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  • Bass Transcription: “Overjoyed” by Victor Wooten

    Bass Transcription: “Overjoyed” by Victor Wooten

    This month’s transcription is “Overjoyed” by Victor Wooten. This superb arrangement of Stevie Wonder’s classic song was originally found on Victor’s debut album A Show of Hands, although this video from 1987 shows that Victor had been playing it for nearly ten years prior to the release of that album: I believe that this arrangement... »

  • Bass Lick Series: Gospel-Style Bass Groove

    Bass Lick Series: Gospel-Style Bass Groove

    Last time, we got down and dirty with a overdrive-charged rock bass groove. This time around, we’re going to get a bit more funky with a modern Gospel-style lick, complete with all the slurs and slides. This groove is based on B minor Aolian, which is a great key and mode for this setting, especially... »

  • Bass Lick Series: Rock Bass with Overdrive

    Bass Lick Series: Rock Bass with Overdrive

    If you’re looking to rock it out on bass, using an overdrive pedal can really help achieve that edge you need. In this lick lesson, I’m pretty much playing the same bass line repeatedly, but with different note lengths in the different sections: short note duration for verses, and long not duration for the chorus.... »

  • Bass Transcription: Michael League’s “Continuum”

    Bass Transcription: Michael League’s “Continuum”

    “Continuum” is one of the most well known songs for bass players, and I’d argue it is one of the greatest tunes on Jaco Pastorius’s self-titled debut album. (I’d also argue it is one of the best albums, ever). It is difficult to cover any Jaco song, and especially one with his signature fretless sound... »

  • Fretboard Exercise: C Major Triad Reggae Groove

    Fretboard Exercise: C Major Triad Reggae Groove

    As bassists, it is important that we know our chords and arpeggios. Coupled with that is the importance of knowing the entire fretboard. In this exercise, we’ll play only three notes – the C Major triad. To make it fun, I’ve set it up as a reggae-style groove. As you’ll see in the video below,... »

  • Bass Transcription: Marcus Miller’s “Cee-Tee-Eye”

    Bass Transcription: Marcus Miller’s “Cee-Tee-Eye”

    “Cee-Tee-Eye” is from Marcus Miller’s 2012 album Renaissance, recorded to feature the new band Marcus assembled for the Tutu Revisited tour, which was a celebration of the Miles Davis album from the mid-80’s Miller contributed heavily to. The title for “Cee-Tee-Eye” is a nod to the various albums released on the CTI Records label, which... »

  • Bass Lick Series: Funky Fingerstyle Bass Groove

    Bass Lick Series: Funky Fingerstyle Bass Groove

    Changing things up a bit this time around with a funky 5-string bass groove (which can also be played on a 4-string). The fill is based on the Em Dorian scale (E F# G A B C# D) and uses the open strings for a doubling effect. The doubling effect is something we’ve tried before... »

  • Covering All the Keys Using a Cool Minor Bass Lick (And Having Fun)

    Covering All the Keys Using a Cool Minor Bass Lick (And Having Fun)

    We’re taking a bit of a detour from our regular bass lick series lessons to work on moving around the fretboard and playing a line through all the keys. In this lesson, we’re going to start with a lick in A minor, and work through the cycle of fifths. Each key lasts four bars each.... »

  • Bass Lick Series: Getting Funky with an Envelope Filter

    Bass Lick Series: Getting Funky with an Envelope Filter

    Using an envelope filter effect can make a funky bass line sound even funkier. This lick is in Em with a fill based on an Em pentatonic scale motif. It uses pretty much only the top two strings on the bass. Follow along with the video and this transcription. For the gear heads, I’m playing... »

  • Bass Lick Series: Fat & Dirty Synth Bass Groove

    Bass Lick Series: Fat & Dirty Synth Bass Groove

    Here’s a fun lick you can use any time the music calls for a fat, dirty groove. This is in E♭, built predominantly on a E♭ minor pentatonic fill (with a 9th added). To achieve this sound, you’ll need a couple of effects: an octaver and an overdrive. I’m using the MXR Bass Octave Deluxe,... »