Here’s a video showing how to play bass to Long Train Running by The Doobie Brothers.
Long Train Running was recorded back in 1973 by The Doobie Brothers and first appeared on their album: “The Captain And Me.” This was the first album that legendary bass player Tiran Porter played on with the Doobie Brothers – and he creates a great line.
I’ve split the song down into the Intro, a basic verse pattern, the verse pattern under the lyric “the illinois central,” and the verse pattern under the lyric: “the pistons keep on turning.”
The outro to the tune is a basic vamp on the G chord – but there’s some very tasty little fills in there that you should think about trying to work out and use. Very cool. (not included in the video though for length reasons).
This isn’t a tune for beginners – though if you’ve been playing for a while you should be able to get your head and fingers around it. The use of 16th notes is really effective – especially in the sections where they work as almost pick up notes, or dead notes. Have a good listen to the original to see what I’m talking about.
This bass line was originally featured in notation and tab in my weekly magazine First Bass & Beyond.