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"Bass Guitar for Dummies" even confusing me...HELP!

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Steve Harris Is, Jul 14, 2005.

  1. Steve Harris Is

    Steve Harris Is

    Jul 4, 2005
    Hate to sound like an idiot here but now something as basic as a paragraph from "Bass for Dummies" has thrown me!

    Being such a newbie I am currently trying to familiarize myself with all the notes on the fretboard, and at the sime time going through some chords/scales and a little TAB stuff to keep it fun. However, I am totally confused by something the book says..

    It has a sidebar referring to the "modes" (Dorian, Lydian, etc...) and it says that what's constitutes these modes is that, if you're in a C Major scale say, you're just starting on the second note for Dorian, the third for Phrygian, etc and so on. However, I am confused because I see diagrmas in this book that notate these modes with C as the root but do not look like that! And also, if you just playing a C major scale and staring on the second note (Dorian) and playing exact same notes as mentioned and you started on D, where is the D you would end on? Same question for other modes.

    I know there must be some elemental piece I am missing and once I get it I will have a mini "breakthrough" but right now I am dumbfounded. :help:
  2. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    The only guy I ever took any lessons from wrote that book. He's a real nice guy. If you continue having problems PM me and I'll send you his number.
  3. gilbert46


    Sep 21, 2004
    Sacramento, CA

    What are you out to learn in music? To be honest I read allot, took music theory classes and cant say its done much for me. If you want to play in a band, look for a beginning band, or take lessons to get up to snuff and then get in a band.

    When I was persuing a music major an upperclassman asked me the same and I responded " i want to be a compitent musician and play in a band " her responce was - go do it. The gist of most of music education is to be educated, not to be good at it. I cant say knowing dorian mode has helped me in a band setting.

    If on the other hand you want to play classical, or play jazz, the modes will come into play. To be honest half of what I play is all major 7 and the other half minor 7 chords.

    I know I will get flamed for saying this but I honestly feel for the casual musician this realm is useless. The usefull education has been actually playing in different styles with different people.
  4. bass_extremes


    Jul 9, 2005
    if you continue to have trouble with that book sing up a activebass.com the guy who wrote that book post on that forum and he could clear things up for you
  5. Correlli


    Apr 2, 2004
    New Zealand
    I never liked negative titles to books. It just creates a barrier before you even open the f-ing thing.
  6. I never think of modes, I just play rock and country.... :D

    But I worked through this years ago. Instead of thinking notes of the scale, think intervals. Major scale: tone-tone-semitone-tone-tone-tone-semitone.

    The next mode, drop the first interval (and move it to the last spot): it now becomes tone-semitone-tone-tone-tone-semitone-tone. If the original major scale was C, this mode contains the same notes, but you are starting in D. To play this mode in C, move down two frets and play the tone-semitone-tone-tone-tone-semitone-tone.

    For the next mode, drop that semitone (move it to the end) now it's tone-tone-tone-semitone-tone-semitone. Get it?
  7. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    What he is doing is showing how the modes relate using C major. This is a good way to see the relationship because there are no sharps or flats to add to the confusion. C major is C D E F G A B C. D dorian is D E F G A B C D. So D dorian uses the same notes as C major but it goes from D to D instead of C to C. Major is also known as the Ionian mode by the way. Another example - G major is G A B C D E F# G. Those same notes going from A to A would be A dorian. Does that clear it up any?
  8. Steve Harris Is

    Steve Harris Is

    Jul 4, 2005

    Yes, it's mush less confusing, and thanks to all who have posted with assistance!

  9. Bruce B

    Bruce B

    Sep 2, 2004
    Just to be clear I had to edit my last post. I put Fb where I meant F#. You get the idea anyway though. :)
  10. Thank goodness, in 20+ years I've never heard anybody say "This is going to be in Phrygian mode...."
  11. Just jazz, really. Modes might enter the picture if you read the program notes, but classical musicians barely have to know what key they're in. Aside from remembering to alter notes as indicated in the key signature, it's all spelled out.