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Showing content with the highest reputation since 17/09/17 in all areas

  1. 57 points
    After my wife died I gave up music. Then 2 years ago I started playing with some mates from school. Old blokes are us! It was going knowhere so I replied to an ad on joinmyband doing covers. Got the gig. Now 6 rehearsals later we are doing a gig! My first in 30 years! I am 61. So... Just keep trying... My love for bass is rekindled. It has only taken me 50 year's to get the best bass sound I have ever had. Thanks markbass and Cort. And the bass soul food pedal. And thank you to this forum/site for being an inspiration!
  2. 42 points
    WoT Snr is far, far handier on the tools than I am. He's just built me a stand, and it's marvellous. Have a look...
  3. 42 points
    Hey dudes, it finally uploaded... So, word of warning... this ended up a little (understatement) longer than I though it was gonna be, but I wanted to cover a few things. Things I hit upon that may be of interest: The reason why we're experimenting with longer form dripped courses outside of the SBL Academy What's actually included within the SBL Academy (for those of you who have no idea) The reason why my YouTube content has changed over the years (this will probably be of most interest to you, as it's likely not what you think) Am I the same in "real life"... or is it a show for the camera? And a bunch or other morning ramblings Ezzzzz
  4. 41 points
    arrived this morning. Birdseye maple facings, ebony fingerboard I've had a couple of Wal's before (one second hand from the mid '80's, one that was new but not my custom order from the late '90's) and those never quite felt like they were "mine". Also, necks a bit on the chunky side. This one is most definitely mine, and the neck is unbelievably slim and fast. Plus, you know, it sounds like a Wal. Just all round gorgeous - now that I have it the two year wait seems completely worth it. Another reason to hope for the end of the lockdown so I can take it to a studio and play it through a cranked up amp And Paul and Philip at Wal were excellent to deal with - top marks all round. My boss thinks I'm working this afternoon. My boss is wrong
  5. 39 points
    Epic fail on at least two levels. 1. Define 'best' - best chops, best playing for the song, best songwriting...? Get promptly mired in controversy. 2. Last time I checked, people don't play bass with their genitals, therefore 'female bassist' is as relevant as 'gay bassist' or 'black bassist.'
  6. 31 points
    Well, i've just done the same to him. Bought a 150 quid item, and marked it payment made, but didnt pay him. Lets see what the [email protected] makes of that
  7. 28 points
  8. 26 points
    Well obviously those awful foreigners keep coming over here and taking all the well-paid gigs away from talented-but-starving hard-working BRITISH people who have paid for the social services and stuff that they want to nick and take back to foreign-land with them when they steal all our best tunes and leave talented-but-starving musical geniuses to rot in garrets while they take all the cash which should have been ours but it's OK cos we're going to kick out Johnny Foreigner and tow Britain out into mid-Atlantic where we can become the first-choice trading partner with North Korea and Peru.
  9. 24 points
    So my incredible other half surprised me on Christmas morning and gave me this incredible Sandberg that I had been drooling over since it landed at Bass Direct. I feel very very lucky indeed to have a girly that would do this and the fact that it is the best Sandberg I have ever played or owned. My older two (one I sold a while back) were the first generation ones and I had only played one of the second generation ones a few years back and had noticed the improvements they had made. Safe to say this thing has blown me away with how good it is and I love it to bits already. I just thought I would share some porn shots with you. My old TM2 is now hiding scared.
  10. 23 points
    Well not quite new but you know what I mean. After ogling the Status Vintage GP model and also numerous 50's precisions I decided to concoct my own version. Perhaps not one for the purists this is a MIM Fender Mike Dirnt in Vintage White (otherwise known as pale custard yellow) which I purchased from @billge along with a Status P neck courtesy of @Cuzzie (also thanks to @HazBeen who gave me some valuable advice along the way). The obvious problem with fitting a different neck onto a 50's style P is the neck heel. The 50's basses have a square heel and everything else has the more common rounded heel. A rounded heel neck will however fit in the square heel socket, it just leaves visible gaps in the corners which the scratchplate doesn't cover. Step forward GIG.ink @TimAl who manufactured me a Mike Dirnt plate with the necessary rounded heel. I'm really pleased with it. The neck and body make a great combination and after hearing lots of goods things about the '59 pickup in these MD basses I'm not disappointed. I may decide to go for another off-white or cream plate in the future but I think the black looks pretty good. 😁
  11. 22 points
    So, I was a teen newbie bass player in the 80’s. Like many a young bassist of the era, I played a Westone at some point - a Thunder 1A in my case. Always had fond memories, so when this Thunder 3 came up for sale locally, I just had to have it. It was in a sorry state (it is 35 years old) - grimy fretboard, broken off screw on the battery cover & worst of all, & no sound from the front pick up, but I could see potential. I was told it had been in a case for most of its life & judging by the minimal fret wear, I can believe that. With a bit of elbow grease from me, the skills of my local guitar shop (Kempsters), & Armstrong pickups, it is now fully functioning and a most welcome addition to my little collection. Sounds epic through modern amplification and the neck is a joy - low action & perfectly set frets make it a breeze to play. Yes, first fret feels a reach & it is weighty at 10.3lbs, but overall it’s superb. Very happy.
