Talk:Bass guitar/Archive 7

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Archive 1 Archive 5 Archive 6 Archive 7

Pictures of people playing bass

This article has a tendency to keep being filled up with pictures of musicians playing bass guitars, usually with little relevance to the section they are placed in or other justification for them.

Most other instrument pages seem to have avoided this, or have one or two pictures which are illustrative, rather than simply being someones favourite player.

There are too many pictures in the article as it is, can we please avoid adding more unnecessary ones.

Dinobass (talk) 21:06, 14 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would agree with this. Good edit, any image of a player themselves should be justified by the article being unable to adequately explain a topic without the image. Bakkster Man (talk) 21:12, 14 February 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hi, I think that is is GOOD to have pictures of famous bass players actually playing the bass. We want readers to see the instrument as it is played. What we don't want is people putting pictures of non-famous their best friend, who is a non-notable player. Or some random editor putting pictures of THEMSELVES playing, out of vanity. But I think it is great for the readers to see pictures of well-known bassists. Look at the different ways they hold the instrument. The pic of Michael Manring is justified according to your approach, as he is referred to in the section. The Spalding pic is justified because she is a well-known jazz player. I agree that there are some theoretical problems with having pics of players, but I don't think having pictures of players who are widely seen to be very important to the history of a bad thing.

OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 21:55, 7 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I propose a policy for pictures of people playing the bass. The person has to be named in the text of the article where the picture appears. I agree that just having random pix of bass players is not helpful. However, if the article names a player, then it appears to me that it is justified to have a picture of the player. This would be in line with WP:Images policy. Another concern which was raised was that there are too many pictures already. In some of the sections, where you have removed the pictures, now there are now NO pictures. I think there should be a reasonable middle ground. The article for Electric guitar, interestingly enough, follows your approach (no pictures of guitar being played). However, the article for drums has a number of pictures of drumkits being played. OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 23:33, 21 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Dinobass, what is your rationale for not wanting pics of people playing the bass. You say other instrument articles don't have pictures of people with the instrument, but the drumkit article has a number of pix of drummers with their drum kits, and the violin article has pictures of people playing the violin. The Microphone article has two photos of people using mics. The acoustic guitar article has a pic of a well-known guitarist strumming a guitar. I think that you need to find a policy rationale to back up your position that the article can have ZERO pictures of people playing the bass.OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 23:46, 21 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Here is the Wikipedia images policy: (I added the bolding) I note that there is a point which supports your views... the last point about "don't add lots of pix just because you can." However, I think 1 photo per section would be reasonable

Pertinence and encyclopedic nature

Images must be relevant to the article that they appear in and be significantly and directly related to the article's topic. Because the Wikipedia project is in a position to offer multimedia learning to its audience, images are an important part of any article's presentation. Effort should therefore be made to improve quality and choice of images or captions in articles rather than favoring their removal, especially on pages which have few visuals. Images are primarily meant to inform readers by providing visual information. Consequently, images should look like what they are meant to illustrate, even if they are not provably authentic images. For example, a photograph of a trompe-l'œil painting of a cupcake may be an acceptable image for Cupcake, but a real cupcake that has been decorated to look like something else entirely is less appropriate. Similarly, an image of an unidentified cell under a light microscope might be useful on multiple articles, so long as there are no visible differences between the cell in the image and the typical appearance of the cell being illustrated. Articles that use more than one image should present a variety of material near relevant text. If the article is about a general subject for which a large number of good quality images are available, (e.g., Running), editors are encouraged to seek a reasonable level of variety in the age, gender, and race of any people depicted. Adding multiple images with very similar content is less useful. For example, three formal portraits of a general wearing his military uniform may be excessive; substituting two of the portraits with a map of a battle and a picture of its aftermath may provide more information to readers. You should always be watchful not to overwhelm an article with images by adding more just because you can. Poor quality images (too dark, blurry, etc.) or where the subject in the image is too small, hidden in clutter, ambiguous or otherwise not obvious, should not be used. Contributors should be judicious in deciding which images are the most suitable for the subject matter in an article. For example:

The central issue here is, does the image add information about the subject of the article - which is 'bass guitar', not 'bass guitarists playing instruments'. There are many bass players mentioned in the article - if we add a picture of each one, has that added anything at all to the article? I would suggest not. It would, as someone else pointed out, make the article look like a grade school project. The wikipedia guidelines specifically mention the issue of two many pictures. The wikipedia guidelines suggest that that a picture may be added if the subject is mentioned, but that is not the same as saying it 'should' be added. The pictures of Steve Swallow and Michael Manring do not, in and of themselves, add any new information about the subject of the article. One could argue that we need a picture of a person playing a bass guitar, as bass guitars are objects which are played by people. However, which bass player do we pick? There is no one definitive bass player that everyone, or even close to a majority of people, would agree with. Therefore, to avoid constant deletions and replacements of pictures by fans and acolytes of particular musicians, I would suggest it is better to follow the lead of the electric guitar page and have no pictures. The violin page has a small number of pictures which include people, these are mostly centuries old paintings - again - almost certainly to avoid problems with acolytes of current musicians. Even if one agress that there is a place for an example image of a musician playing a bass there is no need whatsoever for the recent proliferation of pictures. Especially as the number of pictures has been reduced, by concensus, over the last year or so. What is the justification for adding these pictures, other than that you, personally, like them? To add a picture, any picture, to the article it should be justifiable in terms of the article, not just because it might look good, or any given editor may believe the player is significant. The place for pictures of players is on the musicians individual pages. I removed the pictures of Manring and Swallow because, while reviewing the various pictures of musicians playing basses which had been recently added, I could see no particular reason for their inclusion either. There are so *many* musicians mentioned in the article that this, alone, should not be considered enough justification for inclusion. I would suggest that we return to the status quo of the last 18 months and have an article with minimal pictures of musicians playing instruments.

Dinobass (talk) 12:24, 23 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

You said that this article is about the bass guitar and not bass guitarists. You would be in a stronger point if the article ONLY discussed worm gears and bridges and magnetic pickups and neck woods and so on. However, in fact, the article has several sections which discuss how the bass is played and how it is held, how it is plucked, and specific players are named.
If we were discussing the article for "power amplifier", would I be arguing that we need a picture of a sound engineer pressing the "ON" button? No. There I would agree with you...just show the power amp from the front, back,etc. But once we are discussing an instrument that is held, it becomes useful for the reader to see HOW the bass is held, HOW the strings are plucked, how the fretting hand holds the neck.
The article mentions "Flea" in the slapping and popping section, and I proposed the addition of a picture in which he appears to be slapping the bass. This helps the reader see how the bass is held and played. I am trying to work with you on finding a middle ground between "NO Pictures of Bass players" and "lots of pictures of bass players." One middle ground is to have only a few pictures of bass players, of course only in the section where the bass player is named. You say it does not add information.
I disagree; the picture shows the reader how the instrument is held and played. You are right; there is no reason to illustrate every bassist who is named, but that does not mean that there should be no pictures. You are advocating an "all or nothing" position. My position has Wikipedia policy behind it (which is that images, properly selected, enhance the value of articles). Your position seems to be based on the concern that there will be too many pictures of bassists. Certainly, a limit should be placed. But I believe your view of "ZERO" as the number of bassist pictures is unreasonable. You say how do we pick the player. One way which would be objective would be to choose a bassist who has become highly notable, in terms of awards and so on. One possible player we might be able to get a consensus on is Jaco (I added a pic of him but you deleted it). Regarding the "electric guitar" article, the electric bass article is not bound by the electric guitar article. I find the omission of a picture of someone playing the guitar to be unusual. I have added some pictures of different techniques being demonstrated, but I think you will be OK with them because they just show the hands and the instrument, not the person.

WP:Images policy says that the effort should be on IMPROVING the QUALITY and CHOICE of images, rather than favouring their removal: "Images must be relevant to the article that they appear in and be significantly and directly related to the article's topic. Because the Wikipedia project is in a position to offer multimedia learning to its audience, images are an important part of any article's presentation. Effort should therefore be made to improve quality and choice of images or captions in articles rather than favoring their removal, especially on pages which have few visuals."[bolding added by me]

