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6 Bass Tone Fixes (Beginners, Stop Sounding Like a Newb)

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  • Published on Jun 13, 2019 veröffentlicht
  • 👉 My full beginner bass course: yeah.bassbuzz.com/tone
    You might not even KNOW that your bass tone sucks right now - but you’ll have it fixed by the end of this lesson.
    When I was a beginner, I didn’t really even know what bass tone was. I was so focused on learning technique, theory, and playing songs, that I would have had no idea if my tone was any good or not.
    In this video, I’m gonna teach you all the stuff I wish someone had taught me in my first year of playing.
    First of all, what is tone? I’ll give you a simple functional definition, plus show you some examples of different tones so you can hear for yourself.
    Then it’s on to our 6 Bass Tone Fixes. But first I had to throw in Fix #0, because SO many beginners make this mistake with their tuning…
    Fixes #1 and #2 are about what you do with your plucking hand, which is where tone starts. (a great bassist can make even crappy gear sound good because they know what to do with their hands)
    In Fixes #3 thru 6, I’ll walk you through the gear basics you need to know to fix your bass guitar tone. (and I’ll skip all the stuff you DON’T need to know right now) Once you get your strings, pickups, bass knobs, and amp EQ dialed, you’ll have seriously legit tone on your side.
    Now that you’ve got that killer tone, click subscribe so I can help you more with your bass playing: yeah.bassbuzz.com/subscribe
    #basstone #basseq #beginnerbasslessons
  • MusicMusic

Comments • 2 379

  • BassBuzz
    BassBuzz  3 years ago +1016

    PICK PLAYERS SUCK? Hell no. There are tons of amazing bassists who I love who use picks - Paul McCartney, Sting, Tim Lefebvre, Matt Freeman, Bobby Vega, Carol Kaye, Justin Chancellor, to name a few (Clip-Share em!). I actually cover this point in my Myths video here clip-share.net/video/dh07nFxnT-U/video.html
    I also agree with all the comments that make the point that tone is completely subjective and totally dependent on what it is you’re trying to achieve. My goal with this video was to help >>beginners

    • Wayne Green
      Wayne Green Day ago

      McCartney started out as a guitarist.

    • mace stevens
      mace stevens 2 months ago

      Mary did you know

    • Chart Action
      Chart Action 5 months ago

      I think Mark Hoppus plays with a pick maybe Fat Mike from Nofx too. Personally I only use a pick

    • Up North Cabin Constructs
      Up North Cabin Constructs 5 months ago

      Doug Pinnick!!!

    • motarski
      motarski 7 months ago

      Picks is for the ones who failed miserably at guitar and switched to bass

  • Casey Braunger
    Casey Braunger 3 years ago +675

    As someone who's played bass for over 20 years, I appreciate that you use entry-level gear in your instructions. For newer players it can be discouraging when the people trying to teach them are playing $3k bass on 4x10 200watt stack (or more) while the student is playing a $200 Squire on 1x10 50watt combo.

    • Richard Marlborough
      Richard Marlborough Month ago

      @fridge my harley benton £137 fretless plays better than my £650 ibanez sr600. the neck might warp in 6 months but at the moment it is unreal. plays like a dream

    • Bass Advisor
      Bass Advisor 4 months ago

      I bought an old Academy bass and AXL amp for a student. 80€ everything. Once perfectly setup it sounds TERRIFIC. Actually the amp sounds better than mine (study volume of course).

    • Jackson Shelburne27
      Jackson Shelburne27 6 months ago

      Just get a sansamp bddi and your bass will sound amazing no matter what

    • THE LIFE OF ME
      THE LIFE OF ME 7 months ago

      Agreed!! My entire rig was under $2000 which is not bad imo!

    • fridge
      fridge 8 months ago

      200 bro im playing on a £100 bass

  • Drake Bergman
    Drake Bergman 3 years ago +144

    I'm a guitar player that's been playing for going on 15 years, and stumbled upon your channel a few days ago and have to say that you do this thing right. I love your approach and humor and look forward to clicking on the next video every time one ends. Flawless lessons for a dummy guitarist learning bass fundamentals too!

    • Jeff Knaus
      Jeff Knaus 2 years ago

      Right??! As we would say back in the day...
      This act kicks ass!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +10

      Thanks Drake!

  • Jacob Osborn
    Jacob Osborn 6 months ago +24

    Two things:
    -I noticed that depending on which pickup you want to accentuate on your bass (if your bass has more than one pickup) you pluck across the pickup you have selected so you can hear the intended sound of the pickup and ultimately your desired tone. Even with guitar I didn’t learn to do this (or not do this intentionally) until much later. And it bares mentioning.
    -Lastly to build off this video, it might be interesting for you to dive into how your favorite bass players tend to sculpt their tones, what styles of music use certain bass tones (funk, metal, pop, etc.), and of course how to achieve good bass tone with effects pedals like distortions/fuzz or what have you.
    This video is absolutely a perfect entry point for a beginner bassist like me and more or less can be directly translated to work for beginner guitarists as well (with a few minor differences). Amp EQ was the part I came for but I ended up learning so much more! Going to go give my StingRay some love.
    Thanks Josh!

