Is there an easy way to.......

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by MotoClip, Apr 22, 2003.

  1. Does anyone know an easy way to write a song instrumental-wise, or is it just hard to begin the writing of a song on bass? I know some bands songs are started with the bass line and progress up but I just can't get anything good down on paper! I can sit for hours and only come up with maybe half a song, what's the deal!?:confused: :mad: :(
  2. Sorry I wasn't sure where to put it either. Thanks.
  3. Songs are usually written in a flash of inspiration, not by "sitting down with the intention of writing a song". The chosen instrument is irrelevant if your knowledge of music is sufficient, in fact you should be able to write a song without an instrument in hand. If you cant do this, I'd say your musical education needs some improving.
  4. I don't purposely sit down to write songs. they just come to me. I've only been studying music for a few years, so i can't write a song without the instrument in hand, either, but by the same token I can just write notes on a page and play them, and they'd fit the song perfectly.

    The last one is very much a hit-and-miss thing, though.

    If you're talking basslines, it shouldn't be that hard. A straight walking one would be easy - not much rhythmical change, stick to the chord, etc. Anything else - I'm talking funk, fusion, whatever - would have more rhythm to it but the logic behind it is kinda the same.

    i come up with chords first. I play on the 88 for ages and just play chords (because that's all I can do!) and put everything else to it.

    I wrote one when I came back from NZ a few weeks ago; when i get around to recording it I'll post it on the forums. Just chords at the moment, and a idea about the drum-line, but that's it.

    Oh! BTW: Good luck!
  5. DanGouge


    May 25, 2000
    For basslines I have found a variety of approaches that work. Sometimes it's best to just jam it out, other times I create something with Fruityloops. There is no right way of doing this I think...
  6. Killdar


    Dec 16, 2002
    Portland Maine
    usually, i'll space out and start singin a random song that pops into my head, then I try to remember it and play it......and on the rare occasion that I actually remember it, and the even rarer occasion that is is original, I lodge it in my brain and make something of it.

    Writing songs from scratch is hard, but working off something that already exists is an alright way to come up with songs. Take a nice tune that you like, and start playing with the same scale and things like that. it has worked for me a few times.

    Or, just let someone else come up with something, and modify their part to fit the bass.
  7. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    Most of my songs are not the product of me sitting down and writing out some tune that my barain has concoted. I'd say 75% of the time I am sitting around experimenting with scales and chord progressions when I run across a line I really like, then I take that line and use it as a base idea for developing the rest of the song within the key. When I write stuff in a band setting its usually somethign like I come up with a nice chord progression and the guitarist slaps a melody on it, then I work a bassline to fit it. Othertimes I'll come up with a groovy basslien and teh guitarist will work something out on top of it. Occasionally I'll come up with a specific guitar line and rythm, etc adn give it all to the band as a package and teh guitarist don't mind, but he never tries to mak eme play any specific bassline- I demand my creative freedom!!! :D
  8. By-Tor


    Apr 13, 2000
    Sacramento, CA
    When I first pick up the bass when i haven't played for awhile, like when I get home from work or just wake up. I try to do this little mental excercise. I try to clear my mind of everything, at least as much as I can. I pick up the bass and play something completely off the top of my head. Try not to think about any musical influences and just create and go with it. I've come up with some pretty cool stuff that way.
    And I have to do it on a whim. Like not even thinking about playing bass at that paticular moment. Kinda like I don't even give my mind a chance to think about it or at least realize it and just let my fingers do the walking.
    I know it's weird but it can be inspirational.
  9. I seldom write songs on bass; they always either come to me while I'm playing guitar, or ideas pop out of nowhere and I have to pick up the guitar to coax them into a song. It's usually easiest for me to start with a melody and a chord progression and figure everything else (bassline, drums, maybe horns?) from that. Like Marty said, songwriting for me usually depends on flashes of inspiration; it seldom works for me to just sit down and write. This likely explains why I sometimes have months-long droughts of writer's block :meh:
  10. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    This is very true, to a degree.

    Usually, the initial idea, which might be just a chord progression or a melody, is just a very small kernel of an idea. The process of songwriting is basically building a song around that initial flash of inspiration. To me, that part is a more conscious process.

    The best way to make sure you can turn the basic ideas into (preferably good) songs is to listen and play a lot of music. Having a decent understanding of theory helps too. Some chord progressions work better than others.

    I don't write much on bass. Guitar or piano work better for me.
  11. It is actually alot easier when I just think of a tune and then pick up the bass instead of pickin it up and thinkin while I'm playing. I can come up with bass solo's easy but when I try to make a whole song that will sound good with drums, guitar, singer, etc. it doesn't work out so well. Maybe it will be easier trying to come up with something with the rest of my band there, then I can go home and work out variations and stuff. Thanks for the advice!:bassist: