I think basic rhythms sometimes have names but I'm not sure where to get started finding names for easily recognizable rhythms and basslines.

For example, 50 Cent's Hate it Or Love it appears to use the same bassline as Christina Milian "Say I".

What is that bassline rhythm called?

  • In the "50 cent" song, the bass is straight 8th notes. In the Christiana song, the bass is not straight 8th notes. Jan 30, 2012 at 22:25
  • 7
    The baselines of these two songs are not similar. However, the songs do have a similar groove, which is primarily in the drum track. Rhythmic patterns generally don't have names outside of the basic terminology we use to describe note lengths and techniques of using them, but the many different possible grooves are the bread and butter of any pop drummer's arsenal--and these do have names.
    – NReilingh
    Jan 31, 2012 at 4:40
  • @NReilingh: One possible interpretation (thought it is a bit of a stretch), is that bobobobo was thinking about how both basslines seem to walk down, in minor modes. Again... a stretch... Jan 31, 2012 at 16:10

1 Answer 1


Both songs do sample from a similar source: 50 Cent's sample is from a song by the Trammps called Rubber Band, and the Christina Milian song uses Jackie Moore's Clean Up Your Own Yard. Both are R&B songs from the early 70s, which is why they share a similar groove - so, if you want to call it something, early 70s R&B should be a sufficient description. Or, reference the songs in particular.

In terms of rhythms and basslines that do have names independent of a genre, these are usually limited to the very basics, like a walking bassline, or a swung rhythm, or even a polyrhythm. As you can see, these are a part of musical theory that can be applied in just about any genre.

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