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Acoustic Bluegrass Bass Lesson: Finding Your Playing Position with Missy Raines


The acoustic upright bass, or double bass, is a large instrument, and its sheer size alone can be daunting for players approaching the instrument for the first time. Unlike the mandolin, fiddle, banjo, acoustic guitar, or any of the other instruments that make up a bluegrass ensemble, the upright bass not only requires an understanding of how to hold the instrument in order to play it but also how to position the instrument around or against your body.


In this online upright bass lesson, nine-time IBMA “Bass Player of the Year” award-winner, First Lady of Bluegrass, and ArtistWorks master instructor, Missy Raines explains the proper methods to find your ideal playing position on the double bass. The critical factor that Missy emphasizes throughout this bass lesson is the importance of finding your position—every player’s position is slightly different, and discovering a position that is comfortable for you is paramount.


“The upright bass is a big instrument,” Missy explains. “A lot of playing the instrument well just has to do with feeling like you’re in control and you can feel comfortable with it.”


There are two key elements to keep in mind when positioning your bass to maximize comfort and control—the height of the bass, and the angle at which you rest the bass against your body.


“You want your bass to rest against your body at an angle,” Missy explains. “This angle is going to depend on what you’re most comfortable with. A lot of players actually have quite a deep angle, while others play with the bass almost vertical. You’ll discover what feels best for you the more you have your bass in your hands.”


To learn more about how to find the proper playing position that works for you, dive into this online upright bass lesson from the legendary Missy Raines:




Have you always wanted to learn how to play acoustic bluegrass bass? Through our comprehensive upright bass lessons online and Video Exchange Learning platform here at ArtistWorks, you can learn from internationally renowned players, like Missy Raines, and get personalized feedback on your playing.


Missy’s course starts with the basics and teaches everything from beginner upright bass to advanced performance techniques and tunes. So, whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced player, all levels are welcome and all students will grow and improve their skills as double bass players and musicians!


Try out some free sample music lessons here and see what makes ArtistWorks courses some of the best online music lessons around!



Missy Raines’ Award-Winning Track, “Swept Away”

The First Ladies of Bluegrass Take the Stage

Missy Raines on Songwriting




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Each subscription is for a single school. Pricing and features can vary slightly per school.

1 Month membership
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