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  1. Love watching these videos. SaimoN the Mudvayne stuff is great - that must have taken quite a while to learn??! Very impressive. Jay2U your videos are next level, do you record in front of a green screen or something? I've just put another cover up on youtube, Is This Love by Bob Marley & The Wailers. Haven't really got the right hand technique together at all playing up near the fretboard like that - something to work on over lockdown! Caroline
  2. From American Boy to Giant Steps.. I'm loving this discussion! Here's another one which is maybe a bit more straightforward but I'm finding it interesting. I did a cover video of Around the World by Daft Punk (I'll post it below) and was advised by a bassist to then check out Get Lucky - so I'm now learning to play Get Lucky. B feels like home and I'd probably have firstly said B minor for the key, but then it sounds like more B dorian than B natural minor, so I'd call the key A or F# minor for this - would you agree and why? I think the chords are as follows: B-7 Dmaj7 F#-7 E7 With key A major that's: II-7 IV7 VI-7 V7 or with key F# minor that's: IV-7 bVImaj7 I-7 bVII7 And this is surprisingly basically the same as Around the World transposed up a tone. I think the chords for this are A-7 Cmaj7 E-7 Gmaj7 (or D7 would also work here?) which in the key of G is: II-7 IV7 VI-7 Imaj7 Interested to hear from others who have come across these tunes. Here's me trying to play it http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VLrrE6RO6o
  3. Thanks Alembic, I've been on the lookout for a good drone app. Drummer Asaf Sirkis, uses a phone app drone on gigs sometimes and it sounds very cool. I don't play fretless but have been using a drone recently to practice ear training/singing exercises, a few people recommended it as a good way to work on pitch. I've been using www.dronetool.com which has a nice cello sound, and there's also a shruti box. There's more about that on the Ear Training thread also in this part of the forum if you're interested Rural, and a video from Ingrid Jensen that talks about the shruti box to get a drone. Caroline
  4. Did this wee bass cover of Daft Punk - Around the World this morning
  5. No worries, happy to share and I really hope it helps. I think the other more traditional ear training methods are useful too, interval/chord recognition etc, but in a slightly different way. I just found that there wasn't a very good link with what I was playing and what was happening in my head. I studied jazz (with drums first instrument so wasn't always dealing with pitch) with second instrument piano. So I was taking lessons on piano, playing piano in harmony classes and also playing piano in a jazz orchestra. Some people seem to have a natural link up between what they're playing and the sound in their head and this wasn't happening as much for me which meant I was relying on the technical side and this became quite limiting. I'm not sure if you're the same or not, but taking your example of happy birthday - out of a group of people some will just be able to sing it because they've heard it, some won't be able to sing it well but can hear it, and I think some people if they're really being honest struggle at a much more basic level. This is different to recognising happy birthday, which everyone can do - I think this is the route most interval recognition apps go down. When I started playing bass last year I tried to improve what I'm hearing whilst playing. Most of the ideas are from Training The Ear by Armen Donelian - but I found that book a bit too intense so simplified parts into a daily routine. The results have started showing, I think it's going to be worth all the work. If you try it out let me know how you get on. If anyone else has any tips for improving at hearing/singing pitches, I'm all ears Caroline
  6. Oh my, who knew this about Sweet Home Alabama.. good call! So having spoken it through with someone more experienced, we decided that it's one of those situations where the word 'key' needs a bit more definition - as it doesn't have the same obvious role as say with older classical music. D feels like home, but practically it makes more sense to think D mixolydian than G major.. although there's a bit of G major pentatonic stuff going on, it's mostly D major/minor pentatonic that works. Is that what others would say too? I'm going to try learning some bluesy soloing over this tune. I'm sold on E minor now for American Boy. Before I was thinking E major modulating to E minor, but I'd skipped over the intro - that makes a good case for E minor. With the Fmaj7 chord as a chromatic passing chord into Emaj7, and the Emaj7 as a VI major (to key G major/E minor). I should update these chords. Intro: Em7, B7, Am7. Verse: Emaj7, Cmaj7, Am7, Am7/D (or D sus), Emaj7, Cmaj7, Am7, Fmaj7 (passing chord). Not convinced on a minor/major sound at the beginning that someone mentioned.
