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boring bass lines

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by btbassist, Jul 2, 2004.


  1. does anyone have any tips for spicing up bass lines? i play in a rock band, and i am getting really bored with my parts. :meh:
     
  2. BryLMoo

    BryLMoo

    Mar 25, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
    practice, practice, practice.

    make stuff up!

    don't be scared to try things that might not fit the songs...

    be creative!
     
  3. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    Try playing color tones instead of just the root all the time. Avoid following the guitar player all the time. Get a fretless. Use CGDA as your standard tuning. Play chords. Play left handed. Make up a tapping bassline. Play in a different time signature than the rest of the band. Get a ring mod pedal.

    Note: Some of these suggestions may get you kicked out of your band. Apply with care.
     
  4. Adam Barkley

    Adam Barkley Mayday!

    Aug 26, 2003
    Jackson, MS
    1. Follow the song, but plan a mid-song jam where you can stretch out a bit. If that still bores you, make up the solo/line as you go along and make it different everytime you play the song.

    2. Play the root notes with your left hand by tapping, while tapping an accompanying melody with the right.

    3. Alter the song completely, tempo, time signature, key, etc. Just a random example, If the song is in 4/4 at 120 BPM in E, make it 6/4 at 85 in A.

    4. Use effects. (You be the judge on this one)

    5. Make the regular parts harder

    6. Make a difficult original song that uses every technique you know.
     
  5. sedgdog

    sedgdog

    Jan 26, 2002
    Pasco, WA
    I heard it said once that if your bored with a song it's probably not the songs fault! I try to remind myself of that often because I get in that mode sometimes also.

    Also check out Dave LaRue with the Steve Morse Band. Dave really knows how to lay it down in a rock setting while creating very interesting lines along the way.

    Good Luck,
    Tim
     
  6. That's ridiculous! All the cool kids go BflatFCG.
     
  7. bloodfairy13

    bloodfairy13

    Feb 27, 2004
    Kentucky
    :D :D :bassist: :bassist:

    make up stuff...
     
  8. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Pretend you're someone else.

    I'm serious. When you approach your band's basslines, think of all the bassists who influenced you and the things about their playing that you like. Try to find places in the songs that you play where you can incorporate those ideas.

    Don't worry about becoming a clone. You'll never sound exactly like your influences because 1) you're not them, 2) You're combining many influences and 3) The part of you that's you will not go away.

    Have fun.
     
  9. Try playing color tones instead of just the root all the time. Avoid following the guitar player all the time. Get a fretless. Use CGDA as your standard tuning. Play chords. Play left handed. Make up a tapping bassline. Play in a different time signature than the rest of the band. Get a ring mod pedal.

    Note: Some of these suggestions may get you kicked out of your band. Apply with care.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! ROTFLMAO!!!!!!!!
    Thanks
    Troy
     
  10. HiFi

    HiFi

    Apr 20, 2002
    Anaheim, CA
    I confess! I've come up with some great lines this way and I recommend it as well.

    Also, I always screw around in practice and add things to see if they work. I get a 'good look' from the rest of the band more than half the time so I think it works great for me when creating new lines.
     
  11. SuperSluggard

    SuperSluggard

    Jan 2, 2004
    A bassline is only as boring as you make it.
     
  12. Crypton

    Crypton

    Jul 13, 2004
    Try playing something other that rock:D
     
  13. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    "Just" play colour tones instead of chord tones, it's as "simple" as that.

    :rollno:
     
  14. danshee

    danshee Banned

    May 28, 2004
    Chicago, Illinois
    You said it. I just wrote a radio-cut last month with a bass line that has only three notes and the occasional fill. Everyone that hears it is like, " man, what a groove!" And it is a great groove, although the fills were the most fun for me to record.
     
  15. SuperSluggard

    SuperSluggard

    Jan 2, 2004
    You might not want to make your basslines too complicated. I tried this and my bandmates said it sounded like i was doing a bad solo over what they were playing. :scowl:

    It's best to go for basslines that just sound badass. :bassist: That will make people want to get up and dance.
     
  16. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    Start small. If your guitarists are playing the down beats in 4/4 time, play the eighth notes too, or include rests where the guitarists keep playing to give your bass lines some space. Use octaves to offset the chord progressions. Then start walking from note to note, either diatonically or with passing tones, rather than just changing notes with the melody. Eventually, you can add enough change to make your lines your own.
     
  17. BenderR

    BenderR

    Jun 1, 2004
    Tucson, AZ
    Listen to the bass part in some of the Eagles music. many of their songs are simple and the bass part is repetitive yet Randy Meisner (and later Timothy B. Schmidt) kept it interesting. It's all a matter of playing what needs to be played in order to keep the flow of the song consistent. Dazzling basslines have their place but sometimes just a simple, tasteful pattern works wonderfully.
     
  18. cassanova

    cassanova

    Sep 4, 2000
    Florida
    Listen to a wide variety of music. This will help you come up with different types of lines. :bassist: