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Groove Archives - Page 2

Talking Technique: Pedal to the Metal
Talking Technique

Talking Technique: Pedal to the Metal

Today’s lesson is all about building cool grooves using the pentatonic scale with pedal tones, a technique often found in heavy metal. We’ll use a G minor pentatonic scale in the first area of the bass (more on that in the video). To create the pedal effect, we’ll be playing the root of the scale in between each note. The...

Talking Technique: Killer Dead Note Grooves
Talking Technique

Talking Technique: Killer Dead Note Grooves

Dead notes are percussive effects that can really liven up a groove. There are a variety of ways to create them, including left-hand muting, right-hand percussion, and left-hand percussion. For this lesson we examine how dead notes (and silence) affect the groove. As is often the case, a good way to begin practicing them is by utilizing scales. We’ll be...

Talking Style: The Tresillo Rhythm
Talking Style

Talking Style: The Tresillo Rhythm

The tresillo is derived from the fundamental Latin music groove called “habenera”. It can also be thought of as a variation on the Afro-Cuban son clave. Ragtime pianist and composer Jelly Roll Morton famously called the tresillo that “Spanish tinge” that is a necessary ingredient for New Orleans jazz. The prominence of the tresillo in African-American music traditions and, particularly...

Advanced Bass: Anatomy of a Groove
Advanced Bass

Advanced Bass: Anatomy of a Groove

What exactly is a groove? Aside from attempting to teach feel, which is predicated on stylistic interpretation and flight time on the bandstand, a groove is a repetitive idea – often organized into two, four or eight bar phrases that is based on the harmonic rhythmic and melodic content of a song. Often when coming up with an idea, bass...

Bass Lick Series: Gospel-Style Bass Groove
Bass Lick Series

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 on a 5-string bass, which...

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...

Lesson: Bass Groove with Harmonics and Double Stop Chords
Bass Lessons

Lesson: Bass Groove with Harmonics and Double Stop Chords

Here’s a cool new bass groove for you to try out and add to your bag of tricks. This is an A Dominant 7 lick, complete with harmonics and double stop chords. Follow along with the video below and this transcription. For the gear heads: the bass this time around is my 1977 Music Man Stingray strung with Dunlop nickel...

Lesson: Half-Time 16th Note Shuffle Bass Groove
Bass Lessons

Lesson: Half-Time 16th Note Shuffle Bass Groove

Here’s a new lick to add to your bag of tricks: a half-time 16th-note shuffle groove with a hip-hop vibe. The pattern is based on the G minor pentatonic scale. (Note: If you need some background on the pentatonic scale, here’s a good lesson to help you get started.) Follow along with the video and this transcription (PDF with both...

Developing Timing and Feel: Rhythmic Studies for Bass Players
Ask Damian Erskine

Developing Timing and Feel: Rhythmic Studies for Bass Players

Q: My question is about timing. I realize that the choice of notes make a line hip, but the rhythm and the timing make the groove! How do you practice timing, Damian? A: Truer words have never been spoken! It’s all about the groove and time-feel (fancy words for “pocket”). Here are some goals for developing your timing and groove:...

How To Groove at Jam Sessions
Ask Damian Erskine

How To Groove at Jam Sessions

Q: During jam sessions, I normally have a “hit and stick” approach to coming up with grooves. Essentially, there’s a lull between grooves where I end up peddling notes or playing the one. My keyboard player pointed this out and it bothers me. Is this something that I should be worried about? How do I lead a groove during these...

Settling into a Groove: A Guide for Bass Players
The Lowdown with Dr. D

Settling into a Groove: A Guide for Bass Players

One of the most important things we do as bass players is to create and lock into a groove. When I practice this I prefer a drum machine to a metronome. Here’s a guide to working with a drum machine to master the groove: 1. Set the tempo and style. Choose all the styles you are trying to be competent...

Lesson: How to Groove on Bass
Bass Lessons

Lesson: How to Groove on Bass

One of the important aspects of playing bass is your ability to groove. In this new lesson, I’ll offer up some beginner-level concepts to help you start down the path. We’ll explore keeping time and using percussive an ghost notes to make the lines come to life… the recipe for getting people out of their seats and dancing. Follow along...