Talk:Bass guitar/Archive 4

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Whats the use of Bass guitars

hello i am wonderin what bass guitars are actually used for....

They are generally used for playing the bass line (ie the low notes) in popular forms of music such as pop, jazz, rock, reggae, metal etc. THey help to create the beat and usually help in defining the harmony. They are essential to some bands. You could always ask a music teacher if this does not explain it.--Light current 14:51, 8 May 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Exactly. Bass guitars replace the big stand up basses. They are electronically driven so they have 1000 times the output of stand-ups. They are much more portable. And they play the bass clef register, down to E42. When driven through an amplification they do create a beat, or a percussive blow to the music, either complementing the bass drum of the trap set, or replacing the drums completely. Magi Media 03:24, 12 May 2006 (UTC)Magi MediaReply[reply]
I wouldnt say they replace the drums completely! Neither would any drummer!. 8-)--Light current 05:54, 12 May 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The bass could replace the drums, but its not always the best idea to do that.-- (talk) 05:58, 27 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Innocent Question

I have never played guitar, but does anyone here know the best place to buy one?

A music shop?--Light current 23:21, 30 May 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm all about the little guy, so if you can find a good bass (this is the bass page, so i'm gonna say bass) for not very much money (sub $400 or so), go for it. Try not to give in and get a squire, they suck. If your willing to spend a penny or two i would advise getting something like a Fender Jass (which has provided me with many years of satisfactory service). If all else fails, locate a Guitar Center.... Yes, they are the Wal-mart of guitars, you can't argue with thier selection... and i hate to say it... price. 05:49, 19 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Oh, you can definitely argue with their prices. Usually if you can find a local shop that deals specifically in one or two brands you can get prices that are sometimes a few hundred dollars less then Guitar Center. I got my Ibanez SR900 for $180 less then Guitar Center was quoting me! I find it's a good idea to find a guitar brand/model you like at Guitar Center and see if you can find a smaller dealer to get you a better price

I found a mint condition 25 year old Yamaha acoustic guitar on Ebay for $150... you might want to research brands a bit, then head to ebay to see what you can find.TruthBeTold (talk) 01:18, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

External links

This article probably has too many external links. Please review the links in this article and trim any which are not absolutely necessary. Kelly Martin (talk) 11:50, 7 June 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It does have too many external links and out of compliance with WP:EL. I have not expertise in the subject, so I can't weed out the wheat from the chaff. Perhaps other editors can help clean this up? --mtz206 (talk) 22:30, 12 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am a professional bass player & active wiki editor! I weeded out all the junk that does not meet WP:EL standards. --EmmSeeMusic 18:59, 3 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looks like someone reverted your edits. I agree that there are some superfluous links that don't add much to the article. Not sure why that guy thinks it's "censorship"; clearly he hasn't read WP:EL. Personally, I think the only relevent link there is to The Bottom Line, simply because it's been around a long time. The only other pertinent links I could think of that should go there would be to the Bass section of Harmony Central, Bass Player Magazine and the other Bass magazine that I can't recall the name of. I'm gonna re-trim the list and anyone who's got a problem, don't revert; read WP:EL and then discuss here any links you want to add. -- Davetron5000 14:08, 9 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

So, longer = better? Secondly, Bass Player and Harmony Central (Owned by Musician's Friend) are about as corporate as it gets. I'm a pro bassist too... so? Does that mean my opinion on what's meeting the WP:EL guidelines is any better than another? What's the spirit of Wiki? Or maybe I should offer Fender, Ibanez, and Gibson as the Only options? It's a disservice to bass players - to only give them 'heavy-hitter' links... they could find that on their own. In fact, the heavy-hitters spend good cash to make sure they're found. Now, the smaller, obscure sites... they may be Never found without the free info philosophy of Wiki. I guess what I'm saying as an artist is: I'd rather have more (including possibly questionable 'WP:EL' jargon) than risking Less options by rightous opinion... hence, censorship. C'mon - you guys are bassists, presumably artists too... do you want your music options to be limited to what's on MTV or just things that have been around a long time? BASSIST TOO

By your logic there should be no external links since you can just search and find anything you want. Wiki wants the established heavy hitters to be listed, those are the sites with the most content directly relating to what the article is about. Like Davetron5000 said, if you have any suggestions for links, present them here. EmmSeeMusic 02:41, 13 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've once again trimmed some links from this section. Both were online bass lessons, which I don't think are very relevant. If anyone disagrees, we should discuss and then find the most notable online bass lessons. I'm somewhat tempted to remove the link about bass samples, but it does seem somewhat notable to have ONE link to what the instrument sounds like (though ideally it should, per WP:EL, show up somewhere in the article) As per "BASSIST TOO" (above), WP:EL says, to me, that relevant links should be in the context of body text in the article, and not just thrown at the end. There are better websites to keep lists of bass guitar-related links. -- Davetron5000 17:44, 13 September 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

5 string guitar pic?

