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#1
There are many stories about how a bassist got started on bass because there were no guitar gigs.

I'd like to hear how your story on how you got started playing bass.

I was 19 years old, and had been playing drums for about 9 years already. My friend played guitar and owned a Fender P-bass, which I thought had horrible action. I was taking piano lessons (yuck) around that time and was interested in recording original songs--I figured bass would be necessary to complete the sound (drums, picno, bass) since I had no idea how to play guitar at that time. I always liked John Paul Jones and Paul McCartney, and I figured this was an instrument I could play with ease, since it had only 4 strings--hah hah ha...I was so naive then.

I went to Guitar Showcase and bought a black MIJ Squier Jazz bass for about $300. It had simple electronics on the inside, so I started to tinker with its guts a little. I added a phase switch and a series/parallel switch--big ugly ones from Radio Shack, since Fry's wasn't around back then. It worked great, but the bass was noisier than ever, so I went and bought EMG pickups and put them in, taking out the other stuff. The bass sounds great and has nice action. When my friend with the P-bass came over, he always played my bass instead of his. I eventually borrowed his P-bass and tweaked with the truss rod and the saddles to get it to play in tune. That P-bass is now an awesome instrument.

My first stint as a bassist was not unitl 1993, when met up with some flamenco guitar students who were in a band together (Ritmos de Flamenco). They asked me to come by and jam with them at a party one night, and I brought my bass and a few other percussion instruments. I was asked to join after the jam, and played with them for 10 years, eventually releasing a CD under the new name Silk Road (2000). I learned my chops playing with that group. I'm in a different flamenco group now (Garnada), playing more advanced stuff on bass (fretless and fretted 5 string basses) but I still own that Jazz bass and use it for recording. In 2001, one of the guitarists from Silk Road (Tim) and I formed a pop trio with an friend of mine (Mark from San Jose State physics undergrad days)--the trio (Thornapple) released two albums despite Mark's debilitating bout with multiple sclerosis.

Thornapple is on backburner, as Mark moved back to Santa Fe and Tim moves in a few days to Illinois. I continue to play with Garnada, but work at home on solo projects at the moment until I can get together with the right bunch of musicians to form the next pop group.

Whew. Sorry about that--I was only going to tell the story about how I started on bass, but I got sidetracked as usual.

What pulled you to the bass instead of other instruments?
#2
i thought it looked cooler then guitar, and plus everyone played guitar, i wanted to be different
Ibanez GSR190 Bass
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#3
I started out on Piano, 2months later i started saxophone, 1yr later i started acoustic, 2months later I started the gloriousness that is the Bass. 2yrs Later i'm sitting pretty with my like 30 bands, and $1000's worth of musical equipment. I just always loved the bass. I love the low tones, and the fact my brother has the best car stereo system in our town, and his low levels rock, so i always was accustomed to the awesomeness of his funk-a-delek, pimpmobile. Comeing back to this decade, I was always inspired by victor wooten, R.F Turner, Jaco, and Flea. About a month after i started playing's when i got in my first band, were still all pretty much the same as we were 2yrs ago starting to get some gigs here and there, nothing much. But there's only 2 bassist in our entire highschool, and the other one's a senior so he'll be gone next yr. I'm starting jazz band this august and that's going to suck because i can't read bass clef good enough to preform walking basslines yet, gotta work on that all wummer. If anyone can lend me a website that helps with learning ledgar lines on the bass clef that would be greatly appreciated. I already know www.musictheory.net and www.activebass.com so yeah, that's bassicaly my story for now.
#4
I played Drums(still do), My brother started to learn guitar and a friend of mine was a drummer. I didn't really know much about the bass. So I baught one. I caught on quick and was playing in a band with my brother and my drummer friend. I had a cheap renegade bass. I sold that and baught an epiphone les paul bass which i still play full time today. mind you, I have fixed it up and got it playing and sounding like I want it to, plus I love the aesthetics of the bass.

I played my first gig with my band at my schools battle of the bands, which we won. Then again at citywide which we should have won. Came in second. should have been in first...but none the less...

Last summer i took up the piano to learn and to further my general understanding of theory. I've also been playing acoustic guitar for the past few years and is where i write the majority of my songs. I baught a "Les Paul" acoustic guitar at samashs. It's quite spectacular.

Now this summer when i get some cash, I'm purchasing a Florea Thin Body Jazz Bass and learning real jazz bass(again to further my understanding of theory and expand my bass playing abilities).

