I Got A Woman, is a standard three chord blues song. As with many live songs Jerry Scheff took the bass part and elevated it. This is one of my favourites of his. There are some great bass runs using the standard blues scale in E, which made it a good track to study closely.
The bass line is from the That’s The Way It Is recordings, taken from the show August 13, 1970 Dinner Show. While the backing is based in the 12, August dinner show. The 13th, Jerry does a nice blues run as it comes out of the stops in the middle section. Generally, it’s a frantic bass line for such a simple song, it’s just so good, not to commit it to paper as well.
A subscriber on my Youtube channel suggested transcribing Elvis Presley’s ‘I’ve Lost You’. I was in the process of transcribing something else, which was causing me to pull my hair out, so decided I would do it. The version I choose was the standard That’s The Way It Is album version, which was performed at the dinner show 11 August 1970. Each show, Jerry would have played it slightly different.
What could appear to be the harder sections where the bass plays in the upper register is actually the easiest part of the song. The difficulty was the build up between the verse and chorus on the F chord. Each time is different and Jerry plays along with the drums. Although on the backing track I have, they are not quite the same. While mentioning the backing track, it doesn’t end as the record, the transcription does.
On a quick glance the music looks a little daunting due to all the sixteenth note (and 32nds). As the BPM is around 75 it’s not too bad. This makes quite good practice at reading sixteenths. Where possible I noted where it’s possible to hear Jerry change strings.
Elvis only included Patch It Up in his show for one season. Jerry Scheff often said the TCB band was like a punk lounge band. When you listen to this track you have to agree with him. The key bass figure is almost the same as the one used 10 years later by the Jam on a Town Called Malice. Perhaps the bass player was influenced by Elvis.
The original studio version was recorded by Norbert Putnam, the live version Jerry seems to take it up a gear, and the key went up as well.
There is an interested note in bar 84 which is almost certainly a mistake where Jerry slide to far and missed the note. I included this in the transcription and video. The sections on the F chord are different both time (bars 14-15 and 48-49 along with the following two bars on D. The rest of the song is close to the Putnams studio version.
In 1972 Elvis Presley recorded Burning Love in the studio. Emory Gordy was the bass player on the track, he did later replace Jerry Scheff in the TCB band for a few months when Jerry took a break shortly after the ’73 live show from Hawaii.
Jerry played the bass lines different at each show, for this track the Aloha ’73 version was used. It’s quite a repetitive line, however, Jerry still seems to make each of those repeating lines different. My transcription is below, also a YouTube clip of myself playing the line.
Motown was a huge influence on me, and probably many others due to the fantastic bass, mostly created by James Jamerson.
There is a book all about Jamerson, with many transcriptions, albeit some have errors. I purchased this book with accompanying cassette tapes. It now has CDs, or even a link to mp3s. I decided to try and transcribe a track not in the book. There are parts where its quite difficult to hear quite what note is being played. Bar 7 is the one is this track. There is a drum hit which obscures the notes. It was bars 34/5 and 54/5 that made me want to transcribe the track.
Click the title below for the transcription. If you’d like a TAB version please contact me.
When I was at Junior School, I think it’s call year 5 now, madness were in the charts. I used to jump about to their music. The bass lines are very effective and really help keep movement in the tracks.
I decided to transcribe the bass line to House Of Fun. The bass player was Mark Bedford. There are only a few patterns in this, other than the middle section. The chorus is different each time, which I would never have known if I’d not decided to listen carefully to the track. It seems to be played with a pick, which I copied in the you tube clip below. I could play it using the open strings to limit movement on the neck, I just felt it had more heft to it without the open strings.
The Wonder Of You was one of the first bass lines I learnt when starting out on bass. Which means it’s not a difficult bass line at all. I still see people get it musically wrong. Many years later, I’m now playing this song with an Elvis tribute act.
This is transcribed from the Elvis Presley single version recorded in February 1970. The main reason I decided to transcribe such an easy line, was that one day, I noticed a low E during the guitar solo. I never played a low E. I wondered how much more I’d missed. Not many players aim to play it as the recorded version and that’s fine by me, I like to get close and certainly in the style of the original recording. I think that is what helps a tribute artist stand out from the rest. It’s great getting one part correct, but if the rest is wrong, it won’t sound as close as it could do.
I’ve been told to progress in Jazz we need to listen and copy other players. Exactly as we learn to speak, we then use all this information to create our own sentences or bass lines. Ray Brown in one of the great upright Jazz bass players. I found his version of All The Things You Are, which had a few ( well a lot actually) nice lines in it, so I decided to transcribe those parts, or verses containing the lines I like the sound of.
The song is played at quite a fast tempo for this song.
In the first verse the section over the ii-v-i (bars 17-20) are particularly interesting. I also liked the sequence he used in bars (61-63). There’s a lot more to it, but I think analysing it yourself is much more useful than someone doing it for you. I certainly has given me many more ideas when playing walking bass lines. Anything part you like in this.
I’ve only written the chords over the first verse. Also note, I used iRealPro for the backing, which meant I couldn’t replicate the same turnaround in the first verse, but it’s written in the music.
My Walking bass lines particularly over the jazz blues progression all seemed the same, so I decided I needed to do something about it. I’ve studied some Charlie Parker sax lines which mostly full over jazz blues, at least the lines I’ve currently looked at have. The next thing would be to listen to the bass line on these recordings and listen to lines I could use in my own playing. I find it easier to write them out, that way I will always have a record of them to look at. Of course, these old recordings don’t have the best sound sound separation as more modern recordings. Picking out the bass was really hard in places. For this reason, I only transcribed the first 4 progressions (48 bars). Curley Russell is the bass player.
One thing to note in the transcriptions is that I have written the standard Jazz Blues chords over the top, the Charlie Parker Omnibook, doesn’t have this track as a standard jazz blues, iRealPro, which I used in the YouTube clip, uses the standard Jazz blues progression. You can hear a few clashes. Particularly bar 26, where Curley Russell plays A, the usual sequence would be Bb. Also we don’t hear the diminished chord in the sixth bar as usual.
My most recent YouTube upload and bass transcription is Bruno Mars’ ‘Locked Out Of Heaven’. This was played by Nick Movshan who isn’t the regular bass player with Mars.
Like my previous post of ‘Sign Sealed Delivered’, this is again popular for function bands. I decided it would be an interesting one to transcribe. Not too difficult. In the breakdown section towards the end, I wasn’t entirely sure what was the electric bass, and what was covered by the synths. I’m quite sure that bars 58-61 didn’t have the octave jump on the bass part as earlier in the part, instead, it sounded just like the synth bass playing the octave. Also the breakdown section I added a bass part closest to the recording, I would play if on a gig.