Why is there a 5 string guitar when the average bass has only 4? User:Cheezwizzle 19:20, 14 September 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

What difference does it really make? --Mperry (talk) 20:06, 6 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
5 string basses are very common. In fact, I play one. Ibanez SR305DX is my 5. And Jean Baudin plays an 11 string bass.-- (talk) 03:30, 29 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

>> 5 string basses are becoming more prevalent nowadays. I play an ESP 5 string and it really gives the Notes B-D# a nice punch when played on the low B string. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:37, 16 February 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

4 string is the most common, but 5 strings are still very common, mainly due to the populariity of rock and metal - as the extra string gives extra lower range

Jaco Fretless Date

Jaco's own retellings of the story of his famous fretless differ, he claims to have removed them with pliers or a putty knife and in at least one printed interview (guitar player magazine, august 1984) he states "When I got the bass, the cat who had it had taken the frets out himself, and he did a really bad job of it" - he says he bought this bass 13 years earlier, so it would be around 1971 that the frets were removed according to that article. In light of this I suppose it will be impossible to say definitively when it happened. All indications point to the early 1970's, which would correspond with the period when Fender released their fretless Precision (1970) - which could have been the inspiration for Jaco, or the other cat, to pull the frets from that bass. Dinobass 03:54, 4 December 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Great, go ahead and add that info so there's at least a vague idea of the date. I'd always heard Jaco was the first to make a fretted into a fretless, so I'm surprised that this wasn't the case! Badagnani 04:09, 4 December 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Jaco did not invent the fretless bass, but he does seem to have popularized it, and I think the article might point this out. TheScotch (talk) 08:29, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Is there enough documentary evidence to put this in this article as a fact? As you say yourself he 'seems' to have popularised it, just like how for many years people believed (and many still do) that he invented it. There were plenty of fretless players before Jaco, and influential players such as Mick Karn and Percy Jones who were not themselves influenced by Jaco (or had even heard of him when they started playing fretless bass). I feel there should be some actual evidence for this, rather than hearsay, before it is stated as fact in the article. The article already has 'considered by many etc'. next to his entry - that is a more appropriate place for point of view comments than the main article. Dinobass (talk) 09:16, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Sorry, I meant, "If indeed Jaco popularized it, the article might point this out." We can discuss whether he did or didn't here first. (He seems to have to me, and by this I mean according to my personal recollection of events--which, although not amounting to wikipedia "actual evidence", is still different from "hearsay"). TheScotch (talk) 09:30, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

My recollection of events are that I'd heard Mick Karn, Percy Jones, Dill Katz, Bill Wyman, Pino Palladino, Rick Danko and Sting playing fretless bass, some of them live, before I'd ever heard the name Jaco Pastorius - in fact I owned a fretless bass before I knew who Jaco was. Of those musicians only Pino lists Jaco as an influence - hardly surprising as several are recorded playing fretless before Jaco. As far as I can tell there was a whole generation of musicians discovering the fretless bass at that time, and enough of them played on bigger hits with greater exposure than weather report. My feeling is that the fretless bass was becoming popular anyway and Jaco's influence was more an approach to bass playing as a whole than a popularisation of the fretless bass per se. Dinobass (talk) 10:13, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Your mention of Sting arouses my suspicion here. Unless you're from Sting's home town, you couldn't possibly have heard him play fretless bass--or anything else--before I heard Jaco. You can't have a recollection of events that took place before you were around.

I would certainly agree that "Jaco's influence" wasn't limited to popularizing the fretless and that popularizing the fretless wasn't the most significant part of his influence, but that doesn't mean he didn't, and it isn't necessary for him to be the first to have played the fretless for him to have popularized it. TheScotch (talk) 10:48, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Oh, I'd might as well comment about the others now: Like Sting's, Palladino's career is subsequent to Jaco's fame. My impression is that Wyman and Danko (and Sting as well) only used the fretless occasionally and incidentally--correct it if wrong. I've never heard of Karn and Katz--who are they?. I've heard of Jones only in connection with Brand X, a group I always considered fairly obscure. TheScotch (talk) 11:04, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I lived in Britain at the time. So from the point of view of myself and most of my peers 'weather report' were an obscure american jazz ensemble - unless one actually listened to jazz specifically they wouldn't have been part of ones consciousness. Jaco really started to make it in 1976 with his solo album and work with weather report and Joni Mitchell - although I didn't actually become aware of him until maybe 1980 when weather report toured england by which time I was already playing fretless bass. However let us assume that “1976/77 is realistically the time when he could have started having an influence beyond a limited jazz audience. At that time Sting was forming the police (and playing/recording fretless on those hits), Brand X had already been playing since 1974, Japan formed in 1978 and Mick Karn took up fretless without ever having heard of Jaco. Freebo played fretless exclusively from the late 1960's until fairly recently, Bill Wyman played fretless exclusively on those early Stones hits (he only had the one bass). Rick Danko played fretless on the first 'The Band' recordings from 1968. The point is that there were many players taking up fretless bass in styles as diverse as country, pop and rock, on both sides of the atlantic independent of and at approximately the same time as Jaco. Most of these people were playing commercially available fretless basses. The groundswell of popularity for the instrument was clearly already well in place at the time Jaco hit the scene in the mid 70's. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Dinobass (talkcontribs) 23:19, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It does seem my recollection of Pino was slightly astray, his hits with Paul Jones were much later than I remembered, in 1983. Dinobass (talk) 23:25, 25 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I still don't buy the Sting argument. I first heard Jaco in 1976 on Joni Mitchell's Hejira (and saw him in concert with Weather Report some years later). He began to have a big-time impact in 1974. The Police released their first album in November (late in the year) of 1978. Sting played in jazz and fusion groups before he joined the Police (which, incidentally, was formed by Stewart Copeland, not by Sting). In the early to middle seventies fusion was very far from obscure, and Jaco was always fusion, never straight jazz.

