i'm competent (but not brilliant) on bass and really really wanna get into a band. problem is i want to know the fretboard before i join a band coz it'll make life easier. anybody got any reasonably quick methods to learn the fretboard???

as you can see both of those notes is an A

learn the octave shape, thus if you know the notes along the E and A strings you know all of the notes on your bass
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I just learnt it by remembering the strings (EADG), knowing hat the fifth fret on each was the same as the next string and it just came to me. Really.
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A, A#/Bb, B, C, C#/Db, D, D#/Eb, E, F, F#/Gb, G, G#/Ab THese are the notes in order... If you were on the E string just count up E next fret would be F next fret would be F#/Gb then so on.
Just learn the Major scale the rest is easy and automatic.
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Just learn the Major scale the rest is easy and automatic.

Scales, arpeggio shapes and octave shapes will help. Also, if you can sight read, learn a few melodies on bass, esp. in the upper frets (> 10).
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Play the natural scale in both fifth and seventh positions.(A minor and C major) For the first position just get beginner book that should get you competent.



Say the note names as you go. As reference the Fifth fret E string is A. The Seventh B. Once you have that down do it in thirds with note names. Then do it with the unison (everytime you play an fretted A play the A string, Fretted D, D string etc.) Then thirds and unison. Beyond the twelfth fret you're just starting over. To learn the notes in between these two scales shouldn't be too hard.
I learnt it by using a piano and remember which notes had sharps/flats and then working it out slowely, after a while I just remembered
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Knowing the whole 5th fret is the next string down is helpful. Another thing is knowing the 7th fret is an octave higher than the string below. Like the E on an A string is the 7th fret and is one octave higher than the E string.

The site aixelsydevahi posted is good as well.
start on the G string and set your metronome to a low level, start with the first A on the G string, and by the next tic of the metronome, move to the next A on that string. then move up to the D string and on the next tic you should play the next A, then the next, then move to the A string and repeat, then the E and repeat. Then go back to the G string and start on B. over the month, just keep upping the tempo to make you move faster. eventually you will be able to move like a bullet around the fretboard. Also, as Anarkee said, two-octave major arpeggios are brilliant as they make you think ahead to the next note.

Do that for ten mins a day and within a month you will know the fretboard better than your willy
Last edited by Applehead at Feb 19, 2007,