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Chord-Based (Vertical) Improvisation – Lessons For Bass Guitar Series…

In this video lesson, we will cover Chord-Based (Vertical) Improvisation

To apply this interesting performance technique, you need:

– Understanding basic chord theory
– Working with extended chords
– Improvising on chords

To improvise over a song’s chords, you first have to understand all there is to know about chords.

You have to know how chords are formed, what notes they contain, and how to make a rhythm or grooves in those chord tones.

The advantage of creating a groove pattern and its variations is that in improvising with chords, all the notes are safe. Therefore, there is no tension notes, passing tones, etc.

Everything will be based on how to play rhythmically and with what notes of the chord the groove is going to be established. You can use all or some notes of the chord to improvise the groove, it all depends on the interaction of the notes that you want in your performance.

Vertical improvisation is based on the underlying chord notes of the music. Those are the chords that are notated at the top of the staff, above each measure.

This type of improvisation tends to move in larger intervals. Therefore, it tends to steer towards more disjointed melodic and rhythmic lines.

In this type of performance, the arpeggio notes are used to create a groove. You can use all the notes of the chord or some of them, depending on the intention you have in your playing.

Example 1

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

Example 2

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

Example 3

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

Example 4

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

Example 5

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

Example 6

Chord-Based Vertical Improvisation

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