Episode 7: C Blues, Bassline II

Summary: Learn roots and thirds for a simple 12-Bar C Blues Progression; plus – why you should document your practice in a journal or other medium!

Transcript: Welcome back to Nanoversity of Jazz Pogcast at leahpogwizd.com! Each week, you’ll get a micro-lesson in bassline construction.

In our last episode, we learned a roots-only bassline for a simple 12-Bar C Blues Progression. This week, we’re going to add chord tones – specifically, major thirds – for Bassline II.

Last week’s key concept was that basslines (usually) use the root of a chord on beat 1 of each bar to provide rhythmic drive and harmonic definition. This episode’s main point is that basslines often use chord tones – such as thirds, fifths, and sevenths – on beats 2 and 3 of each bar. This helps further outline the chord changes.

Each of the three chords in the C Blues Progression is a dominant seventh chord – meaning it contains a major third, perfect fifth, and minor seventh. This blend of major and minor intervals is what gives the blues its unique sound.

Bassline II uses the major third of each chord. E is a major third above C, A is a major third above F, and B is a major third above G. Notice that some of the thirds are written a major third above the root, while others are written a minor sixth below it. They both have the same effect of outlining the chord.

To practice Bassline II, sing and/or play along with the MuseScore tracks – linked in the video description. As always, I’ve included tracks in bass and treble clefs.

This week’s tip is to document your practice in a journal or other medium. Write down dates, practice activities, and other information (such as tempos). Over time, you’ll organize your practice sessions and track your progress!

That’s it for this week! Be sure to check out the blog at leahpogwizd.com and subscribe to the YouTube channel. Feel free to ask any questions or offer any feedback. Thanks for watching!

Author: Leah Pogwizd

Bassist and Instructor

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