Bass: Expanding on a Groove

Each of these exercises starts with a very basic rhythm, which represents the rhythmical dna or backbone. Each subsequent bar expands on that rhythm, augmenting it without deviating from it.

  1. Practice these rhythms on a chord progression. Find your own notes to play to the rhythms. Play each variation until you feel comfortable or get bored, then proceed to the next.
  2. Once you feel comfortable with all the rhythms, try to find your own variations and combine them without deviating from the rhythmical dna.
  3. Listen to some recordings you like and analyse the bass lines. What is the rhythmical dna? What is the most basic version of the bass line that cannot be reduced any further? Which variations do you hear?
  4. Play along the recording, trying different variations. Do a round with a very sparse bass line, then try playing very busily. Try to align with the dynamics of the recording.
Example 1
Example 1
Example 2
Example 2
Example 3
Example 3
Example 4
Example 4
Example 5
Example 5
Example 6
Example 6