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application of scales?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by skyskinner, Mar 31, 2006.

  1. skyskinner


    Feb 26, 2006
    hello.. i've been learning bass for a few months now and im now learning major and minor scales.. along with pentatonic scales.. however when i play for church service.. i only stick to the root note given on the scores. and anyone tell me how i would be able to apply the scales that i learnt to not stick to the root note all the time but do more fillins and variations?? or suggest other useful scales if any. =D
  2. Learning scales is so important because it trains you to play and hear what fits for a given key / chord. Use that knowledge to throw in other notes in the scale to add more color to your playing. An easy thing to do is to play the root and the fifth (above or below the root). This can be used for minors or majors. However, if you want to have the bass line follow the minor or major, add the third (flatten the third for minor). Then there's the option of playing the root one octive above. You can do an amazing amount of stuff just using the notes mentioned. As for the rest of the notes in the scale, use them for diatonic walks up or down to support chord changes. Of course, chromatic walks are cool for adding tension / anticipation.

    Paul Mac
  3. Torch7


    May 7, 2005
    Austin, Texas
    hey Skyskinner,

    I am a relative newbie myself, less than a year, you probably have a leg up on me, because you get music to look at. In our church we listen to the song and the musicians just run off and play.(well all except the newbie bass player, the prior bass player left)

    You will also need to learn about modes and how the song progresses.

    I recommend getting the book "Bass for dummies" it will go into this.
    Also check out http://www.cyberfretbass.com good tutorials on this.

    If that doesn't help contact me and I will attempt to shed more light on the subject.
  4. skyskinner


    Feb 26, 2006
    i see.. thanks paul.. alright i'll check them out.. i'll contact you torch if i need any further help :p i'm only 14 years old heh.. but age dont matter! :cool:
  5. chardin


    Sep 18, 2000
    This is a great place to start. With some variety in rhythm, you can do a lot with just the root, 5th, and octave.

    Next, take a look at this lesson on target and approach notes. As the lesson shows, play the root on the first beat of a new chord and then find some approach notes. This is where your scale knowledge will be handy. Even though the lesson is geared at walking jazz lines, it applies to any style.
  6. chardin


    Sep 18, 2000
  7. lola99


    Jan 28, 2006
    To Chardin, oh, thank you for the link! I can't afford to eat much less pay for lessons! I'm already paying for my kids's violin and voice lessons! Thank you!!!! :hyper: :hyper: :hyper: :hyper:
  8. mahc


    Nov 14, 2005
    San Diego, CA
    skyskinner and I are in the same situation

    yeah i 2nd the bass for dummies book. its a great, thick, yellow book filled with bass material.
  9. ashton


    Jan 4, 2001
    +1 the book bass guitar for dummies. No matter what level of playing you are at it can help.

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