The scrub returns.

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Ticktock, Oct 22, 2003.

  1. Ticktock


    Sep 3, 2003
    And I'm somewhat improved. I've been playing on my church's youth group's praise team for about a month and a half now (weekly). And that's been going pretty well. I actually had a solo the first week I played, which I nearly botched, but I quickly recovered. But here's the thing...
    I'm not sure how to play chords.
    Don't get me wrong; I know the structure of the major and minor scales, and how a chord is usually composed of the 1st, 3rd, and 5th notes of the scale (with a flattened 3rd for minor, correct?). But how fast (or slow) do you play those notes? Does it depend on the song? Does musical notation help define the speed?

    Much love, mah homeslices.
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    A chord is 3 or more notes played <b>simultaneously</b>

    If you play them note after note it's called an arpeggio.
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    I imagined that the original poster was being presented with a 'chord chart' - which just had chord symbols on it and he was asking what to play - not that he actually wanted to play chords on bass...but now you say it...:meh:

    More information needed!!

    {My Yes and Yes still hold though! ;) ]
  5. Ticktock


    Sep 3, 2003 what? Is it even possible to play chords on a bass? I'm getting confused now.
  6. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
  7. metron

    metron Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2003
    Yeah chords are playable on bass typically in the higher register. Something about overtones (or a lack of) makes chord playing in the lower registers sound bad.
  8. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    But, Ticktock, don't get confused, bassists usually do play chords one note at a time. What I mean is, they read the chord chart or the sheet music that indicates what chord governs that measure and that tells them which notes they can choose from to play in that measure.

    That is a SIMPLIFIED explanation. One can get really detailed about the key and the chords and avoid notes and all of that, but I know you are just beginning, so the simple answer is the most practical.

    So while it is true that chords are more than one note played at a time as on a guitar or piano, it is also true that when a bassist sees a chord indicated, he plays one note at a time in the majority of cases. I mean he chooses one or more notes from that chord, to play one at a time. He doesn't have to play every note in the chord; he can just play the root four times, for example, if he so desires.

    One thing I do seem to notice about this post and your last one a few weeks ago is that you aren't sure how to read sheet music for tempo and you don't know what the different notes and rests mean. You also don't know what time signatures mean, such as 4/4, 2/4, or 6/8,or 12/8 just as examples. You need to ask someone to help you, so that you will eventually find it easier to know how to keep time with the rest of the group.

    If it is any comfort to you, reading time signatures and understanding how to count time and figure out the time each note or rest is held in a particular song was the hardest and most time consuming for me to grasp. Learning to read the notes was the easiest part.

    All this will come to you. Just keep plugging away at it and each week will seem easier for you.
  9. Ticktock


    Sep 3, 2003
    While I can't read music (although I probably could if I applied myself), I do understand time signatures. In the examples you used, 4/4 would be 4 quarter notes, 2/4 is 2 quarter notes, 6/8 is 6 eighth notes, and 12/8 would be 12 eighth notes...right? Thing is, most of the time, that isn't on the music. Usually, I've just got the sheet with the lyrics on it with the names of the chords written over the words, indicating when I'm supposed to play said chord.

    Now, I'm going to try going out on a limb and guess at something. With the exception of musical notation, (which tells you exactly which notes to play, right?) when you see a chord (i.e., G), you get to pick which notes you want to play, so long as they are within the scale of the chord. And playing the root, 3rd, and 5th notes just happens to be the most basic way to play a chord, right?

    Or maybe I'm completely lost. Either way, I had two people tell me I'm doin' a good job on the band. Score.
  10. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Kinda. The top number in a time sig. tells you which type of note gets one beat. IE: in something with a 4 on top, a 4th, or quarter note gets 1 beat. The bottom note tells you how many beats per measure.
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