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Who's bassline gave you the most trouble learning it?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Lo end PUNCH, Sep 27, 2005.

  1. Lo end PUNCH

    Lo end PUNCH

    Jan 28, 2005
    Ive always wondered what basslines gave you players the most trouble if you were trying to learn them, for me it was "I wanna play for you" by Stanley Clarke and "YYZ" by Rush, those were tough for me. Forgive me if this thread has already been done in the past.
  2. There's some serious speed on the scalar runs that Ron Royce does on Coroner's "Masked Jackal." At every verse, there's a really fast run down an E minor scale followed by other precise, fast fingerpicking parts, then he chugs on the root for all of 4 seconds to sing, and repe. The second part of the intro has a series of arpeggios that come together quick. And as if his thrash bass parts aren't in top shape already, he does a nice bluesy to complement the song during the second guitar solo. His stuff is increidbly busy for a guy that also sang lead. :bassist:

    Also, at first, Steve Harris' stuff was REALLY hard. The scale riff at the chorus of "Aces High" still remains impossible for me to pull off. :meh:
  3. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    most stanley clarke stuff on the return to forever album, "where have i known you before", Jaco on most of his stuff (without a tab or notation, purely by ear), and of course victor wooten get pretty crazy too. I find that i can get the main grooves down, but they improvise so much off those main grooves, to nail down the song note for note is very difficult
  4. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Hmm... I understand (or I'd like to focus) the question in a different way. A bassline may be an overall easy one to learn, but maybe there are little things that "ruin" its easiness of playing and may keep you busy for a longer time than expected. A good example of this to me is Rush's "The Analog Kid". It's a really easy song to play and learn, but playing that scale run in 8th triplets featured in the intro theme cleanly isn't a piece o'cake. Going to the other extreme, I'm not thinking of nearly-impossible things either (Mr. Big's "Colorado Bulldog" comes to mind). In other words: I think that focusing on technical difficulties would end in an endless list. I Just want to mention lines that are within my abilities but because of the song's overall complexity may be hard to nail. Of course, many progressive rock tunes would fall into this category, but I just want to mention two examples that I'm thinking of right now (maybe others will show up later):

    - Extreme's "Cupid's Dead". That looong guitar-bass solo isn't technically difficult, but learning to play it by sheer memory takes some time.

    - One of Rush's best-known songs that hasn't been my favorite (as a song) but now that I'm learning to play it I'm also learning to appreciate its real value: FREEWILL. Awesome and demanding tune! :bassist:

    Again, maybe more to come later.
  5. ii-v


    Mar 27, 2005
    SLC, UT
    Most of Mingus, just tough to get right on top of. The heart of Richard Bona's lines I pick up quickly, but the subtle nuances of his playing I pick up every time I listen to him. Wish I had Bona's charts, would make things a little easier i'd guess.
  6. dalley


    Jul 6, 2005
    Great song by the way!

    My band just added "Cult of Personality" by Living Colour to our setlist. There's a couple of tricky runs in there ... not too bad though

    Another one that comes to mind (more stamina-wise) is "Date Rape" by Sublime
  7. Petary791


    Feb 20, 2005
    Michigan, USA
    "Lacquerhead" by Primus was sooooooooo hard to get down that groove.
  8. There was a time when I thought if I just could play Rush's Closer to the Heart, I would "there" as a bassist. Eventually I did. Then I was like, Stevie Wonder's Sir Duke is the song I need to master to be "it." Then I did.

    It seems there's always 1 more song to learn before you're NOT satisfied. :meh:

    Those were 2 songs that I struggled with, then overcame, then moved on.
  9. Scottie Johnson

    Scottie Johnson

    Sep 8, 2004
    When I had played for only 2 years (7 now) is tried to learn "Interstate Love Song", and it took me a month of work. I didn't have the listening skills that I like to think I have now, but I was not going to quit. I also refused to look at the tabs for it.
  10. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    I learned "Vroom" by King Crimson once. Impossible to remember.
  11. I had a REALLY hard time nailing Roger Glover's solo in 'Pictures of Home'.
    Still can't do that strange run up the neck totally right...

    Also, KC's 'Lark's Tongues in Aspic pt. II'. As mentioned above, nailed once, impossible to remember. It's probably easier than 'Vrooom' tho :rolleyes:
  12. Lo end PUNCH

    Lo end PUNCH

    Jan 28, 2005
    Yeah, most of Brand X's stuff is near impossible to duplicate correctly, Percy Jones uses sooo many techniques on those recordings. The bass solo to "STOMP" by Louis Johnson was also a nerve-racking experiance.
  13. I'm still working on the synth-bass part from Stevie Wonder's Dark 'n Lovely.

    Cheers Rody

    PS Teen Town's not going too great either ;-)
  14. So many, but of course "Jaco's Greatest Hits" (Teen Town, Donna Lee, Come on, Come Over) Bach cello suites. I learned the keyboard solos from "Peaches En Regalia." "Speak" by Tribal Tech is still kicking my ass. "I was Made to Love Her" by Stevie Wonder. "Tommy the Cat" by Primus. My band in high school did "La Villa Strangiato."
  15. Chili


    Mar 8, 2005
    yeah i no what u mean about stomp, the hardest thing for me was gettin that rythem down before adding all the variations, but thx to this bass lesson video with louis johnson i managed to get it and now i am adding the variations from the song and i almost have it the way i want it now :) after 3 straight weeks of practicing it

    if u can play stomp now u should check out dancin free by the brothers johnson, i havnt tryed to figure it out yet but it sounds hard, thats my next objective after stomp
  16. Chili


    Mar 8, 2005
  17. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    YYZ has always been a pain for me. I've been trying to get that song on and off for about 10 years and I still have trouble with it. Also the intro fills for La Villa Strangato are tough for me.
  18. Dave Siff

    Dave Siff Supporting Member

    Yep, me too. I still can't get "YYZ", and "La Villa".. forget about it! I'm not even gonna bother.
    The hardest thing I ever learned was Jaco's "Portrait Of Tracy". I was taking lessons in the early 90s, at a time when I barely even knew how to change strings, and the teacher decides to teach me this Jaco harmonics-fest. We worked on it for six weeks, and I actually got it. I played the whole thing through maybe five or six times without messing up. I still remember the intro, but that's it.
  19. lyle

    lyle Guest

    Jan 10, 2004
    Vernon, B.C. Canada
    In the means of learning a riff by ear, les claypool usually gets me wondering. I mean sitting donw and trying to figure out a riff, he uses so many mutes and it's all overdriven, this makes it very difficult to figure out a claypool riff
  20. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    You remind me of "Is It Luck?". Regardless of the level of difficulty of a riff or bassline, most of the times I can imagine how's played and the rest is about working on that. But how the hell does Claypool play that thing? I've never seen a transcription of this and no idea of how to get started playing it. Anyway, never worried about it because that song isn't one of my Primus favorites, but every time I hear it I'm always puzzled.