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Author   Topic : "Shizo learns to play guitar = evil"
Lunatique
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 9:36 pm     Reply with quote
Ooh, you diving in the the low end too? What brand/model is that thing anyway? What's the tone like, and can you slap that bitch?
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 10:23 pm     Reply with quote
No brand or model. It has "K" written on its headstock but I think it's also a sticker.
I don't really have anything to compare its tone or slapability to, except the $1000 Ibanez that the store owner lets me play. So comparing to that, his is a bit better. Smile

I also made a video on the first day I got it, check http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DAta7XKBJvM
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:27 am     Reply with quote
Hey, that's pretty good! Isn't it cool that a lot of your guitar chops carry over to the bass pretty smoothly? I found that I've shaved off at least a few years of practice time on the bass due to already being able to play guitar.

What amps are you using for your guitar and bass?
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 5:16 am     Reply with quote
Definitely! It definitely helped knowing how to play a little guitar. But I also noticed that the bass is very beneficial to my guitar playing. It trains my fingers to press a lot harder and directly on top of the string (due to thick round strings). Also because my bass is sh*t and it's more difficult to play. Smile So after a week of playing just bass, playing guitar seemed easier!

I'm still using Guitar Rig 2 (check previous page). I plug it in directly into my NI AudioKontrol 1 audio interface. You should really check out RigKontrol 3. If you watch their demo, you'll want it. The video with Frank Zappa's son was also sweet.
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 8:40 am     Reply with quote
Yeah, the G string on the guitar used to a pain for me, but after playing bass, it's like nothing.

I'm using Line 6's Toneport UX2. It's similar to the Guitar Rig/RigKontrol system, but different in features (includes vocal preamps, phantom power...etc). I think GR3's got a better interface and more creative tones presets, but Gearbox has its own strengths too. Amplitube is nice also, but hate the interface. Waves GTR sounds great but is a bit lacking in bells and whistles.
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 11:58 pm     Reply with quote
I got yet another new bass! It looks something like this..


It says "Ashland by Crafter" but actually it's a (good) copy of Ibanez GSR200.

I just recorded "Bob Marley - I shot the sheriff" with it. Check!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFThBS9lb6I
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 2:05 pm     Reply with quote
I think you might have picked the wrong instrument to start on. To me, you seem much more comfortable on the bass--your timing, note length variations, groove...etc are all excellent. Maybe it's just that guitar helped get you there faster, I don't know.

Shouldn't you get a 5-string or a fretless (for sake of variety in your arsenal) for a second bass? I like having the 5-th string for going real low. It's such a fat and beefy string. I'm missing a fretless right now. I also want a Musicman Bongo Stealth really, really, really bad. That fucker's just gorgeous, with such versatility in tone and excellent onboard preamp EQ (friggin high-mid and low-mid, along with high and low--that's 4-band!). Check it out:





The regular Bongo's are pretty nice too--just not as cool as the Stealth finish:



I played it for about an hour a couple months ago at a store, and it plays like butter, but capable of being so punchy as well. The weight is just right, and the neck feels very nice. It can go all metallic and aggressive like the Stingray, or go all smooth if you dialed in a different EQ/pickup setting.
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2008 8:58 pm     Reply with quote
Thanks,
I think this guitar will last me a while. I don't feel the need for 5 strings or especially fretless (come on now, i just started playing last month! I can play like 3 songs.. Very Happy) In fact, I wanted to get a bass with a thin "j-bass" neck because I thought it's be easier to learn on. But I got used to this one already. Just need more practice (that video took me about 50 takes haha).
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 2:55 am     Reply with quote
Bam! Another one!

This time it's Jackson 5 - I want you back
..A truly funkalicious song.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NLfXYwaxdIU
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:03 pm     Reply with quote
You were lagging in timing in some spots, but still nice. Can't believe you've only been playing for a short while. How many hours you practice a day?

So, now you've been intimate with the bass for a bit, how do you feel about it vs. the guitar?

What I've been drilling myself on with the bass is to have all my three right hand fingers play equally well on fast passages (16/32 notes). The ring finger tend to come in too fast so I need to build up proper muscle memory so it functions just like my fore and ring fingers. I've also been training myself to do strike-through on slapping instead of striking on the string, since striking through will get you nice and meaty slaps even when playing the higher strings and higher frets (slapping on the string will only get you so far, then you can't get any decent sound out of higher strings/frets). Striking-through is so much harder, especially when jumping between strings.

