Portrait of Tracy

Discussion in 'Tablature and Notation [BG]' started by swerveo19, Sep 7, 2002.

1. swerveo19

Aug 4, 2002
Can anybody further explain how to do what a tab i picked up at the bass tab archive says to do: 2&6 means push 2nd position down to fret (index
finger) and play harmonic at 6th position (little finger).i have no idea what this is saying and really want to learn all of portrait of tracy by jaco.

Thanks

2. scottos150

postition is usually refering to the fret, maybe it means play the second fret then play a harmonic over the 6th fret, but i'm not sure. I think its worded all wierd like that because jaco played a fretless so the tabber just used the term position since there are no frets on a fretleses bass.

3. Pharmecopia

Jul 31, 2002
i learned from the tab somewhat, its pretty bad IMO. it doesnt explain the whole song, so try to play by ear. i just add in some things that sound like the song, although theyre not exact. sounds pretty cool though. good luck man.

4. wulf

Apr 11, 2002
Oxford, UK
Portrait of Tracy is a song that is very instructive to look at in tab. I still haven't got round to learning it properly but I've picked up a whole lot of ideas about using harmonics from it over the years.

The 2&6 thing is an unusual way of playing an artificial harmonic - getting a harmonic that can't be found from an open string (in this case D#). It's a third plus a couple of octaves above the root note - the same interval as playing 0&4 on any of the open strings. For example, the harmonic at the 4th fret of the G string is a B; same pattern.

It's difficult to play the 2&6 thing because it's a big stretch - huge hands or a short scale bass will help. However, you can also find an equivalent harmonic node using your right hand thumb, which makes the job somewhat easier. One of the tricks in learning harmonics is to realise the a given harmonic repeats at intervals up the string. For example, the B found above the 4th fret on the G string is also found at the 9th fret, at the equivalent frets up an octave AND at various points on the string past the end of the fretboard.

Do a bit of experimentation and you will probably find a physical marker on your bass (eg. maybe just above the front edge of the neck pickup) that will help you sound this D# fretting at the 2nd fret on the A string and using your right hand thumb... that should make things a bit easier on playing that particular passage - although I don't know how you'd notate that in the tab!

Wulf

5. Pharmecopia

Jul 31, 2002
one more thing, when learning this song, it helps to have the pickup volume level good. turn the neck pickup to 0, and turn the bridge pickup to 10, the tone know should be about 8 for the loudest harmonic.