Play chords on the Bass

The bass guitar, as part of the rhythm section, provides the drive and pulse of the music but you can also take a solo on the bass and play chords adding lots of harmonic colour. Here we look at the latter – how to play chords on those low strings and making the basslines sound cool and that little bit different.


What will we be covering?

We always spend a lot of time looking at mixing chords and fills on the 6 string guitar; the bass can do exactly the same!

Adding chords into the bass line, or simply just playing the chords standalone, brings in so much more colour to the music. Chords (usually inversions using two note or dyads) cover the complete spectrum: major, minor, augmented, diminshed, dom7, m7, 9, m9, etc.

Add an extra dimension to your bass playing. We’ll look at the techniques to play chords, where to play them, how to incorporate and enhance a bass line and much more.


Who’s this session suitable for?

Beginner+ to Intermediate  bass players.

This course is for bass players but guitarists would gain lots from the session as well.

Ideally, you should be familar with arpeggios for the basic chord types as well as know the notes on at least the low E and A strings.

If you’re interested but not sure, we have a wealth of materials from previous courses available (PDFs, backing tracks and Zoom recordings of the live sessions) – contact us for more details.

Bass basics includes:

  • The notes on the fingerboard up to the 5th fret on each string
  • The major and minor scales (and their pentatonic cousins)
  • Major, minor and dom7 arpeggios
  • Understand I-IV-V chord progressions (and maybe a II and VI thrown in for good measure)

More experienced players who don’t regularly take solos should gain a lot from this session.



  • Lesson PDF. Usually sent out just before the session.
  • Access to a Zoom recording of the live lesson.
  • Any backing tracks used in the lesson.


Home practice

The session is 60 minutes long; don’t expect to master everything during the session. The tutor will go through all the key parts, demonstrating them and discussing the associated techniques and know-how.

The real work is done by you afterwards. Armed with the materials (PDFs, backing tracks and video  recording), you’ll have all the tools to work on things at your own pace.


Booking a place and buying options

When you book you’ll have two options:

1. You want to join the live Zoom session.

You’ll receive the joining instructions on the day. Being live, you’ll be able to put your own questions directly to the tutor during the session. Choose option 1, Live lesson and materials.

2. Maybe you’d like to attend but can’t make it on this occasion?

You can buy the materials and receive them after the session (i.e. lesson PDF(s) and access to a Zoom recording of the live session). Choose option 2, Materials only.

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