And thats where i stand now. hopefully i will grasp improv jazz bass before i'm out of highschool next year.
#5
I told my parents I wanted to play the drums, but they said that was too loud so they bought me an acoustic guitar. I hated it. Then I realized that all the parts of music I really liked (and all the musicians I liked) were bass players. I started searching around, bought a cheap Rogue gig pack thing, and found this site. I then started teaching myself and when I had enough money bought my MIJ Fender jazz. Been progressing ever since, and searching for a few bandmates in the area.
#6
I've been playing guitar for a few years, and have a decent group of musicians that I jam with. The only reliable bassist that I know wants to give it up, so he sold me his older bass (a 4-string Ibanez) and is still thinking of hocking his BTB405.

So, now I'm trying to convert myself from guitar to bass, since you can't throw a rock without hitting a guitar player most of the time.
#7
i wanted to learn an instrument, my friend suggested bass. me and my bxp are now dependant on eachother to live.

long story short i know.
#8
I hated those tiny bull**** strings on guitars. I hate doing what everyone else does, so when people said to get an electric guitar and a distortion pedal, I got my old squier bass and a banjo. Be different
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#9
when I was 14, I started taking guitar lessons from the pastor at our church (small town folks, not much around). anyway, I took lessons for five weeks and then I broke my arm so I couldn't play. I still did finger excercises and stuff. but the short time I went, the pastor agreed I was a fast learner (almost all of my family from my dads side can play guitar, natural ability I guess). when I came back, the church had started a band. the guitarist was only in 8th grade (god that kid can play) at the time, he had a sophmore violinist, a Junior behind the drum set (crazy on drums, he's awsome) and they had just lost a bass player. because I was a fast learner, I learned to play bass in one day and took the bassist possition the next. been playing there ever since, and that happened almost 4 years ago.
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#10
When I was 17, my friend and I were sitting in my car just listening to the radio and we got talking about how so many of the popular bands these days suck. That's when we decided to start our own band. So, then we just had to pick the instruments that we wanted to play. I got first choice and I went straight for bass. Now that's not because I wanted to just be different than everybody who played guitar or because I thought it was easier to play, nothing like that, I just thought that it would be a hell of a lot of fun to play. GODDAMN was I right!!!!!
#11
June 03 I'm sitting in my friend's room. He was a good guitarist, and a metalhead. He puts on Metallica's St. Anger CD. I dug it, so I looked more into Metallica. I picked up St. Anger, the Black Album, and Master of Puppets in the span of like a month. I notice all the sweet low-end playing, especially on the Black album and MOST especially on Master of Puppets. I ask him what it is, he tells me it's bass. I fell in love, and wanted to play like that. So Xmas 03 my parents got me the bass pack. By January 04 I was in my first band, where the intro of our first song was me playing the bass. We jammed 3 times, and eventually disbanded. I still play.
haha
#12
I started in september around my birthday, roughly 8 or 9 months ago, at 19 (i still am 19 lol). I was listening to the album Dookie by Green Day one day and I really started noticing the bass playing. I decided to start playing bass a few weeks later. I went to my old piano teacher (his main instrument was bass) who I had taken piano lessons from when I was in high school. My parents had forced me to go and I never practiced nor remembered anything. My old teacher told me everything i would need so i went out and got an Ibanez GSR 100 for $90 bucks with a hardshell case off of a friend. I immediately started taking lessons from him, but due to me being broke as **** at the time i had to stop after a month. I continued playing on my own, and after about 2 months or so of playing i pretty much mastered Green Days entire collection of music. When I say "mastered" I mean in my own un-solid, out-of-the-pocket style back then. I was hungry for something a little more complex and (like so many of you on this forum) fell in love with a man named Flea. I started jamming on the peppers like every single day, my parents thought I went crazy.

Anyway, after about 3 months of playing on my own I went back to lesson where i found out how bad my technique was. I practiced everything my teacher told me just as much as i would jam on the peppers and it paid off. I saw my abilities increase 10-fold by practicing technique and apply it to the songs I was playing. My old bass wasn't cutting it anymore so my generous parents got me a Tune TWB43 4-String Bass for Christmas. I jammed on that thing like crazy and around mid-january i joined my first band. It was some old friend of mine who contacted me over myspace that he needed a bass player. So i joined his band and we played at a talent show thing and placed second. That band of mine has kinda of fizzled out over the past few months. Around this time I transfered to Citrus College where i am currently enrolled. Citrus has such an awesome music program and I have learned so much there.

