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julietgreen

How's your walking bass?

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[quote name='louisthebass' timestamp='1503330697' post='3357322']
Haven't investigated them but the Todd Johnson Jazz Bass modular books are also supposed to be excellent. Maybe someone on here has got them and can recommend them?
[/quote]

I have Volumes 1 & 2 of Todd's modular books and can highly recommend them.

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Many thanks to all for advice - particularly to those who explained how they learned, themselves. I have been through a fair number of the 'learn to play walking bass' type recommendations and I have a reasonable knowledge of chord structure and types. It's the practical bit of putting it into a musical context at the rate the changes happen, that I'm still cack-handed with. Making slow progress...

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[quote name='julietgreen' timestamp='1503419178' post='3358087']
It's the practical bit of putting it into a musical context at the rate the changes happen, that I'm still cack-handed with. Making slow progress...
[/quote]

I really recommend that you sit and listen to a LOT of early jazz and standards, and especially old electric blues.
Arthur Crudups old rockabilly/blues stuff uses some great walking bass lines.
Once your ear gets attuned to the changes in most typical jazz/standards pieces, it will all fall into place.

Plenty of basic 3 chord and 4 chord stuff out there to cut your teeth on

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I learned a lot from Scott today - the chromatic up / down note on beat four was something I hadn't spotted before

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Try playing G A Bb B | C D Eb E | Over G and C then work in an A run instead of the D for the five chord. Slightly different take on a 12 bar and gives a really nice unresolved feel that DOES resolve eventually.

I may see if I can record it and post along with some other slightly different takes on walking bass.
So much of it revolves around knowing what alternate voicings and indeed chord structures work.

Edited by ivansc
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Three rules to walking basslines:

  1. Play in key
  2. Play in time
  3. Play whatever you want without contradicting 1 & 2

In practice what you want to do is play a sub-melody that 'pushes' the song along, a good walking bassline should sound totally aligned to the song, It can be repretitive or not have any repetitve figures, its the acme of good playing because it's like playing an ace guitar solo but  has to stay grounded in the song not go off into the stratosphere.

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I learned by arrissing about really.  Playing along to songs, at first copying the bassline verbatim, but as I got better I started doing flowery little fill notes and riffs, and quite by accident walked into walking.  I'm now trying to formalise my technique a bit with some reading on the subject.

Edited by Bassfinger
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Basic easy to understand starter video....  (edit: didn't notice sexist banter at beginning - please skip to 0.07 to miss it)

 

 

Edited by OldG

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On 18/08/2017 at 15:38, julietgreen said:

I set myself a goal this summer to learn to play walking basslines to chord sheets. How did you learn?

I just stick to root, 3rd, 5th.. 7th maybe and a few chromatics here and there.. in various orders
But there’s soooo much to read on the subject! Big respect to the guys who can walk all day long 🙌 help us n00bs

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