UG Weekend Bass Riff: Part 1

Ultimate Guitar


Black Sabbath - Paranoid. Black Sabbath, the fathers of heavy metal, Paranoid is one of there best known songs and has a pumping riff provided by Tony Iommi but spiced up by Geezer Butler via a bass roll.


The basic guitar riff is a simple E-E-D progression with a G-D-E flurry to match the vocal melody on the forth and final bar, nothing too impressive or particularly exciting but a good, solid bassline. The bass adds variety to this by following the guitar note for note but the last 4 8th notes of the 2nd bar make up a E-B-D-E bass roll which adds variety and character to the riff while staying within the C Major Scales boundaries. The way I reccomend you play this roll is to play the main riff using your middle finger and for the roll play all the 7s with your middle finger and the D at the 5th fret with your index finger.

Gear Info & Settings:

Geezer Butler used Ampeg and Marshall amps with EV Speakers, La Bella bass strings and Vigier, Status and Spector bass guitars for his punch yet traditional tone, most of this equpiment will be hard to find because the recording is old but he used old versions of the modern digitech pedals (chorus and overdrive and possibly a pitchshifter).

Audio & Tab:

180 bpm

G|:----------------- | ----------------- | D| ----------------- | ----------------- | A| -7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7- | -7-7-7-7-7---5-7- | E|:----------------- | -----------7----- |

G| ----------------- | -----------------:| D| ----------------- | -5--------------- | A| -5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5- | ---5-----7------- | E| ----------------- | -----------------:| Click here to get a midi file of the tab above.

And don't forget to check out our current weekend riff UG Weekend Riff: Part 7. This week Geldof will teach you how to play Every Breath You Take riff by The Police!

37 comments sorted by best / new / date

    the midi works fine! u jus need quicktime! go here to download it 4 free-
    On old classic. Way tto easy though. Then again, some of the best riffs on all guitars are the easiest.
    Justin van Uum
    That what killemall want's to tab is good. He Does a lick the goes on the d-string and g-string on the 7th en 9nd fret,a half intro or something
    Ya, but the real version does through some things during the chorus and some variations that may take a new player a little while to get down, it's a pretty easy song, but its not as simple as what you see above.
    haha ive heard alaska_bass_kid and his band u guys kick ass....but yeah i hope the put some song up that takes sum skill
    we need more bass riffs! lets get some more flea up in here or sumthin
    Hmm, a great Bass Riff even though I'm not a bassist. Still got me into it! Well done, again...!
    Its not entirely correct what with the B,D,E bit that Geezer most certainly does not do. He does a -----7-9- -----7-9---- -7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7--7-7-7-7----- ----- at some stage but not what you tabbed
    thats apretty boring bass line who would want to learn that u should put like led zeppelin or chili basslines that challenge people
    hehe, that's funny, I'm the bass player in our band and we just decided yesterday we are going to add this song to our play list (Our guitarist wants to show off, and we are doing the more Megadeth version, faster and meaner). I just think thats kinda cool that you happen to show the bass part for this song =P
    me too! were gonna cover it for a gig, so were learning loads and this is one of em! wouldve liked it all tho lol
    been trying to make a more thrash version of this song for a bit... just for the heluvit of course. this was one of the first songs i learned on bass, before i moved to guitar.
    Justin van Uum
    you know, geezer doesnt do that b-d-e thing but he throws to be exactly 8 times a lick in that's derived from the intro.He does then a-b-d-e
    bsullivan- what in the HELL are you talking about^ ??? anyways... theres no way les would be up here- half of the bassists on this site use picks (WHICH I IN NO WAY ADVOCATE) but its true. *rolls eyes* metal, and punk, bleh. flea, on the other hand, has a few basslines suitable for beginners.
    Finally a weekend riff for the bass players of UG. Thanks guys, I hope there's many more to come.
    Pretty simple...Hope we move on up quick! I wanna see some Les or Flea goin' on here. =D
    cool very nice, hope there will be more bass tabs very soon. the bass isn't praised enough.