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Everything posted by FDC484950

  1. Get a keyboard. Seriously, it’s the best possible way to learn ear training, harmony, melody, the works. All classical and the majority of good jazz musicians learn something on the piano to improve their understanding of harmony. It doesn’t matter if you can’t play a note - bang out some basic intervals and get used to the way they sound (bass is too low in pitch in general). Then move onto triads and finally 4 and 5-note chords. Each one has its own sound, and a keyboard helps you to hear that sound in its various inversions. You don’t need to be able to sing the interval but you do need to be able to hear it. Plus it really helps when transcribing to have a keyboard to hand - when I got a keyboard I started working out the chords to songs a lot more.
  2. Just had a listen to the actual track. The only time Emin puts in an appearance is the very first chord. Every other time it’s Emaj7. The intro is E minor, the verse and chorus are E major broadly but with some nice jazzy substitutions. The chords in the verse and chorus sound like Emaj7, Cmaj7, Amin7 and D9sus4, second time around the same except the D9sus4 is replaced with an Fmaj7 (e.g. listen to the guitar right before the first verse vocals come in, clearly the same chord shifting down a semi tone). It’s a good tune as it plays on that minor/major key feel and two maj7 chords a major 3rd apart always sounds cool (even a tiny nod to a John Coltrane perhaps?)
  3. Ah the sheet music makes a bit more sense, having not heard the tune recently but kind of remember it. The intro is clearly E minor (note chords have no sharps, flats or natural signs except the B, which is expected as the V chord for a minor is normally a dominant 7th) and they’ve kept the key signature the same for the verse, where the chords change. The verse is not in E minor but as one key does not fit these 4 chords it probably makes life easier to leave it as-is and write in the accidentals.
  4. I know my way around harmony pretty well and I’d welcome your explanation of why the chords above refer to E minor.
  5. Yes, having a Sterling V HH I do much prefer the clean lines of the traditional Stingray pickguard. The current Stingray V pickguard is enormous and for me unbalances the bass visually, especially if it is a two humbucker model. The BFR model in the link does look much cleaner.
  6. Hellzero, out of curiosity how are you able to see this? Where in the picture above are you looking. The photo isn’t super sharp so what may look like a burned component may be a shadow or something else entirely. To my non-expert eye I cannot see what you’re seeing.
  7. Music is a language, and like any other language, if it’s written vaguely or with too much obfuscation it can be hard to understand. The point of notation is to display the maximum amount of information about the performance, as simply and clearly as possible. So as Bilbo says, on some jazz lead sheets they might indicate a key signature relevant to the melody, but in practical terms a key signature is probably unhelpful, as many tunes go through different key centres, and changing the key signature several times in a short piece of music isn’t making life simpler! It’s more common in classical music but even then, more atonal pieces render a key signature useless. As a sometime sight reader, having a piece of music put in front of you where it’s expected that the second, or at most third run-through is being recorded, or a big band book with 300+ charts handed to you, and page 168 is in 5 flats, is the kind of experience where your reading comes on leaps and bounds. With fewer and fewer of these opportunities available, by far the best alternative is again as Bilbo says - just read lots of music in all different keys. The Internet has a lot of freely-available PDFs - something I sadly never had when I started
  8. I had a half fretted/fretless bass made many years ago. I experimented with the solution above - raising the fretless part of the board (fretless started at 13th feet). I tried to raise the fretless board to exactly the same height as the frets but I had to have it lowered a touch because playing across from fretted to fretless felt very odd (I don’t fret on the fret but behind it, which made it feel like going up a ramp to the fretless section), and neck relief is slightly different on a fretted to a fretless bass (more of a gentle curved very close up). However it did provide a far more appealing action on the fretless part, but still a compromise compared to a fully fretless bass. In the end I sold it as you could only really use it to play parts up to or after the transition - a long ascending line that crossed over just sounded weird, and I got caught too many times playing in and out of the fretted/fretless bit, which was confusing and didn’t work when recording. Fine for a special case bass but I wouldn’t have it as my main instrument.
  9. You may want to check for what TNT will allow enhanced cover. It may have changed but last time I looked, musical instruments were excluded. EDIT: I’ve just looked again (https://www.tnt.com/express/en_gb/site/terms-conditions.html) - TNT are to become FedEx Express, and I can no longer find that exclusion, so they may be fine and apparently maximum limit of £15K - unless of course it’s buried somewhere else on their site. With Interparcel it pays to read every bit of their terms and conditions (which are normally a re-hash of the courier’s Ts and Cs).
  10. Good improvisation is a mix of linear, intervallic, diatonic and dissonant ideas, based on themes that hopefully link together to make a musical statement. For bass players it is often a good idea to start out improvising with chord tones precisely because it gets you away from playing linear scale ideas and into the habit of playing in a more intervallic way - which is more interesting to the ear.
  11. Just imagine if she discovered Jazz 😃 Very cool and a phenomenal ear. IIRC George Shearing did something similar (was it the South Bank Show? Can’t remember, lost in the mists of time). Incredible ability that I imagine only piano players could truly express...
  12. It was Japanese - the dead giveaway being -desu at the end of a few sentences (“to be” or “is”, basically). Looks and sounds cool to me. Don’t know what all the fuss is about him being deserving if it’s a Fender Artist model in Asia...