    • Bizarrefruit
      Bizarrefruit 3 months ago

      You're right but It goes even further than that: On string instruments, where you pick fundamentally changes the sound produced by the string without even taking pickups into account. You get different tonality as different harmonics are accentuated. This works on acoustic instruments too so it isn't just about playing over the pickup or sound hole.
      It is more of a striking effect on guitar but the same thing happens on bass. If you look at 0:41 he is playing RIGHT next to the bridge, resulting in a very trebley sound. On guitar, I use that to great effect when playing the solo in 'Echo' by Incubus; with vibrato it makes the guitar sound like a koto. You can use the neck pickup and pick somewhere nearer the bridge to give more twang to your warm tone as an example.
      Go to the other extreme (playing over the board) and you get a 'oooooooey' sound that I describe as hollow, almost ghostly, especially on guitar. It becomes more evident the closer you get to the twelfth fret. On bass this is less obvious and can sound very dark which is what he was doing at 0:37. Mix this with a bridge pickup that is twangy and you can get some interesting sounds, a bit more warmth.
      Then there is all the goodness to be found in between, nothing says you can't change between them and I move my hand to different places all the time based on what kind of sound I want, closer to bridge, more twang, closer to neck more 'oooo' and warmth.
      I think the best advice is to use your ears, find what you like and don't focus too much on rules. As you play more you will find what you like and I don't think there is a tone that could be called 'wrong', others might hate it but just have a look at some of the crazy fuzz pedals and bit crushers there are out there: One man's trash is another's treasure.
      Just have fun, enjoy yourself and don't be afraid to experiment.

  • Javier Correa
    Javier Correa 3 years ago +229

    No. 7 mute the strings your not playing, it's a basic technique that gets you a better and cleaner sound.

    • Blind Justice
      Blind Justice 8 months ago +2

      @Alistair Explore different finger positions (which finger you are using and which fret you are playing the note on). For the higher notes,, you can often play the same note in three (or more) positions on the neck. You may be accustomed to using your index finger to fret a given position and by shifting to your middle or ring finger, allow yourself to mute with the index finger after the "pull off." Or, you are using your ring finger. By shifting to index or middle allows you to muffle the string with a quick, light squeeze of the ring finger.

    • Alistair
      Alistair 8 months ago

      @Calcifer Black how do I mute the higher strings that I've just played? such the G string

    • Calcifer Black
      Calcifer Black 2 years ago +25

      @Nicolas Kim Both. Personally, I recommend using your left hand to mute the strings higher (pitched) from wherever you're currently playing. You can use your thumb to mute those thicker strings while you're playing the thinner ones. If your hands are big enough, you can also sorta wrap your left hand around and use your thumb to mute the E (or B) string. Look up the floating thumb technique to learn more about muting with your plucking hand's thumb. Or look up videos on muting in general; there's tons of them. :)

    • Nicolas Kim
      Nicolas Kim 2 years ago +7

      With which hands do you mute with?

  • 100 ways to start a song
    100 ways to start a song 3 years ago +30

    good stuff mate! it's as hard for non-beginners to explain all this clearly (as it is so "self-evident") as it is for beginners to imagine it (as it is so "secondary"). keep up the good work!

  • Cadywelp
    Cadywelp 2 years ago +1288

    Him: "Hear the difference?"
    Me: "No"

    • Meltem H.
      Meltem H. Day ago

      😂😂😂

    • Chris LaPlante
      Chris LaPlante 3 months ago

      ha ha ! God bless your honesty 😉👍

    • M Krezanski
      M Krezanski 6 months ago

      the last note is the giveaway lol!

    • Jason L
      Jason L 7 months ago

      couldn't hear for the talking

  • Gongasoso
    Gongasoso 3 years ago +2827

    Tip number 7: get a fuzz pedal.
    Tip number 8: get an octaver pedal.
    Tip number 9: fire your guitar player and become the Royal Blood of acid rock.

    • A_Lonely_Guitarist
      A_Lonely_Guitarist 3 months ago

      bruh

    • The Copper Element Itself
      The Copper Element Itself 3 months ago

      @Gongasoso this superior race stuff reminds me of something...

    • Ethan B
      Ethan B 3 months ago

      Tip 10. Add guitar strings to your bass

    • Spam singles
      Spam singles 10 months ago

      @NumberNEINLarge They're both way cooler than Royal Blood too

    • Jess&John Reed
      Jess&John Reed Year ago

      Can't slap, that's why! And in a studio setting the tonal differences are miles apart, though you could get away in a live setting haha

  • Mysquaredontfit
    Mysquaredontfit 3 years ago +10

    I just found your channel and I really love what you do/how you go about doing it. No nonsense, no ego, easy-to-follow lessons that make the transition from guitar to bass incredibly comfortable and a lot less frustrating for someone like me. Thanks for all the hard work that goes into your videos and your dedication to keeping them coming. Cheers.

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +2

      Thank you so much! Glad you're enjoying, I'll keep them coming. :)

  • Jaribu
    Jaribu Year ago +15

    Those 3 year old strings sounded surprisingly good. For me, string life is the time between when new strings are broken in and when they die.

  • L H
    L H 3 years ago +4

    Another hit video from you. You put it all together in a very digestible way. Beginners like myself need the true down to basics. Great job Josh.

  • Brian Dickinson
    Brian Dickinson 2 years ago +5

    I never used a distortion pedal when I was younger. Now I always have a bit of distortion in my tone. It really helps the bass cut through the mix.