As for the rest, the differences in our recollections may have to do with our nationalities (I'm U.S.) or individual circumstances or maybe Jaco popularized the fretless more in the public imagination than he had in this respect a direct influence on bassists themselves. The bass player in the group I was in around the time the Police hit it big in the states, was certainly influenced by Jaco to play fretless. Like Jaco, he removed the frets from a fretted instrument. He played Jaco solos (from the 1974 record) at the audition. TheScotch (talk) 06:28, 26 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Your premise appears to be that any bass player who achieved fame after Jaco a) must have been aware of him and b) must have been influenced by him either stylistically or in their choice of instrument. Neither of which needs to be the case. You say you don't buy the sting argument because you didn't hear their first hit until 1978 - however you also point out that he played in other bands before the police - and he was also a trained upright bass player. It seems far more likely that his decision to play fretless was the same as all the other musicians who were playing fretless in the 1970's - so many people were taking up this instrument in such diverse musical forms it is unlikely that any individual musician is responsible for this. Certainly there are players who took up the fretless after hearing Jaco - there are also many - especially during the 70's - who did so for their own reasons without ever knowing of Jaco. Incidentally, both the wiki article on the police and on sting suggest that stewart copeland formed the band *with* Sting. Also there is evidence, most particularly interviews with Jaco himself, which state that the frets had already been removed from the bass before Jaco purchased it - which is more evidence that fretless bass was a generally happening thing at the time. Wasn't Miroslav Vitous playing fretless bass in weather report well before Jaco? Alphonso Johnson certainly played fretless with Weather Report. Fretless bass guitars had been commercially available for ten years before 1976 when Jaco started to have the possibility of influencing people and Fender, Gibson and Rickenbacker all offered fretless models. There was clearly already a market for the instrument at this time. John Paul Jones was playing fretless live on stage with Led Zeppelin in 1972. Please don't suggest that a) you haven't heard of him, b) Led Zeppelin are obscure and uninfluential or c) it is likely he was influenced by Jaco's fretless playing at that time. The more I research this the more convincing the evidence becomes that the fretless bass was already solidly on the scene well before Jaco. Dinobass (talk) 00:44, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Re: "Your premise appears to be that any bass player who achieved fame after Jaco a) must have been aware of him and b) must have been influenced by him either stylistically or in their choice of instrument.":

Obviously, that is not my premise, nor should it "appear" to be to anyone. My premise is that the circumstance that, as you say, you "heard...Sting playing fretless bass...before [you'd] ever heard the name Jaco Pastorius" is irrelevant--except to the extent it may suggest your "recollection" of events is skewed.

Re: "You say you don't buy the sting argument because you didn't hear their first hit until 1978...":

I do not say that. I didn't hear the Police until 1980. The point, rather, is that virtually no one could have heard the Police or Sting until after November 1978.

Re:"...however you also point out that he played in other bands before the police...":

The groups he played in before the Police were all local groups. Only his fellow locals would have heard any of these. They included a jazz big band, a Dixieland band, and a fusion group modeled on Chick Corea's Return to Forever.

Re: "...and he was also a trained upright bass player.":

Sting's autobiography describes no formal musical training at all and suggests he had none (unless you count grade school choir). As far as I know he did not attempt the double bass publicly until his first solo record in 1985--on which he plays a very minimal double bass part on one song only. (There is no mention whatsoever of the double bass in Sting's autobiography--which explains that he started on guitar and went directly from the guitar to the bass guitar.)

I don't know whether Sting was influenced by Jaco to play fretless or not, but he certainly could easily have been, given his timeline and interests--and he cannot reasonably be used as evidence that Jaco did not popularize the fretless.

