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Would it be easier to learn guitar if i learn to play bass first?

I want to learn to play the guitar but i also want to learn to play the bass and i was wondering if it would be easier to learn guitar if i learn bass first.

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9 Responses to “Would it be easier to learn guitar if i learn to play bass first?”

  1. alex said :

    other way around

  2. i am taylor b said :

    For a challenge: try learning them both and playing them both at the same time.

  3. Rod B said :

    It comes down to timing

  4. TheGrandOnion said :

    They look similar but they’re 2 different animals.
    For one, bass doesn’t rely on chords like guitar. They both have riffs, but bass riffs have a certain vibe going on separate from guitar.
    The plus side to bass is its strings are so thick that they’ll build your forearm muscle strength to the point that bending strings on a guitar will seem like nothing. Plus, everybody & his cousin’s brother’s college roomate is a ‘guitarist’, so unless you’re the 2nd coming of Van Halen you really won’t stand out much when it comes to finding a band. Bass players, though, are more in demand. So unless you intend to pretty much stay a superstar in your bedroom, plugged into a cheapy lil amp, playing to CDs or MP3 files, you’ll get gigs with bands a lot more often as a bass player.

  5. OnTheRock said :

    I would actually propose doing it the other way around. Bass is not really that much like guitar. You typically play individual notes and pluck the bass with the index and middle fingers. Guitar is more based on chords and strumming/picking (usually). But if you learn guitar and how to read music and play chords, that will apply to the bass and would make learning to play bass somewhat easier. You certainly could learn both at the same time (although playing both at the same time is pretty difficult!). If you had to choose one to learn first though, I’d suggest you go with guitar.

  6. Birra spanish castle magic said :

    Two different instruments with two different purposes in a band, the easy way to look at it is to look at two different but similar instruments.
    Eg a Cello & Double Bass, obviously they’re different but if you can play one then a certain amount of knowledge is transferable.
    People think bass is p*ss easy cause most rock/pop bands (ie popular music) have quite basic basslines, if you look at jazz/funk/blues theres more going on.
    Choose one instrument & get good at it don’t be a jack of all trades

  7. gtarczar said :

    It is much easier to learn guitar first. The Bass guitar is a derivative of the guitar. By learning the guitar first you will gain a much better understanding of what chords are and how they function. The bass has larger strings and a longer neck and is PHYSICALLY more challenging than the guitar. The guitar has smaller strings and a shorter neck and is a bit more MENTALLY challenging at first. Playing chords involves using two or more fingers to hold down strings at the same time. We then strum the strings with the other hand. The bass usually only plays one note at a time that corresponds to the lowest note of the guitar chord. The bass line usually follows what the guitar is doing, but it often involves adding extra notes as transitional notes between chords. We call this a “bass line”. The Bass functions in a much more linear fashion than the guitar. The guitar focuses on on “stacked notes” (chords) that move from one to another.
    By learning guitar first you develop strength and dexterity that will later help you with the bass. I teach both instruments and I think that all guitarists should learn a little about the bass and visa versa.

  8. KrudKutter said :

    I’ve taught students for 35+ years – it’s the other way around. Guitar helps you play bass.

    Of course it’s much more complicated than this- but when I was in Jr. High I played guitar and I taught my buddy enough bass so he could play ZZ Top and Bad Company covers at high school dances with us a week later. He still sucked of course, but he WAS our bass player in a week – so he enjoyed all the chick-magnet benefits of being, say, Gene Simmons. Not bad for a week’s effort.

    Now to your question… would doing that help you play guitar ? Not so much. What will help you more than anything is making sure the guitar you try to learn on has been set up properly so it’s as easy to play as possible – and will stay in tune. It’s impossible to learn on a guitar that makes your fingers bleed, or refuses to stay in tune. Go find yourself the local music shop where the guitar players in your area hang out – make friends with their guitar tech and some of the ‘regulars’.

  9. Captain Jack said :

    Yes. Bass is easier to learn. The tuning is the same as the four bottom strings of the guitar. Playing bass strengthens the fingers more and it’s always good to play both. Plus, if you play bass, you will have a lot more opportunities to jam, as there are far more guitar player wannabees than bass players.



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