Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by brbassist, Sep 27, 2000.

  1. brbassist


    Sep 20, 2000

    I was looking for some chords for bass playing, but I just can´t find it. I learned to play alone, and it´s very difficult for me to find chords... Can you help me ??

    Thank you.
  2. The simplest chord construct I can play on a four string bass is the root note + the fifth above that + the octave above that.

    For an example, A minor will be

    D|------6 (A', octave)
    A|------6 (E,fifth above root)
    E|------4 (A)

    It should work with most (if not all) keys. Play around with that construct and it should work.

    Derek J. Power

    P.S. I know I'm not Michael Dimin but I hope this helps.
  3. Bass2222


    Sep 22, 2000
    I have few voicings for major, minor, dominant, and altered dominant chords.

    First off, an easy way to voice chords on bass is to play the root of the chord on the bottom and play the 3rd and 7th on top, repectively.

    An example: if the chord was Cmaj7 you would play a C, E and a B on top. Obviously, since we're talking about bass the higher you play the better (where chords are concerned)
    if the chord was Cmin7 you could play C, E flat, and B flat.
    If the chord was C dominant 7 you might play C, E, and B flat.

    Another cool minor voicing is the flat third on bottom, fifth next, and the octave on top. i.e. Cmin7=E flat, G, C.

    A different major/dominant voicing consists of the root, 3rd and 6th. i.e. Cmaj7/C dominant 7=C, E, A.

    A cool "weird" sounding altered dominant chord goes like this. C alt. dominant=C, F sharp, C. That is, the root, sharp 4, and octave. Actually, this chord can be used in about any situation where there is an "altered" sound: i.e. diminished, whole tone, altered dominant, etc. Jaco used this chord alot.

    I also have a few 4 note voicings. A major 4note voicing is the root, fifth, octave,and tenth on top. Cmaj7=C, G, C, E. By altering the 3rd and 7th, you can get minor and dominant chords as well.

    Some pro will probobly drop chord tips and voicings way better than these after I post it...but this is what I have.
  4. A good book of chords is Johnas Helborg "Chord Bassics".
  5. Jonas Helborgs book will teach you a lot of chords. Michael Dimin's book will help you to use the chords in songs. and Dr. william L. Fowler's books will keep you studying for years, my favorite "Seventh chords and arpeggios". In the meantime find Michael"s website and try out his book.
  6. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you. There has been some good advice here, but, please take a moment to check out the lessons on my web site, These are graciously reprinted from my lesson column in Bass Frontiers magazine. I beleive it is a good primer on chordal playing. For more advanced study get my book, The Chordal Approach. There are some excerpts on my site as well.
    I hope this helps

    Mike Dimin