Whether finger funk or high speed metal, some notes need a little more punch than others. That’s why, it’s important for bassists, just as much as any other instrument, to understand accent notes and the value they provide to your bass lines.
Accents are just like what they sound like. Accented notes are punctuated with a bit more emphasis than a ‘regularly’ played note. To physically play an accented note is just as easy as explaining what one is to a friend or fellow musician. Simply impart a little bit more finger (or pick) strength into a note to pop it out of the mix.
Playing accented notes for bassists is easy at slower tempos. The challenge comes when as a bass player you’re expected to play complicated accent patterns at fast tempos – 0r even complicated patterns at moderate tempos.
Here are 11 exercises to improve your accent performance.
You’re getting ready to practice or play a big show and you’re getting ready to warm up. Here are some fast tips to bear in mind when warming up with bass guitar exercises that are worth keeping in mind:
Warmup are meant to be just that: warmups. Things that get you prepared for the main event, but are not themselves the main musical event.
Stop If It Hurts
The old bit about ‘no pain no gain’ has been detrimental to so many musicians and athletes alike. If it hurts – something is not right.
Stop immediately and assess what’s going on and what the source of the pain is. Like any good pre-workout and workout, the point is to pinpoint a specific area (in this case, the skill of being able to land tough accent patterns at fast tempos) and nothing more.
If the result is not being achieved and something else is acting up instead, stop immediately and figure out what to fix and how to fix it.
Start Slow Then Work To Optimal Speed
Even though the exercises above are marked with a moderate tempo, that doesn’t mean (necessarily) that you should jump into them at those tempos if you’re not ready.
Like with any new skill, it’s important to take it slow and the build from there, keeping in mind that it’s better to get it right early than to have to go back later and undo an established habit.
For more information on practice habits and practice routine, check out these other Smart Bass articles: