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Raking is it the best way to groove?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by ahhelpme, Sep 6, 2005.


  1. ahhelpme

    ahhelpme

    Aug 26, 2004
    Im currently learning the groove line for the chorus of 'Come On Come Over' by jaco p, and I was just wondering, its quite hard to groove whilst alternating, so is it better to rake to get that groove?
     
  2. WillBuckingham

    WillBuckingham

    Mar 30, 2005
    That is a tough groove . . . I don't have any advice on the raking thing 'cept to say that i've been told that Jaco raked. Start with a good trasncription.
     
  3. I rake I just did what came naturally.... I'm no jaco... I can be barly called a bass played :).

    However, I've been told economy is a good thing. Anything to preserve a little energy cant be bad right? :)
     
  4. do anything feels natural with your hand, i am used to rake when playing faster groove, and i can control it pretty well, so the notes are clear, but i do it because it feels natural to me, just do something that feels natural to you! :D
     
  5. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I have to ask you guys who replied if you actually listened to it. Because if that song isn't strict alternation at its finest, I will send you one of my basses.

    Mind you, I have never seen Jaco play that song, so I can't say with 100% certainty that he didn't rake, but the bridge on that song is almost all rapid fire 16th note patterns, and I have seen him play rapid fire 16th note patterns before and I've never seen him rake while doing them. Plus I used to take lessons off Dave LaRue, who is one of the biggest Jaco fans and students of his style out there, and he would never rake something like that. If you rake patterns like that, it will do two things:

    1. It will take your lead finger out of position and turn it into the trailing finger, thus forcing you to lead with your trailing finger.

    2. It will break the flow of the steady 16th notes. Once you get your fingers going in that pattern at that speed, it is much easier and more economical to keep them going in that pattern than it is to break the flow by raking. People have this misconception about raking that it is more economical of motion to rake. Nothing is less economical of motion than to have your fingers going in a rapid fire 16th note pattern and break the pattern with a rake.

    If you're having trouble playing this song with strict alternation, then I would suggest you need to drill yourself a little harder on SA before attempting it. Raking may seem easier if you haven't got SA down, but as precise as Jaco's rhythm is on the bridges, I don't think there's any possible way he could have raked and played it as accurate as he did.

    I am not totally dead set against raking, but a lot of you folks have misconceptions about raking. It's not always economical. It's not always easier. And it darn sure isn't very accurate for playing quick 16th note patterns. But then again, if you want to rake it, who am I to argue? It just makes more work available for guys like me who would never rake something like that ;)
     
  6. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    Okay, I struggle with that tune, finding it difficult to play smoothly. I tend to rake it...

    Code:
     i   m     i   m i m m i m m i i i   m i m     i m m i m m m i   
    ---------|---------5---4-4-----------------|-----7-----4---------------------|
    ---------|-----7-7---7-----7-X-------------|------[4]4---X---7---------------|
    -3---4---|-5-------------------X-------4-4H|-5-5-----------5-------------4-4s|
    ---------|-----------------------5H7-X-----|---------------------5-5H7-7-----|
    
    By "strict alternation" do you mean something like this...

    Code:
     i   m     i   i m i m i m i m i m   m i m     m i m i m i m i   i m   m i m
    ---------|---------5---4-4-----------------|-----7-----4---------------------|
    ---------|-----7-7---7-----7-X-------------|------[4]4---X---7---------------|
    -3---4---|-5-------------------X-------4-4H|-5-5-----------5-------------4-4s|
    ---------|-----------------------5H7-X-----|---------------------5-5H7-7-----|
    
    It doesn't feel that natural... have I got it right?
     
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Yeah, I think you pretty much do. I'm not a great tab reader, but it looks like you've got your lead finger hitting the beat each time in the second example, and I didn't see any obvious rakes, so yeah, I'd say you're pretty close.