Re: "Incidentally, both the wiki article on the police and on sting suggest that stewart copeland formed the band *with* Sting.":

A wikipedia article is not a valid source for another wikipedia article or anything else. Stewart Copeland came up with the idea for the Police and the name before he'd ever known of Sting's existence. Copeland was playing in a big-time group called Curved Air at the time. He discovered Sting playing in an obscure local group and invited and invited him to London to try out. This is well-documented, and Sting himself corroborates it. TheScotch (talk) 05:54, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Re: "John Paul Jones was playing fretless live on stage with Led Zeppelin in 1972. Please don't suggest that a) you haven't heard of him, b) Led Zeppelin are obscure and uninfluential or c) it is likely he was influenced by Jaco's fretless playing at that time. The more I research this the more convincing the evidence becomes that the fretless bass was already solidly on the scene well before Jaco.:
Yes, I've heard of John Paul Jones. I saw him playing live with Zeppelin in the spring of 1973. I have no recollection of him playing a fretless then, and until you just told me I didn't know he'd ever played a fretless. (I did notice Jimmy Page playing a double-neck on "Stairway to Heaven" and bowing his guitar on "Dazed and Confused".) Was Zeppelin "obscure"? No. Was John Paul Jones an "influential" bass player? Not to my knowledge. The group as a whole made much less of an impression on me than King Crimson, whom I saw the next day. Anyway, the fretless certainly existed before Jaco, but I didn't know of it until I first heard Jaco in 1976. Nothing in my "research" so far contradicts my original impression that Jaco made the fretless much more popular than it had been. TheScotch (talk) 06:18, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think this is the crux of it. You, and it seems many others also, remember hearing Jaco for the first time as being the first time they heard fretless bass. And yet, those same people certainly heard the rolling stones - and if you listen to those old stones tracks again it's obvious that the bass is fretless on many of them. We have pre Jaco players in bands as diverse as 'The Rolling Stones', 'The Band', Freebo (with Bonnie Raitt) all playing fretless bass, and yet there's still this idea that Jaco was the start of it all. Now, here's a thought. You mention King Crimson as being influential to you in 1973. Their bass player up to and for part of 1973 was Boz Burrell - who left them to join Bad Company, where he played an ampeg fretless bass. It's possible he'd heard of Jaco in 1973, but is it likely or even relavent? Jaco certainly popularised a particular, and easily recognisable, style of playing - both of fretless and fretted bass. However, there were loads of fretless players before Jaco, some playing on major popular hits, and the mere fact of having a career that started post Jaco doesn't imply of necessity that the player was influenced by, or had even heard of him. The groundswell of fretless players was already unstoppable by the mid 70's and that this would have continued regardless of Jaco.
Re: Sting and upright basses - My understanding is that Sting played upright bass in the Newcastle big band. Even if that is not the case he also played upright bass in the pre (or parallel with the start of) Police group 'Strontium 90' - which is where Copeland, Sting and Summers first played together. He recorded several of the police songs including 'every breath you take' using double bass (possibly the electric upright) doubled with electric bass. He is well known for playing an electric upright bass on tour with the police. Upright bass is certainly not something he started playing post The Police. Dinobass (talk) 10:03, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

At a number of famous bass players answer the question, “What influenced you to play fretless?” Here are some of the responses:

Victor Wooten: Jaco, of course. Will Lee: Of course, the incredible Jaco Pastorius. Michael Manring: Like so many people, I was totally blown away by hearing Jaco Pastorius. I first heard him when Pat Metheny's Bright Size Life came out and then on his solo record on the Epic label, which was released shortly thereafter. I started saving my pennies for a fretless right away! Marcus Miller: I had begun to play a lot of straight ahead jazz and wanted an instrument that sounded closer to an acoustic bass. I had heard Jaco on "Speak Like A Child" on his first album. There were some tones there that really sounded like an upright. I thought it would be nice to try. Tony Franklin: After hearing Jaco Pastorius (on record). He expanded the possibilities of bass playing and the bass players' role to a whole new level. Yves Carbonne: Listening to Jaco Pastorius, and later Alain Caron. Lorenzo Feliciati: As 85% of fretless players the first time I saw Jaco playing (with Weather Report, it was the last tour he did with the band and one of my first live concerts) I decided to play bass and…a fretless one!!! But then I discovered great fretless players like Mick Karn of Japan and Pino Palladino on the Gary Numan record “I Assassin”…and then Percy Jones, Sting… Mark Egan: I was always interested in the sound of an acoustic bass. Sam Samole, a guitarist and great friend who I went to music school with at the University of Miami [where, he goes on to explain, he studied with Jaco] had a Fender Precision Fretless Bass that didn't have any fret markers. I loved the sustained sound of it. It sounded like a hybrid acoustic bass, but more like a bass guitar and I liked the expression you could get by having infinite spaces between the notes. Franc O'Shea: I was listening to players like Mick Karn with Japan and John Giblin on John Martyn's 'Grace and Danger' album. I loved the sound of the wood, it was very lyrical and mysterious to me. Then I heard Jaco on 'Heavy Weather' and that just clinched it for me. I had to get rid of those frets and a guitarist friend of mine helped me get the frets out, then after that I was in heaven! Joseph Patrick Moore: We'll I always wanted to, I just didn't have enough cash at the time to get a fretless bass. I was listening to a lot of jaco, Sting, Tony Franklin and I really wanted to experiment with it.

