YT268 – This is the stuff… you’re told NOT to learn

EJ RAMOS Bass Guitar Lessons, Bass Guitar Technique, Bass Guitar Theory, Beginner Bass Guitar Lessons, blog, Blues Bass Lessons, Practice Tips

Hey, James here!

Over the last couple of weeks, I've been focusing on some of the bad advice that I was given when I was just starting out as a rookie bass player in my career in the early two 2000s. I distinctly remember one player saying to me, "You don't wanna bother with all of that clever stuff, just focus on the stuff that makes the money. That stuff is a complete waste of time!"

That is why in today's lesson, I want to give you my take on that advice. The advice I was given earlier, was "to stay down the business end where the money notes are." That's where your earner living. I took to my classical double bass teacher at the time, the great virtuosic player, Leon Bosch, and asked him, "Should we learn the more advanced techniques if we're not using them on a day-to-day basis?"

He said something that stuck with me forever, which was "Absolutely yes, because the greater command of the instrument you have all over, the better your plague will be down there where you are earning money." So what I want to do today is show you something that I practice when I'm by myself, just messing around and having fun when I'm at home. I never use this kind of thing on a gig, but it's really helped my knowledge of the instrument and harmony in general. We are going to look at a pattern that uses the Major and Minor 6th and bounces off the open strings.

You may already be familiar with the concept of creating a bass line or using Major and Minor 3rds. The great thing is we can take similar ideas and create baselines using Major and Minor 6ths. The exercise or groove I'm going to show you uses the harmonization of the A7 or A Mixolydian scale. Don't worry if you don't understand that terminology or the theory behind it! What I want to do is get you really familiar with the two shapes on the fretboard, which give us our Major and Minor 6th shapes. 

I hope you can take the concepts that we have discussed today and start doing your own thing with them to build your command and knowledge of the bass. The goal here is to have some fun with these ideas and really play around with a different Major and Minor 6th. This is all about making music and exploring and having fun. Chances are you'll never use this stuff at a gig, but at home, will just give you that most amazing command of the instrument and take your knowledge when you're playing your normal bass lines, your regular groups, to that next level.

What do you think of this exercise? Let me know in the comments below!

I'll see you next week!

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