    • Lee Greer
      Lee Greer 10 months ago

      Boss distortion is the bomb! Highly recommend using one

  • Kyle C
    Kyle C 3 years ago +403

    Another tip for noobs is, you can’t tell what your tone should be until it’s in a MIX. The sound you love coming from your amp at home probably isn’t what sounds best with your band. Try to make a good rehearsal recording. This truer for bass than for any other instrument.

    • Juan Solos
      Juan Solos 2 years ago +1

      @CastleHill That's the worst advice I've seen in years... Yeah limit every bassist to a P or J bass.
      The Spector Legend 4 being Spector's low end basses makes any P-J bass to shame

    • Martin Luther ZING
      Martin Luther ZING 2 years ago

      This is why software amps are your best bet if you're recording. Unlike a physical amp, the tone can be tweaked long after the recording to best suit the mix.

    • My Man
      My Man 2 years ago

      @Nunya Business Prolly due to it having 24 frets or something.
      But yea I hate those too. Tone so thin it barely even stand a chance against a freaking hi hat.

    • Jbird
      Jbird 3 years ago

      Geri O'Neil lmao I see you found the post I was talking about lmao

    • Geri O'Neil
      Geri O'Neil 3 years ago +1

      @CastleHill Dude, you need to get over yourself in a big, big way. That's a complete crock. And usually, the people that say that don't ever play gigs.

  • Key Issues
    Key Issues 3 years ago +338

    Just found your channel! Bought my first bass this week and plan to use your videos to help me get started. Hope you keep posting regularly :)

  • Sam Elowitch
    Sam Elowitch 3 years ago +88

    It should be mentioned that new strings ought to be stretched a lot after installation but before playing. It helps with tuning stability.

    • P C
      P C 11 months ago +1

      @Sam Elowitch I have a pretty shit 90s no name bass and even that doesn't need multiple tunings day. In fact, it's stable enough I only tune it every couple of days and it's never off by much. And that's the case for most non shitty bases

    • Jess&John Reed
      Jess&John Reed Year ago

      @Sam Elowitch a stringed instrument player should in my opinion. It's a tell of a newbie, in my experience of course

    • Muse Nw
      Muse Nw Year ago

      @Sam Elowitch Same here.

    • Sam Elowitch
      Sam Elowitch Year ago +4

      @Muse Nw At a minimum, I tune every time I pick up my bass.

    • Muse Nw
      Muse Nw Year ago

      In a way yes, by letting them adjust after restringing the bass for a few hours, then intermittent/interval tuning in between to let them settle. but another thing to note is knocking your guitar (unintentionally) against hard surfaces can cause vibrations that can loosen your tuning, quite subtly, and temperature changes can also cause some minor shifts. nevertheless, tuning your bass regularly before you play it will keep these issues at bay.

  • Francois Gobbi
    Francois Gobbi 3 years ago +15

    Learning your pickups also means: find the right height for each side of each pickup to have the same output volume on each string.

  • TorTheWeirdo
    TorTheWeirdo 2 years ago +20

    As someone that grew up playing in concert and marching bands I didn’t even know ppl could play an instrument without tuning. That’s literally step number one 🙃

  • MOVIES
    MOVIES Year ago +10

    I have to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Been a musician for years but just jumped into bass thinking it was like guitar... lol, I was so damn wrong. Your videos def helped me on the right track to better playing and sound . Thank you again

  • MatDuck4130
    MatDuck4130 3 years ago +488

    Thanks for explaining flat / round wound and using PICTURES.

    • AxelSpott
      AxelSpott Year ago +1

      Mannnn that flat wound sound is where it’s at. So smooth and low

    • iBlindSamurai
      iBlindSamurai 2 years ago +1

      This video was the entire reason I switched to flats, and I really don’t ever want to change my p bass back to rounds.

    • 0000song0000
      0000song0000 3 years ago

      The fact it is the same time I see a pic of flatwounds (I play guitar since 2003, and moved to bass some years ago but they never carry flats in any store cause the cheapest set is 45 bucks so no one buys it *in my country)

    • John Durgin
      John Durgin 3 years ago +2

      It looked like the you were using coated flat wounds (maybe DRs?). Doesn't that dull the sound even more? Just wondering - I actually like that tone.

    • Lanaka
      Lanaka 3 years ago +12

      @BassBuzz "A single (GOOD) picture is worth a 1000 words." Excellent choices of pics too. In the beginning, I had to buy a set of each types to figure out visually/audibly the differences. Btw, I'm mostly flatwounds with short scales and roundwounds with full scale basses. Altho I have found there ARE a few cases where reversing string type works better. Currently am experimenting with mixed strings on a single bass.

  • yogaba
    yogaba 3 years ago +3

    As a beginner bass player, I really thank you for making it simple and understandable. I guess i’ll wait for a tutorial on mid tone for amps. Subbed!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +1

      You're welcome Shiro!

  • jdjk7
    jdjk7 5 months ago +2

    The two things that have really improved my tone lately are:
    a) sometimes, you need to turn the Bass knob down and turn the volume up.
    b) you can almost always boost some mid frequency to be more present. On my Ampeg amp, what I tend to do is engage the Ultra Low (mid cut at 500Hz) but then boost the 200Hz-300Hz range. This results in a tone that is more evened-out than a mid scooped tone but has a little more nuance than if I did nothing.

