There are many ways to get started with Bass fishing but I'll explain how I got started and it may help you if you are just starting off. Obviously the best way to get started is to know someone who has been Bass fishing for a long time. That is how I started. I asked a friend what was the best lure to get started and he told me to use a Zoom Super Fluke. I was confused about how to rig it so he got out a hook, rigged a Supper Fluke and gave it to me: He was in his office at the time.
I caught a large Bass and caught many more with the White Pearl color version. I then started trying plastic worms and found the Senko black with blue flakes worm to generate a lot of interest. I found that in fishing dirty water, the black contrasts better than other colors in dirty water and that the blue flakes are the last color to be picked up at deeper depths.
Where to Fish
To choose a place to fish, you want to find an area that protects fish (especially bait fish) from predator, the elements such as strong currents and direct sunlight. A good sign is if you see birds around diving in the water or wading on the shore. If you see bait fish then it is time to throw in that line! If you do not see baitfish you can still give it a toss with a buzzbait or spinbait to test the area. You want a lure that covers a lot of area when testing.
When to Fish
The best time to fish is early in the morning with sunset being the second best. Either way those two time frames may get you the most fish. Oddly enough for me, I have caught my bigger fish around the noon time frame. I will pay attention to the weather and solunar forcast to increase my chances during my excursions. Not sure what the reason is behind that but I'm still learning every day I fish also.
If you can find a place where water flows out of a pipe river or creek, you might have a better chance of catching fish. These are natural areas where Bass hang out waiting for baiting or bugs that have washed off the land to make an appearance. Shaded areas around docks or over hanging trees or bushes are also worthy of trying.
If possible pick the windward side (wind blowing in your face) of the shoreline. That is because the wind blows microscopic zooplankton to that side of the shoreline. that is what bait fish such as gizzard shad eat. The wind may also blow other debris that can act as a temporary shelter and shade to bait fish.
The next topic in your angling mind should be what lure to use (if you are not using live bait.) The best bet is to experiment but there are factors that can help you, the informed angler, determine what to use. First and foremost is try to match up the color to the local bait. Then determine if they fish are feeding near the surface or closer to the bottom. Picking plastics or crankbaits will take some experimenting so be patient but thorough.
I would say a good bet is to start off with plastic lures such as a plastic worm or fluke first in areas that are know to have Bass and give them a try before trying other lures. With a plastic worm you can Texas rig or wacky rig the worm. There are other ways of rigging the worm but those are two great basics rigs. For the Super Fluke, you want to use a loop knot to give the fluke freedom of movement on your retrieve. It gives it a natural movement when you twitch or retrieve it. Eventually you will want to progress to other lures such as buzzbaits, crankbaits, spinnerbaits and other lures.