i'm a bassist, and i just joined a rock band...

its cool and all, but i'm having a lot of trouble.

you see, the guitarists in the band are skilled and can make some pretty cool songs, but they don't know crap about music. if i ask them what chord they're playing they have no idea, they don't know what key they're in... really they know nothing but can string together interesting things.

anyway i'm not a bad bassist at all, but when i play with them i'm just awful, because i have no idea how to string together nice basslines since i'm really not sure what they're playing. most of the time i just stumble around until i notice something, like what the rhythem guitarist is doing on the low E string, and then i just keep hitting out 8th notes.

basically, i'm playing like crap and i know that i could be doing better than this. so how do i jam, really? if they can't name what chords they're doing or whatever, and just playing stuff that sounds good, how can i string together a nice bassline or whatever if i don't really know what the guitarists are playing? is there a way to figure out what's going on?

Make them break it down for you. Tell them to explain what they are playing, even if it's something like "first I play this chord, the I play this chord, then I play this note with a ba-da-da thing, then I play this chord."

Edit: I'll say it just to get it out of the way. This should be in "bandleading," but it's no big deal.
well first of all you should be able to look at there hands and tell what key they are in,and i really dont have a second of all damn
In our attempt to seek individualty,we have all become the same

Im so hardcore I could kick a puppy right now
Teach their asses some theory. You won't get anywhere if you don't know chord names.
Oh no he just divided by zero again...*gets sucked into vortex*

Originally Posted by Sirwinston89
whoa man this is turning into the Dream Theater appreciation thread!!! If only every thread kicked this much ass!

You're welcome
So you're blaming it on them? Ridiculous. Use your ear. If you are a skilled player you will find a way. Stop complaining and fine solutions.
You could try to teach them some theory. The biggest thing is probably breaking down what shapes they're playing if you need to, figuring out exactly what chords are being played, and then going from there. Even if you have to work these things out at home, you can still do it. If you can get them to put the chords they're playing into TAB and possibly give you a recording of what they're playing, that'd help you a ton I'm sure. If you have an MP3 player that you could use for recording them, do that, just so that you have something.
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