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FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / Note choice disagreement

Rick Knight
Contributing Member
**********
********

St Peters, MO USA

Standing in the back, by the drummer.
Nov 10th, 2017 02:48 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The guitar player and I are usually on the same page, but in any recent disagreement about what bass note I should play, my note choice has consistently been a third above his. One of us could simply be wrong of course but, because they are both chord tones, it seems to me that an argument could be made that I'm inverting the chord. Any thoughts on this?

Te 52

Laws of Physics

strictly enforced
Nov 10th, 2017 03:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A good bass line has to meet a lot of potentially conflicting criteria:

1. Play the root often enough to make the underlying harmony clear.
2. Try to play a counterpoint to the melody, preferably in contrary or oblique motion.
3. Don't double the melody note too often.

"...my note choice has consistently been a third above his..."

If you are in effect saying that you consistently favor the third of the prevailing chord, that's going to get you in trouble with criterion 1.

Rick Knight
Contributing Member
**********
********

St Peters, MO USA

Standing in the back, by the drummer.
Nov 10th, 2017 03:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Without actually counting, I would guess that I may play thirds as often as fifths, but not more than roots. Nor are these disagreements common. I just find it curious that the pattern is consistent when they occur. If he wants me to play a C instead of an E, I don't care.

Achase4u

U.S. - Virginia

Nov 11th, 2017 12:56 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm not sure about what you mean. Is the guitarist playing one note at a time as in lead solos that are written in stone, or a melody or what? Is this something happening on the bandstand or during writing sessions?

I am curious.

Saracen
Contributing Member
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Vancouver, Wa.

Nov 11th, 2017 12:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I recall one time telling the bass player the song does not go to the IV,
his reply, you play it your way I'll play it mine. Oh well.

Rick Knight
Contributing Member
**********
********

St Peters, MO USA

Standing in the back, by the drummer.
Nov 11th, 2017 04:31 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"I'm not sure about what you mean. Is the guitarist playing one note at a time as in lead solos that are written in stone, or a melody or what? Is this something happening on the bandstand or during writing sessions?

I am curious."

During rehearsals. I'm playing lines as I think they should go. Occasionally, he says I should play a different note. When this happens, the note I played has consistently been a third above the one he wants me to play. I find it interesting that the notes always have the same relationship.

ninworks
Contributing Member
****

Tennessee

Too Much GAS
Nov 11th, 2017 05:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

It depends upon when in the song you're playing the third. Playing a third, just for the sake of playing it, isn't a good reason. It needs to have a musical function in relationship to where the song is at any given moment. Does it help to convey the emotional intent of the music? If so, by all means use it. If not, then there's probably a better note choice to be had. That's a hard one for me to explain. Using the third as a passing tone is one thing but to land on it at a point where the chord progression is moving in a dedicated direction and the third creates unnecessary tension then I wouldn't play it.

But, hey, it's your band and I don't know the music you're playing so, I don't have a difinitive answer for you.

Achase4u

U.S. - Virginia

Nov 11th, 2017 06:59 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Ohhhh I understand now. It's a third over what he *wants* you to play, not what he himself plays on the guitar. I am with you now.

So this could mean you are playing the 3rd over the root, or the 5th over 3rd, 7th over 5th, 9th over 7th etc.

Interesting.

(This message was last edited by Achase4u at 09:12 PM, Nov 11th, 2017)

FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / Note choice disagreement




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