    As for it not feeling natural, it's not something you're born with the ability to do, whereas pretty much anyone who can play a few notes on bass can rake. Start on easier stuff, like scales and easier basslines. This is a very advanced song for making it your first attempt at SA. But just force yourself for a month to do nothing but SA on simpler things, then come back and try "Come On Come Over" the way you have it tabbed out, and I'll guarantee you that if you don't have it note for note, you will at the very least be playing it better than you were when you raked.

    You will go from this:
    :crying:
    To this:
    :bassist:
    To this:
    :hyper:
     
  8. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Sweden
    Desn't matter how you play it as long as it sounds good and on time i guess...
    i used to rake but after the "rake vs strict alternation" thread i started using SA which felt uncomfortable in the beginning but after a couple of weeks it became muscle memory and i think it made me a better player...

    also, rakers, how would you play this:

    G||--------------5-----------|
    D||-----------7-----7--------|
    A||--------7-----------7-----|
    E||--5--8-----------------8--|

    It wont sound right if you rake the last 4notes and it's going to be very very hard to play it on time...
     
  9. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Jaco used raking AFAIK.
     
  10. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    The only thing I've found about his right hand technique is from an interview with Steve Rosen in 1978...

    ...and in a reply to a letter from Cork Green in 1980...

    Which doesn't really tell us anything about whether he alternates or rakes when descending strings

    Does he go into it in any detail in the Modern Electric Bass video?
     
  11. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    IIRC you can see him use raking throughout that video.
     
  12. slybass3000

    slybass3000 Banned

    Nov 5, 2004
    Montréal,Qc,Canada
    I would like to add regarding the example above that SA is good when the rhythms are even. When there is syncopations involved then we will rake or skip a finger here and there to make it smooth and natural.
    I'm a SA user and I apply it in every technical aspect that I can but I don't apply it in:
    1)Walking
    2)Rock tunes that involve 8ths notes(1 finger is best)
    3)syncopated rhythms "à la Jaco".

    SB
     
  13. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    You remember correctly- Jaco rakes on pretty much everything he plays in the video, including 16th note runs. He even gives instruction on how to mute with your left hand while raking so the notes don't ring.


    Watch the above-mentioned video where Jaco rakes down all four strings in the section where he talks about picking. Sounds fine, played quickly and on time. Keep a close eye on his picking hand during the video and you can see how quick and accurate he is with raking as he descends strings.
     
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Suit yourselves.

    Thunk.
     
  15. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    I mean really- when will people finally learn that your way is the right way and there's no two ways about it? :rolleyes:
     
  16. dlloyd

    dlloyd zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Apr 21, 2004
    Scotland
    I just got a copy of "Modern Electric Bass" this morning. I only got to watch about ten minutes of it until I gave in and put Bear in the Big Blue House on for my son who didn't Jaco made good Saturday morning TV.

    However, I did get to see Jaco demonstrating how he plays 16th note grooves similar to Come on Come Over. It's blatantly clear that he's raking.

    I'll pm you an address to send the bass :D
     
  17. FunkSlap89

    FunkSlap89

    Apr 26, 2005
    Albany, NY
    I just looked up the tab and played through (not very well, but i got the general idea). and I didn't find any place in the chorus where i needed to rake. If it feels comfortable to you though, go for it...
     
  18. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    OK, I will send you the broomstick bass I have ;)

    That blows my mind that Jaco would rake during quick 16th note passages. Raking made me play so sloppy on those types of passages. But that's why I always say "Jaco was Jaco and you're not."
     
  19. Jaco may have raked...but he was sorta that rule-breaker, anyway...

    Rocco Prestia, however, does NOT rake.
     
  20. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Yeah I think Jaco was an intuitive player as regards technique - from playing a huge amount and having huge hands with double jointed thumbs !!

    There are loads od things Jaco did that I've seen on videos and know I wouldn't be able to do the same way, as he just had such a phenomenal reach ...:meh:

    The other thing people haven't mentioned about things like 'Come on ... ' is his use of open strings and ghost notes - this made a huge difference to me, in understanding how to play these things. :)