One thing that is valued in Wikipedia is stability. So I see your concern about there being an ever-changing sequence of bass player pictures, based on who is the favourite of editor X or editor Y. So I think that the community could pick a small number of bassists who could be illustrated (with the section that mentions them), by consensus. I nominate Jaco as one of the players. I think you can comfortably say he is one of the more notable jazz bassists. I would like to hear from someone besides me and you on this. Other notables might be Paul McCartney and James Jamerson. Do editors believe that there can be two or three pictures of highly notable bassists in the sections where they are named??OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 23:18, 23 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If you look at the examples of the other musical instrument pages, for the most part pictures of musicians playing their instruments are few and far between. Most instrument articles have no more than one or two photographs of an individual musician (clarinet (1), trumpet (2), timpani (1)), or none (electric guitar, flugel horn, cor anglais, fretless guitar). Articles with multiple named pictures of contemporary musicians are outside the norm. Two articles where pictures of musicians exist and are generally well chosen are the drum kit and guitar articles - in both articles the pictures are, for the most part, directly illustrative of the sections they are mentioned in, and are often either drawings or old pictures of pioneering musicians (in many cases deceased). This was not the case with the pictures of musicians playing bass guitars recently added and removed.
Yes, musicians are mention in the article, and if people want to see what any of those musicians look like they are free to click through to their own articles. There are more than 60 musicians, luthiers and other people mentioned in the article. Each of them is important in their own right, how can one choose between them? Apart from Paul Tutmarc and Leo Fender (whose photograph is absent, but would be appropriate). Even where the picture is of a musician named in the section, is it illustrative? The picture of Flea does appear to show him slapping the bass, but his hands are so small in the picture that one would only know this if one already knew what slapping was. A close up of Flea's right hand would be illustrative - similar to the picture of an unnamed bass player performing two handed tapping - but that is not what was added. A similar example is the picture of Michael Manring in the section about formal training. The picture does not show him either in the process of learning or teaching - it is therefore not illustrative of the section it appears in.
I find your example of a tennis racquet illustrative of my point, in that the wikipedia article on the racquet (Racket) does not include a picture of a person holding a racquet..
As for you suggestion of Jaco as an uncontroversial example player, I would suggest that is far from a reasonable assumption. There are many players for whom there is a stronger case. James Jamerson, John Entwistle, Duck Dunn, Carol Kaye, Paul McCartney, even Flea. All have played on more, and more importantly more widely influential, recordings than Jaco. Within a particular sub-genre of Jazz Jaco is highly rated, and even then not universally, but in an article on the electric bass guitar in the wider context there are much stronger contenders than Jaco. I would suggest that James Jamerson would be strongest contender for an uncontroversial example player - after all - you can hear his influence in recordings by many later players to a far greater degree than you can hear Jaco's influence on later players even within the narrow field of Jazz. Unfortunately, I do not believe there are many good, copyright free, pictures of James Jamerson playing the bass.

Dinobass (talk) 00:24, 24 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi, thanks for your reply (I should have looked at the tennis racket article before I opened my mouth!!) I agree with your proposal of James Jamerson, John Entwistle, Duck Dunn, Carol Kaye, Paul McCartney, even Flea as some of the most notable bass players. I think that we could get a consensus that these are highly notable players. I will see if there are good copyright-free images for them and get back to you. I am interested that you are OK with adding a pic of Leo Fender. Why does a person need to know what Leo Fender looks like? If I follow the hard-lined reasoning you propose, you could argue that a picture of him serves no purpose to the reader. I of course am joking, as I agree it is interesting to see what Leo looks like. OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 00:32, 24 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My intention was not to propose all of those musicians for inclusion - it was intended to be a list of people more appropriate than Jaco. My personal view is that at most 'one' picture of a musician playing a bass is all that is justifiable and I would not, personally, want to be responsible for that choice, although my vote would be for James Jamerson. Not because he is my favourite player, but because I believe there is a strong case for him as the most influential player. In the case of Leo Fender, this is unusual in that it is rare that the inventor of a popular and widespread instrument is known - and even in this case there are two independent inventors of note. The only other example I can think of is Adolphe Sax - who is pictured on the Saxophone page. It would be nice if the picture of Leo included a bass guitar. Dinobass (talk) 05:35, 24 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I propose Paul McCartney, because he is so widely known, even to non-musicians. Do we have a consensus that there can be one picture of a bass player? I think so :) OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 15:34, 24 April 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Here are two proposed pictures, to go, of course, in the section where the player is named:
Duck Dunn
Paul McCartney

Electric bass could be a "good article"

Does anyone know the nomination process to have an article reviewed for "good article" status. I think the article is looking pretty good right now, and we might have a chance. Even if the article doesn't win "good article" status, we will get some good tips for improvement (e.g., more secondary sources)OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 22:38, 6 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

OMG...this article is rated as "Start Class". That is harsh. We need to have it looked at again.