On both guitar and bass I've been drilling myself on ring and pinky dexterity. Those two fingers are incredibly hard to move independently with any amount of speed, grace, or accuracy, due to them sharing the same tendon (or something like that). Like if you make a fist, you can't raise your ring finger much, and it's very weak. I've been doing scale practices while watching TV--finger exercises like different fret combinations up and down the neck, like fore/pinky, fore/middle, fore/ring, middle/pinky, middle/ring, ring/pinky. Then I do fret jumping exercises like fore/ring on string-5, middle/pinky on string-4, fore/ring on string-3, middle/pinky on string-2...etc. Then I'd do it backwards by reversing the finger order and also the string order. There are all kinds of combinations you can think up to train your fingers.
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Sumaleth
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:30 pm     Reply with quote
Quote:
to have all my three right hand fingers play equally well

How'd you lose the other finger?
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:54 pm     Reply with quote
Sumaleth wrote:
Quote:
to have all my three right hand fingers play equally well

How'd you lose the other finger?


Pinky is rarely, if ever used in bass right hand playing. I think it's because the way bass is fingered, the pinky is just too short to be practical when trying to make it sound the same as the other 3 fingers.
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Sumaleth
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:38 pm     Reply with quote
I was joking. Wink
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 7:44 pm     Reply with quote
Sumaleth wrote:
I was joking. Wink


I know, but I thought I'd explain for those who don't play bass. Very Happy
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:11 pm     Reply with quote
Lunatique wrote:
How many hours you practice a day?

I don't know, sometimes I just play on and off all day. I usually just play songs or come up with my own tunes though (I don't really do exercises). Whenever there is a part of a song that I can't play, I just repeat it over and over.
When learning new songs, I slow it down and listen to the bass part. It helps to isolate the bass sound with EQ.

There is a really good Winamp plugin called Pacemaker.


You can slow stuff down with it, pitch it up and down and even remove vocals (sometimes it works).

Quote:
So, now you've been intimate with the bass for a bit, how do you feel about it vs. the guitar?

It's easier to play. Each has its own purpose though.. My plan is to get good enough on both in order to arrange my own songs on live instruments. Then later I can perform them with a band.. Cool
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:51 pm     Reply with quote
Yeah, without tabs it's really hard to figure out what's being played, since some arrangements make the bass notes sound indistinct.

Finger exercises definitely helps, because it forces to you try fingering sequences you might never get to just by playing songs. It's also less taxing on brain power when you are watching TV or a movie--you just build the muscle memory and not have to think about melody, chord structure, key...etc.

My main reason for wanting to excel at the instruments I play (drums, keyboard, bass, guitar) is really just so when I record my own stuff I don't have to do take after take or slow things down--I'll be able to just blaze through it. Also if one day I decide to play live gigs again I'd rather not suck like I did 10 years ago.
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:19 am     Reply with quote
Ok, now we're getting somewhere!
This is a more-or-less complete cover (still too lazy to do a full song, hehe)

Faith No More - Evidence (bass, guitar, updated vocals)

[edit]
The URL is updated. I re-recorded the vocals and fixed the beginning (it was missing the strings Wink)


Last edited by [Shizo] on Sun Mar 02, 2008 9:03 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Sumaleth
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 3:36 pm     Reply with quote
That's actually not half bad. Smile
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 02, 2008 11:53 pm     Reply with quote
What mic are you using? Can't tell with the pop filter in front of it.

I see you're still a Fruity Loops guy. Are you pretty happy with it or you're one of those people that's always wondering if the grass is greener on the side of Cubase/Sonar/Logic/DP/Samplitude/Reaper/Tracktion?

You were using an auto-wah, right? (Since it doesn't look like you were controlling a wah pedal in the video.) Auto-wah is usually a bad idea since there's so little control of the exact timbre you need at the exact moment.

It sounds like you're clipping--may want to pull back a bit on the master fader. Did you slap a compressor on the bass? It's either too heavily compressed or you were playing with a pretty heavy hand throughout--not a lot of dynamic.

Sitting down to sing is generally not a good idea, because you are compressing your diaphragm when you sit down. But that's if you want to sing with "proper" vocal technique--plenty of people don't bother and still sound great.

Pretty good effort overall especially since you haven't been playing that long.
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 3:22 am     Reply with quote
Lunatique wrote:
What mic are you using? Can't tell with the pop filter in front of it.

I see you're still a Fruity Loops guy. Are you pretty happy with it or you're one of those people that's always wondering if the grass is greener on the side of Cubase/Sonar/Logic/DP/Samplitude/Reaper/Tracktion?

You were using an auto-wah, right? (Since it doesn't look like you were controlling a wah pedal in the video.) Auto-wah is usually a bad idea since there's so little control of the exact timbre you need at the exact moment.

The mic is AudioTechnica 2020. It sounds pretty good for the money. But I'll never really know because I don't have good monitors. lol

I use FL because it's good. There is nothing I can't do in it. And also because the name "Fruity Loops" strikes fear into my opponents.
Oh wait.. FL sucks at live recording. But I use Cool Edit for that. COOL EDIT + FRUITY LOOPS = PRO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Maybe I'll get a MIDI pedal later. I'm fine playing like this for now.