  • Dhruv Chandra
    Dhruv Chandra 3 years ago +4

    Thanks for being informative and genuinely fun!

  • Carl Korfmacher
    Carl Korfmacher 3 years ago +39

    It took me a long time to figure this out: your tone sounds totally different in your basement when you are sitting 3 feet away compared to when you are at a gig when the audience is 30 feet away or more. In fact, while you are playing a gig, if your amp is behind you, it will sound boomy with too much bottom, but if you walk out 20 feet is sounds pretty good and if you walk out 40 feet it sounds even better. Most amps are biased toward more bottom end, I think for this reason. The bottom end dies out rapidly from the amp to about 10 feet and then it sounds much better.

  • Ray DeCampos
    Ray DeCampos Month ago +1

    Best bass video I’ve ever seen!! Love the explanation of Jazz tones. I’ve look all over Clip-Share for that specific subject and this by far is truly the best. You have a new subscriber. Thank you!! 😊

  • warlok9
    warlok9 Year ago +6

    I was always taught to change one string at a time by luthiers to avoid totally releasing the neck tension unnecessarily. Still do it to this day.

  • Billy Rouse
    Billy Rouse 3 years ago +8

    As much as these fixes are great, here's another great tip: switch where you pick between the bridge and neck to change your tone, or even use a pick. Ultimately use guidelines to get a good start, then throw them out and do what feels natural. Most bassists will say only play with the drummer, specifically the kick drum. I play off of everything as a bassist. Also, if you're switching to bass from guitar, you might find it way easier to get a tone that's uniquely you by using a pick. I liked using Dunlop 1mm nylon picks, so my tone cut more.

  • Matthew N
    Matthew N 3 years ago +2

    Hey man, love your videos and teaching style. Teachers like you are what this country needs, highly informative and constantly entarnaining!
    Thank you!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      You're welcome Matthew!

  • luke211286
    luke211286 2 years ago +2

    I think mids are very important even to beginners. They dictate whether the bassists can get through the mix or not. At live settings, I tend to crank up my mids to full. I have to sacrifice my desired tone just so I don't get drowned by my bandmates.

  • bwhog
    bwhog 3 years ago +11

    The main point here wrt tone is "know what does what." Also take some time to experiment and hear how your instrument's tone controls interact with the amp tone controls. Once you understand that, then you can start to fine tune it. For the beginner playing with a group, probably your best bet is bridge pickup and your tone knob(s) down to minimum. (Rule #1 of playing with a group: Don't try to outshine the lead guitarist. You won't work much.) However, bass tone is a very subjective thing and depends a good deal on what you're playing with. Do you want to feel the bass more than hear it? Then see my remark about tone knobs. That's what you'll hear on a lot of classic rock. Do you want to hear your fingers/pick ala Iron Maiden? Is your bass a major component of the arrangement and needs to be heard on its own ala Rush? Are you simply octave-down weight for the guitar as in the case of a lot of metal music? Gotta answer all that to know what direction to go. Also remember that a bass with active pickups can be a very different animal than one with passive pickups. When in doubt, you can't really go wrong with a P bass. It is perhaps the most preferred bass of recording artists, producers, and engineers everywhere.

  • John Prinos
    John Prinos Month ago

    Great video! I wish I had access to these tips when I started. I’m enjoying a lot of the content on this channel.
    One thing I tend to do differently is I set my amp tone controls to neutral (12 O’clock) and adjust my bass tone controls to suit, opposite from what you suggest. I’ll play around with that.
    Do you have a video on playing with mids? I’d be interested on hearing your approach.

  • DarksideBallerina
    DarksideBallerina 3 years ago +4

    Thank you for the videos, I've been playing bass for literally a week and I need all the help I can get!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +1

      You're welcome! Congrats on starting bass. :)

  • Azurite Coast
    Azurite Coast 3 years ago +3

    One quick little thing about mids for beginners - if you're finding your bass isn't cutting through in a group setting, kill the bass slightly and get those low and high mids in play.
    Mids sound funky, but they're good for funk, and especially good for clarity in a mix.

  • TheEpongeMan
    TheEpongeMan 3 years ago +84

    Don't forget, what may sound shitty on its own might sound good in a mix

    • Sampo Kemppainen
      Sampo Kemppainen 3 years ago +5

      Almost always the case if there's not really expensive pro equipment.

  • Arthur Allen
    Arthur Allen 2 years ago +2

    Love your prestation in all your videos, and your ability to convey the lesson in a unique and fun way. Rock On

  • Jai Bhimadevi
    Jai Bhimadevi 3 years ago +6

    I usually do smaller gigs and don't need more than my b100 combo, but one feature it has that's a godsend is the frequency notch, which lets you dial out the "evil room resonance frequency" whatever it happens to be.

  • Netspin
    Netspin 3 years ago +13

    I've been wanting to play the bass guitar ever since I started playing it 60 years ago. For me your lessons for beginners are invaluable. Thanks.

    • Hot Vodka
      Hot Vodka 3 years ago +3

      Lol wtf does this even mean

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Glad I can help!

