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Portrait of Tracy by Jaco Pastorious

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by ding_man, Dec 25, 2006.


  1. ding_man

    ding_man

    Dec 24, 2006
    Celina, OH
    I'm tackling this song right now.
    1) Because I really like it.
    2.) Its getting my fingers (especially the pinky) stretched out a bit

    I'm sure a lot of you can play it. Any advice or comments on it? I think once I have it perfect I'm not gonna be able to get much prouder of myself.
     
  2. I'm working in this piece at the moment too so am interested what is said. Can play it all the way through, but need to really polish it up.

    My hands are small, so that it is physically impossible for me to strech for the last artifical harmonic. :crying:
     
  3. ding_man

    ding_man

    Dec 24, 2006
    Celina, OH
    How big are you fingers? I have small fingers and after practicing bass for so long I got some stretch to them and I can play normal.. although the harp harmonic (2) 6 or D# is really pushin it for me. I can do it but I decided to just hover my right hand finger over the sixth fret for that note and then pick the E where ever my hand is. It works ok

    But my point is.. it may not be as physically impossible as you think
     
  4. Here's what I suggest: instead of working on Portrait of Tracy, work on Amazing Grace.
     
  5. ding_man

    ding_man

    Dec 24, 2006
    Celina, OH
    That's by Victor Wooten isnt it?
     
  6. BlimpPilot

    BlimpPilot

    Sep 22, 2006
    Regarding the 2&6 harmonic, I found it helps to momentarily angle your neck to make the stretch easier. I have sad, tiny little hands but if I angled it enough I was able to do it easy enough. And the last artificial harmonic is pretty hard to hit, I believe I read somewhere that the final chord was overdubbed, and I wasn't able to find a way to do that.
     
  7. I think Jaco did a version also
     
  8. you can also hit that artificially and it sounds just the same...fret the B and dink around probably near your neck pickup for the artificial harmonic, you'll find it...it sounds just the same and it's a hell of a lot easier to get to.
     
  9. BlimpPilot

    BlimpPilot

    Sep 22, 2006
    I tried that for a while, when I was first learning it, and maybe it's my bass or something but I found it didn't sound quite as good. It seemed a little bit less full to me.
     
  10. That's what Victor Wooten did in one of his video's, right?
     
  11. SLaPiNFuNK

    SLaPiNFuNK Commercial User

    Jul 28, 2006
    LA California
    The Brains: FretNation.com
    The original is by Jaco...

    Pick up his self titled album... You will not be disapointed...

    You can get it on iTunes as well...
     
  12. PsionAxis

    PsionAxis

    Dec 22, 2005
    Atlanta
    Portrait is a tough one to tackle, but once you have learned it you will never forget it. It took me about three days of intense practicing to get it. Some of the artificial harmonics are really tough to get them to sing.
     
  13. Jeralya

    Jeralya

    Sep 7, 2006
    Chicago, IL
    Learned it about a year ago, took like 3 days for me, like psion said, but its a great piece to bust out
     
  14. ding_man

    ding_man

    Dec 24, 2006
    Celina, OH
    Yeah harmonics on the third fret always wanna be difficult.
     
  15. dougjwray

    dougjwray

    Jul 20, 2005
    When you're having trouble getting the harmonics to really sound, it helps to remember that the person who composed it and originally performed it was using a Jazz Bass with brand new Rotosound Swing Bass strings (bright stainless steel), and the bridge pickup soloed. When you're using, say, a Precision with dead strings, you have to really pound on it to get the harmonics out, and a light touch helps with this piece, IMO.
     
  16. ding_man

    ding_man

    Dec 24, 2006
    Celina, OH

    Yeah I always play through just the bridge pickup when playing Jaco stuff.
     

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