but by sliding to the first note of
the second chord the tapped note
becomes the first of each triplet
group. This then changes back
again at the start of the second
bar on the third chord, then
employing a sliding tap again
when moving to the fourth chord
of the sequence, thus changing
the emphasis every chord change
rather than repeating the same
pattern for each chord.
Incidentally, notice in this
example how we are using
inversions and compound
intervals in our chord voicings,
as we discussed in a previous
column, allowing for wide
intervals in our arpeggios, and
also using the third of the chord
as the lowest note as an option,
in this case on both the D7 and
C7 chords. This allows for a
smooth connection between
the chord changes without the
need to always jump to the
root note, much as a pianist
or guitarist might do when
considering chord voicings for
any particular sequence.
Example 2
is a I-V cadence
in a minor key played as 8th
notes, and in this example we
are fretting two notes for each
group of four, and tapping two
notes using our first and second
finger of our plucking hand.
Notice how the fretting hand
pattern is essentially a minor 3rd
interval for each chord, the root
and minor 3rd on the F minor
chord, then, by moving the shape
down a semitone, becoming
the major 3rd and 5th of the
dominant chord. Again, you can
see that the C7 chord is voiced
as an inversion with the 3rd in
the bass, the economical fretting
hand movement being especially
useful here. The plucking/tapping
hand is, on the F minor chord,
playing the octave and the 5th - a
perfect 5th shape. On the C7,
we're playing the major 3rd and
minor 7th of the dominant chord,
a tritone shape, so we will need to
C lic k to v ie w extra
v id e o co n te n t here
make that adjustment as we move between the two chords. Although
we are not actually playing the note C on the C7 chord, nonetheless the
harmony is sufficiently implied, even without the root of the chord.
As you can see, this is again an economical way of moving between
the two chords, more akin to how a pianist or guitarist might think about
chord voicings, moving to the nearest note in the next chord rather than
immediately jumping to the root note every time. Of course, as bass
players we are used to thinking primarily of root note movement, so
these tapped arpeggios are a useful exercise to think outside of the box
from a bass player's perspective, and help to enhance our understanding
of how chord changes might be connected to each other.
Example 3
serves as a combination of these two approaches, starting
off with root note movement as we might typically conceive of it, but
finishing with an inversion, the 3rd in the bass once more. It is based
on a II-V-I-VI idea, again a turnaround pattern, but this time with the
fretting hand playing the bass-line as it might normally be played, using
root and 5th except for the last chord change. Our plucking/tapping
hand makes double-stops - that is, two-note chords - to suggest the
harmony. Although the first three bars represent a root and 5th bass-
line, note that we alternate moving up a perfect 5th and down a perfect
4th to play the 5th of the given chord.
Notice also that we need to make three distinct tapping shapes
for these chords - a perfect 5th for the minor 7 and major 7 chords,
representing the 3rd as the lowest note and the 7th as the upper note;
a tritone for the G7 chord, again representing the 3rd and 7th; and a
perfect 4th for the VI chord, an A7, this time representing the 5th and
octave, the 3rd and the 7th being played with our fretting hand. Thus
we are combining conventional root movement as we would normally
think of it - the first three bars - with inversions and chord voicings
more akin to the previous examples in the final bar.
Example 4
introduces another useful tapping technique, chordal
pull-offs. Although it looks quite complex on the page, in fact this
is not a particularly difficult technique to perform as long as we
understand how best to realise it. In the first two bars, which is one bar
repeated, we are playing an E6 chord, but notice that our fretting hand,
represented by the second note of each pair of notes, is making a simple
E major shape - fretting the 12th
fret on the E string, the 14th fret
on the A and D string, and the
13th fret on the G string, a shape
our fretting hand can maintain
throughout these two bars.
It is then a simple matter of
hammering on and then pulling
off with our plucking/tapping
hand at the 18th fret on the top
two strings, and the 19th fret
on the lower two. The pull-off
sounds the notes of the E major
shape, and the tapped tones give
us the 6th, major 3rd, root, and
5th respectively as we move
down across the strings. For the
second two bars - again, one
bar repeated - we simply move
the major chord shape in our
fretting hand down a tone, while
our plucking/tapping hand plays
exactly as in the first two bars.
This creates a D major#11 chord,
including the 9th and 13th of the
chord, with our plucking/tapping
hand giving us all the upper
extensions in addition to the D
major shape in the fretting hand.
These various techniques can
provide a great deal of colour and
offer many possibilities for solo
ideas and accompaniment to add
to our range of tapping ideas, so
I hope you'll have fun exploring
some of these ideas.
E l i x i r
5 t r i n g s
f o r
B a s s
D r i v e n
b y
P e r f e c t i o n .
D e v e l o p e d
b y
B a s s i s t s .
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