OnBeyondZebrax (talk) 22:45, 6 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Is it really necessary to include "thumping" in the line naming the various techniques for electric bass, located in the opening section? There isn't even a further explanation of "thumping" in the section outlining the techniques.. this is probably because thumping is a nickname for slapping and not a separate technique. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Messatzzia (talkcontribs) 17:49, 16 May 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Fretless basses

Fretless basses have a distinct sound, because the absence of frets means that the string must be pressed down directly onto the wood of the fingerboard as with the double bass. The string buzzes against the wood and is somewhat muted because the sounding portion of the string is in direct contact with the flesh of the player's finger. is a quote from the article. The statement of string being muted by the finger at the fingering point dies not have a reference and i Believe the statement to be untrue. I therefore intend to remove this statement unless anyone convinces me not to. (talk) 15:02, 14 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Maybe a rewrite would be better than removal. The statement seems obviously true to me, but perhaps "muted" isn't the best word. In a non-fretted instrument, the string vibrates between the bridge and the point where the finger presses it to the wood on the neck. With frets, the string vibrates between the bridge and the fret (usually made of hard material like metal, bone or ivory), so the finger doesn't contribute much to the sound, except to hold the string against the hard fret. That's what I understood the text to be getting at. Willondon (talk) 13:01, 15 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree that the underlying fact of finger muting is true, so we should look for supporting references. Binksternet (talk) 15:15, 15 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Not to say a reference wouldn't be nice, but for me, this falls into the "see for yourself" or "it speaks for itself" category; i.e. verifiable by a layman just by examining the thing themselves. For example, the assertion "The novel 1984 never mentions the word 'doublespeak'". Some might call for a cite, but I think the required reference is the novel itself. In the same vein, any layman could play a note on a fretted bass, then on a fretless bass and immediately verify the difference. A rewrite might be better, because anyone can verify the difference, but "somewhat muted" might be a doubtful description. My two cents. Willondon (talk) 18:31, 15 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Bassists creating own bass lines

In response to issues raised by Dinobass about a paragraph which asserted that electric bass players are expected to be able to improvise or prepare their own bass lines, I have modified the paragraph to only make this claim about jazz bands (in which bass players are provided a lead sheet which lays out the chord progression (for example F7 /Bb7 /F7 /cm7 F7), and country bands that play using the Nashville Number System, an approach which sets out the chords like this:

1///| 4///| 5///| 1///. The bass player has to be able to improvise a bassline to fit that harmony.

I believe that in other styles, such as blues, folk, and so on, for professional bassists in bands playing all or almost all original material, there is an expectation that the bassist be able to prepare his or her own bassline, if this is needed. This is one of the ways that popular music is different than classical. A folk bandleader can say to his bassist "Ok, let's try playing my new song. It's a slow country ballad, and the chords are C, F, G, C for the verse and the chorus is dm G7, two bars on each chord". At this point, I argue that a professional bass player would be expected to be able to improvise or prepare a bass part, using roots, fifths, passing tones, and stylistically appropriate fills such as scalar walk ups or walk downs to the next chord. I think it would be unusual for a professional bassist in an all-original material band to be UNABLE to create his or her own bassline, if asked. OnBeyondZebrax

I agree with your assessment of requirements for a bassist to improvise a line, but I would suggest removing the text entirely. It seems to me that this information is more relevant to the genre of music than to the instrument itself. Willondon (talk) 19:32, 23 October 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The article is about the bass guitar, not the skill set of a bass guitarist or their musical role. While it may be the case that, in some circumstances bass players do create their own lines, or have the ability to improvise - in other situations they do not. There are professional musicians who cannot improvise, or write their own parts. There are professional bass players who cannot read music, or even charts. To try and write a general statement about this issue is probably an article in itself, and one which would be difficult to create in such a way that it conforms to wikipedia guidelines about NPOV, personal research and opinion. I agree with Willondon that it is more relevant to genre of music and is problematic in an article about the instrument. I would suggest removing this section. Dinobass (talk) 00:58, 24 October 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The article treats the topic of bass guitar quite broadly. In addition to describing the instrument's construction and history, there is a section on how the bass is held and played, a section on the uses of the bass in different genres, which discusses the types of basslines that are played, and a section on how the bass is taught. Regarding the role of bassists in creating their own basslines, a standard part of bass method books is providing instruction on how to create basslines to fit a given chord. Even when a bassist plays a bassline written by someone else, there is still some latitude for improvising fills. I will look and see if I can find a source that supports the claim that bassists in some popular music genres may be required to prepare their own basslines. There can't be much debate in some contexts, though, as in the case of country bands using the Nashville number system. In this case, there is no bassline, and so the bassist has to create one to fit the chord progression. Here is an example of a book that teaches bassists how to create their own basslines. OnBeyondZebrax
I don't think the claim that bassists must often improvise is in dispute. At issue is whether or not the information is appropriate to an article about the instrument. There is a separate article for "bassist", where I think the material has a more natural home. Willondon (talk) 21:31, 24 October 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Six-string tuning

