Here it is ! The Bass blues scale !
The blues scale, perhaps the most used in modern music to play lines, whether melodies or riffs, allows us to approach the blues sound without having to play within a blues structure.
It is the most extended scale in pop-rock-jazz because of its versatility, because it always sounds good, always sounds like blues.
To use it we must start it from grade VI of the tonality.
Example in C Major (grade I):
We will use it on the note A (grade VI)
In a blues works differently, we will use it on the tonic note of the Blues.
Example blues in A: We will use it on the note A
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How to play the Blues Scale on 4 string bass
In these bass pdf we present you different fingerings to play this scale well, we will place ourselves in the note A central of the freetboard as always to practice the blues scale, we always remember the fingers to use:
Blues Scale fingering for Electric Bass
Remember to study this bass blues scale tab fingering with a metronome at 60-70-80 and then increase the speed. we will start with the fingering with finger 1, the “blue note” will be played with finger 2 because it is the one that falls into its vertical.
The next fingering to play the blues scale on bass is with finger 3, this way of executing this scale is very comfortable, the moment you master it you will not stop using it.
The “blue note” now will be played with finger 2.
Finally, we propose a fingering with finger 3 also but we will focus the notes below the tonic, that is to say, physically backwards.
The “blue note” now is played with the little finger (4)
How is the Blues Bass Scale Formed?
The blues scale in the bass is formed by introducing a note to the minor pentatonic scale we have recently studied.
We call this note “blue note” and in the diagrams for bass that we enclose we are going to mark it with a “b”.
It should be noted that there is also the major blues scale but we will study this in another section.
The “blue note” is a step note that we introduce between the 3rd note of the minor pentatonic and the 4th.
We are left with a chromatic step that completely tastes like blues, and this blue note will also serve as a resting note.
This scale has 6 notes, with the added “blue note” it no longer has 5 notes.
Blues Scale Intervals
Here it is the intervalic
- minor third
- perfect fourth
- #4 o b5 it is the “blue note”
- perfect fifth
- minor seventh
The moment we play this scale we realize that we enter completely into the sonority of the blues.
It doesn’t matter if we execute it in a descending or ascending way.
This scale always sounds like blues.
Using the Bass Blues Scale
How to use this scale is essential for the bass player.
This scale is magical because it has many options, we will be able to play it on any Blues chord.
It is a smaller scale but is valid for larger chords if we want to generate blues sound.
- Major chords – A maj ✅
- Minor chords – Am ✅
- Minor seventh chords – Am7 ✅
- Dominant seventh chords – A7 ✅
- Suspended fourth chords – Asus ✅
- Second suspended chords -Asus2 ✅
This scale is perfect to give in any song the blues sonority.