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  • Bass Lick Series: Funky Bass Breakdown in E

    Bass Lick Series: Funky Bass Breakdown in E

    Here’s another lick to add to your bag of tricks. Once again, I’m using open strings as described in past lessons. This one is a groovy bass line you can play over a E7, E9 or E13 chord using the Em dorian scale with the Major 3rd added (G#). Omit the G# and use it... »

  • Bass Transcription: Miki Santamaria’s “Thinking Out Loud” Solo Bass Arrangement

    Bass Transcription: Miki Santamaria’s “Thinking Out Loud” Solo Bass Arrangement

    This month’s transcription was suggested to me by No Treble founder Corey Brown, serving to remind me of Miki Santamaria’s fantastic solo arrangements of pop songs for bass guitar. This song, originally by Ed Sheeran, translates nicely onto the bass due to the relatively open key of D major. For the first 8 bars, Miki... »

  • Fast Fretboard Position Shifting on Bass

    Fast Fretboard Position Shifting on Bass

    Here’s a lesson I’d consider more beginner/intermediate-level, but it is a great refresher for all of us. Many times, we have to play a line which requires some quick shifting along the fretboard. Here’s a simple exercise for fast position shifts. Follow along with the video. »

  • Bass Lick Series: Funky Fingerstyle Bass Groove in Dm

    Bass Lick Series: Funky Fingerstyle Bass Groove in Dm

    Time to add another lick lesson to the series. This time around, our focus is on this funky fingerstyle bass groove, which is in the key of Dm or D7, using mostly the D minor Dorian scale with chromatic connecting notes. This lick also relies heavily on open strings, for fast note doubling (D on... »

  • Bass Transcription: Lőrincz Viktor’s “Rock and Roll Bass Solo”

    Bass Transcription: Lőrincz Viktor’s “Rock and Roll Bass Solo”

    There’s been no shortage of great pieces to choose from for my monthly transcription recently: Cody Wright’s groove with drummer Chaisarary Schenk was a serious contender, as was Simon Fitzpatrick’s cracking solo bass rendition of “Rosanna”. I intend to cover both pieces in future transcription columns, but this month I couldn’t resist scoring out Lőrincz... »

  • Bass Transcription: Federico Malaman’s “Speed Demon”

    Bass Transcription: Federico Malaman’s “Speed Demon”

    Like many bassists of my generation, I grew up loving the grooves on Michael Jackson’s records, be it Louis Johnson’s slapped parts on the Off the Wall album, or the heavy synth lines from albums like Thriller and Bad. But the track we all wanted to be able to play was “Speed Demon” from Bad,... »

  • Bass Transcription: Wojtek Pilichowski’s “Cowboy from Prague”

    Bass Transcription: Wojtek Pilichowski’s “Cowboy from Prague”

    This month’s transcription is “Cowboy from Prague,” a short piece by Polish slap bass wizard Wojtek Pilichowski, recorded at the Aguilar Artist Loft earlier in 2014. Wojtek has made a name for himself in recent years with his hard-hitting and energetic slap technique. True to form, he packs a lot of ideas into this short... »

  • 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.... »