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Dorian Archives

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

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 made an indelible impression on...

Bass Lick Series: Funky Fingerstyle Bass Groove
Bass Lick Series

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 (see: Soul/Funk Fingerstyle Bass Groove...

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

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 to note selection for the...

Practical Theory: Improvising over a Minor 7 Chord
Bass Lessons

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 scale is used. The Dorian...