  • Mike McKaigg
    Mike McKaigg 3 years ago +2

    love this! Great video not only for beginners but for those who have been playing for some time just to revisit the fundamentals. For myself, EQ has been dependent on the room and the ensemble. I've played some venues where there is such a huge natural "boost" in the low end that I've had to turn the bass knob all the way down. Sounded like crap onstage but when I got a recording from the room the balance in the band was perfect. A GOOD sound tech can advise when you are playing in their house.

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +2

      Thanks Mike! Yeah, tuning the bass sound to a room is an art form for sure. Never a dull moment with live sound. :)

  • wayne anderson
    wayne anderson 3 years ago +9

    Great info! 👍🏼 I agree on a lot of it being subjective & depending on what sound you are trying to go for. I think that someone can be an overly picky tone nerd(as with any instrument) that you take the fun out of playing all together. Don’t let someone else’s opinion stop you from playing what you love. As you play more & more- you’ll discover what you like & don’t like on tones. I try to remember that 90% or more of the people listening to you play will not care or remember what you sounded like at all. Have fun & absorb knowledge from other musicians but DO NOT let someone else’s opinion stop you from playing & growing. 🤘🏼

  • Shane Edmonds
    Shane Edmonds 3 years ago +4

    Excellent video. Clearly went over all the relevant information and used the proper terminology. Thank you for posting and helping others not sound like turd.

  • Jason
    Jason 3 years ago +4

    Nothing wrong with playing with a pick so long as that's not the only style you practice. Don't put yourself in a box with your playing.

  • Anthony C.
    Anthony C. 2 years ago +3

    I personally love leaving my strings on for a while. Love when they get a tad darker :)

  • Zarya main
    Zarya main 3 years ago +1

    I didn't even realize you had a new channel, but of course this is fantastic content as always! Thank you for this.

  • John Kim
    John Kim 2 years ago +1

    Great video. When I first started out on bass, I blasted the tone and volume pups in my J bass not knowing any better. Finally figured out that picking, finger plucking, position of volume and tone knobs all made a huge difference.

  • Bruce Smith
    Bruce Smith 3 years ago +9

    Halfwound strings can sound cool. I swapped the flats off my fretless J-bass with halfwounds and got a little more high end tone which was pleasing.

  • soakedbearrd
    soakedbearrd Year ago

    I must say, as a COMPLETE beginner, I’ve watched about three of your videos and I’ve learned so much in them, thank you for that. Subscribed after the second video and I’m glad I did.

  • burningxdimx
    burningxdimx 3 years ago +16

    If you're a beginner quit worrying about your tone and keep practicing. Tone of sound is meant to fit a song as a whole, it's not something you just have to exist with forever.

  • Sharon Wilkins
    Sharon Wilkins 3 years ago +1

    You just made my learning experience so much fun love it keep up the good work josh

  • Senastra1
    Senastra1 3 years ago +4

    Thank you so much ! I have been playing for almost a year and this has been so helpful especially with getting the right tome from my amp .👍🏻

  • Muse Nw
    Muse Nw Year ago +1

    The first time i touched a bass, which was about six years ago, i was struggling to find my grip and had no knowledge whatsoever about the knobs at all. And after watching this video, I'd say that's the biggest tone fix I picked up. Now I'm in the clear about what the knobs on my bass do. Big thanks!

  • Kirb.E
    Kirb.E 3 years ago +5

    Awesome video. Been playing guitar for years but I’m trying to switch over to bass and i learned some helpful stuff from this vid👍

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Yes, come to the dark side! :) Glad to help.

  • StagnantExistance
    StagnantExistance 3 years ago +8

    When you were explaining about the different types of strings, I think you should have mentioned, that the strings are made of either stainless steel strings or nickel (there are some other types as well, but these are the most commonly used ones). Stainless steel strings will give you a brighter, aggressive sound, while nickels sound warmer and more mellow.
    As for the two pick-up configuration, it is worth nothing that running both pick-ups at full volume, will result in a rather dull tone, because they will cancel out some of each others' frequencies (mostly mids). So I would suggest having the neck pick-up at full volume and then dial in the necessary amount of volume from the bridge pick-up, until you reach the desired level of brightness in your tone. The blend knob is certainly easier to use, but it does not allow you two dial the same wide range of sounds as the two individual volume knobs.
    Another thing to keep in mind, when setting up the tone of your bass, is how it will sit in the band mix. What sound good soloed, does not necessarily sound good in the mix.
    Keep the videos coming !

    • senormedia
      senormedia 3 years ago +1

      I was given a set of copper strings once. They sounded glorious - for about a week.

  • Jewels/Julie Shelmire

    This video was very good and has a lot of great information. I started playing electric bass guitar July 2021 the first time in my life and bought an acoustic bass guitar 2 months ago. I love it. My boyfriend has played guitar, electric bass and banjo for many years. We go to music jams every week. I was on stage with him after I started playing the electric bass 5 weeks prior to that. It was awesome and scary at the same time.

  • Christine Marchant
    Christine Marchant 3 years ago +1

    I Loved this! Thanks so much. It's stuff I should have known - you explained it so clearly and it has made a difference. I'm looking forward to learning more!

  • Tom B
    Tom B 3 years ago +1

    I'm a guitarist who recently bought a bass because I got an injury to one of my left fingers. I really like the way you present these videos. No nonsense, good tips, and fun. Plus, your licks are awesome. You should teach some of those. Would love to learn them.

