How To Play Seven Nation Army On Bass

2018-11-11T09:55:22+00:00April 27th, 2018|2 Comments

This week let’s take a look at a great bass riff for beginners. Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes!

Yes, I Know It’s A Guitar!

This week we’re looking at what most people would consider a pretty easy bass riff: Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes.

Obviously this isn’t played on bass in the original song. Jack White plays it on a guitar dropped an octave, through a pedal, to sound like a bass. But even so, this is a great bass riff for any beginner bass players out there.

The Main Riff

Here we have the main riff of the tune

You can play along with the following backing track:

A Little Theory!

Now just as a little analysis of what’s going on in the riff, for any of you that what to delve a little deeper, we’re in the key of E minor and the riff is simply outlining a chord progression of E minor, C major B major.

Then for all you music theory nerds, this tune (believe it or not) is a good example of how the harmonic minor scale is used in minor keys.

We begin with an E natural minor scale over the E minor. This gives us the D natural in the riff. Then when we move to the B it’s a B major chord (as outlined in the vocal melody). That gives us a D#, the major 3rd , which implies an E harmonic minor scale.

So any of you that have learned a harmonic minor scale and wondered why or where it would be used, you can see with this tune it’s all about the chord progressions.

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2 Comments

  1. Andrew Aldridge April 28, 2018 at 11:38 pm - Reply

    I watched this right after your Bassic Fundamentals tone lesson 1 and ended up playing off the 12th fret E string with heavy fingers to mimic the original sound. Thanks for both lessons!

  2. Oscar De Leon May 25, 2018 at 5:43 pm - Reply

    I started playing it with the TAB here, but now I find it easier to move the first bar up one string and play the 2nd fret of the D string and the open G.

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