Bass Guitar Notes Chart For Beginners

Understanding the basic sequence of notes is the cornerstone of learning bass guitar. To help beginners stay on track with their learning journey, this chart omits sharps and flats from its design for easier memorization.

An octave refers to any whole note higher or lower from its previous value, making this concept crucial when learning scales, chords and patterns.


One of the first steps when starting to learn bass guitar should be becoming familiar with various scales that you can use for chords and licks – these are known as fretboard scales and provide an overview of where all notes lie on their fretboard and their respective octaves.

A fretboard scale is composed of horizontal lines connected by vertical ones; at each intersection is represented by either a string or fret on a bass guitar. Frets are circular metal strips extending up from the neck, each labeled from 1-12. Each number represents either musical pitch or interval.

Scales are essential in creating chords and licks for bass playing, as they form the building blocks of chords and licks. You can use scales to produce various musical sounds including major, minor and pentatonic scales – the latter of which comprises five notes that can be utilized when writing rock/metal basslines or improvising over minor chord progressions.

To play bass scales effectively, it’s necessary to identify where its root note lies on the fretboard. You can do this either through studying fretboard scale diagrams or consulting a bass guitar chord chart which shows all of the chord tones relating to one another and where their respective root notes reside on the fretboard.

An intimidating bass guitar fretboard may initially appear intimidating, but with practice it will become easier and less daunting. Once you’ve learned all the fundamental notes and their octaves, begin practicing chords and licks for more advanced playing styles.

Chords are collections of notes that combine to form chords, and they form the backbone of most songs. This chart contains a comprehensive listing of major, minor, augmented diminished and suspended 4th added 7th chords arranged alphabetically as well as notes which make up each major and minor scale plus instructions on how to move movable bass chord shapes up and down fretboard to play them in multiple keys.


Bass guitar chords can add texture and dimension to your music. While most bassists opt for single-note lines, playing chords adds versatility in your music and is important when learning bass guitar. Chord progressions including inversions must also be practiced regularly when learning the instrument. Chords form the basis for many popular songs today, and you can find chord charts online to assist in learning these essential bass guitar notes. Each chart indicates where all the notes can be found on the fretboard as well as their names. Horizontal lines represent strings while vertical ones represent frets; dots indicate where each note lies relative to its adjacent string and fret.

As part of learning bass guitar, the initial step involves understanding its fretboard layout. A chart provides visual reference for all bass guitar notes – flats and sharps alike. A fret is a small line extending from one end of the fingerboard toward its neck; typically six-24 frets will exist depending on its model; typically lower-numbered frets will be nearer the headstock while higher numbered ones further away from it.

Next, it is advisable to familiarize yourself with the basic scales of the bass guitar. While there are various varieties, starting off with the Major Scale should provide you with a good foundation from which all other musical scales (minor and augmented scales) may build. Also familiarizing yourself with Circle of Fifths displays connections between different keys.

Once you have a strong grasp of basic scales, it’s time to move on to learning about bass chords. They provide structure for bass music in many musical genres; major, minor, augmented and diminished chords all possess unique sounds which make them useful in different contexts.


Bass Arpeggios can be an excellent way to practice scales and chords while expanding your fretboard knowledge. An arceggio is a sequence of notes from either a chord or scale played as individual, discrete notes in an orderly pattern; ascending or descending arpeggios may cover multiple octaves and provide harmonic clarity; they can even be used melodically and rhythmically, which bass players find particularly helpful as their note source comes directly from chord tones.

Mastering arpeggios on bass guitar can be an invaluable way to increase fretboard awareness and help you navigate its neck with greater ease. Begin practicing by playing arpeggios on E and A strings before moving them up and down the fretboard as desired – creating more fluid solo-like bass lines!

Arpeggios come in all different varieties; chord-tone arpeggios are among the most widely used and are found across genres of music. This arpeggio typically comprises first, third, fifth and seventh notes from any given chord or scale – sometimes with additional octaves too! There are also augmented and diminished arpeggios which share similar sounds but differ slightly in tone.

Once you have learned several major arpeggios, try shifting them up or down an octave or two to hear how they sound and see where their progression fits with other scales and chords. This will allow you to better comprehend their relationships between scales and chords.

Arpeggios can also help you develop your own musical vocabulary by helping to shape bass lines over backing tracks or jam sessions. Doing this will allow you to form your own style and help hone your musical voice.

As part of your practice session for arpeggios, make sure you play them across all the strings on your bass. This will ensure a full sound with all strings contributing to chords; creating a fuller tone and more versatile tone overall.


Bass guitarists tend to approach scale learning differently from pianists and other fretted instrument players: as patterns or shapes. Learning patterns allows you to position one scale shape anywhere on the fretboard while still including all notes from that scale – this allows bass guitarists to learn scales in any key! Our bass scales chart provides this method: it contains movable scale pattern diagrams which demonstrate how to play major, minor pentatonic, and blues scales of any key.

As part of understanding patterns on a bass fretboard, learning the locations of natural notes on each open string of each string is vital. It will allow you to see how scale structures change along its journey up and down the neck of the instrument.

An open E string, for instance, features two natural notes (F and G) in its first position that are played using your 2nd or 4th finger. There may also be one or more additional frets above this depending on how your bass is tuned; any move up the fretboard by any note from B to C at frets four and five is known as a half step or minor second while one from B to C# at frets six and seven is known as full or major second, and so forth.

As you become acquainted with the natural notes on each string, it becomes simpler to discern which frets represent steps up or down from previous notes. For instance, the next note up from B on E string is C; on D string it is A.

Scale and chord steps on the fretboard are what allow certain scales or chords to work in certain keys, making it easy to create bass lines that harmonize with melody, harmony or walking bass lines in songs – as well as giving you confidence when it comes to improvising without memorizing all chords and arpeggios in that key. Knowing them makes the music come alive when creating bass lines for songs with melodic melodies or harmonic parts – as well as providing you with enough knowledge of all possible arpeggios!