  13. IMHO it is a great video with the background and some history. Although I like the musicians I have a hard time liking the album because the pristine digital recording sounds flat and dull to me - although this is a not uncommon recording style for the Dan (Gaucho, to a degree, and Two Against Nature suffer from this). The other thing that puts me off a bit is some of the stiff performances - although Anthony Jackson is in my top 5 bass players the vid had it right by saying that performances were robotic, both of his tracks are very accurate and precise without doing anything for me (also muddled with doubled keyboard bass). Chuck Rainey and Marcus Miller - on Green Flower St and Maxine respectively are the high points. Walk Between The Raindrops is ruined by too much overdubbing (awful kbd bass line doubling the bass) only rescued by Larry Carlton and Greg Phillinganes’ excellent and very musician parts. Overall it feels like there is a great album hidden in there that never really fulfilled its promise.
  14. I didn’t realise these were available - nearly every shop says due in > 3 months. GLWTS!
  15. Rome wasn’t built in a day! Keep it simple and focus on one or two different exercises. For example, play thirds ascending, going up the first pair of notes and down the second. So in G major, play a low G (3rd fret, E), then B (2nd fret, A), then up a fret to C and down to A (5th fret, E), then up to B, and up to D, up to E and down to C, Up to D and up to F#, up to G and down to E, up to F# and up to A, and finally Up to B and down to G. Then take the above exercise and invert each pair of notes, first pair of notes are descending, 2nd pair ascending. It’s harder as you’re not now starting on the root but the 3rd - so: B and G, A and C, D and B, C and E, F# and D, E and G, A and F# and finally G and B. Instead of picking other exercises stick with the two above, play them over 1 and 2 octaves, then all over the neck, top to bottom. Play them up one string as far as you can, then 4 notes on each string, and once comfortable, around the cycle of 4ths in all 12 keys. It sounds like a ton of work but once you get the shape and sound of each pair of 3rds, it does become a lot easier, is a fantastic way to learn the fingerboard and gets you away from purely scale based, one note next to each other type lines. Where theory turns into music is when you call upon this type of knowledge to build lines based on intervals, triads and sequences - add these to scale based and chromatic lines and you have all the required materials for improvisation. However I’d recommend starting as above with 3rds as they appear in the majority of chords, so provide an excellent foundation for both regular bass playing and playing up the dusty end
  16. I have to say I’m really not a fan of these bedroom play along people on YT - the track already has a great bass line so it’s very hard to work out how much is the original groove and how much they’re actually adding - or how many goes they’ve had to record it right. In this case I’ll make an exception - she has very accurate articulation and control over both the length and dynamic of notes, perfect timing and she’s got that elusive “groove” that so many on YT lack (e.g. The monstrously talented but nearly impossible to listen to Senri Kawaguchi on drums - technically perfect but I just can’t listen to it for very long).
  17. Special kudos should go for the Jazz with the new colour “roasted pine”, or “cheap 70s plywood table” The only slightly interesting colour from the new batch is Miami blue. Given they’re charging similar prices (for a simple passive bass) you’d think they could at least match Musicman’s range of colours and have some more interesting finishes? The problem is that in today’s society it’s not enough to gradually improve things like the pickup, or the hardware. You must produce something “new”. As there is essentially nothing Fender can do to change the layout and look of a precision or jazz, they’re reduced to new model names for the same old bass. And it sells, so why not? I’d still love a Roscoe Beck as a standard model (hell, they’ve had a Tony Franklin in the line for years and I know even less about him than Beck) or a p-bass with Dimension eq and pickups - but such experimentation tends to end up in their Squier or cheaper Fender ranges.
  18. Song for my father is in F minor. A la the first chord. It’s definitely not a tune in a major key. Ab major and F minor are related keys so have the same key signature (4 flats).
  19. I think the Ray34/35 are pricier with roasted maple necks and the Ray is a cheaper range, but still comes with dual humbuckers.
  20. The cheaper models also have a roasted maple neck. I guessed it was a US a model from the colour and just about being able to see the logo on the headstock.
  21. That’s a “thing” about Musicman basses. It may require you be a bit more precise as the G is quite close to the edge of the fingerboard. Some people apparently don’t notice it at all. All of the sounds are humbucking but AFAIK from both a US Sterling and Stingray the bridge only position is authentic Stingray.
  22. Yep. Sterling by Musicman: https://sterlingbymusicman.com/products/ray5-hh
  23. Looks like it to me. I think the colour is Burnt Apple. I would pretty much guarantee that a Sterling (not the US bass but the cheaper range) would sound 99.9% the same. The extra you pay for a US model is for lighter weight (wood and hardware), quality of construction and finishing , a hard case and the cachet of being made in the USA. EDIT: and the 18v circuit with neodymium pickups in the newer US model.
  24. A complementary concept is don't keep practising things you can already play perfectly. It’s tempting but is one of the biggest blockers to getting better. A good balance of things to practice should include tackling things you cannot play, but with moderation - for example take a lick/line you know well, and redo it over different harmony (e.g. minor instead of major), or with different meter/time signature. It really helps develop vocabulary. When improvising, always play with some kind of chordal accompaniment. Improvising without context is the origin of noodling
  25. Don’t forget exchange rates. £-$ isn’t what it once was.
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