I learned how to jam with a group of people i met a citrus. I had never jammed or improved or anything before this, but I took to it really quickly. Around this time i sold my Tune bass and got an Ibanez SRX-500. I started a new band with the people I Jam with at school and we play reggae-rock, which is pretty awesome and we are currently working on a demo. I just joined another band with some guy from my job which is like blues-jazz-rock which is pretty cool too. Anyway, thats pretty much it..i think
Its better to regret the things you did, rather than the things you didnt do.
#13
I kinda started with my band, at first I was a rythm guitarist. Then we got another addition to the band, so we switched between bass and guitar. I decided I loved playing bass in a band situation, so I decided to be the full time bassist.

In January this year I bought a Hartke HA3500 head and a VX115 cab, the next day I bought a Stagg Fusion bass, it's an active jazz bass kinda thing. Not an expensive rig, but I gets a good tone and it handles everything I need it to do. I bought an amp like that as my first amp because I didn't want to have to upgrade later, originally I was gonna get a 100w combo, which I would have already had to upgrade by now.

Now we're got a 3 track demo, which we recorded for free at school, and in turn the mix is horrible. But that got us free time at a proper place, so in 5 weeks we'll have a pro quality demo CD to send out to clubs.

I know I've only been playing bass for 5 months or so, but I've been playing trumpet for six years and guitar for two and a half, so I had a good grounding in theory and left hand technique before I started. Playing bass has changed the way I listen to alot of music, and the way I think about bass, so it's been a great learning curve for me. And playing in a band form the get go has improved my playing alot, I'd definatly reccommend it no matter what instrument you play.
"You can practice to attain knowledge, but you can't practice to attain wisdom." - Herbie Hancock
#14
I started two years ago, at the age of 25. I'd always been into music, clubbing and raving since the age of 14. But i was always (and still am) a DJ. My passion was playing music, not making it. My father is a musician (world class steel drum player) but never taught me or pushed me to music. I used to play a little keyboard when i was about 11 but when i found DJing i forgot about that. It wasn't until about the age of 22 that i got bored of DJing and decided to get into producing my own music. At this stage it was more electronica/dance than rock, although i've always had a passion for rock music as well as dance. As io began making music, i realised that to make music you need to know about music. So i soon came up short in my efforts. So, three years on, i decided to learn bass so i could write some cool basslines for my tunes. My mate played guitar for about two years so i thought why not learn bass and see what happens? A friend of mine is in a Band and he was selling his bass to buy a 5 string, so i said yeah i'll buy. It's a Washburn Force ABT Series. I remember getting it two days before going on holiday for three and a half weeks (gutted!!) and all holiday bored my girlfriend over my new bass! Once i got back i ended up splitting up with my long term girlfriend and was a bit lost at the time.. this gave me countless hours to sit in my flat and play my bass. Most nights at least three hours i would say. Studying music, learning about the bass, you name it. Then, my friend was selling a piano, so bought that and am currently still taking lessons, and have passed ABRSM exams. I also now play guitar to a better standard than my friend, even though i've been playing a year. I've defintiely caught the music bug, as they say.
So back to bass.. I loved the Washburn, and have still got it. I'm either going to Mod it or defret it (maybe you could help decide?). I now own a Schecter Custom 4, pictures are in the My Bass thread. I bought it new, got it shipped from the States last year.
Great bass, great action, great neck, great tone, great great great.. I dont run many pedals, i prefer a clean bass tone, but i do own a LMB-3, Marshall Guvnor, ODB-3 and a Q-Tron. I run a GK 400RBII Head off a 410 SBX Cab and adore it. I prefer the tone you can get to the "Ampeg Sound" which you cant get away from with the Ampeg heads. If i use effects they are done very subtlely. Subtle is good. I use Elixirs for my strings, they shipped with the Schecter and i can see why, they're excellent. I'm now in a band called The Very Special Guests, and we've been gigging around London all this year. I must say i'm quite proud of myself as two years ago i couldnt tell you the strings on a bass, now i am on stage playing one of them to crowds of over a 100 music fans.

I must say my playing took a quantum leap when i joined the band and began to play with other musicians who had all been playing their instruments for 10+ years. I'd never played outside my bedroom and by myself before that. Anyone who is only playing by themselves, i would advise you to get in touch with a drummer and guitarist, even if you are all newbs.. it will help you all greatly.

So what's next? Well with my bonus this year i am planning to buy a Stingray and a Fender Jazz to complete my collection (for now!!) and mod or defret my old washburn. My band have gigs lined up every two weeks until september and we are recording in two weeks.