"Some players prefer B0-E1-A1-D2-F♯2-B3" Is that a typo? B3 is an octave and a fourth above F♯2. (talk) 23:06, 5 September 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Nope. B3 is only a fourth higher the F#2 - B4 would be an octave and a fourth. Dinobass (talk) 00:35, 6 September 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Nope. B3 is an octave and a fourth above F♯2. It is a typo. Hereby fixed. Siffuor Kuzmuus in the Norwegian Wikipedia, 16:50, 27 December 2011.

This article doesn't say what the MIDI notes are for a normal bass, therefore total fail. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:48, 17 March 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Freebo and country

In the section listing people who play fretless guitars the player is named and then the style of music that he plays and Freebo is called "country." I don't believe that he would be offended by this and I certainly am not offended on his behalf. After all, country is as respectable a marketing category as any other. However, I believe it is inaccurate or at best incomplete. He is best known for his work with Bonnie and that work was blues-centered, although lots of her fans call her a folk artist. (talk) 16:43, 7 May 2014 (UTC)Will in New Haven65.79.173.135 (talk) 16:43, 7 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't think that entry is meant to suggest that Freebo primarily or exclusively plays country music. It is more that he is an example of a fretless bass player who has played and recorded country music using a fretless bass. On his own website there is currently a quote describing his music as 'his own cosmic blend of folk/country/rock/soul ear-pleasing genre-defying music' and Bonnie Raitt usually has the term country included in any description of her music (along with blues and folk). There may be another player who is a better example of a bass player who frequently plays fretless bass in country music contexts, if so it would be appropriate to change the entry. Otherwise I would suggest he is the most high profile fretless bass player who regularly plays in country contexts and therefore the most appropriate player for the entry.

Dinobass (talk) 06:12, 8 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Proposed merge with Piccolo bass

"Piccolo bass" discusses a particular tuning of a standard-size bass guitar. It has some significance but apparently not enough to make for an article that's any more than a stub. Whatever can be said about it does not need its own article. LazyBastardGuy 04:20, 24 December 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree, although "Piccolo bass" really refers to a tuning of either a standard bass with thinner strings or a smaller scale bass guitar. However, I do not think this merits a separate article. BassHero55 (Talk) 12:52, 8 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Having just noticed that a piccolo bass section was merged into the bass guitar section I realise that there are some issues involved here. The current piccolo bass page refers to two different instruments, the acoustic piccolo bass - which is based on the upright acoustic bass, and the electric piccolo bass - which is derived from the bass guitar. These are quite different instruments, and while the piccolo bass guitar fits well within the remit of this page, the acoustic piccolo bass does not. While it is true that the current piccolo bass page is little more than a stub, it is not that different from the extended range bass - which has its own article. An article which is not much larger than that of the piccolo bass. I would suggest it would be more appropriate to expand the piccolo bass page rather than fold it into either the bass guitar or upright bass pages. Dinobass (talk) 02:52, 22 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Regarding the Jaguar Bass mention in the 1980s-Present Section

(as of 11/25/14) The section ends with the quote: in 2011, a 60th Anniversary P-bass was introduced by Fender, along with the re-introduction of the short-scale Fender Jaguar Bass. This is erroneous on two accounts: (1) The Jaguar Bass was introduced in 2006, and has been in continuous production either in Japan, the US or China (under the Modern Player line) since then, and (2) all versions of the Jaguar Bass have been 34" scale, or "full scale" necks (with the exception of the Pawn Shop Reverse Jaguar, with 32"), according to the Fender catalog. See: — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:13, 26 November 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Kala uBass

