A beginner bassist's foray into the unknown

Referencing the E string

I created a file in Word that lets me keep track of what I’ve been practicing. I’m going to use it to structure my sessions because I still feel kind of lost and the end of November will make it a year since I started practicing (even though its really been more like 3 months of actual practice). The file is divided into technique, theory, reading and “other”. Entries are made per day, on dates that I get to practice. Later on, when I find a good way to post it up so that I can edit it after practice sessions, I’ll do that.

So, I’m going through Bass Guitar Exercises for Dummies and I decided to use it for a technique exercise first. I started with an early exercise in Chapter 2 called “Referencing each string”. For some reason, my head is cloudy right now, so I didn’t do exercises that reference all of the strings as starting positions. Instead, I made a variation so that I can start with just the E string. I also added some fretting, to keep my fretting hand involved.

This is what I did:

Basically, what you want to do is play on the E string, move up a string and forward a fret and play there, then hit the E string again, and repeat. Afterward, do it backwards. Watch which finger you use to strike the strings. If you play it correctly, each finger will strike the E and another string once going up and again coming down. This is done starting on the 9th position on the E string (starting with your index finger on the 9th fret). Naturally, you can do this in any position. I just used the 9th fret to start and get my fingers moving. The Dummies book does this with open strings (no fretting). Its probably a good idea to move the pattern around the fretboard, actually, so that the exercise is learned from different positions.

This will be my warm-up for today. Then, I’m going to work on a scale and its triad. I think I have a handle on the major (Ionian) and natural minor (Aeolian) , so I’ll pick another one to start learning. That will be the practical part of theory for now.


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