Bass Chords: Three Views of a Secret

Jaco Pastorius - 3 views of a secret

Bass Chords: Three Views of a Secret

In this lesson I look at some of the chord shapes we’ve talked about in previous lessons, and demonstrate just how advanced you can be with simple bass chords played across three and four available strings. I use the example of the famous Jaco tune, “Three Views of a Secret.” There are a lot of complex chords in this song, and the melody if very developed, so getting the two to work together can be a real challenge.

As an added bonus, instead of playing the bass, I use my bass-ukulele so you can hear how lush and rich bass chords can really sound, especially when played an octave higher than a standard electric bass. I’ve included the chord chart for the tune for you to download. Check it out, work out some of the shapes, and then let me know if you have questions. If you haven’t gone through the earlier chord lessons, be sure to do that now. FYI: I don’t necessarily follow the form of the song as it’s represented in the chart. I more wanted to give you an idea of the level of complexity available to you when creating bass chords.

Remember: When working through creating advanced bass chords you need to decide what notes stay and which ones you can get rid of. In general, the melody note (top note of the voicing usually), is essential for getting across the “intent” of the song. As well, the use of open strings can come in very handy when trying to achieve a “ringing” lush type of sound.

Download the chord chart

  1. iopmatt

    What kind of Uke bass is that?

    • Chris

      I picked it up in Hawaii earlier this year, it’s made by a company called Kamoa.

  2. アバクロメンズ


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