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Gotta play "Low Rider" by next week....HELP!

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by rickbass, Mar 19, 2004.

  1. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    For any of you who have successfully played BB Dickerson's bass line on "Low Rider" by WAR, I'd appreciate any advice - my basses are so damn resonant --- how do you kill the notes so quickly to pull off that bass line ???

    It reminds me of someone stacking bricks to build a building as the bassline ascends. But the individual notes are as tight as a nun's luvin' and immediately die before the next note is played.........so quickly. In other words, the envelope of the notes played look like avery tight inverted "V".

    I've been doing covers for decades but maybe my palm muting isn't good enough ???....chop, chop, chop!

    For those of you who forgot the line, here's where a small sample is (turn on your speakers) http://ubl.artistdirect.com/store/artist/album/0,,182562,00.html

    Any advice is appreciated, mucho bolango!
  2. Been playing that one for 2 or 3 years now, fun song.

    I play it fingerstyle, alternate index and middle, and use a right handed muting. It must be a well-timed muting technique in which you strike a note, then with the opposite finger you dampen (chop) the note. It works well if you now use the finger that dampened the string, to play the next note.

    Hope that makes sense? :confused:
  3. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    It does, bimp. Thanks very much.

    My notes just keep ringing into each other, (which I thought was a virtue of their "resonance"). But the notes and dynamics of this bassline have foxed me.

    I also think you have to play a little behind the drummer.
  4. You could try it thumb style with palm muting as well...or just stick a sock under the strings near the bridge ;-)
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Yep, lermgalieu.......I've heard "just stick a sock in it".....but it wasn't about my bass playing. :D
  6. I think I learned how to play choppy, staccato lines with conventional fingerstyle by playing along to Def Leppard and AC/DC, strangely enough...

    thumb-muting is often mentioned, but does anyone else finger-mute?
    -ie. pluck with fingers while palm-muting/muting with the pinky.
    I prefer this especially for live playing as you still get the attack of calloused fingertips, and and can play more articulate lines than with just the thumb (well, I find 2 fingers more articulate than thumb alone).

    BTW in the UK the Lowrider song is famous for being used in the Marmite (yeast extract spread, similar to vegemite) ad-
    with the words "I love/hate* Mar-mite" instead of Low-rider.

    *some kind of reverse psychology thing, that has worked, apparently.
  7. XxBassmanxX


    Nov 21, 2001
    Rosman NC
    Funny.. I was just thinking of learning the bassline to "Go Down" by ACDC a long time ago. Instead of just learning the dat t-dat t-dat t-dat thing i would try to make it interesting by adding a hammer on and a mute at the end... It was like 7 5/7 <mute> .... 7 5/7<mute> . It was way trickier than the usual simple pulse but it really improved my muting and taught me to use slide-ons as an accent. For some ideas with the Low Rider bass line id check out Blues travellers cover of that tune. Bobby really has a bunch of tasteful fills and I think he did a good job with the tune.


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