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#1
Ok, my bro seems to think that bass is a percusion instrument, along the lines that it provides the beat to a song. Now Im a guitarist, dont flame me, and I am now really not sure.

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#2
i wouldnt say it is, given its a bass GUITAR.

i know someone is gonna say this, but listen to korn, hah.

the only bass i would call percussion...
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#3
its really not a percussion. Though I play bass in the marching band with the percussion section, but only because I just stand on the side of the field and play instead of marching.
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#4
Wouldnt slap bass be considered percussion?

lol, ah heck if i know, i never thought of it as a percussion instrument
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#5
not a percussion instrument, a RYTHMN instrument. two different things. the bass isn't physically a drum, but it has a similar role. thats what you're bro is probly talking about. But recently (ok not THAT recently) a lot of bassist have been putting bass in the spotlight and moved from holding down the groove, to providing the lead melody.
#6
I think of it as some where between a percussion instrument, as you can do percussive techniques on it and it keeps the beat, and a melodic/instrument with a definite pitch instrument because you can change the notes and sometimes you will find the bass having the melody or soloing. The official group of the bass is a stringed instrument.
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#7
im pretty sure percussion means it is plucked strummed hit or slapped in some way....i never thought of it as that but technically it is look up the definition of a percussion instrument...

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#9
Bass is a stringed instrument, traditionally used for rhythm, though sometimes used for leads. Like guitar, it can used to make percussive sounds, but this is not enough to qualify it as a percussive instrument.

There's no way you can classify it in a group filled with drums, cymbals, congas, timbales, ago-gos, bells, etc.
#10
Quote by mangablade
not a percussion instrument, a RYTHMN instrument. two different things. the bass isn't physically a drum, but it has a similar role. thats what you're bro is probly talking about. But recently (ok not THAT recently) a lot of bassist have been putting bass in the spotlight and moved from holding down the groove, to providing the lead melody.



true, even though fieldy is a percussion bassit not only did he say it in an interview, but listen to the dam songs! lol
#12
Percussion literally means you hit things...which you don't do.
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#13
Quote by That_Pink_Queen
Percussion literally means you hit things...which you don't do.

slap is hitting. and congrats on the modifying.
#15
this is sad... 13 posts and what.. 2 get it right?

the bass guitar is a stringed instrument, it evolved from the violin ffs.

wtf, rhythm instrument? since when has that been a category? perhaps this is why we dont get the respect we think we deserve.

it uses percussive techniques to emulate percussion, but it cannot be considered a percussive instrument because of it.

unless of course he's referring to the bass drum, like in marching bands, than yeh thats a percussion instrument no doubt.
#16
Dammit i'm sick of guitarists thinking that bass is their backup rythem or the dude that makes the heavy sound. Bass work is just as important as guitar work, its people who dont understand this who fail.
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#17
If he was talking about bass drums, why would he post it in a bass guitar forum? =P
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#18
Quote by Koolcow
hes talking about the bass drum (percussion). Not the bass guitar.



Ya mate, Im talking about bass guitar.

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#19
If bass is a percussion instrument, then so is guitar, and violin and every other stringed instrument. So no, bass isnt percussion. And guitar can be a just as much rythm instrument as bass. Listen to Primus. Les Claypool has all the cool harmony parts, and the guitarist is mainly just a backup.
#20
Not to start this again, but it's not a Bass guitar, it's an Electric bass. Anywho, Bass is not a percussion instrument, it's simply a stringed instrument that is mainly used to keep time and rythm for the band. There are many exeptions to that I.E Victor wooten, Jaco, Flea, Sheeman, and many others. Bass is a stringed instrument and a direct descendent of the Stringed Bass, which is defiently not a percussion instrument.ish
#21
technically playing slap makes it a percussion instrument but plucking doesnt. because when you play slap youre making the sound by hitting something, but plucking or picking your pulling it back and letting it go. but its not a percussion instrument no, its a rhythm instrument
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#22
Playing slap doesn't make it a percussion instrument. It gives the bass a percussive element. There's a difference. Striking the strings with your thumb is a far cry from pounding a timpani with a mallet.

