Let's Create some Jazz

Discussion in 'Ask Michael Dimin' started by JazZ-A-LoT, Jan 25, 2003.

  1. JazZ-A-LoT


    Jan 5, 2003
    Ok so here's the deal usualy our sax player brings in songs, gives me the changes and I make a walking line. I was wondering how to go about writing jazz on bass, then giving it too the sax and guitar player to work out? I guess you could figure out patterns and stuff, but what are some interesting original ways to write jazz on bass.
  2. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    write the melody. determine some interesting counter melody and then take the interval between the notes from the two and decide on the chord (if any) to put there. A multi-tracker really helps. So does having a keyboard or guitar. Writing on bass is certainly possible but it's easier if you have broader voicings available (i"m a 4, 5 string guy ... you 6 stringers are exempted from that last little bit there ...)
  3. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    There are a couple of ways to go about it, but I wouldn't think of it specifically from a bass POV.

    Create an ostinato bass part (like "So What", "Chameleon" etc), from there define a harmony and you can either develop a a melody or have your sax player come up with a melody.

    You can come up with a harmony at the piano or guitar and then develop bass lines and melodies to the harmony (often the way that I write)

    Finally you can come up with a melody (bass melody is cool) and then develol the harmony to go along with the melody.

    Each way is valid, but it does entail a knowledge of how harmony works ("THE JAZZ THEORY BOOK" by Mark Levine is a great asset).

    You might want to look into a multitrack or looping tool to help you come up with ideas. My Boomerang Phrase Sampler is absolutely the best too that I have for developing bass lines, melodies and harmonies as well as proactice soloing