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Bass Line Construction Archives

The Lightbulb Moment: Playing Inside The Box
The Lightbulb Moment

The Lightbulb Moment: Playing Inside The Box

Some people call it “serving the song.” In Ryan’s new “Lightbulb Moment,” she talks about playing inside - and sometimes - outside the box, including covering the literal box patterns on bass.

Using Minimalism and Subtlety In Bass Lines
Ask Damian Erskine

Using Minimalism and Subtlety In Bass Lines

This week, Damian received a question about creating bass lines with minimalism and implication versus overt and fuller harmonic context. This is a deep question, so instead of just writing about it, he decided to make a video to play through some ideas and talk it out.

Licks and Fills from Right Hand Drive
Ask Damian Erskine

Licks and Fills from Right Hand Drive

In this video from the road, I decided to respond to an email requesting some contextual examples of how I might use a few of the “licks and fills” from my book, Right Hand Drive. After a handful of technical difficulties and the majority of my day off spent filming in a hotel room, I present to you… Real world...

Walking Bass Line Construction
Ask Damian Erskine

Walking Bass Line Construction

In this video, I’ll talk you through the basics of developing a walking bass line in addition to demonstrating a few approaches. There’s also a nice exercise at the end that’ll really challenge most of you as you explore new ways to navigate chord changes. Enjoy! Follow along with this chord chart I used in this lesson.

Intervallic Exploration for Bass
Ask Damian Erskine

Intervallic Exploration for Bass

This week, we’re diving into the topic of getting to know (and map out across the fretboard) every interval on the bass. We’ll also focus on ways to try and turn them into licks and melodic patterns that you probably wouldn’t have thought of otherwise.

Creative Bass Lines: Using the Melodic Minor Scale To Navigate on a Minor ii-V-i Chord Progression
Creative Bass Lines

Creative Bass Lines: Using the Melodic Minor Scale To Navigate on a Minor ii-V-i Chord Progression

Welcome back to another column, and today we’re diving further into jazz-related harmony with a look at starting to get inside two of the most useful modes from the melodic minor scale. The full line is demonstrated right after the opening title credits, with a little backing groove, and then during the video, I dissect and explain it for you....

Bass Transcription Analysis: Getting Inside Cannonball Adderley’s C7 Lick
Creative Bass Lines

Bass Transcription Analysis: Getting Inside Cannonball Adderley’s C7 Lick

In our last series of lessons, we had a look at a chorus of a Bob Mintzer blues over four episodes. Well, today we are putting just two bars of music under the microscope. This line is from a Cannonball Adderley solo on a tune called “Limehouse Blues.” Now the line itself isn’t super tricky, but in this pretty intensive...

Talking Technique: Sting Groove Workshop
Talking Technique

Talking Technique: Sting Groove Workshop

Inspired by a Sting bass line, I’m bringing you a groove creation workout today. We’ll cover how to create your own bass line using a simple formula that will have you coming up with ideas for workable grooves every time. We also shine a light on the correct use of pentatonic scales and top it all off by learning Sting’s...

What Scales Do I Use Over a Minor ii-V Progression?
Ask Damian Erskine

What Scales Do I Use Over a Minor ii-V Progression?

Q: I have a question about minor ii-V’s. In a major ii-V7-I progression, each chord is diatonic to the I chord. The ii chord is Dorian, the V chord is Mixolydian and it resolves to a Major tonic. In a minor ii-V, the 1 would be natural minor, which makes the ii chord Locrian (7th degree of the major scale)...

Creative Bass Lines: Lydian Triad Pairs
Creative Bass Lines

Creative Bass Lines: Lydian Triad Pairs

Today, we dive into something new – superimposing Major triad pairs derived from Lydian Mode Harmony over a Major 7th chord. The examples on the video are over an F Major 7th chord, and I am using a neat little looper for this. It’s a great practice tool. In the video (and transcription) I take you through the basic major...