Thats the story.. hey... wake up you fckers!
Last edited by Applehead at Jun 6, 2006,
#15
mmm I guess my love for bass started when i heard 1979 by the Smashing Pumpkins. I wanted to learn bass and whenever i would go to a concert i would find myself falling for the bassist and just jamming to him i told my mom i wanted a bass...she bought me a guitar pack....i wanted a bass. I learned one part of My December by Linkin Park on guitar and never touched it again. Last christmas I got my bass and now I'm looking for lessons so I can become one HOT ASS BASSIST/LEAD VOCALIST. I always thought i would be awesome to have the bassist be the vocalist for a band instead of a guitarist. I learned ALOT about tone playing the flute so I'm a damn good vocalist now all I need is to fill that empty void and finally be proficent at bass.
#16
Playing bass and singing lead is hard ! Seperate rhythm and melody going on in your mind, as well as controlling four fretting fingers, two or three plucking fingers, remembering the lyrics, singing in key. But of course it can be done, and done well. Personally i love Doves, and the lead singer is also their bassist. Nice. McCartley and Sting can do it like demons too!
#17
I started out 4 years ago on bass. But I played the flute for 5 years before that.
My brother, a big peppers fan, was always watching them live on TV, playing the tape again and again and again... I was looking at it, and I saw a little guy jumping around like crazy with blue hair called Flea. Because of him, I started paying attention to bass in songs and wanted to play bass. I tought I should start out with guitar and took one year of guitar lessons. After that year I stopped and bought my first bass: Squier MB4 and a Fender Frontman25B.
I started playing like crazy and that started to reflect on my fingers after a while. So my MSN nick stated 'bassplayer with pain in his fingers'. A girl I met the day before, contacted me and said she knew someone that was looking for a bassplayer. So I got in touch with him. His nick stated 'in search of bassplayer', and he knew the girl for a week. So I got together with him in school and he said I should come to audition. So I got there and setup my gear, playing Californication to set it up. Later I found out that that was what made them go 'OK, he's in'...
After a month, we got a second guitarplayer and The Sugarlips Incident was born. We played together for about 3 years. We split in february. I found it hard because we had played for over 3 years together, playing about 30 gigs and we knew each other in and out on stage. But all things come to an end so we disbanded the band.
The singer/guitarplayer and me started a new band. We found a drummer and we jammed with him every saturday. He suggested to get someone on keys and that he knew someone. So the guy on keys came and we jammed the whole afternoon, even recording them (you can find recordings on www.jezebelandtheflurks.be). So at that time Jezebel & the Flurks was born. We're still writing songs at this point, untill we have enough music to play a full set wich will be around september.

During all this I also found some time to participate in an exchange project to the UK with my school. It was awesome, I was able to play bass for a whole week, instead of going to boring classes . I also did some side-projects like playing bass on a prom, or performing with some of my friends on a talent show in school. I also played during a carnival-like afternoon at my school.

I think I'm forgetting some things here and there, but this is the most important stuff...
If you want to read up on my gear history: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=310577
Quote by John Swift
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#19
hmm

i always wanted to play an instrument, and my brother had a fender squier guitar. i doodled around on that for a while, but the high notes annoyed me. i then went through a phase of wanting to play drums, but that passed. then i think someone said i should try bass (latter half of 2003). i knew absolutely nothing about it at the time, so i was a bit wary of what to do. eventually i went out and bought a Westfield P bass and a Rocket20B amp. i was hooked, i loved it. i also had that 'my bass is better' attitiude, lmfao. eventually i went out and bought a 5 string Vintage EST96AF. nice little vietnamese company Vintage are, i still have the westfield (in pieces, because it buggered up). my next main purchase was an Ibanez PD7 (probably the best Dist pedal i've heard), and then i went out and bought an Ashdown five Fifteen shortly after joining my first band, Grip. the 5 string was my main bass for about a year and a half with the band until i bought my fretless from Leno on these forums. the band eventually split, and i joined another local band Chaos Undivided. i've been with them for about 4 months now i think.

wow, that was dull
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Last edited by IndieMetalhead at Jun 6, 2006,
#20
At the age of 13, I started getting into Pop-Punk (i.e. Blink, Less Than Jake and Green Day etc.) and I found a common thread, that my favourite member of all my new favourite bands, was the bassist - specifically Mark Hoppus of Blink (Oh yes, I DID just say that) and Roger Manganelli of Less Than Jake.

At this point I decided I wanted to play bass, but being the skint little teen I was, I couldn't buy one. So I borrowed my Aunt's truly old school classical guitar, and started learning basslines from tabs off this site. My Uncle then loaned me a bass that he got at a car boot sale, and my Dad went out and bought me a bass amp the next day, but didn't tell me - that was a nice suprise after a hard day at school

I joined my first band Angst shortly after. Angst were together for about 2 years, we played about 20 gigs, and despite our rather large following, we NEVER got a headlining gig...not even at our school!! After these two years we all just stopped showing up at practises, so we decided to call it a day. My current band (From Sorrow To Serenity) have only played two gigs, and we headlined one of them...!!

