Modern Bass Lines for Your Professional Playing

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I present you with a series of carefully selected studio recordings on how to use the bass guitar in practice. You can find different musical styles in an accompaniment and a solo version, together with rhythm. Examples are written for bass guitar in a modern way of interpreting tone designing.

The recorded examples can be called simply as “rhetoric of designing tones on the bass guitar”. It is important how we play a certain tone. The tone speaks to our listener – especially when we play in public. We can always use effects, but we should not rely on them in the very beginning.

I always include such examples in my study programme with intent to broaden the pupils’ ideas and present them with the broad use of the bass guitar in practice.

Many bass players – at least in the beginning – face the problem of monotonous bass lines

Beginners often have a problem with the interpretation of their ideas. Their bass lines or solos are the same, or very similar. You have to listen to many different styles and focus exclusively on the bass. Let me justify my claims, which are intended to you – the listeners.

Let us begin!

Example 1 – Long & Short Tones

In this accompaniment we play the short and long tones in a continuous chain. By combining short and long tones we achieve contrast.

Listen to

Example 2 – Modern Rock -Fusion

Modern Rock-Fusion in a classical 12 bar blues form. We melodically connect the chords so that the passing between chords is seen as little as possible.

Listen to

Example 3 – Funky-Latin Fusion Accompaniment

A Latino-American version of modern accompaniment. The peculiarity of this accompaniment – which is already sounding like a solo – is a combination of a double finger technique with elements of Funk-Slap; we call that a Fusion.

Listen to

Example 4 – Blues Rock Feeling

A slow version of a modern Blues version that is used in all playing styles (Funk, Double Fingers) and modern musical genres. This example has an accompaniment meaning, with an emphasis on the Rock feeling.

Listen to

Example 5 – Sweet Harmony

Accompaniment or a solo in a soft-sounded minorish version called the Sweet Harmony.

Listen to

Example 6 – Octave Accompaniment

The use of a minorish octave accompaniment. This time we will use uneven stresses, which give this type of playing a special charm. People mostly use even stresses.

Listen to

Example 7 – Octave Accompaniment Rock Feeling

A slow or a fast version of an octave accompaniment. Speed can be adapted to the need and the character of the composition. The emphasis is on the Rock sound.

Listen to

Example 8 – Typical Octave Playing

Typical octave playing with stress on the second tone in the octave, which gives momentum to the entire rhythm section and the musical cast that we play in. This way we develop our own playing technique and enrichen other participating chord instruments.

Listen to

Example 9 – Typical Octave Playing

This example is also oriented towards octaves, but it shows a different rhythmical pattern. On the first from the two octave tones, it nurtures a constantly noticeable stress on every first note.

Listen to

Example 10 – Chromaticism

Let us listen carefully. These tones are carefully stylized and in constant movement. They give the composition enriched colour in a relatively small tone range, which means that the tones are located closely together, without big movements of the left and the right hand.

Listen to

The accompaniment is composed mostly from semitones, which is called chromatics, and is unnoticeable.

Example 11 – Fusion Bass Solo

A bass solo with Pop/Jazz/Funk Slap and Latin elements. It is an example of virtuosic and attractive bass guitar solo. It shows you the change of techniques in the given moment.

In a considerably longer double finger technique version, it suddenly switches to Funk Slap and then back to the double finger technique. It can be used for Fusion style and other styles as well.

Despite the use of different harmonies, the solo doesn’t have rough sound changes and is unnoticeably combined into gentle wholeness, which intrigues the listener. It adds to the musical recognisability and emotional nobility of the ensemble.  I have custom made it for a recording of an established band.

Listen to

I hope that these 11 important points will take you to a new, modern playing and thinking.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 simon george March 12, 2013 at 3:47 am

thansk so much for the bass lines! ive been playing for a while and learning new stuff is always important to get better. Great post keep up the hard work.

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2 Ladislav May 16, 2013 at 11:17 am

Thank you SG, glad you like it!

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3 Glenn G July 21, 2013 at 11:06 am

Great.. these are excellent lessons to learn and new techques…
Post some more 🙂

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4 Ayodeji November 25, 2013 at 4:24 pm

Though i’m so close to getting my own bass, but with what you’ve laid down here, i’m saying A BIG BRAVO! AND A BIGGER THANK YOU! God Bless….please come up with more if you can…. I really ‘ppreciate it!

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5 Ratul June 2, 2015 at 6:09 pm

great work hope to learn more n thankz

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6 Omio January 12, 2016 at 3:13 pm

Thanks for these interesting and nice bass lines. Is there the tabs available for these bass lines?

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