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fretless , 5 string, 6 string basses

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 4:55 am
by lorilu
In my search for stuff to study and learn at the sheet music store, I found a lot of stuff for fretless, etc. How to learn fretless bass. I don't know it got me curious. So can anyone tell me the whys and whats about fretless, 5 string and 6 string bass? I know a bass player that has 6 basses (he calls them his ladies). Some are 5 and 6 string.

RE: fretless , 5 string, 6 string basses

PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2006 5:19 am
by oleman
[updated:LAST EDITED ON Feb-03-06 AT 00:23 AM (EST)]Iv'e been playing fretless, both bass guitar and Upright for a little over a year now. I found it very awkward in the beginning but lots of practice with CDs and guitar players; I'm as comfortable with fretless as freted. In fact I much prefer the fretless sound and vibe now and almost never play fretted. I have no experience with more than 4 strings. I think I would have benefited from a series of lessons on the fretless because I'm sure my technique is real Funky but I just rationalize by calling it "my style." My style with fretless is much more sparse but with much more vibrato. I love the bass!! There are a lot better bassists out there than me but I get lots of offers because of the fretless/upright image.

RE: fretless , 5 string, 6 string basses

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 3:42 am
by lorilu
Thanks Oleman. You also might get lots of offers to play because you love it and you get along with people and don't seem to have an attitude. My guess on the 5 & 6 strings might be more for jazz and prog rock? How does a fretless sound different from a fretted? Not upright but electric bass guitar. If you don't mind all the questions.

RE: fretless , 5 string, 6 string basses

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 6:25 am
by oleman
L. I hope I can express the sound and feel of a fretless bass. First I don't think the fretless really lends itself to "hard rock" but for blues, jazz and latin/salsa music, it's great! With a fretted bass the string attack was much sharper and precise but with the fretless it's almost as if you Caresse the note with a more gentle approach. Thus a softer almost sensuous sound with a sweet vibrato. Since I have started playing the fretless, I find I am playing a lot more jazz type phrases and trying to interact with the melody; in contrast with locking in with the drums when I play R&R. For me a welcome level of sophistication that I never thought I could reach as a musician. I want to encourage all bassists to at least try a fretless and experience what I have come to love. Peace!

RE: fretless , 5 string, 6 string basses

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2006 8:15 pm
by lorilu
Oleman,
You expressed that beautifully. I felt drawn to fretless for an unknown reason. Maybe it will come my way as everything else in music seems to have done. I would have to do both as I love a hard edge to things. Thanks so much.