A new section has been added regarding the Kala uBass. There are multiple issues with this section. The uBass is a bass Ukulele - not a bass guitar. It is historically innacurate, as extremely short scale basses, such as the Ashbory Bass have existed since the 1980s and are already mentioned in an appropriate place in the article. There are many grammatical errors and the section reads like an advertorial for Kala. Also, no other bass, even the Fender Precision or Tutmarc bass, have their own section so a section for the uBass is unprecedented. I suggest that this section is removed, and perhaps some mention of the uBass moved to either 1980s to present, or design considerations. Dinobass (talk) 23:16, 5 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

And it's in a separate subsection under "Pickups and Amplification". Willondon (talk) 00:03, 6 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Also the name of the instrument should be u-bass, not UBass. Dinobass (talk) 02:12, 6 April 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

External links modified

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Use of bass guitar in contemporary classical music

Hi - I made a comment, which I am sure must be correct. On reflection, I deleted my comment as I did not have a source with which to back it up. My deleted comment read:

"Contemporary classical composers do not necessarily always use the bass guitar for the sake of its novelty. On the contrary, its use may be associated, (like the use of the electric guitar and drum kit) as a reflection of its dominance in popular music over the last 60 years, and the influence this has had on composers who have grown up during that period."

If anyone can identify a source to back this up, I think it would be a useful point to make. I think it balances out the existing comment about bass guitar being used for its novelty factor (which is also lacking a source). With respect, I don't agree with that: as bass guitar is hardly a novelty. It is ubiquitous, and that's got to be why it is becoming increasingly well used in classical music. I don't want to just delete the existing comment, but I think it would be useful to balance it out.

Happy to discuss! CHRM2 (talk) 22:15, 25 September 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

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Unreferenced claim about LongHorn6 needs a reliable source

I removed the following sentence, as it has no reference. If we can find a reference, it can go back in the article. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, so readers need to be able to be confident that what they read is reliably sourced.OnBeyondZebraxTALK 21:53, 8 April 2017 (UTC) "The original six-string bass was the LongHorn6,[citation needed] created by Danelectro in 1958, as a guitar tuned down an octave (EADGBE)."Reply[reply]

Large sections of this article (in fact most of it) is unreferenced. As one of the most popular electric instruments, there should be plenty of quality reliable sources on electric bass to cite. WP:No original research includes "To demonstrate that you are not adding OR, you must be able to cite reliable, published sources that are directly related to the topic of the article, and directly support the material being presented." [emphasis in original] WP:PROVEIT adds:

All content must be verifiable. The burden to demonstrate verifiability lies with the editor who adds or restores material, and is satisfied by providing a citation to a reliable source that directly supports the contribution.[2] ... Any material lacking a reliable source directly supporting it may be removed and should not be restored without an inline citation to a reliable source. [emphasis in original]

Ojorojo (talk) 14:35, 9 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
the article does seem to have become long and rambling. I will endeavour to clean it up. Although there aren't many citations and a lot of superflous and unnecessary examples and repetition, there isn't much which strikes me as being factually incorrect.

Dinobass (talk) 05:39, 20 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

too much tuning?

Seems to me like most of section 2.2 Strings and tuning doesn't belong here, maybe better over on Bass guitar tuning. It comes across as much too deep for a general-readership article, and somewhere between technical jargon and how-to.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 22:06, 3 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Similarly, shouldn't Playing techniques become an entirely separate article? It too mostly goes way over the "general readership" heads, and so introduces much useless bulk.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 22:36, 3 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
On closer review, I see how much of Performance techniques could be said to run afoul of WP:NOHOWTO.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 23:15, 10 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Here's a bunch of tuning stuff I cut out. Mostly fancruft/trivia, but maybe there's a nugget to be found.

Other tunings, such as C–E–A–D–G are rare. Some bassists like C as the lowest pitch because that's the lowest note on an upright bass with a C, and C is a common note in a few popular keys C (e.g., C major, G major, F major). Some players may detune the lowest string to B or A. B is common for bassists who play in brass bands, as B is an important and common key for this type of ensemble. Relative to a four-string bass, the fifth string provides a greater lower range (with a low B, C, or A) or a greater upper range (with a high C or B is added) and provides more notes for any single hand position.