P.s. in terms of gear:

I'm now playing a Fender Deluxe Active P-bass through either my Peavey Basic 112 combo, or my Ashdown EB-180h and my 2 1x15 subs...I also own a Yamaha RBX-170 - my workhorse...!!
#21
I started last winter/early spring when my dad left a bass at my house, so I decided to try it out, no harm done. I had previously tried my brothers acoustic guitar, but I broke it, so I stayed away from guitar for a while.
#22
jaco, i'd love to hear you play some flamenco stuff. Have you got any links or recordings? I'm sure i'm not the only one to have not heard Flamenco bass, and i love Paco De Lucias music..

thanks man
#23
I started out playing guitar. I thought it was cool and all, but everyone did it... So, in order to form a band we needed a good bassist... I decided to try bass, so I snatched the schools bass to see if I liked it and stuff before I bought one. I liked it right away, I thought I was pretty good, but you know I sucked :P

So, I'm play it for about 1 1/2 years... all the time. I play guitar all the time too, but I like bass better, and the band needs it so...

I'm about 14 now, so I have alot of time to play bass... lol. I'm thinking when I get older I'll be pretty good.

I've always been musical (piano, guitar, bass, trumpet, some drums) so who knows what I'll learn next lol
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#24
I'd been playing guitar for years and just recently figured out how to moderately work a drum machine program on my computer and wanted to record some psuedo "full band" songs, just for fun, so I got the instrument I lacked, a bass, and started to play around with it. after a while I realized I was much more apt at playing a bass than I ever was at playing guitar and switched my main instrument.
#25
What really amazes me about so many of these replies is just how few actual gigs so many of you play; we shared a rehearsal room with a young band, we rehearsed once a week and gigged three times a week they reheased 5 nights a week and gigged once a month.
It was August 1962, I was playing rythmn when I happened to pick up the Bassits Bass, I liked it, I sacked him and bought my first Bass (a Hohner) on the Saturday and gigged the following Friday, this was September 1962. During the next three years of Beatlemania I must a played around 800 gigs, and I mean 800! To me playing an instrument is about getting out and performing live, I played three gigs last week and this week I'm also playing three gigs.
I Joined the British Army in 1966 with the intention of killing people but they found out about my morbid interest in Bass guitar so I was drafted into the regimental band where I played Bass guitar in dance and rock band and Eb Baritone Sax in the military band, I attended the Royal Military School of Music London in 1967/8.
I left the army in 1969 and since then I have continued to play Bass Guitar in many differing genres of music, my favourites being The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac and most classic rock bands.
G&L L2500
Squier Affinity Jazz Bass 5
Ashdown RPM pre-amp
Ashdown Little Giant 1000
300 watt 15" powered cab
450 watt 15" powered sub bass cab
2x10 + horn
1x15x10 + horn
#26
In 4th grade at school we had a chance to play an orchestra instrument. I wanted to play upright bass but i thought i was too short so i played cello. Then around 5th grade i started listening to Primus and Les Claypool stuff and decided to get a bass guitar since it's same as the upright (but cooler).
#27
Let me say one thing regarding Applehead first: His band is absolutely amazing. I've said it before, I'll say it again. Good luck with that man.
And in response to John Swift: there arn't many venues that accept artists our age right now. My band learns Cream and Hendrix songs now just so that we can get a gig within two hours of my house. The only teen venue there is near me will only book hardcore or emo bands. It's not as easy as it used to be to get booked.

As for me, I started about 3 years ago (christmas of '03). I have been playing piano for about 10 years now. I have played jazz and classical, but nothing I really ever listened to in my free time. My friends were all outside skating one day listening to Incubus and RHCP. We said there wern't very many bands that good any more. One of my friends played guitar, and another played percusion in the school band. He said that he would learn to play the drum set, and I couldn't sing, and I didn't really want to play piano, so I took up the bass, since it was the only instrument not being played. Again, I thought it would be easy to pick up because of the 4 strings. (as someone said above, I was very naive).

So I saved up until Christmas and my parents helped me pay for my first bass and amp. It was a Squire P/J and an SWR LA12. I sat in my room for hours and hours after school when I had nothing else to do and just played. Some days I would play for over 6 hours, and have enormous blisters on my fingers afterwards. I knew from piano that the only way to improve was to practice, and I did just that. I practiced extremely hard. By March of that year, we decided we were good enough at our instruments individually to start playing together. That "band" lasted about a month or so. We were all beginners, and the guitarist hated playing guitar (in fact, he was not the least bit musical at all).

