Walking Basslines PDF – F Blues
In this 5 minute masterclass, we’re going create a bass line over a blues in F. Walking bass lines are a fascinating part of jazz, as they support and mark the harmony underneath the chords and melody.
As this is a lesson about the baseline, we will be using only basic rootless voicings in our right hand for the following chords in the F Blues:
If you are not familiar with these voicings, check out the "Related Lessons" section for detailed tutorials on how to learn and master these useful jazz piano voicings.
The Bassline & PDF Example
The bassline we cover is a combination of several bass lines I have transcribed from the bass players mentioned below. We start with a simple 1-5-1 octave higher and then the 3rd of the chord leading chromatically to the 4 chord – Bb.
Continuing with repeating the notes Bb and B which leads us to the 5 of the F chord in the 3rd bar.
Then 5, 1 back to 5 and 1 an octave higher, from where we start the with Eb, the 7th of the F7 chord, or 3rd of the Cm7. This kind of line that starts from a note other than the main triad notes 1, 3, or 5. This is something that for Ray Brown used – for example – among others of course. It gives an interesting colour, and creates a good foundation for this bar, which resolves to the 4, Bb.
We then start the 5th bar with the notes of a Bb triad, leading to Bdim chord, where we again use the note of the diminished, last note being b natural, which gets us nicely to C, the 5th of the F chord. then 1F 2G 2# G#, chromatic approach note to Aminor7b5.
As the next 2 chords Aminor and D7 last only 2 beats each, we’re going to just use A, then tritone for it, leading chromatically to D from above, then D and the 3rd of the chord F#.
Last 4 bars we have Gm7 C7 to F, first we play a bass line which is very common. It follows the scale, just adding a chromatic note between 3 and 4.