Alternative tunings for six-string bass include B–E–A–D–G–B, matching the first five strings of an acoustic or electric guitar with an additional low B, and E–A–D–G–B–E, completely matching the tuning of a six-string guitar but one octave lower allowing the use of guitar chord fingerings. Rarer tunings such as E–A–D–G–C–F and F–B–E–A–D–G provide a lower or higher range in a given position while maintaining consistent string intervals.

Some people prefer a slightly shorter scale, such as 30 or 28 inches (762 or 711 mm), as the higher tension required for longer scale lengths coupled with the thinner gauge of higher-pitched strings can make a long-scale piccolo bass difficult to play. The tuning varies with the personal tastes of the artist, as does the number of strings.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 22:50, 10 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Before Tutmark's electrified solid-body bass, there was the acoustic mandocello, which dates back to at least the early 1900s Gibson. Depending on the manufacturer, scale length ranged up to 27 inches, as compared to the 30.5" Model 736, both near the modern "short scale" length. As well, there were analogous larger versions of the balalaika. Arguably, the innovations of the Audiovox bass were the slab body and the pickup, rather than the length or the guitar-like playing style.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 22:08, 3 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

cruft removal project

There's a whole lot of stuff hidden inappropriately under Footnotes and references. First, I will put these passages into the body proper. Eventually, I will return and remove any that haven't been linked to a credible source — at present, that would be all of them.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 19:11, 17 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Footnotes substantially cleared.
The Chucking subsection is quite poor, apparently relying entirely on the memoir of the guitarist (and referencing an excerpt rather than the book itself) and on a fan website that is nothing but a bunch of links to videos of people using (or attempting to use) the technique. Without proper sourcing, this is well past WP:NOHOWTO.
The entire (poorly titled) Uses section is packed with unsourced examples, dragging the entire article into example farm territory. (I'll begin with a better title.)
Weeb Dingle (talk) 16:23, 18 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have improved one reference in the “chucking” section, giving a citation to a published book with page number.Design (talk) 22:07, 18 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Still a long ways to go. Of the three citations midway through the first sentence — which strongly implies that Edwards created the technique AND that Edwards coined the term — one is a dead link, one mentions chucking only once in passing, one mentions chucking as a GUITAR technique:
Rodgers immersed himself in the art of funk rhythm guitar, which he learned from Edwards, who called it “chucking.”
Nowhere is the origin either of the technique or the term credited to anyone, least of all Edwards.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 21:37, 3 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree that more detailed citations would be good. However, of the 6 current citations, none are deadlinks for me. Some of them are citations of Edwards calling the technique ‘chucking’. I don’t think it implies he invented it, it justs cites that is what HE called it. We don’t NEED an origin story for the technique, for it to be included in this article. If you think the one citation about Edwards calling the guitar technique ‘chucking’ is not relevant, then feel free to remove it.Design (talk) 23:34, 10 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Acoustic bass guitar?

This article is titled "Bass guitar" but covers only the electric bass guitar. Its introduction and content should also include the acoustic bass guitar. Additionally, this article has been around since 2001 and has not progressed above START class. The Archives show much talking but very little doing. Somebody needs to take it under their wing and give it some care.

Mizsabot now established for auto-archiving. A technical request regarding no edit function provided to the right of the topic headings has been lodged here. William Harris • (talk) • 00:28, 27 February 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