Some others (like Mark Egan above) say the double bass as played by various jazz musicians (for these the admonition "So from the point of view of myself and most of my peers 'weather report' were an obscure american jazz ensemble - unless one actually listened to jazz specifically they wouldn't have been part of ones consciousness" wouldn't apply). Some of the younger ones mention neither the double bass nor Jaco--presumably by the time they came around the fretless would have been established. TheScotch (talk) 08:05, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Here you have a list of 9 players, 2 of whom discovered fretless via other means, one was looking for that sound anyway and happened to also have heard Jaco. Elsewhere in this discussion I've listed a similar number of players who came to the fretless bass via other routes entirely - several of whom pre-dated Jaco. Certainly many bass players, both fretted and fretless, have been influenced by Jaco Pastorius. However, the fretless bass was already happening, and would have continued to happen regardless. Dinobass (talk) 10:17, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Possibly two, but I think the circumstance that Egan's teacher at the time was Jaco may be significant. The other says that Jaco's influence was decisive, which means his knowing of the existence of the fretless before is not really relevant, nor should it necessarily be at all in the case of popularization. Lee's and Wooten's "of course" needs to be taken into account, as well as Felaciati's "85%". Of the player's you've listed, you haven't given any evidence other than "pre-dating" for the "several" that they "came to the fretless bass via other routes entirely" or in most cases that their fretless playing was anything other than incidental and occasional. TheScotch (talk) 13:48, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There are vanishingly few bass players who played exclusively, or even predominantly fretless bass for their entire careers. Even Jaco played a fair amount of fretted bass both live and on recordings. However, Freebo (who played with Bonnie Raitt and others), did play mostly (perhaps exclusively) fretless during the late 60's and early 70's - well unless you count his tuba playing. Mick Karn played exclusively fretless and has stated in interviews that he'd never heard Jaco (in fact, as a response to the inevitable comparisons to Jaco in the press he made a point of never listening to Jaco - only finally doing so many years later). Percy Jones was playing mostly fretless from around 1970. I've already listed these players before - what about Bunny Brunel? - pre-dates Jaco, played mostly fretless and started because somehow who's name he can't recall said he'd taken the frets out of his bass and Bunny decided to do the same. There are also players like Tony Levin who play a fair amount of fretless, and started in the early 1970's - Tony has stated that Jaco is not influential to his style of playing. If it required Jaco to popularise the intrument, why were there so many players already playing fretless, and so many basses already with the frets removed (not to mention commercially available instruments), well before he started having an influence? Dinobass (talk) 20:17, 27 January 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Addressing loose ends on Dinobass's talk page--if anyone's interested. TheScotch (talk) 09:30, 20 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'd also remind everyone that Rick Danko was a regular fretless player - ampeg, I believe.--Masmit (talk) 00:25, 22 August 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Removals 2

Why have the corrections to historical assumptions been removed as well as images of Tutmarc, the electric bass fiddle and Jazz Bass headstock in this edit [[1]]. Tutmarc was already in the article. All the points were covered in the discussion page. Please voice any objections before removal of absolutely every contribution within an edit. Specifically Badagnani justify for each individual image why it was removed immediately, why you removed the application of bold font on electric bass as per your suggestion, and if the other amendments are either major corrections or factually incorrect. Also explain your authority in such instant and repeated total obliteration of all of these contributions. Ozbass (talk) 06:59, 29 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I can't answer as to why they were removed, possibly copyright issues (which is usually why images are removed) - however, there are no images on the Paul Tutmarc page - so assuming you have copyright permission for those images, why not put them there? Dinobass (talk) 23:46, 29 April 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Italics v. quotation marks

If you go to, you will find that quotation marks are used only "to enclose direct quotations"--I'm quoting the source here--or "to indicate words used ironically, with reservations, or in some unusual way". The example given to illustrate the first use is, "He asked, 'Will you be there?' 'Yes,' I answered, 'I'll look for you in the foyer.'" The example given to illustrate the second use is, "History is stained with blood spilled in the name of 'civilization.'"

Italics are used "to indicate titles of complete or major works such as magazines, books, newspapers, academic journals, films, television programs, long poems, plays of three or more acts", for "foreign words that are not commonly used in English", for "words used as words themselves", and for "words or phrases that you wish to emphasize". The given example for the penultimate (third) use is, "The English word nuance comes from a Middle French word meaning shades of color."

Or go to, where you'll find this advice: "Italicize words used as words. Many people misuse the words bring and take by interchanging them."
Or go to, where you'll find this:
"Using Italics and Underlining....
Words as Words
  • The word basically is often unnecessary and should be removed.
  • There were four and 's and one therefore in that last sentence. (Notice that the apostrophe-s, used to create the plural of the word-as-word and, is not italicized. See the section on Plurals for additional help.)
  • She defines ambiguity in a positive way, as the ability of a word to mean more than one thing at the same time."

