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A Bass Lover's Guide To The Bass Guitar

Acoustic Bass GuitarSince the beginning of music and the dawn of musical composition there has always been a demand for low-pitched instruments. In nearly all modern musical arrangements the most desired instrument is a bass guitar.

The bass guitar is a stringed instrument which usually has four strings and is often tuned one octave lower than a regular guitar, although obviously many tuning configurations are possible. Another difference between bass guitars and regular guitars is the fact that some bass guitarists prefer to remove the frets from the necks of their instruments. This fretless variation was first used on a bass guitar, but many guitar players are now following suit. Bass guitars may be either electric or acoustic, but electric versions are far more widely used and popular.

There are many methods to playing a bass guitar, and each method suits different styles of music. One might play a bass guitar with their fingers only, using their fretting hand to depress the strings and choose notes while their other hand plucks the strings. This fingerstyle method is prominent in all styles of music where bass guitars are used and is sometimes said to be the most versatile way to play.

Another way to play a bass guitar is with a guitar pick. The strings of the bass are simply struck with a pick, and sound is produced. This pick style of playing is just as popular, if not more so, than the fingerstyle method.

Usage of Modern Bass Guitars

Musically, the bass guitar is not as versatile as a regular guitar. Having two less strings makes less chord tones available, which limits the bass guitar to a more rhythmic role instead of a melodic one. In modern rock, a genre the electric bass guitar is well suited for, the bass guitar usually forms the backbone of a song along with the drums. by playing single notes in a rhythmic fashion, the bass moves the song along from chord to chord and keeps the music going. In more extreme hard rock and metal music, the bass is often distorted much like an electric guitar and played just as quickly as the lead guitar player might play.

Jazz is another musical genre in which the bass guitar is often heard. Jazz often uses swing rhythms, and since the bass guitar is an important part of all rhythm sections, you can often feel the bass pushing the music along. In jazz, one type of bass line is very common: the walking bass line. In walking bass lines, chord tones are played one after another, one note per beat, hitting every beat of the measure. Even though walking bass lines were first developed on upright basses before normal bass guitars were made, the walk is still used in jazz today.

Although the bass guitar may seem like an instrument that lacks versatility, looks can be deceiving. The bass guitar can be played in a variety of ways and is used to fill roles in many different musical genres.

By Bryan R Price - -  

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