Blues Scale on the Bass

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 20,023
    Professional bass guitar player Scott Giambusso demonstrates Blues Scale on the Bass guitar.

    Scott Giambusso

    Scott, a native Washingtonian, has been performing for audiences since 1968. A self taught musician, he mainly freelances as an acoustic bassist. Scott also plays guitar, electric bass, and tuba as well as singing in the styles of Nat King Cole, Mel Torme and Jack Bruce. He has worked with The Glenn Miller Orchestra and The Modernaires; The Peter Duchin Orchestra; The Ink Spots; The Tokens; Rory (Disney Channel); Charlie Byrd; Susannah McCorkle; Keely Smith, Jamey Aebersold and Chuck Berry. In spring '07 he performed in a clinic and show with Gene Bertincini at the 4 Seasons DC. Besides playing jazz, Scott's latest project is a Cream tribute band featuring Dan Hovey and John Zidar, (formerly Root Boy Slim's rhythm section). The band is called GHz (Gigahertz} and is breaking sound barriers around town. Besides playing over 200 club dates a year, Mr. Giambusso teaches and performs as a member of the Jazz Faculty of the Montgomery College Music Department. Not only does he teach the bass, but he also coaches singers, pianists and all instrumentalists on the nature of music and operates a recording studio for student demos. Because of his versatility, knowledge of tunes and styles, and his 30+ years of gigging experience, he has the rare ability to explain music to the laymen with clarity of vision.

    Scott Giambusso: Hi, Scott Giambusso here, giving you some bass instruction. Now, today Id like to work on the Blues scale, the most used scale in rock music and the Blues of course and certainly in Jazz music. The Blues scale comes out of our pentatonic minor scale. If you remember the pentatonic minor scale, I am going to play an A pentatonic minor scale. It will be played, in this position, I am going to use my pinky, I cant emphasize the use of the pinky enough. Root A, and the C is on the eighth fret, so A is on the fifth fret, your pinky is going to play the C. So, the fingering will be one, four, one, three, one, three. Important to sing, all your notes become intimate with the music; singing everything is absolutely important. Now, what we are going to do, we have the root, we have a minor third note to C, we have the fourth, we have the fifth, and we have the flatter seventh and we have the octave. We are going to add the doubles tone, the flatter fifth to the scale to create the Blues sound. Of course, we do an octave five starting on this A. So, I could play a two octave, I am going to shift to it, I am going to do that slowly one time; A, C. When I get to the flat seven, I shift to the root and I am just playing the exact same thing. Then I am going to stick my first finger shift to the double dot and there is my A octave. Now, with my five-string bass, I get three octaves. So, thats the Blues scale. Now, we need practical application and Ill show you that next time.