What is a double stop?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by halfnote, Feb 26, 2001.

  1. halfnote


    Feb 1, 2001
    or a single stop for that matter? I hear the reference often, but I don't know what it is. I wonder if I am doing them...


  2. A double stop is a two-note chord. For instance, a major 10th double stop would be the root and its major 10th.. say, D at the 10th fret of the E string and F# at the 11th fret of the G, played simultaneously.
  3. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Chuck Rainey was the master of taste when using double-stops; tunes like "Peg" & "Josie"(from Steely Dan's Aja album) come to mind. Also, some of the tunes from his Aretha Franklin period...also, the first tune off Richard Tee's first solo disc(sorry, forgot the title). Is there anyone better than Chuck?

    Another example: Stanley Clarke's uses OPEN strings to play some of the double-stops on his "Lopsy Lu".
    1/2 Note-
    Try this simple "line"...
    Bar 1=
    Play an OPEN "E" for two beats(1/2 note)
    Play "D"(12th fret "D"-string)/"G#"(13th fret "G"-string) for two beats.
    Your fretting hand's index finger will play the "D"
    Your fretting hand's middle finger plays the "G#"
    Your plucking hand has a couple options-
    1)Index finger RAKES hi to lo
    2)Index/thumb TOGETHER
    3)Thumb strums down(lo to hi)
    4)...anything else you come up with

    Bar 2=
    Play an OPEN "E" for two beats
    Play G#(18th fret "D"-string)/"D"(19th fret "G"-string) for two beats.

    If you notice, the "D"/"G#" in the 1st bar is INVERTED in the 2nd bar..."G#"/"D".
    Regardless, the notes suggest E7(1-3-b7)
  4. halfnote


    Feb 1, 2001
    Well, I can guarantee you that I HAVE NOT been playing them, but I have just done so and will continue to do so. Thanks guys, that is way cool. I am going to have to figure some more out though..cause I don't know anything about b7's or inverted thingamabobs. (Although I would like to learn about them) This thread has also reminded me that I need to purchase Aja, it has been a glaring hole in my collection.

  5. Yea hey guys, how do you play a double stop, with your hand resting on the bridge or balanced on your middle finger above a pickup or whatever. I rest my hand on the bridge like I'm palm muting or something.
  6. DenverNewbie


    Mar 4, 2001
    No big thing half note. The E7 is an E seventh chord. The b7 mentioned is the seventh note of the E major diatonic scale FLAT (b). Everything within the parenthesis is the formula for a seventh chord. 1 (root), 3 (third note of the scale, also known as a major third), and b7 (seventh note of the scale played flat, i.e. one fret lower than normal on the E diatonic scale.
    As for inversion, that just means that the chord is played upside down, the root note not being the lowest.
  7. Man if I didnt know better, Id swear you'll are just making this up to confuse the new guys..
  8. DenverNewbie


    Mar 4, 2001
    Ain't theory fun????!!!!!!
    Seriously though, don't let the "T" word throw you. It's basically very easy to understand, the pain is that there is so much of it. Everything fits into an ordered logical plan, but the plan itself is enormous. Take a little bit at a time, learn it , and move on. Everything relates, and after a while, you'll start to see the simplistic beauty in the apparent chaos.
  9. You know how Wiley will race right off a cliff, then stop in midair, then look down, then plunge down, then stop again? Sorry, couldn't resist. A double stop is not any two-note chord, it's when you stop (hold down notes on) two strings at the same time.
  10. ..which is a two-note chord. Except, there is no such thing.. my bad on the earlier post. A chord's gotta be three notes, at least.
  11. Yeah, you're right, my bad too, although any tritone interval implies the root and fifth so strongly (probably due to our cultural exposure to it only in the setting of the dominant seventh chord) that those two notes may as well go unplayed (although most keyboardists would likely feel very much put out at having eight fingers unemployed all at the same time).
  12. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    I have just started experimenting with chords on the bass and have just discovered double stops.

    My question: If I am playing root five as a double stop and create a melody using only root five positions, what key would I be playing in?

    For instance, if I do When The Saints Go Marching In, in G, I am simultaneously playing a C note over the G note. Would the guitar start out on C chord or G chord?

    I hope I worded this in a way that can be understood. If not I'll try to rephrase.

  13. Oysterman


    Mar 30, 2000
    I'd say C, otherwise it would not be root-fifth positions, but root-fourth positions. :p
  14. Well, a C over a G is going to sound like a fourth with the C at the bottom because without a third somewhere in there to force the recognition of a particular inversion, the ear will start at the bottom and make sense of things going up. A G over a C will sound like a fifth with a G at the bottom for the same reason. This is the power of the bass. You can mutate any chord and there ain't a damned thing your git-picker can do about it. If he plays a C6 and you lay on an A, it's an A-7 and that's that.
  15. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Thanks Oysterman and K.

    Oysterman, I've got to go over what you said a few times and see if what you're saying comes to me.

    kurosawa: What you are saying about the ear recognizing chords from the lowest notes seems to make sense. I don't know how I recognize chords but I do. Maybe it will be clearer when I get further into chord theory.

    One (at least) last question: If I play a double stop on the D 5fret and the G 5fret and pedal for two bars as an intro, what chord would the guitar player play? For some wierd reason it seems that a C chord OR a G chord would harmonize but common sense tells me that it has to be one or the other.

    Darn, I wish I could play a guitar and bass at the same time. :)
  16. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Well, duh. I just reread your response, Oysterman and it came on like a light.

    Correct me if I'm wrong. G is the fifth from C but C is the fourth from G. Therefore if I'm playing root five I have to be playing in G. Therefore the guitar player would be playing a C chord.

    I purposely didn't delete my previous post because it's such a good lesson in not thinking. :)

    Ain't theory fun?

  17. slam

    slam Guest

    Mar 22, 2000
    What about minor chord double stops? Using the minor third and minor seventh would not be a tritone. Would that still sound like a double stop?
  18. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    yes, a double stop is just two notes (any two) sounding at the same time.
  19. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    ...yeah, playing the b3 & a b7(looks like a 1-5 "Power Chord")against the root is cool(example: bass plays a "F" & "C" vs. the "D" root).
    Or, play your "b3" & "b7" & hammer the "b3" UP a 1/2 step(becomes the maj 3rd again)while sustaining the "b7".