Also bass has traditionally been a rythm instrument, but it isnt strictly for rythm. Stop saying its a rythm instrument, and go listen to Jaco Pastorius, Stanley Clarke, Victor Wooten, Primus, and hell even the odd Red Hot Chili Peppers song.
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#25
Socko: im thinking in roles.

in like the literal meaning, of course bass is a stringed instrument

but in the ROLE meaning, (role of the instrument) its traditionally a rythmn section instrument.
#26
Quote by Bumper
^Even a brass or woodwind?



or maybe a stupid kid who wants attention?

naw, i think you know what meant. you decide the role your instrument plays.

and i say again, technicality sucks
#27
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#28
Quote by mangablade
Socko: im thinking in roles.

in like the literal meaning, of course bass is a stringed instrument

but in the ROLE meaning, (role of the instrument) its traditionally a rythmn section instrument.

ur thinking the entirely wrong way then. this thread is about classification of instruments, not roles in a band. the role of an instrument changes entirely genre to genre, however its classifcation never changes. in old school jazz and blues, guitar is primarily rhythm, and winds and brass instruments were leads.
#29
I guess if you use it to beat up your idiotic drummer it would be a percussion insturment.

And if slappping makes it a percussion insturment, so do hammer ons.
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#30
Quote by notoriousnumber
Ok, my bro seems to think that bass is a percusion instrument, along the lines that it provides the beat to a song. Now Im a guitarist, dont flame me, and I am now really not sure.




providing a beat to a song seems like a Role to me.
#31
I guess it could be used as one. I suppose that if you learn some drum theroy and played some cool slap rythms on it, you could use it that way, but generally its a rythm instrument.
AND ITS AN ELECTRIC BASS, NOT A GUITAR!
#34
Quote by Bumper
^Is a baritone guitar, a guitar?

Yeah, cause its tuned to the Spanish tuning- 4th, 4th,4th,4th, Maj3, 4th, so that it resolves back to the original note- in this case, B , unlike a bass, which keeps going in stright 4ths. The tuning is what truely defines a guitar.

And besides, a bass isn't a guitar, its much better.
#35
I like to think of bass as a cross between a guitar and a drum. It can be used like a guitar or it can be used like a drum. Its a very versatile instrument.
#36
^I've always thought of it as a drums set with strings. Its what glues the two together in a standard rock band anyways.
#38
Quote by MastaBassist10
Yeah, cause its tuned to the Spanish tuning- 4th, 4th,4th,4th, Maj3, 4th, so that it resolves back to the original note- in this case, B , unlike a bass, which keeps going in stright 4ths. The tuning is what truely defines a guitar.

And besides, a bass isn't a guitar, its much better.



So if I tune my high C string to B, then it's a guitar?


I like you mastabassist, you're the only one who i've talked to so far about the "bass: is it or isn't it a guitar?" subject who's made any sense. I still don't agree, but at least you've got a good basis for your belief.
#39
^In theroy, yes, because it resolves back to a B, hence completing the pattern of 4th 4th 4th 4th maj3rd 4th, but I'll have to ask my teacher to make %100 sure. And I'm glad I made sense, I've spent a lot of time "crusading" my argument that a bass is not a guitar.

Quote by madbasslover
bass is the same kind of instrument as a guitar. it provides rhythm. the only band that uses bass as "percussion" is korn.
You'd be surprised, there are pleanty of fusion and world instrumentalists who use bass and bass-like instruments percussively, but in terms of well known bands, yes they are.
I myself am trying to learn some drum theroy (when I have time, hopefully I'll have more time when school lets out) so I can play drum rythm techniques on my bass.

The bass is very versitile, it can be played as a rythm instrument, percussively, or even like a piano, hammering on and pulling off the bassline and tapping the melody.
Last edited by MastaBassist10 at Jun 4, 2006,
#40
Our jazz band at school refers to me and the guitarists as the rhythm section. That's how I see it.
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