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Jazz Bass Lessons: Rhythmic Drills - Triplet Feel for 8th Notes

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Okay, Now, I'd like you
to put your bass down.
We're gonna do a little basic dance,
clap, sing routine here.
[LAUGH] What I wanna deal with now is,
the effect that the triplet,
and the 6/8 feel have on swing and jazz.
Now, I'm gonna talk about it simply
because in the theory section
you learn about what 6/8 means.
I mean, right now, I can just tell you
that all it means is there are six
beats in a measure of music, and
the eighth note is what gets one pulse.
But for now, don't even think about that.
Consider yourself learning a tradition
that's an aural tradition.
You learn it by ear and by eyes,
too, and it's an African tradition
where you pass rhythms down.
I learned a lot of these things
by asking other musicians,
and learning, especially from Danilo
Perez, the great pianist from Panama.
What we're gonna be talking about is the
connection between a rhythm from Africa,
it's called, Abakua.
And it has to do with 6/8 time.
And it's a way for us to understand
the connection between that, and
the triplets that inform the feeling
that we play jazz with, and swing.
It's actually really connected.
So, we're gonna put a click on, and we're
gonna move simply to the beat at first.
And I'm gonna show you
about how this works.
[SOUND] Okay, So, now we're gonna
move our feet left and right.
[SOUND] One, two, three, four, five, six.
Like that, that's 6/8.
One, two, three, four, five, six..
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One [SOUND] You got that?
One, two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four [SOUND] notice
how the eighth notes are rolling,
just like triplets.
[SOUND] Triplet, triplet, one,
two, three, four, five, six.
It's the same feeling.
now I'm gonna introduce the Abakua rhythm.
[SOUND] So, all we're doing is one,
two, three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
But when I'm gonna clap, you're gonna
leave out some of the beats, and
I want you to learn this by ear.
We're gonna do this over,
and over a little bit.
One, two, three, four, five, six.
Don't get ahead of the beat.
Okay, Now, I wanted to
show you that because
what we need to do is get that
in our body to feel it.
It's a visceral thing,
it's a physical thing.
It's dance, it's rhythm.
We have to be able to play that triplet
feel, like rolling feeling cuz it has
a lot to do when we walk and swing,
when we play on two feel with triplets.
Like were gonna do a little later on.
All these things are connected.
And also there's one more way that
I can sing you the connection.
Let's turn that, the beat on again.
[SOUND] So, when we're doing one,
two, three, four five, six.
[SOUND] In jazz,
the right cymbal
feel is,
So, you see the connection,
the cymbal beat in jazz
is really connected to
that Abakua rhythm in
6/8 from Africa.
And since jazz comes from the African
art form, as people from Africa were
brought to this country, and the music
spread all over the world, and really in
the such a pronounced way in this country
how the music changed everything here.
So, I want you to grasp that, now to learn
on a deeper level, we're gonna now switch
back, and get our basses, and we're gonna
do something with 6/8 with our instruments
to learn how to play in different parts
of this beat that we just learned.
now that we've discussed the abakua and
the 6/8, and
how that affects the triplet feel and
how it ties in with swing,
we're going to do a six-eight
exercise with the bass so
that you can start to feel
comfortable playing on different
parts of the beat,
when we say one two three four five six.
You're going to play on the one.
And sometimes you're going to.
That's the first part.
We're going to lay down three
different bass parts actually.
So you're going to play on the ones,
The one and the four.
One two three four.
One, two, three four.
One, two, three, four, five six.
One, two, three.
There's gonna be a downbeat part.
And then there's gonna be one that plays
off the downbeat on beat two and three.
So it's gonna be one bong bing, two bong.
Two bong bing, three bong bing.
Bong bing, bong.
So you're playing off the beat.
And then the last one, is going to be
playing on the third beat and the sixth
beat so its one, two, three, four, five,
six, one, two, three, four, five, six.
So, in doing that, we are going to
get more comfortable playing over
each part of that triplet or 6/8 rhythm.
It's sort of the same feeling,
the triplet and the 6/8.
You could think of two triplets
as making up a 6/8 bar.
So, I don't want you
to get discouraged cuz at first
this might be a foreign thing.
It might take a little while but
you could, I want you to lay in
this groove for an hour if you can.
And just get used to playing it.
So we're gonna start up
the rhythm now with a click.
And we're gonna have a little
cowbell accompaniment.
And the first thing we're gonna do
is lay down the down beat part.
And I'll show you what that goes like.
Okay, now that we
have the basic part.
You hear the metronome,
you hear the cow bell.
Then we hear the first bass part,
which is downbeats oriented.
Now we're going to play off the second
part of the beat, the second eighth note.
So we're gonna one, go [SOUND].
It's the second eighth note,
and the fifth eighth note.
So, go [SOUND] one, two,
three, four, five, six.
One, two, three, four, five.
One, two, three, five.
One, two, three, five.
One, two, three, five.
One, two, three, four, five.
And sometimes five, six.
It's one, two, three, four, five, six.
That's in there too on this.
So we're basically playing off.
We leave the first eighth note rest and
we play on the second one.
That's the major accent, the second note.
If you're thinking triplets, it's one and
two, one, two, three, one, two, three.
Or if you're in six eight, one, two,
three, four, five, six, one, two, three,
four, five, six.
So I'm gonna do that part right now.
Final part,
is based on, the third and
the sixth note of six eight.
Or if you're thinking triplets it's one,
two, three, one, two, three, that one.
Or one, two, three, four, five, six,
one, two, three, four, five, six,
one, two, three, four, five, six.
So it's the last beat of
each three note grouping.
So again, this is gonna be great for
you to practice.
You're gonna have to practice really
laying back and getting into the six,
eight, and
making really kinda thick rhythm, and
not speeding up or anything,
just laying there, it's a slow tempo
I wanted to make it slow enough so
you could really feel the beat and relax.
It's a challenge.
In one way it's going
to make it easier for
you to play this tempo and in the other
way it's a bit of a challenge.
So play this groove.
Over and over and over again until
you get really comfortable with it.
And until you start to here the, also
the ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding.
Like this jazz symbol
beat is right in there.
Okay so, now we're gonna do the last part.
Here we go.
me a
I realize the abakua and the 6/8, and
these types of things might
be new concepts for you.
Before you send it in, always check out
what I've said to the other students,
and I'll take a look and
give you some feedback.