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Any good bass books on Blues????

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by relman, Oct 21, 2001.


  1. I'm starting to get the blues bite (thank you very much Mr. John Paul Jones) and I wanted to know if anyone knew of some good books on styles, scales and progressions....

    thanks

    Ariel
     
  2. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Yeah.

    "Mel Bay's Complete Blues Bass Book" by Mike Hiland has kept me busy for the last year. $15 at Borders, or was it Barnes and Noble? Wherever.

    A great book!
     
  3. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Heavy Duty is right about Hiland's book. I think it is one of the very best and most comprehensive on blues for bass guitar, including blues history, an explanation of various blues styles, exceptionally good explanation of the twelve bar blues and its variations, and the scales most useful for creating blues bass lines. Plus it comes with a CD, so you can hear the way the bass lines should sound or play along with the music passages in the book.

    There are others also that are helpful. One is called "101 Blues Licks for Bass Guitar." That also comes with a CD. This book gives you a thorough foundation in the most common basic blues riffs. Once you learn them, you can vary them with your own tasteful additions and ideas. Also that book gives you turnarounds, intros and endings (as does Hiland's book.)

    Let me suggest another type of book, too. One is "The Blues Fake Book" by Woody Mann. This has basic lyrics, treble clef notation and chords to over 200 blues "standards" which should be well known to blues bands.

    Onother one is "The Definitive Blues Cllection" with 99 songs, all of which are part of a blues bassist's repertoire.

    I have a couple of other blues instruction books, but I'd have to dig them out. Needless to say, the books above are the ones I've used most. In fact, they are dog eared, and tattered from use.

    Oh, I have to add one more idea here. Roscoe Beck has made two really excellent blues instruction video tapes for Warner Brothers. He is an exceptionally good blues bassist and I learned so much from his videos.

    Lastly, I'd add that you should try to listen to blues whenever you can so you can begin to internalize the "feel." Listen to everything from Stevie Ray Vaughan to Buddy Guy to Robert Johnson to the Allman Brothers to B.B.King to Junior Wells to Eric Clapton to Gary Moore to Kenny Wayne Shepard and many, many others. Learn how they differ; learn how they are similar. Most of all, pay attention to the bass.

    And have fun doing it. But I didn't even need to say that. :)
     
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    This should do even better in General Instruction.
     
  5. MJB

    MJB

    Mar 17, 2000
    The Mel Bay book is excellent. I'll add that it's a good idea to get the companion CD.
     
  6. Thanks guys!

    On a different topic...How about syncopation and funk phrasing...not true funk...something like...hmm...Blind Melon's 'Tones of Home"....
     
  7. I gotta agree with the others, the Mel Bay book is as good as it gets.