Some may say that tablature for bass guitar is actually useless as the instrument is easier to play than an acoustic or electric guitar. However, this is not the case. Find out why you should use tablatures (tabs) as extensively as possible to improve your playing skills. Get some useful tips on how to make the most out of the tabs available.
In its essence, the tablature for bass guitar allows you to read music so that you can play it. It is perfectly possible for you to learn to play by year by just listening to songs and playing what you have heard. The reality is that this is an extremely difficult learning method that is not recommended by professional players and teachers alike.
It is true that tabs contain a lot of symbols that you have to memorize. However, they give you precise directions on what tone to play and when. When you take a tablature for bass guitar, you will see the strings denoted by lines and the frets that you need to press. The frets are denoted by numbers. Each number has a position which shows you exactly which string to strum. The horizontal distance between the numbers tells you how long to play a tone for.
Using tabs allows you to practice more effectively not only chords, but also more complex techniques such as hammer-ons and pull-offs. More importantly, as you get to learn how to read tabs, you will be able to play even songs that you do not know. This is a great benefit for expanding your repertoire as a bassist.
Start using tablature for bass guitar from lesson one when you learn the major chords. Learn how to read tabs and practice playing simultaneously. Eventually both things will come naturally to you. Needless to say, you need to practice extensively to get the hang of the instrument.
Once you get to master the basics and move to intermediate level, you should consider incorporating other elements of playing which are important for your overall performance. You need to focus on the rhythm and on the dynamics of your performance. It is essential for you to work on precision and harmony. Just listen to your performance and pay attention to the overall feel and mood and not so much to the clarity.
Practice daily to make the most out of tablatures for bass guitar. You can readily find plenty of free samples online so you will never have to go back to a song that you already know.
PS: Check out the great video of Billy Idol teaching how to play rock guitar