Marcus Miller is 100% right!

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Dr. Cheese, Jan 31, 2023.

  1. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
  2. bass12

    bass12 Have You Met Grace Jones?

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
  3. You should find out. And try to understand what he is saying instead of looking to be offended.
  4. bass12

    bass12 Have You Met Grace Jones?

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    I'm not looking to be offended. I simply see a contradiction in what he's saying given how many vocal melodies he's played on bass.
  5. Bassinthemudd

    Bassinthemudd Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2020
    These "Shorts" are designed to compete with Tik Tok, which is a shame. For all of YouTube's faults, it's willingness to host long form discussions is invaluable.

    I'm reasonably sure I agree with what he was saying, but there was no way to include any elaboration in the brief time allotted for the video.
  6. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Marcus Miller doesn’t do covers where he totally above the twelfth fret and he doesn’t use a piccolo bass. I would say he is consistent. He also can play bass clarinet when he wants to feature that texture too.
  7. Exactly, it is a 'dumbing down' of content. Comments clipped and presented without context. I'm not a fan of this format in general.
  8. I agree with him. Marcus is such an accomplished composer too. He’s got the wisdom. :thumbsup:
  9. Is the type of playing he seems to be referencing even that pervasive? I can't remember the last time I heard a song with a noodly bass melody sitting on top. I'd argue that type of playing is fine in the context of soloing on jazz tunes a la Pattitucci though.
    soulstew and LiptonJigglers like this.
  10. Stop chewing the sound byte and look at the entire portrait of the artist.
    Why must it be a contradiction? As bass players it behooves us to master as much about music as possible. Period. Playing an effective melody and a stylistically appropriate melodically supportive bass line and appreciating the very unique and special powers of our chosen instrument do not preclude the other but make us more complete as bass players or musicians who play bass. MM can play killer melodies, bass lines and create spontaneous music because he understands that, more bass players need to embrace those ideals rather than placing artificial limitations.
  11. sawzalot

    sawzalot Supporting Member

    Oct 18, 2007
    I would recommend you watch the full video (1 hour, 13+ minutes) instead of an out-of-context 30 second Youtube short.
    wintremute, ThePez, REV and 8 others like this.
  12. bass12

    bass12 Have You Met Grace Jones?

    Jun 8, 2008
    Montreal, Canada
    I watched the whole video when it was first posted.
  13. Sean150


    Jul 18, 2018
    I’d say that he is right but his wording was sloppy. Every instrument has a unique voice and that should be taken advantage of in the writing.

    The problem with his comment is that it can be taken out of context by the “bass should stick to its job” as him stating that you should not play melody on the bass or above the 5th fret, or not play a line originally written for another instrument which is clearly not what he is saying.
    oomo, Drzejzi, Dominic D and 2 others like this.
  14. Phaidrus


    Oct 25, 2009
    I'm not really into fusion, although I occasionally enjoy a Weather Report or Billy Cobham album, but Marcus Miller is a master musician with an extraordinary depth of knowledge of music in general, not just of the bass guitar. Sometimes he may be expressing his personal views but they are never unfounded.
  15. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Lead bass melodies are pretty common in Smooth Jazz. I am pretty sure Marcus Miller was referring go that scene.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2023
    Scot and Mastermold like this.
  16. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Even in that short excerpt I don’t see how you could get that. He was giving example from Stanley Clarke that demonstrate pretty clearly what he is talking about. In the full interview, he demonstrated some Jaco lines that made his point too.
  17. Sean150


    Jul 18, 2018
    I’m not sure which part of my response you are referring to.

    If it’s the part about instruments having their own voice; that’s what he is demonstrating with the Stanley Clark reference put into my own words.

    For the second part of my response; it was just my reaction to the comments and watching the video again (watched the full interview when it came out). Probably the one talk bass hill I will die on is about the opinion that there is a proper way to use a bass guitar.
    WestyBassBob, Nomad5 and Dr. Cheese like this.
  18. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Ah-yup, that's one wise dude there.
    Artman and RattleSnack like this.
  19. RattleSnack


    Sep 22, 2011
    Marcus is great musician and very experienced in the industry. It would do good for everyone on this forum to listen to whole interview.
    As for writing songs that are not for bass guitar, he also goes into that and explains process.
    RyanSaranich and Artman like this.
  20. sean_on_bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    I take what he is saying is that things should be ARRANGED for the instrument. Not necessarily to say that a melody has to be written for a single instrument only. For instance if i am going to play a Stevie Wonder melody on bass, i am going to re-interpret that melody to be played on the bass and it is not going to be an exact replica of how Stevie sang it. That's my takeaway.
    P. Aaron, Polfuste, MDBass and 5 others like this.