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Paul Chambers Transcription- Straight No Chaser

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by pettinellibass, Dec 8, 2013.

  1. Hey so this is one of the pieces I'm playing for my upcoming jury in a week and a half. To get some performance experience, I decided to play it for the other students in my jazz history class. The beginning of the video (although part of the explanation is cut off) is simply me telling the class a bit about Paul Chambers and what I am going to do (melody- walk- transcription- improv- melody). I had to do this because the jazz history class is a general education class, and thus doesn't contain all musicians. I'd really like some feedback on my playing from all of your fine ladies and gentleman. I am a freshman studying music education and jazz performance at George Mason University. Thank you! Link is below.

  2. jake3

    jake3 Guest

    Aug 23, 2013
    Nice! Your bass playing is well along the road to my ears and eyes. I like how you use your third finger as well as your index on your right hand, that's something I have to work on. Your note choices in walking are very tasty. If I had a suggestion, it's that your soloing is a little busier than it needs to be for the listener's pleasure.

    Now, as to the quality of the video - are you sure you're at George Mason and not trying to play your way out of an Iranian prison or something? ;):bassist:
  3. Tom Lane

    Tom Lane Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2011
    Torrance, CA
    Nice job, man! I like your lines and good job on a fairly difficult transcription, too. I agree with the previous poster that you could leave more space in your solos. Your left hand looks very good to me, but I think you can probably get more intensity and presence our of your right hand if you employ a more traditional right-hand pizz technique. Google Lynn Seaton for an example of what I mean. Hope that helps.
  4. Hey thanks guys for the feedback!! Lol as to the quality of the video, it was shot on my cheap college-student affordable camera haha.
  5. tappingtrance

    tappingtrance Cooke Harvey Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2005
    Well done, you are on your way. One piece of advice, memorize this stuff and internalize. I would rather here one passionate solo than many that are not. So work on getting Paul Chamber's inflections, timing and don't read it, one chorus and nail it. You have a nice sounding instrument and clearly you have facility, now put your heart into it.
  6. tappingtrance

    tappingtrance Cooke Harvey Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2005
    Also don't short change the lower notes, make them sound out as opposed to a ghost note.
  7. bskts247

    bskts247 Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    New Orleans
    I'd just like to say try playing it like an upright bass (thats not ment to sound harsh). With your right hand try pointing the fingers down. You can check out some technique videos on youtube and even watch paul chambers videos.
  8. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    Your playing is generally pretty good, aside from the comments you've already gotten.

    My contributions:
    * About the right hand - needs more finger meat. Watch Chris Fitzgeralds video for some tips on tone production and the right hand. You could also add a little "chicken winging" to your playing and get the rest of your body into the action.

    * Watch the spacing and how far you lift your fingers on the left hand. At least from the angle of the camera it looks like it tends to collapse. Your pinky gets up pretty far away from the fingerboard. Don't let it collapse so much and your pinky closer to the fingerboard and you won't exert any uneccessary energy trying to cover that distance repeatedly. You're also losing out any speed advantages by keeping it close and spaced out.

    * You tend to rush and from the video it seems like you might be getting nervous and tensing up. I could be wrong, but you look a little tight around the shoulders at times. See if you can stay relaxed throughout. esp while walking your lines. Any amount of tension anywhere will slow you down.

    * About your rush/time feel. It's very hard to judge what you're doing right/wrong in the moment. Take a moment and watch the video of yourself playing and analyze what's going on - especially when you're just walking. While watching it, snap your fingers on 2 & 4 like a drummer would do on the high hat and pay attention to where your pulse falls. Where are you on the beat? I can hear the solo transcription outline the changes, but I should also be able to hear you outline the rhythm. I should be able to feel your pulse when your'e walking or soloing.

    Aside from that, good job.

    EDIT: On second listen, I may be pretty nit-picky about the time feel. It's hard to tell from a recording sometimes. It's generally good from what I can tell.
  9. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member


    You may want to recheck the "Milestones" version of the melody - you're playing something different starting in bar 4, ( in both statements of the melody), compared to the recorded version.
    (I apologize if I sound all "Jazz Police").
    Also, too - Good for you for doing the "work"...
    Thanks for your time and interest.

    Here's what I got for the melody on "Milestones":