Saturday, September 10, 2011

Slap bass intro riff for Wille Colón's "Tiempo Pa' Matar"

Hi again. Here's a new effort, which I hope you'll find useful (and cool). Here's the description as posted to YouTube:

In 1984, Salsa singer/trombonist/band leader Willie Colón released an album called "Tiempo Pa' Matar", which included the smash hit "Gitana". As far as I know, it was the only track that got extensive airplay. But it also included a little gem that was chosen to give name to the album. "Tiempo Pa' Matar" (the song) features a cool slap bass intro recorded by master Salvador "Sal" Cuevas, and I decided to capture my version of that riff. I don't know how master Cuevas played it and it was not my intention to play it exactly as he did. The original version has much less dead notes, and I thought the riff would sound even cooler by adding a steady 16th-note (8ths in cut time) percussive pattern as a background for the main melody. Not that it's "my style" since I didn't invent it and there are lots of people who like to play that way, but anyway this version is a closer representation of the way I tend to feel this kind of stuff. Hope you like it.

That's it. I want to emphasize the fact that this is DEFINITELY NOT the exact way in which master Sal Cuevas playing the riff. Here's the original (full) song for you to check out:

So this is simply my version, which I think is a valid one in spite of the fact of not being 100% identical to the original. Here's the transcription:

Tiempo Pa' Matar (Bass Intro)

And here's the demonstration video:

I think the articulations are pretty clear and/or easy to infer for an experienced player. Perhaps it is worth noticing that cross-strings slurs are performed by hitting the string with the fretting hand alone (hammer-on from nowhere). The dead-note chords you'll see in the transcription are a way to indicate that a left (fretting) hand slap should be executed there (all the fingers hit all the strings, so I thought it makes sense). Thanks for stopping by! :^)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

A short bass workout courtesy of Master Frank Zappa

Hi again.

This is a short fragment that I've always considered an excellent exercise. I've taught it to my students from long ago, but I've just recorded it on video, so here's the full transcription and the accompanying video:
Echidna's Arf (of You) Coda - Electric Bass

The original version, recorded by terrific bassist Tom Fowler, is played entirely fingerstyle. But as you can see, I decided to slap a section. Choose the approach you like the most. Have fun!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Bass solo: Randy Coven's "Funk Me Tender"

Hey! It's been a while since my last post. Here's a new transcription/video combo:

Funk Me Tender

As you can see, this transcription includes articulation marks: "T" = Thumb, "P" = Pop, "LH" = Left hand slap. On measure 10 you'll find a downward glissando that cannot be played on a 4-string bass (I don't play it in the video). That's because Randy Coven recorded this solo with a whammy bar-equipped bass. Have fun!