Home INTERMEDIATE "Must Know" Walking Bass Substitutions with Todd Johnson /// Scott's Bass Lessons

"Must Know" Walking Bass Substitutions with Todd Johnson /// Scott's Bass Lessons

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So What (originally composed by the great Miles Davis) is one of those tunes that get’s called time and time again at jam sessions.

In fact, if you’re starting to think about attending a local jam session, or if you’re already attending them – you need to know this tune. Simple as that.

The gag is, that due to it’s modal nature people tend to get lost within the form very easily and ultimately it can end in a total train wreck.

Honestly, I couldn’t count on 10 hands the amount of times I’ve heard this tune end in disaster during jam sessions.

So – let’s make sure that it doesn’t happen when you’re taking care of business! 😉

Let’s look at the chord sequence:

Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 |

Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 |

Ebm7 | Ebm7 | Ebm7 | Ebm7 |

Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 | Dm7 ||

As you can see, there’s a lot of Dm7 — and that is exactly where the problem is. When playing through this tune, if you don’t know how to map out the form you’re in danger of getting lost in a sea of Dm7 very easily.

But don’t worry, help is at hand!

In this lesson Todd Johnson is going to show you a fantastic way of mapping out the form of So What by simply inserting II V substitutions over the minor chords. By using this technique you’re not only going to give your bass line much more shape and contour, you’re also going to hold the rest of the band together in a way that everyone will know exactly where they are within the form. The cool thing is, they won’t even know why they know exactly where they are. All they’ll know, is that when they play with you – everything just works!

As always, see you in the shed…


PS. This clip was taken from one of the weekly live seminars from within The Academy here at ScottsBassLessons. Every week we have live-streamed seminars with the likes of Ed Friedland, Anthony Wellington, Todd Johnson, Steve Lawson, Steve Jenkins, Cody Wright and many more…


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