Here are two non-online sources:

1) The Elements of Grammar by Margaret Shertzer, p.119:

7. Use italics when a word is spoken of as a word.
The word gay now carries a different connotation from its meaning in Cornelia Otis Skinner's Our Hearts Were Young and Gay.

2) The Harbrace College Handbook, 8th edition, by John C. Hodges and Mary E. Whitten, pp. 94-95:

Words, letters, or figures spoken of as such or used as illustrations are usually underlined (italicized).
In no other language could a foreigner be tricked into pronouncing manslaughter as man's laughter. --MARIO PEI
The letters qu replaced cw in such words as queen, quoth, and quick.

--CHARLES C. FRIESTheScotch (talk)

  • Comment - Absolutely not. Italics are used at Wikipedia for the titles of published works, as well as for foreign words. When featuring an English word, double quotation marks are used; italics would cause confusion with the two aforementioned uses. Badagnani (talk) 05:09, 4 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

NO. WORDS AS WORDS require italics as the many sources above clearly show. TheScotch (talk) 05:11, 4 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Comment - Wikipedia makes no such stipulation, and, due to the confusion that would be caused with the other common uses of italics at WP (foreign words and direct quotes), such an imposition is inadvisable. Badagnani (talk) 05:14, 4 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

1) Actually Wikipedia does make "such [a] stipulation". From the Wikipedia Manual of Style:

Words as words
Italics are used when mentioning a word or letter or a string of words up to a full sentence: "The term panning is derived from panorama, a word coined in 1787"; "The most commonly used letter in English is e".

2) I can say objectively and with impunity that this practice is not at all "inadvisable" (note that quotation marks here mean I'm quoting you) because the many sources I've cited above advise it, in fact. Moreover, I see no reason that the risk of confusion should be greater at Wikipedia than anywhere else, and the risk of confusion here, as elsewhere, is significantly smaller than the risk that quotation marks will be taken to imply that someone is being quoted (which is not to suggest that the latter risk is necessarily great either--depending on the context). TheScotch (talk) 06:31, 4 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Carol Kaye

Re: "In the 1950s and 1960s, the bass guitar was often called the Fender bass, due to Fender's early dominance in the market for mass-produced bass guitars. The term electric bass began replacing Fender bass in the late 1960s, however, as evidenced by the title of Carol Kaye's popular bass instructional book in 1969 How to Play the Electric Bass[9]":

Because there were various terms for the instrument in use by this time, the circumstance that the term electric bass began to become popular in the late sixties does not necessarily mean it (in particular) began to replace the term Fender bass, and the passage above is misleading in this respect and needs to be reworked. Moreover, if we're going to give this much prominence to this particular book, it seems to me reasonable to point out in the text of the article itself that at least eleven other of Kaye's instructional works simply call the instrument "bass" (quotation marks because I'm quoting these works here). I don't have dates for these right now (if they are all later, then we might say--with respect to Kaye's works only--that bass subsequently replaced electric bass), and I suspect there may be more than eleven (I happen to own a Kaye "keyboard bass" work, but that's not really relevant in this context.) TheScotch (talk) 17:38, 5 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

You're right in that the text as it stands makes it appear as if Kaye's books were singlehandedly responsible for the shift in terminology. However, the new edit went too far in obscuring the fact of this shift, as the term "electric bass" (although not the "most correct" term for the instrument) did gradually achieve greater popularity vis-a-vis Fender bass during this period. A middle ground would be good. Badagnani (talk) 18:31, 5 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I never intended "the new edit" to be the final word (it came only a moment after my previous attempt; I was still experimenting). My main concern here, though is not whether Kaye is "singlehandedly responsible" (I suspect she may be largely responsible, but I really don't know); my main concern is that the article is maintaining that the term electric bass in contradistinction to the terms bass guitar and bass replaced the term Fender bass, and that contention, which is a statement of putative fact, would seem to me to require a citation. Without a citation, the article must say only what it knows: that the term Fender bass became much less common and that the term electric bass appeared (at least) by 1969. TheScotch (talk) 06:59, 8 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Blanking of wikilink

Please restore the wikilink to contemporary classical music blanked three times in this edit. Contemporary classical music is a specific subgenre and the link should not have been blanked. Thank you kindly for this. Badagnani (talk) 16:53, 16 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have to go with Badagnani on this one. Classical music is called that because it's by definition old -- while "contemporary classical" is more like music that may eventually become it. A lot of it has more in common with avant-guard jazz than anything most people would think of think of with "classical", and in fact often what would be considered classical isn't really in the umbrella on so-called "contemporary classical" for stylistic reasons. ♫ Melodia Chaconne ♫ (talk) 17:05, 16 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In an effort to build conscensus, rather than edit warring, I support a link to contemporary classical music, as the section refers to the use of electric bass in post-1945 compositions. dissolvetalk 17:16, 16 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would be willing to compromise by leaving "Contemporary" out of the heading, but restoring the wikilink. Badagnani (talk) 17:08, 16 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Agree with Badagnani, the more specific “contemporary classical music” is better and should be retored. --S.dedalus (talk) 01:05, 21 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thinking about it a bit more (though my above comments stand nonetheless) the fact that it was invented in the 50s means perhaps it isn't as big a deal, at least NOW (by which I mean, something that may change in 20-30-50 years). Still, the wikilink to contemporary classical music is certainly more fruitful a choice. ♫ Melodia Chaconne ♫ (talk) 10:44, 22 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Contemporary classical section

