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What are your go to patterns/shapes

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Peace Cee, Feb 13, 2013.


  1. Peace Cee

    Peace Cee

    Feb 9, 2011
    What are some of your "go to" patterns? (eg. root/5th, 1-3-5 over major chords or any of the inversions/arpeggios, root,5,octave, etc.)
    I find that I like 1-3,4 hammer-on to-5th root, the 5-b3rd root for minor chords, to name a few.
    There are many, but I'm wondering if anyone has any cool and unique "anchor moves" that work for them.
     
  2. roden

    roden

    Aug 30, 2011
    Sweden,Uppsala
    Over major chords i like to use the root(,) 5th sliding into the major 6th Back Down to 5 or up to the octave or 10th
     
  3. Tupac

    Tupac

    May 5, 2011
    When in doubt, throw in a bent minor third. (3rd half step away)
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I don't do shapes, thank you. I do chords and chromatic scale, and I like it all ;)
     
  5. tbplayer59

    tbplayer59

    Jan 20, 2013
    With major chords, 5-6 up to the root. With minors, 5-7b up to the root.
     
  6. Duckwater

    Duckwater

    May 10, 2010
    USA, Washington
    Whatever chord tones are relevant to the notes the other people in my band are playing,
     
  7. Nashrakh

    Nashrakh

    Aug 16, 2008
    Hamburg, Germany
    I don't do patterns as such though there are underlying patterns in my playing ;)

    I work with a lot of chromaticism, like the mentioned b7 to root or major 3rd to 5th (guess that's lifted from blues turnarounds?). In some songs like Toto's Africa (during the outro where the singer gets a chance to talk to the audience since it's usually our last song) I sometimes go like 3-4-b5-5-6-b7-7-1, basically a chromatic run on the major pentatonic without the second degree.

    That aside, the root fifth octave hand shape is default, lol. I don't use combinations of minor and major third though, something I gotta work on. 5 - b7 - 8 - b3 always works too.
     
  8. Peace Cee

    Peace Cee

    Feb 9, 2011
    I know that there are no "patterns". But no matter how much theory you put on it, in the heat of the moment, thay can be considered as muscle memory and shapes. A bass master on the islands, Nathan Aweau, said at his clinic, "I don't know much theory. I see the fretboard in patterns of "L" shapes and boxes. And, he would whip most guys asses in a battle.
     
  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Unless that battle was reading charts in a studio ;)
     
  10. Peace Cee

    Peace Cee

    Feb 9, 2011
    Touche'. Reading music always helps me to break from the norm. I was looking for some immediate gratification idea sharing for the "free play" "technique" portion of woodshed time. I do the 20 min of reading time first, kinda like I eat my salad before the steak.
     
  11. kirkdickinson

    kirkdickinson Supporting Member

    I play mostly Christian music which is almost all I - vi - IV -V chords in different combinations. I have found myself lately struggling to do some interesting when changing. One thing that seems to work well on a change from the I to the vi is to walk up the Major triad, jump to the octave of I and then to to the vi. you are using all notes of the I and two of the notes from the vi in the transition. Sometimes I even throw the 4 or the 7 into it. Or go to the octave and go chromatically to the vi.

    Kirk
     
  12. Nashrakh

    Nashrakh

    Aug 16, 2008
    Hamburg, Germany
    Interesting. I would say for me that would be chord tones of seventh chords. There's only a handful of variations of them in one octave, like any combination of root, minor/major third, perfect/augmented/diminished fifth, major/minor seventh (sometimes doubleflat seventh if you're into thatkinda stuff). Sounds like there would be like over 9000 patterns if you want to cover them all but it's not that bad... Muscle memory mainly.

    Comes in handy when you're handed a chart for songs you never played - read the notated chord progression and let the chords fly...
     
  13. I'm trying to break out of patterns because I've noticed lately that my playing is starting to bore the hell out of me. I usually base everything on arpeggios, adding a fourth sometimes. I love playing with guitarists who play chords with interesting voicing though, and when they do it I find ways to accentuate the extra voicings they're doing, especially during chord changes (or right before or after them). I slide up to the ninth sometimes which seems to impress [non-musician] people, but it's really, again, kinda boring. 11th's and 13th's are interesting too. Just know what chord is playing and adjust your mode/scale based on that. Memorizing which chords are major, minor, or diminished in both minor and major progressions helps a LOT. You can kinda just force your patterns into being in key if you know this without even thinking about it.

    It's amazing the variations you can do with arpeggios though just by changing the order and the length you hold the notes. When my guitarist is tuning on stage sometimes the drummer and will improv. My go-to line when I'm feeling uncreative is usually a variation on holding the root, jumping to the octave, down to the fifth, down to the third, up to the fourth twice, hammer on to the fifth, up to the seventh, back to the fifth, then some kind of glide note leading into the octave again. Then I'll play the same riff again, but this time at the end of the bar I'll play around with the 10th and 11th or will start a walk down type thing starting at either the 13th or the ninth. Typically I start in minor and move it up with a simple progression with similar riffs in a I - IV - I - V -IV - I - III, IV, V 12-bar blues type thing. The idea is to keep it simple so that it's solid and doesn't just sound like we're doodling on our instruments. I'll nod to the drummer and find a way to resolve it. We've actually gotten people cheering afterwards thinking it was a rehearsed thing or even a song before. It's so easy to impress non-musicians sometimes :p.
     
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Hate to break it to you, Hibachi, but you're not fooling anyone...you're just getting applause for a job well-done. Had you sucked, I doubt you'd have gotten as much applause ;)
     
  15. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    +1

    I'm in the same boat. I find myself rehashing a lot of the same stuff again and again just because it's easy and because I know it'll always 'work' in any song. I really need to find something new to study because playing bass is beginning to get a hair boring.
     
  16. I was worried I was about to enter the flame zone when I read "Hate to break it to you, Hibachi" but then it ended up being someone saying something nice. :). I never said I thought it _sucked_ necessarily, but I know I could do better and I know I should do better. At the end of the day something I always have to remind my debbie downer bandmates of at the end of shows is "our job is to entertain and people were entertained, so mission accomplished :)"

    Exactly. It's the "comfort zone". It's a trap we all fall into from time to time (or for entire careers for some people). Whenever I get into one of these ruts I force myself to learn an entire album from a band that plays differently than I usually do. Last time I was stuck in a rut I forced myself to learn all of "I Am" by Earth, Wind & Fire. It was a pain to learn all of those great bass lines but afterwards for a while I noticed I broke out of some of the old walls I used to surround myself in while playing bass, especially with improv.
     
  17. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I worded it like that on purpose ;)
     
  18. kirkdickinson

    kirkdickinson Supporting Member

    Found a pattern that I use occasionally. In Praise and worship there is often a first inversion chord on the one or the five chord. In G, it might be G/B or D/F#.

    Most times I will try to play the note to the right of slash, the major 3rd of the chord. Every now and then, it sounds HORRIBLE. If the note sounds good, I will stand on it. If the note sounds bad, I will only let it ring for an 8th note, then walk up the arpeggio. So for a G/B, if I play the B and it sounds bad, I will play D, then the octave of G then often bounce off of the octave of B back to G. Time it so that I land on the G on the and of 4, then I can throw in an 8th note transition somewhere to my next chord.

    Since it seems I am usually playing that 3rd with the index finger, and most of the motion is with the pinky and ring finger, so it took a little practice for consistency.
     

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