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  • Bass Transcription: Ben Shepherd’s Bass Line on Soundgarden’s “Pretty Noose”

    Bass Transcription: Ben Shepherd’s Bass Line on Soundgarden’s “Pretty Noose”

    The unfortunate passing of Chris Cornell is a devastating loss for music. It is especially poignant for those of us that grew up listening to grunge music in the ’90s and 2000s. “Pretty Noose”, the first track from Soundgarden’s Down On The Upside, is a personal favorite of mine. On this track, Ben Shepherd performs... »

  • Talking Technique: Pivot Perms & Mirror Image

    Talking Technique: Pivot Perms & Mirror Image

    This episode is part one of a three-part challenge. Those time tested permutation exercises (you are doing them, right?) are getting two fresh twists in this episode: descending by their mirror image for an additional right-hand alternating challenge, and what I call the wicked “Pivot Permutations” – a great fun way to spice up that... »

  • Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 3: Minor Arpeggios

    Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 3: Minor Arpeggios

    Continuing our series on increasing fingerboard knowledge, here’s the accompanying Minor Arpeggio Exercises to play all across the fingerboard. This is the same principle as the Major types. I’ve given you a number of variations to try, and you’ll see this gives you more options when playing over a minor chord type. As usual, practice... »

  • Talking Technique: Close Your Eyes and “See” in New Ways

    Talking Technique: Close Your Eyes and “See” in New Ways

    Let’s start with a simple exercise. I say, go ahead, get your bass and just do it – that way you get the full benefit from this article. To start, let’s play a simple shift, such as C to D on the A string with the first finger on both notes (this is not the... »

  • Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 2: Arpeggios, Major 7ths & Beyond!

    Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 2: Arpeggios, Major 7ths & Beyond!

    We have not one, but two lessons for you this month! In this lesson, I’ll talk you through major 7th, then 9th, ♯11th and 13th arpeggios, which follows part one (“Triad Visualization”). I am a firm believer in learning these concepts in multiple ways/fingerings – it all goes to increase our overall knowledge of the... »

  • Advanced Bass: Giant Steps Plays the Blues

    Advanced Bass: Giant Steps Plays the Blues

    “Giant Steps” is well known as a challenging workout for all aspiring jazz musicians to learn. In this lesson, we’ll cover how to superimpose “Coltrane Changes” over the first 4-bars of the Blues with a fingerboard friendly symmetrical pattern that will open doors – both harmonically and stylistically into the world of John Coltrane. Download... »

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  • Talking Technique: “Mordents” for Finger Strength

    Talking Technique: “Mordents” for Finger Strength

    Today we have another multi-layered workout for you to build up your finger strength. This lesson will help you practice a scale up and down one string while improving coordination and strengthening your fingers. It’s not a beginner’s workout, but wherever you are on your journey, give it a good try. You’ll need to be... »

  • Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 1: Triad Visualization

    Creative Bass Lines: Increasing Fingerboard Knowledge – Part 1: Triad Visualization

    This column finds us looking not at bass line creation, but some solid foundation ideas that help to increase knowledge of the fingerboard. We are going to start with some easy stuff and ramp up over the next few installments! The concepts in the video are a good place to start. There’s no transcription, as... »

  • Talking Technique: Efficient Practice Hacks #5: Mnemonics – Part 2

    Talking Technique: Efficient Practice Hacks #5: Mnemonics – Part 2

    More memory tools for bass players! This is part two in my mini series on Bass Mnemonics. Mnemonic – hard to say the word – but endlessly useful! You can take a look at part 1. Here is more… and a time-limited bonus for you at the end! Eartraining: Song beginnings are a great way... »

  • Advanced Bass: How to Play Across the Bar Line

    Advanced Bass: How to Play Across the Bar Line

    In this lesson, we’ll take a deep dive inside the world of playing across the bar line. Equally as relevant for both your solo lines and your groove playing, we will cover how to play across the bar line by using “Time Signature Superimposition” that will take your phrasing to a whole new and exciting... »