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Chromatic Scale Exercises

Exercises
.1 b . . . . . .
4
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4. 3.
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1 b
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3. 2. b
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2. 3. 4.
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1

Dwight MAbe

Exercise 1 -

Bass

Bass

.
.3

T
A
B

4 5

4 5

4 5

3 4 5

5 4

6 5

4 3

6 5

4 3

6 5

.
.
4 3

The above exercise is for basic dexterity. Note the fingering is always 1234 going up and 4321 down. As you
begin, place the left hand over the 4 notes on the E string shown. Place the 1st finger down. Leave it down
and place the second finger. Once the second finger is down on the 4th fret, move the 1st finger to the 3rd
fret of the A string. Once the 3rd finger is down, move the 2nd to the next string, etc. Follow this pattern up
and down. Start practiing very slowly, emphasizing efficient finger movement and the proper curl in the fingers
to make the movements.

. n . . # . . . n . . b . . b . .
? ..
b

. b . b ..
. b . n . b . n . 2. .3 4.
. .
5
1 2 3 4 1

Exercise 2 -

Bass

Bass

.
.3

.
.

This exercise takes the above and puts it into a musical example. This a G chromatic scale. There is more
finger movement as the chromatic scale is one of the more difficult scales for bass guitar. The 1st four notes
on the E string are played 1234. As you place the 4th finger, begin to stretch your other fingers backward
in anticipation of the 1st finger being on the 2nd fret of the A string for it's first note. Same for the D string
but you will shift up for the G note to the 5th fret of the D string. Coming down works essentially backwardsplay the G, Gb, F, E sequence, stretching up with the 4th finger to catch the Eb on the A string. Continue the
pattern on down. Start this one extremely slowly and work up by 2 BPM only when the stretches and finger
movements are comfortable.

2012, Bass Guitar Instruction Studio

Chromatic Scale Exercise

This is the full version of a Chromatic Scale, up and down the fingerboard by half-steps. This is one of
the best dexterity exercises you can do on a bass guitar. It is vitally important to play through these
slowly and carefully. Strive for smooth stretches and shifts. Make sure the notes are even. Once you
have the exercise up about 90 bpm, start practicing it as a straight connected group of 8th notes. In
other words, let the C in measure 19 be an 8th note and continue right on through to Db.
Once the 8th notes are comfortable and clean, go back and do the continous exercise in 16ths. Once
again, very slowly at first, then work up in bpm. It is even more important in the 16ths that the notes
be clean and even. Take you time and do it well. This is an exercise that should be practiced every
day.

Bass
8

Bass

4. 3. 2. .1 4.

2.
3. 4.
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.
1 b n b

. b b . n . b . n .
4 .3 2. .
1
1 2 3 4

. n . . b . . . b . . b . . . .
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b

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. . . .

. b . n . b . . .
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b

. b . n . # b n
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. . b . n . . n . . .
14
. . .
. . . .
? b b . # . n . . b . b . . n . b . . . # . . b n b n
. . . .
17
. b . n . b . n . b . . b . . . b . . . . . .

b # n . b . . b . . . n . .
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11

Bass

20

Bass

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23

. .
. b . n . b n

. b .

. b . n .

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Bass

Continue
Pattern

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Bass