    • Tom B
      Tom B 3 years ago

      @BassBuzz Thanks Josh... yes maybe it is. I broke a tendon on my middle left hand finger about 3 months ago. It's just starting to get better. I find bass a bit easier to play because I don't need to curl my fingers as much as on guitar, using the flat side of the finger rather than the tip.
      PS... Some of the backing tracks you have are really cool. Where can we find those?

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Thanks Tom! Sorry you hurt your finger but sounds like it got you to start playing bass, so blessing in disguise. 🕵

  • Gemma Seymour
    Gemma Seymour 3 years ago +5

    You should immediately tune your instrument every single time you pick it up to play. If you are playing a gig, then you should check your tuning when you initially set up, immediately before you start your set, and in-between songs as often as you possibly can without bogging down the flow of your set.

  • Abigail
    Abigail 3 years ago +14

    I just got my bass a few days ago (ik I’m a super beginner) and this video was extremely helpful, thanks!! Definitely going to subscribe

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +2

      That's awesome Abigail Congrats on starting bass. :)

  • V_Athena
    V_Athena 2 years ago

    Been playing bass for a year and the brand of strings that I've landed on are Ernie Ball strings and they have that perfect zing to them that are perfect for me,I have also been using these tone fixes for 5 months and they have helped me improve.
    Thank you, Bass Buzz!

  • forsenE
    forsenE 3 years ago +5

    I would advice against using both (jazz) pick-ups for beginners. I might sound REALLY good by yourself but in the mix it's often a mid-scooped mess. Unless you slap or have a lot of room in the mix (like Marcus Miller or Flea on some records) you can get away with blending. On most occassion you want to dial one of the two back JUST a bit to get the mids back (Marcus Miller actually does this when switching from solo/slap mode to basic bassline mode).

  • Mo Dev
    Mo Dev 7 months ago

    Man as a long time bass player this is inspiring to get to basics and just play

  • Fedora_Trading
    Fedora_Trading 3 years ago +2

    Unfortunately had to figure a few of these out on my own (e.g., slightly pulling up on the strings, and adjusting fingertip angle to avoid nail-strikes). If one chases the sound and tone, they’ll eventually figure out what’s right and wrong (for them), but great to have guidance, so appreciated. 👍

  • Brenda Khoo
    Brenda Khoo Year ago

    thank you for this video; your pace and detailed instructions is perfect for me to share with my beginner bassists

  • mr4string
    mr4string 3 years ago +8

    Little expansion on the mids for anyone wondering. When messing with the mids with EQ at home, in practice or in recording find one that you like and sits well within the mix...thats fine and great. Changing Mid levels are more important when it comes to live performance and will change dramatically from gig to gig depending on the environment. If you're in a open space with lots of natural reverb you're going to want to boost the mids to in order to cut through that. Hopefully the tech guys will be good enough to account for this in most situations but if not, its always worth investing in a really long cable, or even a wireless setup so you can stand in the audience area during soundcheck to hear out for any adjustments you need to make.

  • Perseus
    Perseus 3 years ago +1

    These are very good tips for beginners.
    I have a caveat; learning to restring is a huge boon to anyone interested in learning how to play bass.
    Not only does changing strings get the player familiar with the instrument, it also forces them to tune, again and again (because new strings stretch quite a bit).
    I like the sound of new strings so when I was a poor kid with no money, and not able to afford a string change before every gig, I would boil my strings (I do NOT recommend this). If you aren't familiar with this practice, that's a good thing. It's like Russian roulette for which string will break first. The different metals in strings have different expansion rates so after being boiled and brought back down to room temperature, they lose quite a bit tensile strength to the point of brittleness. Boiled strings will sound exactly like a new set, but don't do it unless you have absolutely no money like I did and can't afford not to to keep up.
    By the way, when you change your strings, you should never pull all your strings off at once. When you do that your truss rod (the metal rod inside your neck the keeps it from warping) to flex inward without tension from any strings. This will cause many issues down the road. I am not sure why he did that in the video.
    Restring should be his next video. I am surprised there isn't one yet...

    • Graham Bell
      Graham Bell 2 years ago +1

      Ahhh the old 'truss rod myth' just keeps on going. I had no strings on my P bass for over six months... strung it up, good as new. These things are built to last.

  • Jeff Pattison
    Jeff Pattison 3 years ago +4

    It was nice to know that I was already doing all those things. I guess it helped to be a guitar player and recording engineer before taking up bass a year ago.

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Yep! Engineers know bass tone better than most bass players.

  • John Galaxy
    John Galaxy 2 years ago +1

    Very good explanations! Even a guitarist like me understands!

  • Rod DeShong's odds and ends

    I'm not a newb, been playing for 35 years, but I love your channel. It is interesting and keeps your attention to the subject at hand.....and I find it entertaining as well. I recommend beginners to your channel as a great place to start. Keep up the good work. Maybe some day I'll be as good as Josh newb!

