Re: Meshing

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Posted by Jorquoi on September 18, 2000 at 14:37:55:

In Reply to: Meshing posted by Nathan on September 12, 2000 at 20:08:48:

Well, I mostly want to agree with the others.

If it's your tecnique that is the bandit, and not some funny reverb thing, I'd suggest playing slower.
Since you say you play fast, I imagine you being in a rock/metal band of some sort. I'd like to add that giving a slower byt steady bass beat to the faster guitars really give a powerful effect. If you construct your own basslines, I'd advice you to go for a slower pace. Maybe even very slow. If you look at most basslines you se a rootnote, and then a bunch of dribble that you can cut out if you can't master the speed it takes to play it. The effect will not be very noticeble for the listeners... unless it's a bass solo obviosly ;O)

Anyhoo. As I said, this is if your fingers are just to slow and you don't mute your strings well.... Then I'd allso suggest to practise your scales over and over in a slow pace. Don't fall into the trap that so many people (dare I say mediocre guitarrplayers) fall into when they practice. Namely play them faster then their fingers can keep up, just becous their fauvorite player does it. (nevermind that player probably played for years and years) This WILL lead to some really horrific tecnique. It's better to start very slow. Maybe one note per 2 seconds (use a metronome) and really think and analyse what you are doing wrong, and if you aren't. Then figure out how you can improve perfection hehe.

Ok, ofcourse you shouldn't do this all the time. When you feel you got it down pretty perfect. Speed up. Continue to do so, using a metronome, until you feel you can't keep up with your metronome. Now, I should point out, don't go from 40 bpm (beats per minute) to 100 directly. Try increasing by 5 or less. That way you will get a pretty exact reading of when things start to fall apart.

Ok, now that you know when your fingers want to quit, set your metronome back about 5-10 bpm. Now play at this speed for a few minutes. If your fingers, wrists, hands or some other part of your body start to hurt, then you are doing something wrong. If so, decrease speed and try to figure out what you do wrong. When you've figured that out, at slow speed, play it right for a few minutes so that you and your fingers feel what you changed and it will allow them to know what's right (your fingers). Now up the speed to the top speed (not until it fell apart. The fell apart minus 5bpm I mean). This speed will start to feel comfortable and painfully easy after a few days of practise. Remember to play at your top speed each day though. An additional thing, and this is my personal opinion and prople might totallt disagree ith me, but I'd say do NOT try to increase your speed until after the few days. In my experiance, if you do, you will not gain speed faster, you will more likely just increase the risk of bad form. So, if it gets boring, let it be that then. After all, you are only going to be playing at this speed for a few days, and a few days won't kill you. The benefit will be better form, and you will make a bigger jump in speed, which is a big plus, right? ;O)

Now that your current speed feel easy and boring (say after 5-10 practise hours) you can again try to slowly increase speed. You will surely be able to up it a few bpm. Do the whole thing over. play until it falls apart, lower it 5 bpm. Train a few days. Max out, lower 5 train....and so on.

If speed is your goal, this will give results fairly quick. After a month you will have increased your speed and accurasy quite a bit. Oh, and a note on accurasy. If you play your scales at (number taken out of the air) 120bpm but you get that mesh thing going, then you are playing to fast. The mesh thing is what usually happens when you play too fast. And when I say "fall apart" the mesh thing is included. So, when your sound get meshy, your fingers can't keep up, you miss notes, jump notes and so on, that is the falling apart bit!

I've been playing for quite some time and I can say that you will have to practise scales until you die. You are never finished with scales. You can always make things better and faster. Ofcourse, you will get faster and more accurate, but you can allso improve fingering, thumbmovement, maybe you can try to use more of your right hand fingers when you play and so on.

For additional practise in speed, I suggest searching the net for notes (or tabs) that involve big jumps. With this I mean notes that are far from eachother. As you probably won't be playing scales when you play your music, you need to practise as many different ways of aproaching the notes as possible to get your fingers used to the movement.
This is kind of hard to explain, but when I was starting out on bass, and got into the more advanced stuff I would sit and pluck the notes veeeeeeeeery slow (since I sucked) over and over and over and over, this was generally just a drag and not fun at all. However, after doing that for quite some time, I was able to play it really really fast since my fingers knew what to do. In other words, I didn't have to think on what I was doing. I just though "Ok, now do that" and my fingers did it for me.
That probably souned really stupid if you didn't get my point, but when you get more advanced, your fingers will eventually start to almost be as a second language. In my case, I think "Ok, now I want this" and my fingers play it for me. I'm allmost like a listener when I play. Anyway... my point was, that this came from some really agonizing and boring practise when I was younger.

Not to say that practise need to be boring. That's why I say, in addition to the scales (you can't ascape them hehe) you should find some challanging basslines and play them as fast as you can since the aim here was after all, speed. (remember, same thing as with the scales... minus 5 bpm)

So.. go look for some good lines from your fauvorite bands and play away.

Ok, I went on for a bit I notice now heh. Sorry. Hope this helps you.

: I'm just beginning bass and when I try to play my bass fast, like one note after the other, the notes all mesh together to form one, annoying sound...I'm wondering if I'm doing something wrong and there's a teqchnique I don't know about or if there's something wrong with the amp or something...thanks for you help.

: Nathan

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