The bass is the back bone or the heart beat in a band.
The bass is the instrument that hold things together, creates consistent cohesion. The bass requires a player who can stay focused and steady. There are times where a bass player will get the chance to solo or jam, but unlike a lead guitar or other instruments the majority of time the bass plays the same notes over and over throughout the tune. Everyone in a band, an orchestra, quartet or most any other group of instruments playing together, will depend on the bass as a guide, if the bass makes mistakes it can throw everyone off.
The bassist propels the tune along by aligning each chord so that the other players move smoothly through the cord changes in the music.
To play bass well is not an easy accomplishment. The physical stamina in your fingers and arms alone requires strength. You have to work up to the endurance and stamina needed in your hands to actively and consistently play bass well. Practice and preparation with finger and hand strength building exercises are needed to handle the strings of a bass.
The bassist must keep excellent time, they are the time keeper. The other players depend on the bass to be always consistently on time though out the tune.
While the bass most often has four strings there are five and six string bass guitars as well. Most bass guitars are electric. The stand up acoustic bass is used most often in classical and jazz music. The Ibanez brand does also make an acoustic electric bass, which allows you to play with and without amplification.
The bass has a much lower tone pitch than a guitar or other string instruments. The longer a string is the lower the tone. The bass has longer strings than other string instruments including the acoustic and electric guitar. The bass is responsible for taking care of the lower sound spectrum.
An electric bass is most often built for left hand fretting. The tuning keys are at the top of the headstock. The nut is the piece of material where a grove is provided for each string to sit in. The flat part of the neck is known as the fretboard where the strings are pressed to create the separate notes. while the strings are actually a part that is separate from the bass itself, the bass is incomplete and non functional with out the strings. The strings create a vibration that is the sound of your bass.
An electric bass will have pickups that pickup the vibration of the strings and send the sound through the amplifier. On an acoustic bass there is a soundboard and a hollow body that transmits the string vibration into the sound you hear.
The Ibanez company builds and sells acoustic electric bass guitars that have a pickup to allow for a louder sound when required by the player. When playing with other acoustic instruments most often no amplification is needed and so the acoustic electric bass can still play where the electric bass guitar can not function without electricity and an amplifier.
The bass is available in a wide price range. You can buy a quality brand bass for under a $150.00 and you can pay well into the thousands for top of the line professional models. Ibanez while being a quality builder offers some very low priced models for beginners. They also offer comparatively high quality for the price.
Ibanez is known for their acoustic electric bass guitars as well as their standard electric bass.
Even when you are just beginning to play bass it is a good idea to start out with a bass of reasonable quality that has good action and fits your hand size and feels comfortable.
When going out to try different bass models ask lots of questions and if possible bring along a friend that plays bass to help you find a fit.