I strongly discourage the addition of huge amounts of new, extraneous data in the contemporary classical section. This article is about the instrument, and large amounts of background about the composers (that can be found at their own articles) clogs the section and makes it disproportionately long. Please return to the original version, thank you. Badagnani (talk) 22:47, 27 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Neck-body connections

Why isnt there a section describing the differences between set neck, neck thru, etc. Its a pretty important part of the sound, not as much as woods and electronics, but important nonetheless.  R a k h t æ l  03:07, 5 June 2008 (UTC) Let's mention the zero fret while we're at it. It barely affects the tone, or the playability. It doesn't deserve a mention in this article.-- (talk) 17:10, 9 August 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

different bass guitar lengths

-how long should the necks be for different age groups? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:44, 24 August 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It also depends on style. A smaller neck is handy for jazz, as it lets you do very fast runs, but large basses are popular for rock bands for image reasons

Why so many pictures?

This article appears to have become a gallery of images of bass guitars and musicians playing them. My understanding is that wikipedia is not intended to be a photo gallery. Obviously some example pictures are be useful and necessary, but most of the pictures on the page at the moment add little to the article except give the impression, as suggested above, that it is a junior school project. I propose reducing the weight of pictures to one or two pertinent examples per section - and preferably not involving musicians pulling faces. Dinobass (talk) 21:31, 11 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

{{helpme}} I've removed this helpme request; this isn't really something to ask for help - it will be decided through discussion on this talk page, to agree consensus. If might be helpful if you could make your proposal more specific, e.g. "I suggest we remove all the pictures from XXX section, except for YYY.jpg and ZZZ.jpg". Cheers,  Chzz  ►  20:35, 3 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Getting rid of some of the various stringed bass'. For instance, the pictures of the 5 and 6 and 7 string basses. They really dont add anything to the article. Also, these pictures, Gibson EB-3, Music Man Stingray Bass. Notice the pick-up placement that is ideal for slapping. (useless because there isn't a section on slap bass). Also, maybe get rid of a few of the bassists pictured. The metallica bassist thats on here is replaces, IIRC. Most of the other pictures are relevant though. Wiggl3sLimited (talk) 22:42, 6 June 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Addition of Bassists and Bands

I am at the end trying to reason with people on here. Yves Carbonne, who is the bassist who CONCEIVED the sub-bass, and is currently the ONLY bassist in the world to play 10-12 string fretless subbasses (also, the lowest at 15.4 hertz) has been deemed unnotable by some of your admins, who clearly know nothing about music. He has been featured numerous times in Bass Musician Magazine, has a #1 cd for his record company, and is making the 3rd cd now, has a HUGE cult following, has played with the best in the world, and is a pioneer re: bass instruments. Can someone explain to me why he has been removed, in favor of MUCH less notable bassists, with many less supporting references? And can someone tell me why the entries about him under "sub bass" and extended-range bass" are consistently reverted to exclude him, and revert back to a long, repetitive gush about Garry Goodman? I can't imagine the rationale for excluding him from those pages. It doesn't make any sense at all. I will wait for your answer. Thanks for your assistance. TruthBeTold (talk) 21:55, 30 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Probably in response to the first effort to put Carbonne in Wikipedia, an effort which angered many with its spam-type pattern. A bad first impression. Secondly, your quest to put Carbonne in appears to have a conflict of interest, and people here haven't seen a reason to believe otherwise. It appears to me that another, disinterested and unconflicted third party editor who wants to mention Carbonne in various bass articles will have to pick up the flag and carry it forward. Binksternet (talk) 22:06, 30 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Yes, you were one of the admins there. And there is no conflict of interest: he has nothing to do with this. I am asking this question to the bass players over here, thank you. I wasted more than enough time with that trying to explain it to non-musicians. And believe me, my first impression of your practices and the unkind treatment I received as a newbie was much worse. Several people have now seen the talk page, and are disgusted with the way I was addressed. In the end, whatever happens, it is your loss if he is not listed on the site. You are leaving out one of the most important bassists of our time. All the same, I would rather get some fresh eyes to look at this over HERE... that is why I posted it HERE, thank you. TruthBeTold (talk) 01:10, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm no admin, I'm just an observer. Binksternet (talk) 03:59, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

All the same, I prefer some fresh sets of eyes. Thanks. (talk) 04:11, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

