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Just starting playing jazz Walking bass

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by cire113, Apr 23, 2009.


  1. cire113

    cire113

    Apr 25, 2008
    Maybe jazz isn't as difficult as i thought

    Aside from knowing the chord changes and using different approaches (dominant, scale, or chromatic); and sometimes just playing appregios


    Is that good stuff to get started on?

    Also someone told me I that i Dont have to play the root on Beat One and sometimes playing the 3rd or 5th on beat one works also...(or even the 7th)


    A question about approaches does a scale approach just mean within the scale.. because somtimes a chromatic approach is the same a scale approach..?

    What are the textbook jazz standards? I heard there are like 10 standards for all of jazz

    Thanks for the help
     
  2. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    BigEgoHead suggests...

    The magazine of the International Society of Bassists had nice things to say about it....
     
  3. Asher S

    Asher S

    Jan 31, 2008
    MA
    The middle chapters of The Total Jazz Bassist (pages 25-86) provide an excellent, clear, comprehensive course for developing prime walking skills.

    But Ed's book looks great too! ;)

    As far as the "10 jazz standards", I have yet to see that classic article. One thing you could try is The Real Book... Practice walking to all those chord progressions and you will likely cover all the major standards and then some.
     
  4. beggar98

    beggar98

    Jan 23, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    For me, learning to create interesting walking lines came from two things: playing often, for long stretches, with musicians that were better than me; and transcribe, transcribe, transcribe. Knowing how Ray Brown or Paul Chambers would approach a set of changes went a long way towards de-mystifying walking bass.
     
  5. BillyRay

    BillyRay Supporting Member

    Jan 20, 2008
    Quebec
    Yeah transcribe and listen a lot to the masters.

    At face value, walking is easy. But once you start digging, you begin to notice that there's a LOT to walking a great line instead of an okay one.
     
  6. afromoose

    afromoose Guest

    Yes this is true!! I've just started walking too, and sure it's easy to get by, which does feel kind of cool, but when you listen to really good people like Ray Brown it's like 'what the hell was THAT!!!!'

    To be honest I think it's a lifetimes work - it's a bit like chess or something - the rules are simple but the possibilities are endless.
     
  7. nickonbass

    nickonbass

    Jun 8, 2008
    The chess one is a great analogy. So true.

    It's one of the most enjoyable things about playing music for me, and especially bass. I am in 2 blues bands - one of them we play very simple blues songs and we haven't learnt any new songs for a good year or so (the drummer fears change!).

    It's never bothered me though - my focus is all on walking into and out of the chords - trying new things out each week. Same songs but different approaches.

    It really helps if you can spend a lot of time on something simple. I've learnt that working on the basics never stops.
     
  8. nickonbass

    nickonbass

    Jun 8, 2008
    That should be working on the Bassics.:bassist:
     
  9. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
  10. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    namm_sher.

    BigEgoHead is happy to note hisowndambook front and center in the display behind Chuck..
     
  11. EADG mx

    EADG mx

    Jul 4, 2005
    No

    Yes

    Yes

    Not so much

    Diatonic or chromatic, both are scalular.

    Lots.

    Big no.
     
  12. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Listen, listen, listen.

    Ray Brown.
     
  13. cire113

    cire113

    Apr 25, 2008
    Could someone give me a list of some of he legends of jazz ive got miles davis , charlie parker, ray brown..


    Ive also noticed that alot of jazz tunes are in the circle of fifths.. well most of them right?
     
  14. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    It's a long and detailed read, but Ted Gioia's history of jazz would be worth picking up.

    I would expect a beginning jazzer to get the blues and "rhythm" changes under their belt before tackling circle-of-fifths changes.
     
  15. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
  16. kingbee

    kingbee

    Apr 18, 2006
    Jazz bass is very rewarding and there are opportunities to enjoy it at a variety of levels. When you first start walking, you can sound really great on the straightforward changes of songs like Fly Me to the Moon or All the Things You Are. Just using the arpeggios and scale tones works great to create satisfying bass lines there. You can spend a lifetime swinging at this level and still find new and exciting ways to play these same changes.

    As others have said, listen to the masters like Ray Brown, Milt Hinton, and Walter Page.

    A bit farther down the road, you'll have to wrestle with the ambiguous tonality of composers like Monk and Coltrane. It's more complicated but it builds on the foundation you're laying now. Hang in there!
     
  17. bearshimmy

    bearshimmy

    Feb 14, 2005
    I can't stress how important listening to other players is.

    doing root 3 5 7 is the meat and potatos of walking, but knowing where to put in passing tones and other non chord tones, and which beats to accent is a skill that can only be aquired through listening and experience.
     
  18. afromoose

    afromoose Guest

    +1
     

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