33

With long open strings, the span to reach notes especially at the nut end would be too much for a lot of players if it retained the 5ths pattern of tuning. Making the tuning in fourths means that the left hand can encompass three notes in a scale and then move across to the next string in the same hand position. That said, it's not difficult to slide up a ...


15

What you seek, my friend, is "the groove". As you're discovering, there's more to it than the mechanical (or even mathematical) approach of playing certain notes with a triplet rhythm. While your approach is technically correct, I'm guessing it lacks the feeling you're looking for. That's what's known as "groove" or being "in the pocket" or (especially ...


13

It's an extension that allows the low E string to drop to low C. A lot of modern orchestral music has been written for extended range basses, and so professional bassists should have this. There are little fingers that can pinch the string off at any of the half steps along the length. It's not standard simply because it's an added cost, and people who ...


12

As far as I can find, it was likely just a really big double bass! Whilst it may appear somewhat equivalent to the octobass - it is different to the maintained examples in the Musée de la Musique and Musical Instrument Museum in that: a) It has 4 strings, rather than 3; b) Octobass's appear to normally have a extension mechanism for the 'fingerings', to ...


12

Generally it is to do with speed/tempo. Poco= a little, meno = less, so, a teensy bit slower. Slower than marked, or slower than you played the bit before. Often followed by 'mosso'.


11

Effectively, the image and video prove that a double bass is stronger than you imagine. There are angles at which you wouldn't want to step on a double bass, but at the positions shown, it will safely hold an average weight person. You wouldn't want to try this with an expensive instrument, but a rockabilly bassist is unlikely to be using a high-end bass. ...


11

I'm assuming we are talking about natural horse hair and not synthetics. From what I understand, the white hair is finer and preferred by violin and viola players. The black hair is the coarsest and strongest and used almost exclusively in double bass bows. It 'grabs' the string better and is said to give a grittier sound. Here is an article from Strings ...


10

It's the tenuto sign. It means that the note should be emphasized, by either playing it slightly louder than the rest or holding it to its full length. Wikipedia explains it pretty well.


10

I can think of two reasons: Bass is difficult enough the way it is. If you were to play it like a cello, you would need a) much more frequent position changes, and/or b) a strong, independent and wide-reaching (much wider than on cello with its shorter scale) pinky. I think most bassists never use the pinky on its own at all (or do they?), because a bass ...


9

It is much easier to balance the bass sitting on a stool than it is standing. When on a stool, you can take your left hand entirely off the bass without it sliding; but when standing, I have found that a small amount of the bass's weight will always be on the thumb of your left hand. For this reason I always prefer sitting to standing, but it's possible to ...


9

There is a difference between "on the string" staccato and "off the string" staccato with a host of subtle variations (such as spiccato, slurred-staccato, martele, and many others.) The type of staccato you use depends on the context and the sound that either your or someone else is looking for. I would consult a bass player for the correct way to perform ...


9

Electric bass strings are much thicker, hence heavier, than electric guitar strings - this allows them to sound at a much lower frequency without needing double the length. (Guitars have scale lengths in the region 24-25 inches, electric basses around 30-34 inches depending on the style. The thickest guitar strings are usually a single steel core with a ...


9

The "double" in double bass is due to its range compared to the cello which is an octave lower so it's "double the bass" compared to the cello. The names contrabass and double bass refer to the instrument's range and use in the contra octave below the cello, also called the 16' octave relative to the church organ. --Source


8

When one plays a walking bass, one uses all sorts of notes that are not necessarily included in the underlying chord. It is not just going up/down an arpeggio. In 4 time, generally 1st and 3rd beats will be played on notes from the chord, but not always. The dominant chord is there to take the music back to tonic (home), so the G is the 'right' bass note to ...


8

Used like this "Latin" is a rather non-specific term. Markings denoting specific styles of Latin American Music, for instance Bossa-Nova, Samba, Mambo, Rumba, Salsa etc. would suggest particular associated rhythmic patterns, particularly for bass and drums. However, this generic use of the word "Latin" leaves a lot of room for interpretation by the performer;...


8

Look at this video, particularly from 1'35" You finger from the left (player's view). The 'clips' are on the right. They don't obstruct fingering.


7

You would need to double the length if you used the same strings under the same tension, but they're not. Bass strings are usually thicker and vibrate slower. If pitch were purely a function of string length you wouldn't be able to tune a fixed-length instrument.


7

Seemingly odd question! I guess they'll both sound and play about the same, and if it's mainly for home practice, colour shouldn't be an issue. One of the reasons solid colours are cheaper is that the wood doesn't have to be bookmatched or even have a nice grain pattern, because it's been painted over. That may very slightly affect the sound, but for ...


7

Double Bass does not imply a Single Bass instrument: but I was under the impression that the cello was a "tenor" instrument, rather than a "bass" one. Perhaps the cello is a tenor instrument in terms of the entire range of instruments, but until the double bass was invented, it was the bass voice relative to the rest of the violin family. During the ...


7

Since the standard 4 string double bass only goes down to E, and the cello down to C, this has been an issue for centuries. Many 4 string basses these days have an extension device fitted to the E string which enables Eb, D, Db and C when needed. This might be a cheaper option for you. Also, plenty of 4 string players are quite happy to tune down to a D ...


6

It is important to remember that you are a human being first, a musician second, and a bassist third. Musical instruments are not monogamous. As a musician, you feel a need (on some level) to express yourself. The manner in which you do so may change throughout the course of your life, and that's okay. Personally, I cycle through several instruments, ...


6

The same question for strings in general is discussed here. Here are a few good quotes from that discussion: The truth is that you want strength at the heel of the neck, you want slimness where your fingers need to go the most, and you don't want a baseball bat for your neck and Then there is the matter of the amplitude of a vibrating string. As you ...


6

Extended range basses have become all but standard in professional orchestras. Lots of music uses it, so you might as well have it. In the US, the preference (for whatever reason) is for the E-string extension to C on a four-string bass, whereas in Europe they prefer the 5-string instrument. Similarly, the bass clarinet extension to low C (the "normal" ...


6

The measure in question is a straightforward melodic minor scale. It is an "Etude for String Bass" so presumably there are no other instruments possibly playing (or having played) a different C. There is no similar/transposed passage in the vicinity that would require an accidental/natural. So you are correct in being irritated: this particular natural is ...


6

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slam_Stewart "Leroy Eliot "Slam" Stewart (September 21, 1914 – December 10, 1987) was an African American jazz bass player whose trademark style was his ability to bow the bass (arco) and simultaneously hum or sing an octave higher." I believe that's what you're hearing here. I'm also guessing it's the same as this recording ...


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