How to Play Hysteria on Bass (10 Simple Steps + Tabs)

I can do the chugging version from Josh’s video with only open strings at full tempo without any problem…

I can also just repeat the A chord part over and over, but I go over the rail with the string crossing…

I’m at a temp house for the vacations at the moment, when I get back home I’ll try to get a new setup with lower action, hoping that might help…

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Thats why I was thinking if yiu combined a bew open back tp back notes, like Ipen A
Ot F F E D E, whhere you play tge F once and let it tie to the end of the 2nd F.

True, not a whole many opportunities to do that, but, it DOES. Give a little (Tiny as it may be) split second to take a few rests
Here and there thru, which ar first can help you get thru that chugging with just enough endurance, AND over time, you can start to drop the toes, and play the notes double, as they should be playes, tjen after a few goes ar practice with your mates, you should by then, be getting ot wired. make it.

And this is a very mild example. If its bad, you can just start playing all the fretted noted, and no open notes. And nust jive with it, until you get comfortBle adding kpen notes here, then thrre, then over the whole song.

I think this example would work best in a live practice situation.

If you cant keep tempo, but hou can drop tje frettef “G”. “G A”. “G”. “E”. “FF” “E” “D” E”

And might be easier plYing this 2nd part all on the E string “IF YOU ARE GONNA KEEP SKIPPING OPEN NOTES)

Could go go “D” “D E” “G” “E” “G G” “E” “A”

I know, wgen you know how it is supposed to be played, this seems wat confusing.

But playing live. Would you want to fall behind, or go back to basics. Basics is playing the root notes,

Yes, its more then root notes, but its riff notes.

It will keep the song going, and will help you in the long run to add open notes in places-when it seem right and appropriate , and then over time, and by over time, I mean, by your next gig , which is probably next weekend, you should be rovking out to the whole tune, no problem.

And if you cant get it by yhen.

2 words.


:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

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This song takes a lot of practice to play it at the right tempo. It’s a very cool song but I would say that most Muse songs are a bit harder to master. The part were you go from E to A and back is were I usually cock-up too. Don’t feel frustrated, just take your time (and tempo) and keep practicing. @T_dub and @howard gave some nice feedback. Thanks for that!


I started working on this last night. It looks like it’s going to take awhile.


You can do it. Once you memorize the notes and patterns, as long as you don’t try playing it full speed, you will get it from paper / screen to brain / memory pretty quickly.
But what am I saying, you got instruction from the best bass teacher on the net, so you will get it down no problem, just following Josh’s lead.:wink:

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I’m also in the early stages of this (step 2, just getting my chugging on the open strings up to 93bpm - can do 83ish evenly). I love these longer term projects, I’m quite happy that it’ll take me at least a year (if I ever even get there). Really hope Josh does another difficult song like this - I asked him for something funky by Jamiroquai in the AMA. I mean I guess I could do it myself… This video made me want to learn the bassline, it’s just amazing. Even harder than Hysteria maybe?


Today I have managed to match the full speed for the first time!

Not my cleanest playing obviously but for the first time I was playing what I was hearing in my head not listening to what I just played…

I noticed that at this speed I cannot match with my ear so I had to trust my fingers would be doing the right thing!

It’s a crazy concept probably but it worked out pretty well for now!


Nice work @Fahri ! Love all the kid noises in the background. :stuck_out_tongue:

Your plucking is staying in time nicely for a lot of it! (you can probably hear the spots where you got off a bit)

My main piece of feedback would be to nitpick with your fretting hand a bit more at the end of the first bar, those last 5 notes (F F E D E). If you can keep your lower numbered fingers down, you’ll have a lot less coordination to worry about.

Meaning - when you’re fretting a note with your pinky, the other three fingers should also be down, and when you use your ring, the index+middle should be down. Then you only have to do a lift to change notes, rather than a lift and press, which is actually harder and makes more sloppy sounds happen.

I talk about that in some detail here:

Keep at it! :blush:


Thanks a lot for the feedback Josh! I didn’t notice the kid noises when I first recorded it. It was a sweet surprise when I was listening to it at work the next day…

I know the video very well. I was thinking to get back to it recently but I lack the discipline to do them regularly… There are simply too many things that I should be doing regularly!

At this speed I am also having a lot of trouble crossing the strings back and forth on the E chord. That does not happen at 80 bpm but higher than that I feel like stumbling over the strings…

I even saw a guy on YT using the G on 15th fret instead of 10th so he was crossing the string only in the final A. But it’s also not super comfortable to move so far up the neck and come back for the D chord…


This is what trips me up too at full speed. It’s basically the only tricky part; the rest is straightforward but just fast.


Hmm, yeah, I guess that’d work, not how Wolstenholme plays it though. Plus the struggle is good for you. :stuck_out_tongue:


I’ve tried it that way and it’s just trading one difficulty for another.

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Thanks a ton Josh. I am still not “there” yet (wherever that is where all fretting fingers are down and all fuzz pedals are affordable)

But I’ve arrived here and I feel like the king of my hill! Thanks for supporting me all the way from the beginning!

I have profited a lot from these little tweaks…

-Playing while standing instead of sitting down gave me the possibility to get the neck in a better angle and straighten my plucking hand wrist.

-Accenting on quarter notes made the rythm much more manageable. I was always practicing with all 16th notes drum machines and that’s only good for right hand practice. Once I got the riff under my fingers I felt much more relaxed using a normal metronome at 93 bpm.

-I have found a great hack where instead of plucking two open string 16th notes at the beginning of each chord change I pluck a single 8th note which gave me possibility to mark the time better and have a micro second of breathing room

-I was trying to be light on my plucking fingers which caused a lot of inconsistency with the dynamics and rythm especially during string crossing. Then I noticed that @JoshFossgreen was digging in on this video. This gave me much more control on the speed.

-As you can hear in my video when playing the intro I am actually faster! So this is something to work on but for now I will just do my best to arrive where the drums go in and resync there…


Nice finger work out @Fahri ,
Standing whilst playing is definitely the way to go as you don’t feel restricted in movement.
You are progressing really nicely,
keep up the good work,
Cheers Brian


Yep. Pretty cool seeing you play it all the way through.