bass tools needed

So you want to play bass


You got it in your head that you want to learn to play bass.  You’ve heard it’s pretty easy, it only has four strings and you like the way it sounds.


Well, first the bass is fairly easy to get started. But if you listen to bass players like James Jamerson or Chris Squire, you will quickly realize that it can get quite complicated.

But don’t let that discourage you. You can get started quickly and if you’re motivated, you can take it to whatever level you want.


You’ll need a bass. Kind of hard to play bass without one.

For a first bass, it’s hard to go wrong with a cheaper version of the Fender Precision bass made in a country like Korea. The Fender P bass has been used a lot in classic rock and the sound fits in nicely in a group mix, if you decide to later join a band. You should be able to get one for a few hundred dollars.

For beginners, your best investment on the bass is a professional setup. These go for $30-$50 on average and are worth every penny because they will make your bass easier to play (strings will be set closer to the neck) and make your bass sound better (eliminate buzzing and out of tune notes farther up the neck). You may be able to find a bass or guitar tech in your area that knows of a bass for sale that would be perfect for you, or a brand/model that they recommend.


Your second piece of equipment to buy is an amp. If you’re just learning and not planning on gigging right away, you can get a small practice amp.

Basses like power and bigger speakers (minimum of 10 inches).

Here are two good choices:

Fender Rumble 40 - 40 watts, 10 inch speaker, sells for around $200

GK MB110 - 100 watts, 10 inch speaker, sells for around $370


Other items needed:  a tuner (I’d recommend one you plug your bass into) and a cord (pay a little more $30-$50 to get a nice one).


Now, you will have the desire to play bass and the equipment to do so.

In the next post, I’ll talk about how to learn how to play rock bass. This is a way that worked for me. There are other ways, better ways but I’ll talk about ways to hack your method and get you up and running quickly.

Happy shopping!  Find yourself a new friend and meet me back here.

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