1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)


Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Bushfire, Jul 7, 2005.

  1. What the hell are they? :help:

  2. In this context, "musical/instrumental skills". ;) ;)
  3. Correlli


    Apr 2, 2004
    New Zealand
    There's probably lots of definitions for term "chops". The one I use is a 1, 2, 3, or 4 bar unique phase. It incoporates both Rhythm and Melody. Drummers also create chops, which is mostly Rhythm orientated.
  4. bill_banwell

    bill_banwell Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2002
    Chops... fancy stuff.. like say if you had some good slapping things that you could do, people would say that you had some good chops.. its a bit like 'licks'.. ahh the slang..

  5. Maverick Blues

    Maverick Blues Being a Thumper is all about ATTITUDE!

    Apr 28, 2005
    Richmond, VA
    I wonder how much it all varies depending on what part of the country or world you're from.

    Where I grew up (central East coast of the U.S.), "chops" equaled talent or skill ("hot chops" = "mad skillz?") "Man, that dude has some chops" means he can really "tear it up." Whereas "licks" referred to specific little frills or runs or whatever, often signature things. "Did you hear that cool lick he did in the chorus?"

    It'll be interesting to see what the majority opinion is.

    Another one that differs for me is "noodling" -- to me it always meant just sort of goofing around on an instrument with no real purpose, wandering around to see what you could come up with. Lately though, I've been seeing it used as if it refers to something closer to very skilled playing or even shredding.

    Like you said, "Ahh, the slang..."

  6. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass **** Supporting Member

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    Here on the West Coast the word chops usually means playing ability, often also associated with speed/dexterity. Not sure but I believe it comes from brass and/or woodwind players, coming-up playing in big bands I especially heard the term associated with shape/condition of the crown a trumpeter's upper lip. Guys with alot of chops could hit higher notes, easier for longer. Phrases like, "don't blow your chops", or, "man my chops are sore", were very common place. \
    Chops aren't always altogether good!! I also hear phrases like, "he has more chops than he knows what to do with", or, "sure he's got the chops...BUT", these phases may relate to someone who has good speed and dexterity but hasn't yet learned to play "musically", or may be WAY to busy.

    ....boy that was long!!
  7. "Chops" refer to what you can do with your "axe". It's metaphorically consistent.
  8. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Long, but informative!
  9. Bassist4Life


    Dec 17, 2004
    Buffalo, NY
    I just purchased the CD "Chops" (Joe Pass & NHOP). This is what is written on the back of the CD:

    I remembered this thread and thought that this would be worth posting.


Share This Page