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  • Talking Technique: Optimize Your Octaves with a Killer Bass Riff

    Talking Technique: Optimize Your Octaves with a Killer Bass Riff

    Here is a cool modern retro disco funk riff that will help you optimize your octaves. A cool slide in the middle inspires more ideas for creative explorations and technique shedding. The transcription will help you out, but follow the step-by-step way to break it down and make it manageable. Practicing technique the groovy way! »

  • Talking Technique: Short-Scale Bass Shedding

    Talking Technique: Short-Scale Bass Shedding

    Short-scale basses have recently enjoyed a bit of a resurgence – be it as an alternate tool in a pro’s kit or as a main axe chosen for its sound, lightweight, easy playability and hip factor. In this episode, we’ll explore some right-hand, left-hand, and coordination drills that will help you wrap your mind around... »

  • Talking Technique: Alberti Bass

    Talking Technique: Alberti Bass

    Do you know what an “Alberti Bass” is? If you play electric bass (rather than cembalo in the 1700’s), you are excused if you don’t. That does not mean that we cannot use this keyboard figure to inspire some heavy duty technique shedding: string crossing, right-hand shedding, and coordination. In this lesson, we’ll go over... »

  • Talking Technique: Thinking Inside the Box – Upper Structure Pentatonics

    Talking Technique: Thinking Inside the Box – Upper Structure Pentatonics

    Today’s episode is all about thinking inside the box. Pentatonic box shapes only on the G and D string are easy to finger and make for quite the pizzazz when you lay them over a variety of chords. Check out the PDF to guide you along the easy shape and what colors you introduce using... »

  • Is Rhythmic Tapping Okay in a Band Setting?

    Is Rhythmic Tapping Okay in a Band Setting?

    Q: When I play the bass (let’s say on a 4/4 beat), I often tap the strings on the exact beat that the snare drum makes (on the 2 and 4), and I can’t seem to stop doing that. I was wondering: Let’s say I’m playing in a band, having fun, and I start tapping…... »

  • Talking Technique: Whole Tone Riffin’

    Talking Technique: Whole Tone Riffin’

    The whole tone scale is a really interesting scale. Unlike our major and pentatonic scales, it’s built out of all whole steps making it sound a little bit eerie and bright. Because the scale is symmetrical, it does not sound like it has a beginning or an end. Another neat fact is that there are... »

  • Talking Technique: Sweet Emotion

    Talking Technique: Sweet Emotion

    There’s nothing like starting a song with a cool bass riff. “Sweet Emotion” by Aerosmith shines a light on the bass for sure! At the very top, we set the tone. To play this riff correctly and in time right out of the box is what it’s all about. How to approach learning something like... »

  • Talking Technique: The Pinky Workout

    Talking Technique: The Pinky Workout

    Is the pinky your weak link? If it is, you are not alone. The pinky and ring finger share a tendon. Either of those fingers prefers moving in tandem, rather than on their own, so it is a good idea to isolate them. As for the pinky, it is also the weakest of the bunch.... »

  • Talking Technique: Bach for Two (In Three)

    Talking Technique: Bach for Two (In Three)

    In episode 43, we looked at an easy piano piece that was arranged for two basses. This is a great exercise because it works on your reading and your technique. Bach’s bass lines are typically challenging and push us as bassists to hone our chops. This time we’re checking out the Minuet in B♭ (though... »

  • Talking Technique: Got Dexterity?

    Talking Technique: Got Dexterity?

    Let’s go to the gym. The bass-finger gym that is! This work out practices one-finger-per-fret with elaborate string crossings. I have plenty of tips for you to succeed if one-finger-per-fret is hard for you. As always, this only works if you stay relaxed, move as little as possible and keep your fingers close to the... »