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Stuck in a Rut...

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by musicman5strng, Apr 18, 2005.

  1. musicman5strng


    Mar 28, 2005
    1st time poster here.

    I play in an original rock band whose sound has been said to be a blend of Zeppelin mixed with Soundgarden fronted by Alicia Keys.

    I am concerned my playing is in a bit of a rut. I seem to be resorting to the same fills using the minor/blues pentatonic, or major depending on the key. I suppose I have just become comfortable using the box patterns. My lines sound good in the song and get the job done, however I don't want to limit myself, and always like to expand as a player.

    Any suggestions on how to dig out would be appreciated. I don't want to just learn a gazillion exotic scales and hope that "inspires" me.
  2. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    Spend some time playing something completely different and more melodic - Bach's cello suites, opera arias, melodies from jazz tunes... whatever. If you can't read music, you can probably find the cello suites in bass tab form. It will get some different kinds of ideas into your ears, head and fingers.
  3. musicman5strng


    Mar 28, 2005
    Thats a good idea. Come to think of it I have heard some Bach sounds pretty wicked when played on the bass.
  4. Razman

    Razman Supporting Member

    Feb 10, 2005
    Orange Park, FL
    Practice. Even if it seems repetitive. Listing to music repeatedly gives me ideas often. Practice some more. Most often I'll think of stuff after a practice and while I'm on my way home. Hope this helps.

  5. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    I'd say pklima is on to something...listen, learn and it will become part of you. JPJ has got some classic lines and ASSuming you have learned them, I would give a listen to some "soulfull players", even it's it not your "thing" check out Jill Scott's first album, or her live DVD..If you've got Alicia fronting your band, at the very least she will appreciate it!!I have a feeling it will serve you well in the fill and and feel dept!!
  6. Try this:

    sing a line out of your head, then double it on the bass

    not easy, but this will develop both your ear AND your ideas

    Get some George Benson CD's, too
  7. bonscottvocals


    Feb 10, 2005
    Upstate NY
    Excellent advice.
  8. Perfect-Tommy


    Mar 28, 2004
    Hitting on the Bach idea, there is a Bach for Bass guitar book out there. I got it off of musiciansfriend.com It has both notation and tab. Might want to check it out.
  9. Nemesis


    Apr 24, 2005
    Start learning some theory. Not that stuff with harmonic and melodic minor, but some church modes would improve the musical quality of your lines.

    Sing your favourite melodies (that helped me) and your exercises. Sing along when you`re making scale exercises or whatever
  10. WillBuckingham


    Mar 30, 2005
    Start with the 7 modes of the major key like Nemesis suggests. If you want more material learn the 7 modes of the melodic minor. The harmonic minor is mostly useless. 2 octave pentatonic scales offer some great fills too (stanley clarke). Chuck Sher's (a bass player) book on theory explains this stuff in a real straightforward way.