Skip to main content

Bass Lessons - Page 5

Talking Technique: Switching Drills for 4, 5, and 6 String Basses
Talking Technique

Talking Technique: Switching Drills for 4, 5, and 6 String Basses

Switch much? If you find yourself switching between four-, five- and six-string basses a lot, or even just between different bass models, here’s a lesson for getting comfortable with whatever bass, fast. Playing different instruments is like driving a different brand new car. It takes time to get comfortable and settle in. If you find yourself switching around, try these...

Bass Transcription: Mattia La Maida’s Solo Bass Arrangement of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition”
Transcriptions

Bass Transcription: Mattia La Maida’s Solo Bass Arrangement of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition”

The first thing we have to consider to play this arrangement is the accents. The trick is to emphasize the 2nd and 4th movement, just as a drummer would do with the snare drum. To do this use the “strum” technique (think Stanley Clarke in School Days), accenting the 2nd and 4th movement where I can try to keep it...

Bass Transcription: Trevor Bolder’s Bass Line on “Changes” by David Bowie
Transcriptions

Bass Transcription: Trevor Bolder’s Bass Line on “Changes” by David Bowie

Since 1963, David Bowie worked with many bands as both singer and instrumentalist, and he had released several unsuccessful singles under his own name before “Space Oddity” became his first substantial hit. The song reached number five in the UK in 1969. Bowie’s first two albums (both confusingly called David Bowie) had been recorded using session musicians, with the bass...

Talking Technique: Sweet Emotion
Talking Technique

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 this? Only playing the riff...

Bass Transcription: Colin Moulding’s Bass Line on XTC’s “Senses Working Overtime”
Transcriptions

Bass Transcription: Colin Moulding’s Bass Line on XTC’s “Senses Working Overtime”

The three founding members of XTC, bassist Colin Moulding, drummer Terry Chambers and guitarist/vocalist Andy Partridge, initially got together in 1972, calling the band ‘The Helium Kidz’. They took some of their early influence from The New York Dolls and attached themselves to the developing ‘glam rock’ scene that was popular in the UK at the time. When guitarist/keyboardist Barry...

Talking Technique: The Pinky Workout
Talking Technique

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. These drills will get your...

Talking Technique: Bach for Two (In Three)
Talking Technique

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 I’ve transposed it to the...

Get daily bass updates.

Get the latest news, videos, lessons, and more in your inbox every morning.

Talking Technique: Got Dexterity?
Talking Technique

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 strings. Keep breathing and give...

Bass Transcription: Graham Maby’s Bass Line on Joe Jackson’s “Is She Really Going Out With Him?”
Transcriptions

Bass Transcription: Graham Maby’s Bass Line on Joe Jackson’s “Is She Really Going Out With Him?”

Joe Jackson has had a similar career to that of Elvis Costello, first coming to prominence in the “New Wave” era in the late 1970s, and then diversifying into a broader variety of musical styles as he became more established. The initial success of singles such as “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” (1978) and “Different for Girls” (1979)...

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...