Not sure about clipping. Probably just a result of careless mixing. Embarassed
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 03, 2008 6:08 am     Reply with quote
Yeah, Audio-Technica makes some good shit. I have the AT-4033/CL and it's awesome. It's pretty much my go-to mic for just about anything.

I don't think you need to have "pro" monitors to tell if a mic is any good. If it's got fast transients, tight lows, crisp highs without being harsh/grainy, clear and lush mids, then it's a good mic. And of course, good mic technique is important too, since you can use a $1,000 mic and sound like crap if your gain level is not set properly and you eat your mic while singing (which I think you might have been in the video). The 2020 is a large diaphragm condenser, so you should back up a bit--about 6-inches distance (not counting the pop screen) or so. You should also sing off-axis (not directly pointing your mouth at the front) at roughly 45 degrees to control the pop/silibance even more. For doing the full and lush lows, a dynamic mic is probably better due to the proximity effect.

I have a killer dynamic mic too--the Shure SM7A (the go-to mic for many rock and rap singers), but I haven't really found a use for it yet, since it's thicker/darker sounding and I generally prefer a more clear sound. I'm sure I'll find use for it eventually, like if I need to belt out some rockin' vocals with lots of gravel.

FL has definitely "grown up" a lot in the last few years. It's still got some legacy issues that prevents it from being considered a "big boy" sequencer in the pro audio circle, but it's certainly not considered a toy like it used to be. I've used version 6 for a little bit and it's quite good. The MIDI editing in it is still one of the best in the industry. In fact, I was one of the people who bitched Cakewalk out on their own forum about how shameful Sonar's MIDI editing was when compared to FL, and amazingly, they ACTUALLY LISTENED. Now Sonar 7's got fucking awesome MIDI editing. Still no pitch bend feature like in FL though.

If you don't have a good set of monitors, you should at the very least have a pro quality headphone, just so you know you are hearing all frequencies at proper level and nothing is hyped or anemic in all the ranges. Luckily a killer set of headphones can be had for a fraction the cost of decent monitors. I highly recommend these (and they don't break the bank at all):

Sennheiser HD555 - It's so close to the flagship HD650, but cost less than half. Very comfortable, but they are open design so you can hear others and they can hear you too. (Most high-end headphones are open design)

Beyerdynamics DT770 Pro - You see these a lot in pro studios. Very comfy and fairly accurate. This one's sealed so you can record with them and not leak into the mic.
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[Shizo]
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 7:17 am     Reply with quote
An improvised drum kit:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fI-twF9BbY

Wink
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 10:05 am     Reply with quote
Hahah, I love ghetto setups. I like how you got the weights anchoring the pad.

They actually have pretty cheap electronic drum kits these days. They don't feel as good as the expensive stuff, but still, you get all the pads in the proper positions:
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/navigation/electronic-drum-sets?N=100001+304772&Ns=P_Price|0

Since you already got a pad, you can at least practice your rudiments just fine. It's only after I became a drummer that I found out how important the rudiments are--even seasoned pros still practice them everyday.

How's your keyboard finger drumming skills? There are some freak of natures that have crazy finger independence on the MIDI keyboard and can play really complex rhythm with the two hands. I can't seem to do that--I just do the typical right hand forefinger on closed hi-hat, middle-finger on open hi-hat, ringer finger on crash or ride, and then left hand ringer finger on kick, fore and middle fingers on snare/rimshot. I use the fore/middle fingers to do snare rolls, but it's hard to control it perfectly.

I'm lusting after the Zendrum currently for ultimate MIDI drum programming:
http://zendrum.com/
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Sumaleth
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 4:25 pm     Reply with quote
I'm curious about the Drumkit From Hell. Devin Townsend used it for the Ziltoid album.
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Lunatique
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 5:08 pm     Reply with quote
It's very good. I have it, and also DFH Superior. In fact I own a bunch of these drum libraries and VSTI's (Battery, Guru, BFD, Addictive Drums, Artists Drums...etc).

They are all damn good, but the ones that specialize in acoustic drum sets will have the edge in realism and control. But the latest Battery (version 3) also has some nice acoustic kits as well. Addictive Drums is the current darling of the bunch, since it's intuitive, got smaller footprint, and sounds great. The new BFD is coming out though (version 2), so that may up the bar even more.

The original DFH stuff was good, then they went apeshit and did a version that was insanely huge in footprint (DFH Superior) and required heavy resources, and that's something most people didn't want to deal with. Then they came out with EZDrummer, which is like the dumbed down version of Superior, and everyone loved it. Until Addictive Drums came along and stole some of its thunder.

BTW, another Devin fan here. Love his Ocean Machine and some of his Strapping Young Lad stuff.
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Sumaleth
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2008 8:55 pm     Reply with quote
I'm not into the SYL stuff, but loved Ziltoid and Synchestra. And the album he did with Steve Vai pre-skullet.
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