I was without a band for about a year. During this time, I watched the same Primus DVD over and over again. It was so addicting. I mimiced Les Claypool's style, and adopted it. I also really fell in love with Dirk Lance of Incubus' style. He remains today as my biggest influence. Then I overheard a conversation between two of my friends. I was completely unaware that one of them played guitar, and they were talking about starting a band. I kind of jumped in, saying that if they needed a bass player to give me a call. Both of them were avid Blink-182 fans, but I was desperate. We lasted about 6 months, before deciding we should stop writing music. Our musical tastes were breaking apart completely. I introduced my guitarist to Jimi Hendrix and Incubus, trying to break him away from his Blink-182 influence, and my drummer began to like heavier music (Atreyu, System of a Down). We still played together, but we only played covers. We had to compromise on each song. We would play "The Wind Cries Mary" by Hendrix, as well as "This Photograph is Proof" by Taking Back Sunday.

After a while, we discovered that we all did have something in common. Our love of the Chili Peppers. We got back together just this month, and are now writing a TON of songs. They all sound MUCH MUCH better than what we had been writing before, and I love every aspect of our band. The band teacher at our school is going to help us record a 4 track demo this month, and so I will have some recordings up later.
Thats pretty much how I got started and how I got to where I am today.


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Last edited by Incubus_SCIENCE at Jun 6, 2006,
#28
well, it all started december 10th 2005...my buddy was having a gig the next day, and i already bought a ticket to go to it. But, his bassist quit, so they needed a new one. He asked me if i could play, since he knew i played guitar for about a year and a half previous, and piano for five years, and since i was playing sax for one of their songs, i said okay. I borrowed this guy's cheap epiphone, and the show was a complete disaster.

After this show, I really wanted to play bass. I looked at bass ads, bass reviews, everything bass. I started listening to primus, kyuss and faith no more a lot, and on jan 2, i bought my first bass (an Ibanez GSR200). The next month I bought a used 400W Yorkville Bassmaster, and i've played three gigs since (all with different bands)
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#29
And in response to John Swift: there arn't many venues that accept artists our age right now. My band learns Cream and Hendrix songs now just so that we can get a gig within two hours of my house. The only teen venue there is near me will only book hardcore or emo bands. It's not as easy as it used to be to get booked.
It wasn't meant as a dig at you, sorry if it came over like that, the young band sharing our rehearsal room are in their 20s (old to you, young to me).
Sorry for the mixup.
G&L L2500
Squier Affinity Jazz Bass 5
Ashdown RPM pre-amp
Ashdown Little Giant 1000
300 watt 15" powered cab
450 watt 15" powered sub bass cab
2x10 + horn
1x15x10 + horn
#30
Quote by John Swift
What really amazes me about so many of these replies is just how few actual gigs so many of you play; we shared a rehearsal room with a young band, we rehearsed once a week and gigged three times a week they reheased 5 nights a week and gigged once a month.
It was August 1962, I was playing rythmn when I happened to pick up the Bassits Bass, I liked it, I sacked him and bought my first Bass (a Hohner) on the Saturday and gigged the following Friday, this was September 1962. During the next three years of Beatlemania I must a played around 800 gigs, and I mean 800! To me playing an instrument is about getting out and performing live, I played three gigs last week and this week I'm also playing three gigs.
I Joined the British Army in 1966 with the intention of killing people but they found out about my morbid interest in Bass guitar so I was drafted into the regimental band where I played Bass guitar in dance and rock band and Eb Baritone Sax in the military band, I attended the Royal Military School of Music London in 1967/8.
I left the army in 1969 and since then I have continued to play Bass Guitar in many differing genres of music, my favourites being The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac and most classic rock bands.


the music scene has gone down quite a bit since the 60's, and its very hard for me to find a group of teenagers willing to not only play a jazz funk fusion style, but to find guys with the talent and time to put into it. im sure back in beatlemania you werent approache by only metal and emo bands. its hard being a 17 year old who loves miles davis and weather report these days
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
#31
Quote by crazypeanutman
the music scene has gone down quite a bit since the 60's, and its very hard for me to find a group of teenagers willing to not only play a jazz funk fusion style, but to find guys with the talent and time to put into it. im sure back in beatlemania you werent approache by only metal and emo bands. its hard being a 17 year old who loves miles davis and weather report these days

