. It's just 200 (essentially 400 as all 200 hundred are giving up the neck and down the neck) simple one bar lines that you can play over and over again to increase finger strength, dexterity, endurance, basically anything you care to focus your attention towards. The first exercise is pretty simple it's playing 1-2-3-4 on the E string, then the A string then the D then G.
#6
JazzRockFeel has given you some solid advice here, so I'll just add a few additional comments / pointers.

#2. What you are doing is called hooking (playing with one finger). Unless your last name is "Jamerson" its going to hold you back considerably in your playing. Get yourself a loud metronome and practice alternating fingers as suggested above. Its going to seem awkward at first, but with some concerted practice it will come over time.

#3. On practicing . We all have different approaches as to what to practice, but do make scale and arpeggio work part of that. It may seem mundane and droll inducing but it pays off big time. And the best advice I can give you is to record yourself periodically and keep a practice log. Both will help you track your improvement over time and show you the areas you need to focus on to improve.
#7
Quote by MelodicSlap
dont focus on technique or theory.. just play

that sounds cliche but there is no better advice


This.


Is bull****.

I think getting a teacher would be greatly benificial to your technique, even just one lesson so you know what you should be doing, then you can continue on your own, as you seem to be ****ing up majorly by the sound of things.
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