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Writing Basslines...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Bassline1414, Nov 26, 2000.

  1. Hey guys,
    I play guitar as well as bass and I write some things on guitar, as well as bass, but I can't put my guitar writing with my bass playing really well, they don't really connect. I might write a progression like E,Dm,G,C7 and it'll sound cool, but then I can't write anything cool with it on the bass. How do you guys write basslines to existing songs, or, how do you construct other instrumentation to an already existing bassline?
  2. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    It all depends on the style you are writing in, and the role of the bassline within that style. Is the song you are dealing with in a style where the function of the bass is primarily rhythmic, or more melodic? In either case, a good place to start is by assigning the bass the root of each chord and trying to connect smoothly from there.
  3. Yertle The Turtle

    Yertle The Turtle

    Nov 15, 2000
    This may be totally unrelated, but whenever I play guitar (especially acoustic) I ALWAYS use my fingers and not go past the 2 low strings :D It's just something I'm completely stuck to I CAN'T PLAY GUITAR RIGHT!! But I can come up with cool stuff that way....

    And I know someone who can't play bass properly and play really high chords on the neck.......

    Sorry to waste space
  4. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    It's simple, really. You take the melody and you take the harmony (chords) and you write parts that complement it.

    This is where some knowledge of music theory helps a lot but a good ear will also do the job: try SINGING parts against the guitar, then when you've sung one you like, go figure it out on your bass.

    Don't overlook stealing licks and ideas for your lines from other songs with similar feels.
  5. Thanks for the comments/suggestions.

    On this song I've been writing lately, the chord progression is:

    E, Dm, G, C7
    E, Am, G, C7, B7

    It doesn't follow any theory or anything, but thats what I came up with. I play it as kind of a mellow pop rock thing, and I think a melodic bassline would sound really cool. I've been tinkering with a walking bassline variation....
  6. Stangg

    Stangg Guest

    Ususally when i write, i just play the note the guitar is playing, do a funky little thing, and do it again. I'm completely improv in my writing. like for the E, Dm, G, C7
    i'd play e-improv-e-d-improv-d-g-improv-g-c-improv-c and do it all over again. it might not work for everyone, but it's fine for me.

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