Specialist music is always going to have limited appeal both to audience and musicians,the ages of my first band was 16-19yrs we played youth clubs, church halls, pubs, social clubs holiday camps etc, the overlying factor is that there are far more genres of music these days therefore limiting the overall appeal, older people won't go and listen to a punk band just as most younger musicians won't go to see a MOR/soft rock band.
G&L L2500
Squier Affinity Jazz Bass 5
Ashdown RPM pre-amp
Ashdown Little Giant 1000
300 watt 15" powered cab
450 watt 15" powered sub bass cab
2x10 + horn
1x15x10 + horn
#32
ive played guitar for a while and played electric, but clint norris of as i lay dying made me want to jumo into bass man, his vocals are sick so and i wanted to do the same type of stuff, plus alot of his bass playing is the same as the guitar playing , just DEEP
#33
Quote by John Swift
Specialist music is always going to have limited appeal both to audience and musicians,the ages of my first band was 16-19yrs we played youth clubs, church halls, pubs, social clubs holiday camps etc, the overlying factor is that there are far more genres of music these days therefore limiting the overall appeal, older people won't go and listen to a punk band just as most younger musicians won't go to see a MOR/soft rock band.


theres nothing that i dont agree with there, im just sayings its a bit more difficult to get that perticular specialty group really gigging because of age factors and a scarcity of events that we would be qualified/accepted to play at. im in a metal band too, and that has already gigged twice in its first month. im just hoping that opportunities will present themselves for the jazz/funk group before we go away to college.
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
#34
^ You gotta remember, opportunities don't always just come to you. You might have to make a compromise and play a different style if you wanna play out, but that's not bad at all. At the very least you'll learn something.
"You can practice to attain knowledge, but you can't practice to attain wisdom." - Herbie Hancock
#35
I was in a music class at school in 2001, where I was basicaly just playing tambourine and shaker in one song. The next year, I resolved to play an instrument, so in the class next year I was given a bass and a tab for Stand by Me (I didn't even understand that 0 meant play an open note). I was left to my devices in a room with a ****ty Fender bullet bass and started to work on it.

Two months later I was playing Brown Eyed Girl at a school showcase, then I moved to Impression that I get by the Mighty, Mighty Bosstones by the next year. All the while I was learning as much of the RHCP catalog as I could and I started writing after a few months.

Now I play in a cover group with the teacher who put me on bass and I have an original group called "Seedy and the Buns", who are getting ready to gig (we played one, but felt we needed more practice).
#36
i dont play bass i play guitar but im getting to the point where im in a rut on my guitar and i dont feel like trying anymore.. and i recently aquired a bass so maybe in the future if this forums still around and things keep going like they are i will be telling my story that you had the pleasure of hearing before it happened.. how bout ya now
Quote by Air Guitarist!
yeah if she starts gettin fat just punch her in the stomach once or twice a day

Quote by Martyr's Prayer
Spit everywhere, and just yell things at the crowd.

Quote by Virgil_Hart05
YOUR MOM (guitar) and YOUR OTHER MOM on drums
#37
I played guitar (and still do) me and a group of mates at school decided to start a band, we had me, another guitarist, a drummer and a bassist, however the bassist had no bass, had never played (loz itz b455 itz 3zy he says) and never looked like he was going to get one, so a few months later i saved up and got one so the band could carry on with me on bass, i learned some stuff and here i am now, now the band want me to go back to the guitar because the band think one of the current guitarists (he's not very good) (we got a new one for some unknown reason when we really didn't need one) should play bass, as it's easier (which is true for simple root note bashing), but i don't want to give it up, plus it's my bass

i loves bass
Quote by slayaplaya

(oh! maybe some one will sig that witty comment! maybe not...)
#38
Quote by John Swift
What really amazes me about so many of these replies is just how few actual gigs so many of you play; we shared a rehearsal room with a young band, we rehearsed once a week and gigged three times a week they reheased 5 nights a week and gigged once a month.
It was August 1962, I was playing rythmn when I happened to pick up the Bassits Bass, I liked it, I sacked him and bought my first Bass (a Hohner) on the Saturday and gigged the following Friday, this was September 1962. During the next three years of Beatlemania I must a played around 800 gigs, and I mean 800! To me playing an instrument is about getting out and performing live, I played three gigs last week and this week I'm also playing three gigs.
I Joined the British Army in 1966 with the intention of killing people but they found out about my morbid interest in Bass guitar so I was drafted into the regimental band where I played Bass guitar in dance and rock band and Eb Baritone Sax in the military band, I attended the Royal Military School of Music London in 1967/8.
I left the army in 1969 and since then I have continued to play Bass Guitar in many differing genres of music, my favourites being The Eagles, Fleetwood Mac and most classic rock bands.


