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  • Creative Bass Lines: Funking with the Dorian Mode and the Blues Scale

    Creative Bass Lines: Funking with the Dorian Mode and the Blues Scale

    Welcome back to the third installment of Creative Bass Lines. Before we start, I’d like to take a moment to say a fond farewell to the amazing Victor Bailey who sadly left us way too soon a few days ago. Victor was an enormous influence on me, and his highly melodic yet super funky playing... »

  • 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... »

  • Funk Bass Line Lesson – James Brown’s “The Payback”

    Funk Bass Line Lesson – James Brown’s “The Payback”

    Today’s featured video is as instructional as it is cool. Bassist/instructor Anthony Pell breaks down how to construct a funk line, using James Brown’s “The Payback” – a tune from Godfather of Soul’s 1973 album of the same name. Fred Thomas was the bassist on that album, by the way. Pell breaks down three approaches... »

  • Practical Theory: Improvising over a Minor 7 Chord

    Practical Theory: Improvising over a Minor 7 Chord

    Today, I’m kicking off a new Practical Theory lesson series, starting with an approach to improvising over a minor 7 chord. In the video below, I demonstrate a solo groove before describing the approach. In jazz, funk, and rock, if a solo section consists of a static minor 7 chord, most often the Dorian minor... »