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Bass Lines With Jaime Vazquez: Grooving with the Chord Tones

Meet Jaime Vazquez

WELCOME TO THE NEW DECADE! Hope you’ re grooving a lot my friends!!! This time we’ re going to work with the chord tones. So, if you want to go out of the root this is the best choice! Why? Well, they give you the chance to enhance your bass lines. You can listen to a lot of great grooves based on chord tones. So, if you have a C chord you can groove with C, E and G. Let’s play with some examples!

Figure 1, we have a groove based on E7(#9) chord (the Jimi Hendrix Chord). The E7(#9) chord is (E-G-G#-B-D). As you can see, this syncopated groove is using all the chord tones. Check how every note plays an essential part for the bass line.

Click to the left to enlarge the image…

Figure 2, a bass line influenced by the 70’s disco. The first bar is based on Dm7 chord (D-F-A-C) and the second bar is a G9 chord (G-B-D-F-A). The cool thing about this bass line is that we are playing the chord tones in octaves. For example, for the first bar we are playing D and F in octaves in the Dm7 chord and for the second bar we are playing G, A and B in the G9 chord.

Figure 3, is a blues bass line. For the first bar, we have an A7sus chord (A-D-E-G) and for the second bar an E7 chord (E-G#-B-D). Here’s a good example of how the chord tones brings a lot of motion to your grooves!

Feel free to experiment with the chord tones. They’ re a great tool for playing bass lines and solos too. Keep on grooving and enjoy the new decade!

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