Hi John,

I couldnt agree with you more. It frustrates me i cannot play three gigs a week (at the moment!!??), but the way promoters work nowadays is, for want of a better word, shady. Take for example the gig i have next week, i attach the prmoters terms below for you to see. This is what we have to work with..

Confirmed Very Special Guests Fri 14 July at 8.30 pm at the Caernarvon Castle, 7 Chalk Farm Road, Camden NW1.
Soundchecks
Friday 5.30 pm
Saturday 5.00 pm,
Doors open at 7.00 pm
30 minute set. A Minimum draw of 25 people is required to secure re-bookings
Entry £5 flyer attached please add your gig details and email on to people
Artist income for all shows is derived from the following door split and dependent upon the audience paying to see that individual artist. (At the door everybody will be asked and noted down whom they have come to see).
First 1 to 10 people - all revenue to Big Note to help recoup the shows' running costs.
Next 11 to 19 - £1 per person to the artist
Next 20 and upwards - to be split 50/50 between artist and Big Note.
Guest list - due to door policy changes by the venue there is no free guest list


Now, if you notice the part in bold... They are all the same. So this means to play a gig you need to draw in crowds, which gets easier with time, but you cannot possibly draw that type of crowd three times a week as a startup band, and even though we've been gigging a while and have a small following, we just could not convince people to come to our gigs three times a week! We dont get paid much either, i attach payment plans too above.. So, we rarely get paid a lot, and when we do a lot of it goes on cabs and transport to the venue as a band expense. it's a nightmare. If you dont draw those crowds, you wont get to play again, and the same promoters are running all the gigs around London. We have a gig every two weeks until August now, but we have to be careful because the promoter doesnt want you playing within two weeks of the last gig at another one of his nights, even though he runs loads around London! Myspace has helped a bit, as we've had a few offers of gigs from that. But it's really hard, John. I'd love to be able to play as many gigs as you, and i think you are right, gigging and playing live is what you learn for, i crave it and i miss it if i go two/three weeks with no gig. We know a great band called Black Mariah (check them out!!), and they've got so sick of it they have put on theiw own night, however i am sure they will enforce the same sort of rules ! They asked us to play their opening night which was nice of them, but if we dont bring loads of poeple they wont ask us again even though they are friends !

Is anyone else having this issue in London.

How many people on here are actually gigging?


And Incubus, thanks for the compliments mate, that's really nice of you to say. We are recording a proper demo next week to start touting around, so fingers crossed. One day i might be able to give up my day job!!

P.S John, do you live in London? I'd love to come see you play some time
#39
I used to play once every three weeks... I'd want to do more, but it's kinde impossible... For starters because promotors and organisors won't book the same band in a 4 month span. Also, where we live, there aren't many venues, so we have to go further away to find venues, and to have our parents drive us every week, or even 3 nights a week is too much to ask from them... No one had their drivers license then so we couldn't drive ourselves, but that is being taken care of ATM.

With my new band it will go a lot better I think. We all have experience, we all have contacts with venues so if we'd want to we could gig very frequently... We also study in the same city (Ghent), and all live near Bruges, so we have two city's where we can find places to gig.

I'd love to play 3 nights a week... But as long as I don't have my drivers license, that won't happen, and as long as punk-rock and pop-punk is the biggest scene where I live, the more alternative rock me and my band play won't make a big chance with organisers...

Maybe we should cary this on in another thread since it's going a bit offtopic...
Quote by John Swift
My neighbour bought his son a Mark Hoppus bass for Christmas, the set-up on it was terrible (the neck had so much bow they should have supplid arrows with it).


Its nice to be important, but its important to be nice...
#40
Quote by Applehead
Hi John,

I couldnt agree with you more. It frustrates me i cannot play three gigs a week (at the moment!!??), but the way promoters work nowadays is, for want of a better word, shady. Take for example the gig i have next week, i attach the prmoters terms below for you to see. This is what we have to work with..
PS John, do you live in London? I'd love to come see you play some time



Hi Applehead you have my full sympathy it's always been the case in London, luckily for me I live just outside Sheffield our band is based near Barnsley, the area has a very healthy live music scene.
What some of our young bands have started doing is to hire the local hall and do their own promoting where three of them get together or one of them organises it and after expenses they split the takings with none of it going to Mr 10%.
There are also plenty of youth clubs where you can hone you gigging skills and play for free as we did on some ocassions.
If you'r hungry enough it will happen, I know it's hard sometimes.
G&L L2500
Squier Affinity Jazz Bass 5
Ashdown RPM pre-amp
Ashdown Little Giant 1000
300 watt 15" powered cab
450 watt 15" powered sub bass cab
2x10 + horn
1x15x10 + horn
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