Connect with us

BASS LINES by Jaime Vazquez: Yngwie J. Malmsteen – The Polydor Years


BASS LINES by Jaime Vazquez: Yngwie J. Malmsteen – The Polydor Years

Jaime D. Vazquez - Lathon Bass Wear Exclusive ArtistSteve Huey of AllMusic stated that, “Yngwie Malmsteen is arguably the most technically accomplished hard rock guitarist to emerge during the ’80s.”
Yngwie Malmsteen was born in Stockholm, Sweden, on June 30, 1963. The youngest child in a household that included his mother Rigmor, sister Ann Louise, and brother Bjorn, Yngwie originally had no interest in music. However, on September 18, 1970, Yngwie saw a TV special on the death of guitar iconoclast Jimi Hendrix. Seven-year-old Yngwie watched with awe as Hendrix blasted the audience with torrents of feedback and sacrificed his guitar in flames. The day Jimi Hendrix died, the guitar-playing Yngwie was born.
YNGWIE & A BASS GUITARApplying his intense curiosity and tenacity to first an old Mosrite and then a cheap Stratocaster, Yngwie immersed himself in the music of such bands as Deep Purple and spent long hours practicing to learn their songs. His admiration for Ritchie Blackmore’s classically influenced playing led him back to the source: Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, and Mozart. As Yngwie absorbed the classical structures of the masters, his prodigious style began to take shape. By age 10, he began to focus all his energies into music. His mother and sister, a talented flautist, recognized his unique musical gifts and gave him support and encouragement. His mastery of the instrument progressed rapidly. In his early teens, Yngwie saw a television performance of Russian violinist Gideon Kremer, who performed the highly difficult 24 Caprices of 19th century virtuoso violinist Niccolo Paganini. The effect was profound, and Yngwie understood at last how to combine his love of classical music with his burgeoning guitar skills and onstage charisma.
The Polydor Years 
– Polydor is a record label owned by Universal Music Group.
Yngwie’s first solo album, Rising Force (now considered the bible for neoclassical rock) made it to #60 on the Billboard charts, an impressive feat for a mostly instrumental guitar album with no commercial airplay. The album also gained Yngwie a Grammy nomination for best rock instrumental performance. He was voted Best New Talent in several readers’ polls, Best Rock Guitarist the year after, and Rising Force became Album of the Year. Rising Force blazed a trail on the concert circuit that established Yngwie as one of rock guitar’s brightest new stars and added a new genre to the music lexicon: neoclassical rock.
With his place in guitar history firmly established, Yngwie’s neo-classical compositions fueled the ears of fans and the ambitions of aspiring guitarists worldwide for over a decade with such powerhouse classic albums as Marching Out, Trilogy, Odyssey, Live in Leningrad / Trial By Fire (gold-selling concert video of Yngwie’s 1989 sold-out concerts in Moscow and Leningrad).
Fig. 1 – Song: “Far Beyond The Sun”
Bass Player: Yngwie Malmsteen
Album: Rising Force(1984)
Fig. 1 - Far Beyond The Sun
In a 2008 interview, Malmsteen said: “I’ll probably play ‘Far Beyond the Sun‘ and ‘Black Star‘ until the day I die”.  True! Both songs have endured as two of Malmsteen’s most popular songs, as well as being staples of his live setlist. Here’s the intro! Notice that it is played in unison with the guitar.
Fig. 2 – Song: “I’ll See The Light, Tonight”
Bass Player: Marcel Jacob
Album: Marching Out(1985)
Fig. 2 - I'll See The Light, Tonight
Check out the first two bars and the last ones, you will be playing a sequence of b5’s in unison with the guitar. Prepare your hands for vibrato. During the repetition, you will be playing a pedal note and then, a fill in unison with the guitar.
Pedal Note
– A tone sustained through several changes of harmony that may be consonant or dissonant with it, in instrumental music it is typically in the bass.
– A sustained bass note, over which the other parts move bringing about changing harmonies often shortened to pedal.
– In its pure form, vibrato is usually achieved by twisting the wrist rapidly to bend the note slightly, moving to and from the root note. However, the same techniques are applied at a slower speed to get pitch alterations.
– In contemporary music, finger vibrato is also routinely used by classical guitarists on longer notes, to create an impression of a longer sustain. The technique is also used by jazz bassists to add depth of tone
Fig. 3 – Song: “Trilogy Suite Op:5” 
Bass Player: Yngwie Malmsteen
Album: Trilogy(1986)
Fig. 3 - Trilogy Suite
This is the 2nd theme of the Trilogy Suite. The bass is playing the tremolo picking technique, while the guitar is playing the arpeggios.
Tremolo Picking
–  Is a rapid movement of the pick alternating downward and upward producing a rapid repetition of a single tone.
Fig. 4 – Song: “Deja Vu” 
Bass Player: Yngwie Malmsteen
Album: Odyssey(1988)
Fig. 4 - Deja Vu
Odyssey is Malmsteen’s highest-charting Billboard 200 release.  It reached #40 on that year’s Billboard 200 chart and remained on that chart for 36 weeks. The main riff is a challenging bass line and it is played in unison with the guitar. Prepare yourself for full bass shredding!
Fig. 5 – Song: “Bedroom Eyes”
Bass Player: Svante Henryson
Album: Eclipse(1990)
Fig. 5 - Bedroom Eyes
This riff has a great groove! It is played in unison with the guitar. Be careful with the hammer- ons, the vibrato and the staccato. This is a very solid bass line. Enjoy it!

More in Latest




To Top