  7. Hey, maybe this will be of some help - it's something I really looked into when trying to find ways to improve my ears. It's very variable what people are blessed with naturally and some musicians don't have to think about it much. I asked around trumpet players and singers, as they have to actually generate notes in pitch, and I personally felt there's a difference between interval recognition (like the ear training apps) and generating the interval yourself. So here's what I've been doing.. Use a drone to get a background note. Ingrid Jensen talks about a shruti box here, I'm hoping to get one but in the meantime use a website called dronetool.com I go for A as orchestras tune to A and I usually have a tuning fork in A with me. I'll then sing a small list of scales and arpeggios. I also looked up chromatic solfege syllables (moveable-do not fixed) and Kodaly hand signals, which vary a lot and there's a lot of criticism but usually it's from people blessed with strong ears. The hand signals give you a physical link to the scale degree, like practicing it on a piano and getting used to scale motions. It's a slow process: - think about the next note (say you've just done Do, think about what Re), try to hear the pitch clearly in your head relative to the drone. I try not to rush through this step, as learning to hear the note clearly is my aim really. - move your throat to the right position to sing the note you're hearing. I got this from a singer, when I jump straight into singing a note it's usually shaky but just this small step usually fixes that. - sing the note and get used to how that sounds with the drone, you might feel a bit of resonance on certain notes, then look down at a tuner and see how you did, adjust accordingly if needed I'm not sure where this will take me long term, but it gives some confidence to slowly improve at something that I knew was a weakness. Caroline
  8. Hey, this was my reasoning for E minor: Oh great, haven't played Sweet Home Alabama yet.. will check it out! Caroline
  9. Ah yeah, I see what you're saying - but then there's the F# in the melody? E feels like home. I'd say E major thinking of it as then modulating to G major (E minor), or could say the key is E minor with VImajor chord (the first chord, E major). Which is bound to confuse people.. Or maybe say "it's in E" and hope for the best 😆
  10. Hi everyone, I've been learning a pile of pop tunes and sometimes it's not all that clear what key a tune is in.. So here's an idea, post a tune where you're not sure the key and hopefully someone in the know can help? I'll start - American Boy.. Emaj7, Cmaj7, Am, Am/D, Emaj7, Cmaj7, Am, Fmaj7.. I'd say E major for the key, would you agree - and why? Caroline
  11. Kinda cheating because I'm on drums for this - I've been learning it on bass but it's too fast! I think our bassist did a cracking job though and hope you enjoy, rest in peace Rocco!! What Is Hip by Tower of Power covered by my big band
  12. Thanks for all these helpful comments and ideas. That completely makes sense to get away from the amp to get an idea of the sound around the room. I don't have anything wireless just yet but I do have cable linkers so could join a couple of cables and walk around a bit. I can also bring a couple of extension leads to get the bass amp closer to the drummer so that we set the volume together. They usually rehearse and gig in the same town hall so if I can work on getting a good sound there then that will be a good start. The drummer was nice and said the feel was good and driving but the sound wasn't cutting through when the full band was playing. Hopefully some experimenting with getting just the right sound will pay off and set a nice foundation for the band. It's a weekly band and the previous bassist did it for over 20 years I'm told! So I'm working through the tunes in the pad at home and looking forward to playing more. Oh yeah I should have said, it's a Precision 4 string bass and a Mark Bass medium sized amp, the amp can go really loud if need be. The chairs there were curved and it didn't sit flat on the chair so I put it on the floor, but I can bring a stool or something to raise it off the ground. Thanks, Caroline
  13. Bit excited.. After doing some depping on bass with some local big bands, I've finally joined a big band as the main bassist. I figured it's a good way to improve at bass as you get so many different styles thrown at you. So I asked for some charts in advance and learned them, and got quite roasted at reading some new ones.. have brought the pad home to work on. The main thing I'm having difficulty with is finding a good sound and volume. I'm more used to playing acoustic instruments (drums & percussion) where the sound carries quite far, and the sound seems to travel really differently coming out the bass amp. We're rehearsing in a big wooden town hall and some of the tunes are really loud. It seems really loud to me next to the bass amp but others (even the drummer who was about 2m away) were struggling to hear it so I think the sound trails off quite quickly when it comes out the amp. I cranked up the volume until the drummer was happy.. he's a good and experienced drummer so I definitely trust his judgement. So just wondering, when you're right next to a bass amp and the volume is just really loud , and it can sound totally different even 2m away - how have people learned to gauge what it sounds like around the room to set it so it's not too loud or too quiet? And any tips on setting sound in this environment to cut through well? Thanks, Caroline
  14. Hey everyone, I was looking into ways to play outside just now as it's summer and UK indoor performances are all cancelled due to Covid. I got some useful advice on the Battery Powered Bass Amps thread for different types of battery powered bass amps and also ways to connect a battery to normal bass amps or run from car generators. After a lot of looking into it, I ended up not going down the bass amp or battery/generator route at all. I'm also a drummer and had a couple of outside jams with a quartet where the double bassist owns a battery powered PA speaker. He said a few local double bassists use these, and to get the 40W one instead of the 100W as the bass sound is better. It's a Behringer battery powered PA speaker https://www.thomann.de/gb/behringer_mpa40bt.htm I bought this and the Behringer V-tone bass pre-amp for around £20 for a DI, which actually has turned out not to be all that necessary. Apparently the battery lasts up to 12 hours, it's small/lightweight and it has a second input as well as a bluetooth function to pair with a microphone or MP3 player. It sounds great with guitar coming through and can get an impressive volume out of it. When I have been on drums, the guitarist had the volume around half full and it sounded fine. It doesn't deal with the lowest notes on my 4 string Precision too well at a really loud volume, although changing tone and pre-amp settings helps. It comes with a mic and cable. Just wanted to let people know that this has turned out to be a reasonably simple and cheap option to allow outdoor playing.. hopefully we'll be allowed to play indoors again soon. Caroline
  15. Really good I thought. I've kinda gone off topic on this thread and ended up getting something different from what was being discussed so I'll start a new thread for anyone looking into battery powered PA speakers. Thanks again for the help.
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