D ow n lo ad the B a s s
app for extra co n te n t
APP EXTRA
PHIL MANN
GHOST NOTES? WHO
TOO GONNA CALL?
I
can remember back to the first
time I heard Jaco Pastorius:
sitting with my former teacher
Andy Higgins, listening to this
guy's incredible vocabulary.
His melodic approach to
the instrument was simply
untouchable, consistently executed
with near perfect fluidity and
military-type precision. Personally,
it wasn't these almost predictable
elements that you hear quoted
time after time in reference to
Jaco that had the most profound
effect on me; what really blew me
over was his ability to surround
melodic phrases with an almighty
magnitude of varying types of
ghost notes, all coming together to
create this wonderful percussive
wall of sound.
One of the more operative
characteristics of three-fingered
technique is the ability to
use numerous digits on your
plucking hand to enable you
to generate a multitude of
varied percussive sounds when
compared to that of traditional
two-fingered technique. A lovely
example of this is can be found
in Gary Willis' approach: check
out some of his playing on early
recordings of Tribal Tech with
Scott Henderson.
Back in
BGM
116, I introduced
a way of performing sixteenth-
note subdivisions with your thumb, index and middle fingers; let's take a moment to revisit that
information now, ensuring that you are able to consistently execute the patterns with competence. Use
your thumb to come down upon the string to create a percussive 'thump'. Then, while still resting on the
fundamental, use the thumb again to pluck the string, before subsequent plucks from both your index and
middle fingers complete the 16th note subdivision.
EXAMPLE 1
P T p ImPTp imPTp imPTp Im
PTp
ImPTp ImPTp ImPTp im
I
---XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX-
IL-B-------
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX |
Y
P P ^ r r r r r r r r r r r r r l
PTp
ImPTp ImPTp ImPTp Im
PTp
ImPTp ImPTp ImPTp Im
X X X X XX X XXX X X X X X X—-та
-fc
----X—X—X—X—X—X—
X x -x - x -x —X-X—X-X—X—
-
.
4
EXAMPLE 2
Example 2
uses the rhythmical constituents developed in our first example to create an ostinato groove. You'll
notice that the first two beats of the initial bar use exactly the same rudiment found in the first exercise, and that
beats three and four utilise a semiquaver triplet rhythm. A sixteenth-note triplet represents the same duration of
time as a conventional eighth note: they can be tricky to perform at first, but sound fantastic once mastered. In bar
three you'll notice that the eighth note that succeeds these initial sixteenth-note triplets has now been replaced
with two sixteenth notes.
“ A LO V EL Y E X A M P L E O F T H iS IS C A N B E F O U N D iN G A R Y W i L L i S '
A P P R O A C H :
c h e c k
O
u t
S O M E O F h i S P L A Y iN G O N E
a r l y
r e c o r d i n g s
o f
t r i b a l
t e c h
w i t h
s c o t t
h e n d e r s o n
"
r
r
Music To Your Ears
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