1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Prog-ressively Getting Better-A Blog/Guide Thing

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by mcblahflooper94, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    NOTE: This is for advanced players who seek to take their bass playing skills further, and feel that they already have their basics complete (can maintain a groove, can improvise, can keep time, can play with a pick, fingerstyle, and slap proficently, understands modes, and has a good left hand technique). Do NOT follow this guide until so, because trying to play songs above your level without learning about hand positions/etc. may cause bad habits, thus stifling your prog-ression. (there's that lame pun again)

    Okay, so, for about a year now I've been stuck in a rut. My technique is good, but I feel I am not as sharp as a player as I used to be, and I think it's because I've gotten lazy and haven't been putting enough time in working to get myself better.

    I realize that there's probably a lot of people on TalkBass in the same boat, so I decided that I'm going to make a list of difficult songs on bass that I will slowly, but surely, take out from a list. You can (and are encouraged to) join me! Each time I master a song enough to move on, I'll [DEL]cross it out[/DEL]. The point of this thread is that we can help each other get better, maybe find some good videos for each song, or find some good tab resources on the internet, etc.

    It'll be a little slow, and some songs are going to take longer than others, but here's the list:

    1. Dream Theater-Never Enough
    2. Rush-La Villa Strangiato (I can already play 3. YYZ, but if you can't, work on that!!!)
    4. Primus- Jerry Was A Race Car Driver
    5. Megadeth- Polaris
    6. Jaco Pastorius- Kuru/Speak Like A Child (Jaco's hardest, IMO)
    7. Rancid- Rejected
    8 .Yes- Roundabout
    9. RHCP- Blackeyed Blond
    10. Stanley Clarke- Hot Fun
    11. Muse- Hysteria
    12. The Who - My Generation
    13. The Who - The Real Me (this song doesn't sound that difficult, but it's one of those songs)
    14. Possibly a Victor Wooten cover (??)

    I'm starting off with probably one of the harder songs on this list, Never Enough by DT, and then the list will be done downwards. Feel free to comment with some more song suggestions. I'm trying to avoid songs that require a 5/6 string (that's why I don't have Tommy the Cat :) ) and only really feature songs that can be done on a four string, so anyone can play along. If you choose to follow along, I wish you good luck!
  2. This is a great idea! I wish I was good enough to cover some of these. I don't have nearly enough theory/technique/shear experience to cover some of these songs.
    I see you've listed Dream Theater and Megadeth! If you're into the more hardcore brutal stuff you might enjoy the challenge of playing some Beyond Creation or some Obscura (may I suggest Omnipresent Perception and Anticosmic Overload, respectively). These songs are great technical challenges, especially because they are originally played on fretless 6ers. I guess they kind of kick themselves out of the party just for that, but you know, could be songs on the side ;)

    I'm looking forward to seeing the results of your journey, good luck!
  3. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    Thanks! I might consider doing some heavier stuff like Opeth or something later on. I'm not much into dem "br00tal deth metalz screemz", but I love Opeth for some reason, so I might do some of those, but I'm trying to avoid extended range/fretless stuff, just so others can play it. If you have any good metal songs for bass without screaming, I'd love to give some of it a shot.
  4. Yeah, I missed the no fretless/erb part. Went back and edited my comment but, whoops! Too late!
    I do have another song in mind, Decadence by Disturbed. It uses a fiver, but the very few notes played on that low A# string can be played as an octave without disturbing (haha, so punny!) the musical integrity of the song as that's how the guitarists do it. If I think of any other ones, I'll be sure to throw them your way! :)
  5. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    I have an official sheet music for primus and he uses a 6 strings fretless to play Jerry was a race car driver and I'm pretty sure a 6 strings or some low B is used on Never Enough by Dream.

    I would put Panick Attack or Dance Of Eternity as difficult, way more difficult than Never Enough.

    You could try some Spastic Ink ... there is a lot of weird stuff
  6. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    Yeah, but you can play Jerry Was a Racecar Driver With a 4 stringer. Thanks for the suggestion, will look into it :)
  7. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
  8. I strongly suggest you go visit Songsterr if you like guitar pro style tabs. They're the most likely to have accurate tabs.
  9. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    With songsterr, I find it harder to find accurate tabs. Surfing the web for good tabs from multiple websites proves much more successful for me. I usually then return to a website like Songsterr just to play along, even if it isn't right. It gives me a good overview.
  10. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    sure but you'll miss the higher note in the tritone that he taps around fret 20 ...
  11. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    Meh :D
  12. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    Okay: so a quick update. I got the main riff down for the most part: it just needs a little polishing which I think will come as I learn the rest of the song, which seems relatively easy. The only things I'm a little worried about is the 16th notes during the verse, that might be a little hard on endurance, but I should be good. I have a great sense of achievement for getting that riff down; I can't wait to get the rest of the song down too! :D
  13. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    Aug 11, 2012
    Upstate NY, USA
    First of all, very cool list. Anyone who has Rancid and Rush on the same list is all right by me. And that's my all-time favorite Rush tune :bassist:

    Secondly, I thought you'd like to know that you can get a tab for "Jerry Was A Race Car Driver" in the "Bass Tab White Pages", which is available from various bookstores and online retailers, and offers an incredible amount of transcriptions for a relatively low price. Unfortunately, none of your other tunes are in it, but it's still a fun book to have. Just thought I'd throw that out there.
  14. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    I just listened to Panic Attack, not that hard. The intro is pretty easy/main riff whatever you want to call it (I learned it in about two minutes) You can't really do the bass intro part though with a four string because he's droning the G string and the only string that can play those notes high notes on a four string is the G. You could maybe use a capo, I guess :\ The only thing that may be difficult is the solo part. It'd be really tricky to learn, but once you'd have it down you'd be pretty set.

    The Dance of Eternity that distortion bass solo part kinda sounds tough, but I can strum pretty quick (I do two finger flamenco, something I made up where you do basically what Geddy Lee does with his one finger, and you do it with both your index and your middle finger if that makes sense. You can bust out 32nd very nicely once you get it down)
  15. Two finger flamenco? 32nds?!
    I'm intrigued and want to know more now.
  16. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011

    I made a quick video for ya.
  17. Thanks for the video!
    But... like you said, probably not actual 32nds. Although with enough practice that technique might get you there... just not at the BPMs of a song that's faster than average.
    Think about it for a moment: 32nds in 4/4 at 120 bpm is 16 notes per second (correct me if im wrong). You'd be up there with some of the world's faster guitarists, I bet.
  18. mcblahflooper94


    Aug 31, 2011
    Sorry, haven't said anything in this thread in awhile. I'm a junior in High School, and ACTs are coming up so I'm going to have to divert most of my focus over there, but I will put time into this list when I can.

    I think I might jump around songs. In stead of learning the rest of Never Enough, I might try to work on some of La Villa.