BASS

INITIAL

BASS – INITIAL

At Initial you can develop a range of skills and techniques including dynamics, rhythm, syncopation and repeated notes. In the exam you’ll play a set list of three songs and demonstrate your playback or improvising skills. 

You can find out more about the exam by downloading the complete Bass syllabus, or taking a look at the information below.

Everything you need to know about the exam, including durations, marking, room setup and what to take, can be found in the Bass syllabus.

EXAM STRUCTURE AND MARK SCHEME

Maximum marks

SONG 1

25



A song chosen from the relevant graded Trinity bass songbook, played with backing track

SONG 2

25




Either a different song chosen from the relevant graded Trinity bass songbook

or a song from the additional Trinity bass arrangements at trinityrock.com

or an own-choice song

or a song composed by the candidate

Song 2 may:

  • be unaccompanied
  • be played to a backing track (which can be recorded by the candidate)
  • include added vocals, performed live by the candidate
  • include an accompaniment played or sung live by another musician

SESSION SKILLS

20




Either playback or improvising

SONG 3

30



A technical focus song chosen from the relevant graded Trinity bass songbook, containing specific technical elements, played with backing track

TOTAL

100


In your Initial exam you’ll play a set list of three songs. Two of these will be from our Initial songbook, including a technical focus (TF) song which focuses on two specific technical skills which run throughout the song, so you can demonstrate these techniques seamlessly in your performance. Your other song can be from our Initial songbook, or can be a song of your own choice, a song that you’ve written, or a cover version that you’ve arranged.

These songs are included in the Initial Bass songbook:

BOB DYLAN All Along the Watchtower
THEM Gloria
T. REX Ride a White Swan
THE XX Shelter (TF)
BEN E. KING Stand by me (TF)
U2 With or Without You
COLDPLAY Yellow (TF)
FLEETWOOD MAC You Make Loving Fun

THE SONGBOOK

The Initial Bass songbook includes everything you need for your exam, including sheet music for eight songs, along with performance hints and tips and background information for each song.

It also contains a code that gives access to downloadable demo and backing tracks for each of the songs. Buy and download your resources here.


LISTEN ON SPOTIFY

For inspiration, have a listen to our Spotify playlist featuring the artist’s original versions of our Rock & Pop 2018 Bass songs for Initial to Grade 2. If you don’t already have a Spotify account, it’s free to set one up. Follow us and our playlists to easily find them again.

Develop the skills professional musicians rely on in their careers, and learn how to play music you’ve never seen or heard before or improvise over a track in the session skills part of your exam. You can choose which skill to demonstrate in your exam. 

PLAYBACK

Candidates choosing this option perform some music they haven’t seen or heard before. The test consists of a series of short melodic phrases, which candidates repeat back in turn, over a backing track. See the syllabus for full requirements and graded parameters.

An example of a playback test is coming soon.

IMPROVISING

Candidates choosing this option improvise in a specified style over a recorded backing track that they haven’t seen or heard before. The backing track consists of a passage of music played in a loop. See the syllabus for full requirements and graded parameters.

An example of an improvising test is coming soon.


You can find out more about the session skills tests, including technical expectations and how they are marked, in the Bass syllabus.

We will be releasing additional arrangements suitable for use as own-choice songs.

There’s also a range of songs from the 2015-2017 Trinity Rock & Pop syllabus that match the current own-choice parameters, and can also be used for Song 2.

See the latest releases and the list of 2015-2017 songs

2015-2017 SYLLABUS AND OVERLAP ARRANGEMENTS

There will be a one-year overlap between syllabuses. For the duration of 2018 candidates will be able to perform songs from either syllabus, but not a mixture of both.

Download the 2015-2017 syllabus

"IT'S REALLY NICE HAVING THE ABILITY TO CHOOSE WHAT YOU LIKE ... IT'S HELPED ME DEVELOP AS A MUSICIAN."

JOSHUA, GRADE 7 GUITARIST

KEEP ME UPDATED

Enter your details below to receive email updates. You can opt out at any time.