One could argue that, if there is only one bass player in the world who plays such an instrument then either it/he really aren't notable, or are so important they deserve their own article. In the context of the bass guitar wiki a single player of an instrument that barely qualifies as a bass guitar really isn't that important or notable. There is a wikipedia article specifically relating to extended range basses and that is the appropriate place for the level of detail that keeps being added (and rightly removed) from the bass guitar wiki. I note that Yves Carbonne is not currently even mentioned on the extended range bass wiki. This instrument isn't the first 12 string, or the extended range instrument with the largest number of strings - therefore I would tend to agree with the editors who revert the innapropriately gushing entries that are being entered with respect to this instrument, player, luthier etc. Frankly I'm surprised there is thus far no mention of the person who feeds the luthiers dog while he is working on these improbable instruments for Yves. It's pretty clear from the edit history here, on the extended range bass page, and from the removal of the Yves Carbonne article that there is a personal agenda here on the part of TLCbass. Take it elsewhere please. Dinobass (talk) 04:16, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Well, that was offensive. Look him up. And he is the only bassist in the world to play a 10 or12 string FRETLESS. Mind you, he also kicks butt on a 4 string Fender. But, whatever. Just look him up, that's all I have to say. I don't like being bullied, so if you say I have a "personal agenda", it is that I appreciate great talent. Period. End of story. (talk) 06:04, 1 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It is of little relevance that the bass is fretless. There are other multi stringed sub and extended range basses - at this point having additional strings is not really an innovation - just an extension of the concept. It's not clear from any source I can find who originally thought up the sub contra (approximately an octave lower) neither Jauqo, Yves or any of the other players claim that they thought up the idea - although Jauqo does seem to be the first. Regardless, the place for detailed entries is elsewhere on the extended range basses wiki. These are of only peripheral interest to the bass guitar wiki and the pioneers of the movement are already mentioned here. Whether or not you personally believe Yves to be talented is really not relavent here. You've clearly tried to include references in the appropriate articles and had those reverted for quite reasonable and reasoned reasons. This entry really doesn't have any compelling reason to be included in the bass guitar wiki. Insulting the knowledge of other editors, and calling any other dissenting voices bullies really doesn't do anything to further your argument for this to be included. Dinobass (talk) 22:52, 2 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

1. I never insulted the knowledge of other editors - I am trying to share knowledge, which is being rejected repeatedly, for clearly spurious reasons. 2. It is most certainly relevant that the fretless he plays is both the lowest, the only, and is in fact a fretless. You are voicing YOUR opinion here. 3. Please do not mis-quote me: I never said he conceived the sub-CONTRA bass. He conceived the SUB-bass (B lowest string at 15.4 hertz). I will make it easy for you. The reference is this article about him in Bass Musician Magazine: 4. I am hardly alone in my opinion that Carbonne is talented. He has an enormous fan base, and if you haven't heard of him, I don't consider that my problem. 5. There are no pioneers that meet the criteria he does in the ERB wiki nor in any other wiki, because he is the only one who does what he does: in the world, mind you. An overly repetitive, promotional entry about Garry Goodman is all I see on there, relative to ERBS. I will not even get started voicing my opinion on that one. On the sub-bass wiki, it's all metal players. Once again, VERY spurious indeed. 6. It seems to me there are compelling reasons why editors (or competitors), whichever the case may be, would NOT want information on his particular expertise shared on here. The reasons for that are crystal clear. Because no one else is able play the instruments he does. Period. Bass Musician Magazine, The International Institute of Bassists and are examples of references in which he receives considerable recognition by non-threatened experts in the field.

So if accurate information is not published about him on this particular site, I am sure it would not ruin his weekend. As I said, it is more than clear that the motives of those responsible [for relentlessly using their authority to block valid facts from being shared with the public] are highly questionable. That's my conclusion. I really don't care what yours is, to be honest. Again, I found both of your posts offensive and angry. And yes, I have been clearly bullied on here - that is obvious to anyone with an objective point of view. So be it. It doesn't matter in the big scheme of things. Have a great weekend. TruthBeTold (talk) 00:23, 3 May 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Changed info box photo

Hi all, I have changed the infobox photo. The sunburst Fender P-bass was a beautiful pic of a nice bass, but it didn't show the whole instrument (it was a closeup of the body, showing the pickups) As the first page of an encylopedia article, I think we have a duty to show the reader the whole instrument.OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 00:11, 26 May 2009 (UTC))Reply[reply]

Too much reliance on footnote detail

Why do people keep adding footnotes that talk about details such as tuning and materials? Much of what is being added should either be brought into the article in prose form or should not be added at all. What this article needs are real, hard references. Binksternet (talk) 21:36, 1 June 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi, I can answer that...There is a tendency for some editors to want to have perhaps too much details in the article. For the last few years, I have been shifting details to footnotes, as a way to make the text easier to read. I find that when you move details to footnotes, you are less likely to get people angry (because you haven't deleted it, you've just put it in a more hidden place...)OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 23:50, 18 December 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Speaking of footnotes... shouldn't footnote #2 be associated with the word it defines? That would be the word "bass" (in bold in the same sentence), not "bass guitar" or "electric bass". Any objection to moving it? MrRK (talk) 09:31, 24 July 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]