That's at least two disparate thoughts. First, the "acoustic bass guitar" is a bass neck stuck onto something that looks like an oversize acoustic guitar; aside from the awkwardness, the body is not large enough to properly resonate the bass tones so almost all instruments require amplification, making it directly analogous to the hollow-body electric guitar. Second, I've been pulling weeds by the handful, so "very little doing" is questionable at best. And, naturally, you are empowered to edit the article.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 21:53, 3 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Did you just write that an acoustic bass guitar cannot hit the "bass notes" whereas an electric guitar can? Both types of bass guitar require amplification to be heard well. Aside from that issue, where does that leave the acoustic bass guitar - do we simply make believe that it does not exist in a Wikipedia article titled "Bass guitar"? Does it not warrant some mention in the lede? WiDlliam Harris • (talk) • 07:13, 5 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Please stow the "incredulity." Yes, as you can likely grasp, I did indeed write that, and not for the first time (that being a guitar discussion site back around 2009). I've been playing and repairing guitars for 45 years. If I were to take an acoustic guitar and mount a pickup on it (as companies from Electro through Martin have done), I'd have a dual-purpose instrument. However, "the acoustic bass guitar" has almost no history, AND (requiring amplification) is no more "an acoustic instrument" than (say) a Tele Thinline or ES-335, which last I checked are regarded as "electric guitars."
One of the very few credible attempts was Ernie Ball's Earthwood bass… which was prone to top collapse due to the pressure of the four strings on a top design that essentially just scaled up an acoustic guitar. (FFI) Here's a photo.
Here's some thumbnail physics. If a resonant surface needs to be at least Y square inches in order to support frequency M, then it's an easy guess a similar surface intended to support frequency M/2 ought to be 2Y square inches. This analogy can readily be extended to hollow space.
Anyone who's ever seen an Earthwood realizes what a big chunk these things are. In order to have any chance to both support the stresses AND resonate at half the frequency of an acoustic guitar, an actual "acoustic bass guitar" really needs to be MUCH larger than most such instruments on the market, which suggests it's a marketing gimmick rather than something created by any luthier.
At the moment, you are attempting to push a personal opinion. As soon as you can provide at least one credible source stating that "the acoustic bass guitar" is somehow "a thing," then you'll be one step closer to making a case. But I can make the countercase that "the acoustic bass guitar" is MUCH more appropriate buried in the article about the Mexican guitarron — which, incidentally, inspired the Earthwood. Have a look at how huge the top and the body cavity are, as compared to a regular guitar.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 17:55, 9 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I overlooked another critical bit of practical physics: lower frequencies attenuate much more rapidly with distance. In order to have any chance of being "an acoustic instrument," a hollow-bodied bass would need to be massive in order to be heard as part of an ensemble at the depth of even a small audience (call that 20-40 feet). That's why the guitarron body is so huge. And, again, if it can't be used as an acoustic instrument, then "acoustic bass guitar" is a pointless oxymoron.
Weeb Dingle (talk) 18:24, 10 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
OK, I bow to your greater knowledge of these things and let the matter rest. William Harris • (talk) • 20:42, 14 March 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Split into separate instrument and technique articles

This article has become too long to read comfortably and maintain. Propose to split it into two articles:

  • Bass guitar – focus on the instrument itself (history, design, types, pickups, etc.)
  • Bass guitar techniques – focus on the playing aspects (picking, fretting, soloing, training, etc.)

This would effectively split the article at the current "Performance techniques" section, with sections 1–4 remaining in the "Bass guitar" article and sections 5–7 forming a new "Bass guitar techniques" article. Hopefully, this will make it easier for readers to focus on sections and add reliable sources to a vastly unreferenced topic. —Ojorojo (talk) 16:24, 19 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Oppose. Almost nothing in the article is appropriately sourced, and consists of reams of original research. Instead of splitting all this into two articles, it really ought to be properly rewritten and sourced, which would likely result in cutting lots of bloat. Popcornduff (talk) 22:31, 30 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Ceramic magnets vs. ceramic and steel magnets

In the section "Pickups and amplification" part "Magnetic pickups," it says "Dual coil pickups come in two main varieties; ceramic or ceramic and steel. Ceramic-only magnets have a relatively "harsher" sound than their ceramic and steel counterparts, and are thus used more commonly in heavier rock styles (heavy metal music, hardcore punk, etc.)." Is this even accurate? Why isn't anything like that in other articles like "Humbucker" and "Pickup (music technology)"? Aren't the two chief magnets used in electric guitars alnico and ferrite? Maybe "ceramic" is ferrite and "steel" is alnico, IDK... WorldQuestioneer (talk) 23:23, 18 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@WorldQuestioneer: Many WP music instrument and related articles contain personal opinion/commentary that is not backed up by reliable sources (note the "multiple issues" box at the top of the article that have been in place for years). When you see questionable material without any inline citations, I suggest you correct it with proper references or remove it. Some article topics may already have separate articles (such as tuning, pickups, amplification, and effects) that deal with the subject in more detail. This article should only provide an overview of those areas and leave the finer points to the other articles. In your example, ceramic vs. other is excessive detail for a general article about the instrument, especially when the existing pickup article is linked.—Ojorojo (talk) 14:42, 19 January 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]