  • Alan Doran
    Alan Doran 2 years ago

    Again ...... another excellent well detailed video. Thank you for your continued help. It’s refreshing to hear that you have not forgot how hard it is to be a true beginner. Help with what seems obvious to the seasoned bass player is a lifeline to help us on our journey.......... thank you
    All the best from Scotland

  • RRM
    RRM 3 years ago +3

    Some good advice for beginners what made it for me you showed the amp set up which makes a big difference so many people start beginner bass lessons showing all the parts of the bass and how to pluck or pick it and right through the lessons they never show an amp set up. I love the how to play lessons where they show all the notes to play and never show the amp settings. A beginner has no idea about drive compression gain etc which makes a big difference to what you are playing

    • RRM
      RRM 3 years ago

      @michael w I thought a sentence always began with a capital letter. I bow to your superior grammar.

  • Tiff Monique
    Tiff Monique 2 years ago +1

    I love your channel! It always makes me feel like I'm learning from a friend.

  • march angel
    march angel 3 years ago +3

    Great content, thanks for sharing. Medium strings sound great on jazz basses.

  • Parker Winters
    Parker Winters 6 months ago

    I just started playing bass a couple months ago. Your vids are AWESOME thanks man

  • Megan
    Megan Year ago

    I really love how you show different angles for fix 1

  • Christine Sabella

    Exactly what i needed, thank you for this!

  • James Anderson
    James Anderson 3 years ago +8

    Hey Josh, well done. I was tone deaf until I saw your video. Now I'm feeling more "equalized" and flat wound, or maybe I'm round wound, or well rounded. Either way , I'm better informed, thanks to you. Kudos! Job well done. I left the multiple "knob" jokes alone, because that's just wrong.
    Cheers!!! 👍💗😊

    • Coop_012
      Coop_012 3 years ago +1

      BassBuzz does that make you Mr. Thomas Anderson

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +3

      Haha, thank you for your great taste as usual, Agent Smith.

  • blink70
    blink70 Year ago

    I don't have a bass amp yet, however going through my mixer with sweepable mids teaches me quite a bit. Thank you for this video.

  • Bob West
    Bob West 3 years ago +1

    Nice overview. All good points.
    Fix #0 gets my vote,
    I used to have a guy in the band who either could not or would not tune properly.
    We'd secretly tune him when he went on a break.
    I also had a bumper sticker from one of the local music stores: "TUNE IT OR DIE!!"

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Haha! I'm so glad I've never had to secretly tune anyone while they were off getting a drink.

  • Bettsinator
    Bettsinator 3 years ago +1

    Just starting out, love the simple break down. I'll be referencing your videos a lot!

  • Hannah Burns
    Hannah Burns 2 years ago

    Thank you bass sensei I'm so glad you are here to help ❤️

  • Grant Koeller
    Grant Koeller 3 years ago +2

    Teach players the importance about being in tune, because all the music is built on top of your bass tone. You are the foundation. If you are out of tune than the entire group will be off. I love the KORG tuner's big display. This is useful for you to check your overall intonation on the bass. Play open string, now play string fretted up one octave. They should match, if not, then take it into a guitar tech, or learn how to set your intonation by watching video.

    • jhorneman
      jhorneman 3 years ago +1

      Grant Koeller *Literally* tip 0

  • turtlebeachpro0
    turtlebeachpro0 3 years ago +3

    Insightful. I'd say I'm intermediate, thank you. I'm taking all the help I can get to improve

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +1

      Glad to help Rees! And I definitely didn't know some of this stuff til I was intermediate either, nobody used to teach tone!

  • Francisco Lopez
    Francisco Lopez 3 years ago +2

    Great video! Learned a lot in just a few minutes. Thank you!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      Thanks Francisco! Glad it helped.

  • S H
    S H Year ago

    Pulling across instead of plucking. I have been playing guitar for 40 years and took up the bass a couple weeks ago. I can play stuff right off but I'm newbing it up big time. Your vids are super helpful.

  • TheBearKat
    TheBearKat 2 years ago +1

    watching your series is making me realize im a better bassist than I give myself credit for.

  • Bow Promise
    Bow Promise 2 years ago

    That plucking technique is exactly what I needed to know and came here for. I’m teaching myself and really enjoying bass but my plucking‘s been ugly!

  • Paul Marc Lalonde

    Tanks for making these .I’ve learned a lot from you 👍👌🙌🏻

  • Elijah Albuquerque • Music Studio

    Thank you! I'm an intermediate guitarist. I just got a bass for my Clip-Share cover videos. Loved the tips!

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +2

      You're welcome Elijah, hope it helps!

  • igor kevorkian
    igor kevorkian 3 years ago +1

    As a guitar player for decades who recently decided to pick up bass I appreciate this vid. I don't need an explanation of bass anatomy, notes on the fretboard or how to hold it.
    What I do need is practical tips on the technical differences of fingerstyle bass vs picking guitar strings. Picking up the bass gives me a new respect for better bass players I've jammed with over the years.

  • GooseDave62
    GooseDave62 3 years ago

    Good solid advice. On strings: for beginners on (usually) cheaper basses, it's better to change the strings (and take to tune) one at a time to keep tension in the neck, if you don't know/are not confident about trussrod adjustment. Also, always wash your hands before playing. Boil your strings to extend the life (they're fucking expensive) and use a string cleaner like Fast Fret occasionally. Finally, too much action is a tone/tuning killer - difficult this one, because most gear shops don't give a fuck about setting up beginner basses correctly - so learn from YT.

