Re: 5 string / fretless instruction

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Posted by Ben on May 16, 2000 at 02:25:48:

In Reply to: 5 string / fretless instruction posted by Dave Patterson on May 15, 2000 at 12:04:35:

: I recently purchased a 5 string fretless bass and I'm looking for any instructional info on both 5 string and fretless techniques.
: I don't read musical notation, but do read tabulature.
: My 4 string fretted bass skills are faily well developed, so I'm mostly interested in gaining skills in the 5 string and fretless areas, which are both new to me.
: Also, any recommendations on fretless players to listen to would be appreciated. My favorite fretless players are Jimmy Johnson and Pino Palladino (who now plays fretted bass).

: Thanks in advance,
: Dave Patterson

Hey Dave

Well first offwhen playing a 5 string all you really need to know is that the extra string is usually a low B so therefore you can play lower notes than a four but also can use hand positions futher up the neck (great to avoid hand cramps). Secondly if this is your first 5 string you may need to modify your right hand technique so that you reduce unwanted string noise. I use the floating thumb method but you shpould do whatever works for you.

As for the fretless side of things you'll need to decide where you are going to play the notes ie in front of or behind the lines (I'm assuming you have a lined neck). When you decide where your're going to play then you need to have the bass setup so that your intonation will be in (with your playing style). When getting used to playing fretless it can be helpful to record things using a fretted instrument and then playing along with the tape using the fretless. Other than that just have fun.

Players you should check out are obviously Jaco but also Kai Ekchardt on a recording by Curandero called Aras. His playing is pretty damn cool and most of the fretless on the album is solos, aside from that it's just a damn good album. Well I hope this helped a little, keep groovin. C-YA.


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