In this article, we are going to explore the question of ‘is bass guitar easy to learn?‘
A lot of people are intimidated by the bass guitar, it often has a reputation as being an instrument that takes a lot of time and effort to learn. There is also the assumption that you need special musical talent in order to play it well.
but are these ideas true? is bass guitar really that complex? how long does it take to learn the basics of the bass guitar?
Table of Contents
- What exactly is the bass guitar?
- Why is the bass guitar so intimidating?
- Is bass guitar easy to learn?
- Is the bass guitar a good instrument to learn?
- In Summary – Is Bass Guitar Easy To Learn?
What exactly is the bass guitar?
The bass guitar is a solid wood instrument, and its strings are positioned in the lower end of the neck (the piece that runs down where your fingers rest when you hold the fretboard).
Bass guitars can be electric or acoustic. They look somewhat similar to an electric guitar sometimes – the only difference being they have four strings instead of six.
Why is the bass guitar so intimidating?
Despite being a stringed instrument, it is bigger and heavier than an electric or acoustic guitar. In addition to this, their very name has ‘bass’ in it which makes most think they are only capable of producing low pitched sounds – at one point there was even a ban on bass guitars in some dance venues because the DJ’s couldn’t mix their beats properly over the bass.
However, despite these factors making them appear more complicated than they are – it is possible to learn the basics of the bass guitar very quickly.
Is bass guitar easy to learn?
When it comes to the question of ‘is bass guitar easy to learn? The short answer is yes.
Bass guitar is actually one of the easier instruments to learn, and it is possible for most people with a desire to learn to pick up such an instrument without too much effort.
Is the bass guitar a good instrument to learn?
Here are my top 10 reasons why the bass guitar is a good instrument to learn.
1) It has a limited range.
Whilst many instruments have a large section of notes that they can play, including some extended techniques such as a slide or a vibrato, the bass guitar has a very limited amount of notes available to it.
This means that you will feasibly achieve your goal of learning to play bass guitar sooner than many other instruments, as it is easier to learn the notes.
2) Because of this limited range, the bass guitar doesn’t stray into complicated music theory concepts.
Most bass guitars are tuned EADG (lowest string-E, highest string-A, 4th string-D, and 2nd string B), this is known as standard tuning.
The only music theory shortcut that bass players use is knowing which notes on the E string to play in relation to their location on the fretboard.
For example, if you look at a tab for a rhythm guitar part played on an acoustic guitar, you’ll see that the tab specifies which fret to play.
If this was played on a bass guitar, it would only be necessary to note the location of the note on the E string.
This makes it much easier when learning music theory for bass players than other instrumentists who need to understand concepts such as sharps, flats, time signatures, or key signatures.
3) The bass guitar is often not very loud on its own
This means you will learn to use your hands efficiently to produce a half-decent sound.
A great advantage of the bass guitar is how easy it is to overdrive an amplifier. this makes learning difficult techniques much easier as they can be attempted without fear of making too much noise.
This means that you can play with distortion and other effects to get a feel for how your bass guitar should sound without needing to learn more about playing it cleanly first; this does not apply to all electric bass guitars, but it is very common.
4) The equipment required to start learning the bass guitar is relatively cheap.
This means that you do not need to spend vast amounts of money before you can learn, which is different from many other instruments such as the cello or viola, for example.
The majority of bass guitars cost less than 400 pounds, which means that it is a great instrument to learn on a budget.
5) It is easier to improvise when you learn bass guitar.
This means that it is relatively easy to experiment and find your own style, which will allow you to explore and develop new ideas over time with a minimum of resistance.
You can try out new techniques in a jam with no fear of making mistakes or ask friends for some feedback on how you sound.
6) The bass guitar has a more relaxed learning curve than some other instruments.
Most people who learn bass guitar do not become good at it overnight, and there is no need to practice as many hours as there are with an instrument such as the violin or classical piano.
Learning to play can be enjoyable as you progress at your own pace, and there is no pressure to perform as with some other instruments.
This relaxed approach will mean that you’ll be able to pick up the bass guitar and practice with ease, which can be a great way of keeping motivated about learning an instrument.
7) It is easier than many people believe to write your own music on bass guitar.
The majority of modern styles of music nowadays can be played on the bass guitar, from heavy metal to hip-hop and from jazz to classical.
It is a misconception that you need a great deal of knowledge in order to write your own music, which means it will be easier for you as a learner to start writing your own material.
8) The bass guitar is very popular in many mainstream styles of music.
Pop, rock, and funk are all examples of styles that feature the bass quite heavily, which means you’ll be able to find more opportunities when learning bass guitar than on some other instruments.
9) It is easier than on many other instruments to develop a unique sound on the bass guitar.
This means that you’ll be able to create music in your own style, which will make it easier for you as a beginner musician to find your niche and stand out from those around you.
10) there is no ‘best age’ at which it is best to learn the bass guitar, as it is possible for people of all ages to begin.
It does not matter whether you are ten years old or sixty-five years old, you can start learning the bass guitar right now and become a great musician over time.
In Summary – Is Bass Guitar Easy To Learn?
In summary, the bass guitar isn’t as hard to learn as many people think. It is, however, a complex instrument to master.
Everyone’s ear and talent are different, but the basics of any chord progression or song can be learned in a month by most people with some initial guidance [much like learning how to play guitar].