  • That Immo
    That Immo 3 years ago +1

    I'd add playing position to the Fix #4. It really changes the tone, too.

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +1

      Yeah, super important! Deserves its own video.

  • Jesse Dreher
    Jesse Dreher 2 years ago

    This is great! Thank you for taking the time to make this video.

  • Cynthia Armstrong

    All the questions that I didn’t know how to ask answered in one place! Excellent, thank you!!

  • Rick
    Rick 3 years ago +2023

    just tune your bass every time you play it

    • N_Rattlehead
      N_Rattlehead 2 years ago

      And invest in a proper tuner while you're at it. The pedals are great but I just use one that clips to my headstock. These kind go by the amount of vibrations so they're super accurate while not being super expensive. I can clip it right back on my bass stand during a gig after I'm done tuning. No biggie.

    • Lego Robotics 101
      Lego Robotics 101 2 years ago

      @precision Brown unlike mine I need new strings

    • precision Brown
      precision Brown 2 years ago

      That’s ridiculous. My fenders stay in tune after sitting in the closet for 5 years

    • Paavo Bergmann
      Paavo Bergmann 2 years ago

      That´s cheating. It´s not fair to the guitar guys. And it´s hard to keep your bass face when there´s used knickers thrown at your face, which is what´ll happen, and you have to deal with the guitar guys throwing a tantrum later. And you will never sound like real Punk.

    • Lego Robotics 101
      Lego Robotics 101 2 years ago

      I tried just to do it.....the horror........the horror

  • a_professional_geek
    a_professional_geek 3 years ago +1

    You're reviews are fantastic man, I'm a beginner and I'm wondering if you can make some tutorials on learning the fretboard and making your own riffs/basslines

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago

      For sure! Learning the fretboard basics - clip-share.net/video/tcok98Vk6uA/video.html

  • Dodds Tarun III
    Dodds Tarun III 2 years ago +1

    Honestly, it helps me a lot thanks man great explanation for a beginner like me.

  • AndJustinForAll
    AndJustinForAll 3 years ago +3

    I'm a guitarist that just picked up my first decent bass. This was Very informative
    Liked and Subbed \m/

  • DiegoVansante
    DiegoVansante Year ago

    As always, nice content and humor to blend it all out.

  • D P
    D P Year ago

    Don't cut your nails. It gives you 2x more tonal options. Use the pads when you want a scooped tone and use your fingernails when you want a treble plucky tone

  • SciFiArtMan
    SciFiArtMan 3 years ago +7

    The first tip for sounding good is to set your intonation properly, or have it done at a good shop if you're unsure how!
    All these other ideas are meaningless if your bass isn't set-up correctly, i.e., your bass plays in-tune all over the entire neck. This is of course true for guitarists too, but way too many people in both camps forget, or don't know this MOST IMPORTANT step! Then, tune your bass every time you play, hopefully to A=220/110 or to your organ or piano (untunable) if in a band. And check your tuning after every few songs, or anytime you suspect it has changed, especially if you bend strings a lot, or play very aggressively.
    The next step is string choice and condition. I've heard all kinds of results - good and bad, from top-end basses to pawn shop specials, all based on string choice and condition! This is the real key!
    Finally, try to get 90% of your tone from your bass and your playing style, and not from preamps, EQs, effects, or cabs, etc.. Then, you can color your tone with these added devices, but the meat and potatoes of your tone should come from your bass (as if run direct to a recorder). (secret tip; a good compressor/limiter can be your most important "effect"!)
    And if you're a pick player, be aware there are all kinds of picks that can wildly affect your tone (nylon, hard plastic, hard felt, rubber, and even metallic), but also be familiar with finger playing too, because a good hard felt pick can do wonders, but there really is nothing quite like finger playing! It's all good, and it all adds to your diversity of sound (and gigs/sessions!).

    • Lee Greer
      Lee Greer 10 months ago

      I made a pick out of stainless steel and it gave me such a brutal time and I loved the way it sounded like I wanted it to.

    • BassBuzz
      BassBuzz  3 years ago +2

      Great tips!

  • Bats
    Bats 2 years ago

    I'm so glad you just focused on the treble and bass knobs because my amp doesn't even have a mid knob and everyone else mentioned it like it was super important. Made me feel like Id never be good just because I've got the wrong amp. And thanks for mentioning the two knob one pickup setup, again everyone acts like you *need* two, which sucks when you've only got one.

  • Book Davies
    Book Davies 2 years ago +1

    Here's a tip. If your roundwound strings sound dead, can't get anything but a non sustaining thunk, do this.
    Take all your strings off.
    Wind them up like they came out of the envelope when new.
    Go boil some water in a pot. Let it get good and boiling, not just hot.
    Put the strings in the boiling water, let them boil for 3-5 minutes.
    Take them out, put them on a towel and dry them off well. They cool off pretty quickly.
    Restring your guitar and tune up.
    You're welcome.
    They won't last as long as when new, and you don't want to try it more than twice on a set, but it'll get some life back in the strings, and hold you over til you get a new set.
    This is best for steel or stainless steel roundwound, helps flats too but flats are better off being a little deader anyway.
    Don't forget to turn off the water and dump it. Wash the pot too, mom doesn't want string yuckies in her stewpot.
    Good luck, and give a like if this helped out!