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Play Along Tracks: Lesson 2 – Walking the ii/V: Jazz Studies With Bill Harrison



Meet Bill Harrison –

Please download the pdf at the end of this page to get the most benefit out of this lesson.

Last time I left you with the tantalizing prospect of creating smooth, swinging bass lines on the most basic of jazz progressions, the ii/V. If you have any doubts about the essential theory behind these chords please take a quick look at last issue’s lesson. Before continuing with this lesson you might want to download both the pdf and the backing track so that you can put this info into practice.

If you’ve had a chance to walk on this progression using just chord tones you probably noticed that some of the transitions to beat 1 (where the chord changes) sound good, while others sound kind of clunky. The notes may be technically “correct” but the shape of the line just doesn’t sound pleasing. So let’s get more specific with the crucial moment of transition between one chord sound and the next, namely, beat 4.

The 4th beat of the measure is the glue that holds your walking bassline together. After playing the proper root on beat 1, you can pretty much get away with murder on beats 2 and 3. But if beat 4 connects to the first beat of the next chord change awkwardly, that spot will call attention to itself – and not in a good way. After listening to the master players and working on this myself for many years, I’ve distilled three more or less foolproof ways to get from beat 4 to beat 1, as shown in the accompanying pdf file.

a) by half step up or down

b) by whole step up or down

c) by descending 5th or ascending 4th

So the transition from D-7 to G7 can be accomplished by using one of these notes to approach the new root (G):

F, F#, A, Ab, D

Remember that you have more than one octave to work with because that will give you a variety of pathways to your goal note. When moving from the G7 to D-7, we have the following options:

C, C#, E, Eb, A

Note that the harmonically “backwards” move from V back to ii is not nearly as musically graceful as the ii going to V.

I suggest that you try out each connecting tone by just playing beat 4 to beat 1. The track moves slowly but until you get comfortable with these smooth connecting tones you may want to write out a few variations for each one and find out what sounds good to you. Keep what works and toss out the stinkers. Until next time, happy walking!
Download Lesson2Walking-Oct09

Bass Edu

BASS LINES: Triads & Inversions Part I



Jaime David Vazquez - Lessons For Bass Guitar

Triads & Inversions Part I

Hello bass players and bass fans! In this issue, we are going to study the triads and their inversions.

It is very important for all bassists to understand and master the triads, but it is even more important to understand their different inversions.

In Part I, we are going to learn what the triad is in fundamental position.

The Formula consists of root, third and fifth.

Degrees of the Triad

Major Triad: 1 – 3 – 5
Minor Triad: 1 – b3 – 5
Diminished Triad: 1 – b3 – b5
Augmented Triad: 1 – 3 – #5

Fig.1 – The C, Cm, Cdim & Caug triads
(Fundamental Position)

BASS LINES: Triads & Inversions Part I
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Bass Videos

Have Fret Sprout? Sharp Fret Management… a How-To Video



Have Fret Sprout? Sharp Fret Management... a How-To Video
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Products courtesy of Music Nomad Equipment Care and Zymol

Have Fret Sprout? Check out this sharp fret management how-to video…

Have you found a bass you like but noticed the frets feel sharp? Have you ordered a bass online and discovered that the frets are sharp on your hands when it arrives? Have you picked up one of your favorite basses and noticed that the frets seem unusually sharper than they used to? You might be experiencing fret sprout!

Join me as I fix those pesky frets on one of my basses so you learn how to fix yours too.

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Bass Edu

Premiere! Bass Playthrough With Foetal Juice’s Bassist Lewis Bridges – From the Album, Grotesque



Premiere! Bass Playthrough With Foetal Juice's Bassist Lewis Bridges - From the Album, Grotesque

Premiere! Bass Playthrough With Foetal Juice’s Bassist Lewis Bridges – From the Album, Grotesque

Bassist Lewis Bridges Shares…

“Gruesome’s sparse intro marks a stark contrast from the intensity of the rest of the album.  The original intention was to keep the bass simple but colourful, however as I worked on it, the lines grew more expressive and the more striking flourishes began to emerge.  The intensity builds into a harmonic minor passage that takes us into the drop — a signature death grind cacophony.  This is where Foetal Juice thrives.  You’re getting a full-on right-hand barrage to in the face to take you into a groove-laden mulch-fest.

I owe my throbbing bass tone to the Darkglass Alpha Omega pedal borrowed from our sound engineer, Chris Fielding (ex-Conan), mixed with the clarity of the tried and true Ampeg SVT CL.

As mentioned earlier, colourful basslines are important, especially in a one-guitar band. Chucking some funny intervals and odd flourishes here and there brings life into the brutality. There’s no point sounding brutal if it’s not gonna be fucking evil too!

Recording this playthrough was hard work. This was not the fault of James Goodwin (Necronautical), who was kindly filming and is ace to work with, but because in true Foetal fashion, we had stinking hangovers — and that jam room was hot!”

Follow Online

FB @FoetalJuice
TW @FoetalJuice
IG @foetaljuice
Youtube: @Foetaljuice

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Bass Edu

Bass Lines: The Circle



jaime Vazquez

Bass Lines: The Circle…

Hello bass players and fans of bass! This month we’re going to study “The Circle.”

The Circle of Fourths can also be called “The Circle of Fifths or just The Circle.

Practicing the scales, chords, and ideas in general via the circle has been a common practice routine for jazz musicians and highly recommended.

It is a disciplined way of working through all twelve keys.

Plus, many bass root movements to jazz and pop songs move through sections of the circle.

Fig. 1 – “The Circle”

See you next month for more full bass attack!

#bassmusicianmag, #basslines, #bmmbasslines, #groovemaniac, #thecircle, #thecircleoffourths, #thecircleoffifths,#scales & #chords.

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Bass Edu

Approach Notes – Part 5



James Rosocha

Continuing our lesson of Approach Notes, Part 5…

In continuing with the concept of approach notes being applied to chord tones, this lesson approaches the root, third, fifth, and seventh degree of each arpeggio inversion by incorporating a double chromatic approach from above, and a single chromatic approach from below. 

The first examples approach the root of a G major 7th arpeggio as a double chromatic from above and a single chromatic approach from below -before continuing to the third, fifth, seventh, double chromatic from above/ single from below to the root, continue to the third, fifth, and come back down.

The next example approaches the first inversion of G major 7th arpeggio.

A double chromatic from above/ single from below approaches the third, continue to the fifth, seventh, root, double chromatic from above/ single below to the third, continue up to the fifth and seventh, and back down.

The third example approaches a second inversion of a G major arpeggio.

A double chromatic from above/ single from below approaches the fifth, continue to the 7th, root, 3rd, double chromatic from above/ single from below to the 5th, continue to the 7th, root, and back down. 

This final example approaches a third inversion of a G major 7th arpeggio.

A double chromatic from above and below approaches the 7th, continue to the root, 3rd, 5th, double chromatic from above and below to the 7th, continue to the root, 3rd, and back down.

Be sure to pace yourself with these lessons to avoid burning out.

Being overly ambitious with your practice schedule can lead to unrealistic expectations. Try learning one approach note concept and one chord type a week. Change your practice routine as necessary and tailor it to your needs as a musician. Good luck!

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