  12. 22 points
    Can you imagine if The Police had their van nicked? *Ring Ring* Hello, police. Hi there, this is Gordon from the police. Our van's been nicked. Jeeze, a police van? Boy you're in trouble. No... well, yes, I suppose you could say its a police van... it's certainly the police van. What? Look, I'm in the police. OK. And our van's been nicked. Right. Well can you like, find it? You're in the police. Yes. Find your own ****ing van before your Sgt finds out. No... I'm not in the police! You said you were! Well in one way I am. I'm recording this, you know. Oh, that's ironic. What? Etc...
  13. 22 points
    I believe Scott's brother, Barry Devine, has a Youtube channel which is aimed at builders. In an hour-long special, he covers "Why do a lot of builders use a Ford Transit" with an interesting 12 minute monologue by a roofer who presents an alternate view and owns a Renault Trafic. Also he has a 15-part mini-series on the premium channel, on different types of sand.
  14. 22 points
    The best one I ever saw was at an Iron Maiden gig. They were being supported by a then (and probably still) little known band called Funeral for a Friend (catchy huh). They were a bunch of fresh faced young lads about 18 or 19 playing to an arena full of Maiden fans who just wanted to see the main act, and they were being heckled mercilessly and having things thrown at them by a couple of hundred hard core Maiden fans right at the front of the stage. Three or four songs in and they were going down like a turd sandwich at a buffet. At which point the singer who was about as old as my favourite socks, walked to the front of the stage, stared straight at the offending crowd, lifted the mic, and in a level voice said "F#ck you! I'm 19 years old and I'm up here supporting Iron Maiden, and any one of you f#ckers would give your right arm to be where I am now", at which point an almighty cheer erupted across the whole arena, the band started playing the next song and all the offending Maiden fans started moshing along. The rest of their set was absolutely brilliant! I've never before or since seen anyone turn a crowd like that. Absolutely legendary!
  15. 21 points
    Noticed a funky looking Wishbass on ebay: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Bass-Fretless-4-String-Curly-Ambrosia-Maple-J-B-Wishbass-Kent-Armstrong-J-PU/143531217204?hash=item216b209134:g:ks0AAOSw7UheGOpm and this fugly one: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lefty-Bass-Fretless-4-String-Red-Cedar-Fiddle-Shape-Short-Scale-28-Wishbass/133325147860?_trkparms=aid%3D555021%26algo%3DPL.SIMRVI%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D20190711100440%26meid%3Daf81145a6a9f4ca6b4d1f88154fb85a7%26pid%3D100752%26rk%3D1%26rkt%3D18%26mehot%3Dpf%26sd%3D143531217204%26itm%3D133325147860%26pmt%3D1%26noa%3D0%26pg%3D2047675&_trksid=p2047675.c100752.m1982 Also noticed the verbiage near the bottom of the page: Unfortunately this video exists with Mr Wishnevsky himself demoing one of his basses by using it to make a noise like a dying cow
  16. 20 points
    When the rest of the bass playing world wakes up to the fact of HB's astonishing ability to turn out flawless instruments and flog them at a 5th of the price of the competition, there will be more than a few manufacturers looking nervously over their shoulders. This is another beauty. Not 'good for a beginner' or 'OK considering the price point' or 'will do for a back up' or 'good as a start point for a mod' or 'might be OK once I replace every working part of it'. No. It's just great, straight out of the box, no qualification, no prevarication. It's beautifully finished, plays like a dream balances and sounds like a a P Bass. 42mm at the nut, no sharp edges, no dead spots, beautiful 3ply tort plate, no buzzing, no blemishes. And a laughable price tag. *sigh* in love again. Happens all the time.
  17. 20 points
    This little beauty arrived today!
  18. 20 points
  19. 20 points
    A stunning example of Leo Fender’s G&L P bass. It’s a proper U.S. model built in 2016 at the Fullerton, California plant. Hang tag, warranty card, certificate, spec sheet etc is included. Alder body. Finish is cherry burst. The three ply guard is more like the lovely old vintage looking tort. Saddle lock bridge. 9.5 radius dark Rosewood fret board. Bone nut. Width at the nut is 1.5/8th”. Frets are medium/jumbo and all seated and finished perfectly. G&L Alnico pick up G&L ultralite tuners. Weight is 9lb 12oz. Original hard-shell, black tolex case, which looks almost as new. This bass has not had a hard life, the first owner only used it at home, I’ve gigged it twice. Although I believe it left the factory, with round wound strings, the previous owner fitted a set of flats, so there is no fret wear. Condition is near perfect, with just a little swirling/signs of use to the pick guard. Lovely tight, neck pocket and with six securing screws, the neck/body joint is rock solid. I love this bass, it’s comfortable to play seated or standing, looks amazing and sounds great in a band setting. My reason for selling? Well a near miss last night, on a crowded stage, when our drummer knocked over a heavy cymbal stand, made me rethink gigging with a pristine instrument like this. I’m going to use my old G&L and a P bass that I built for myself, both of which sport war wounds and genuine road wear. Hopefully the photos will give a good indication of the condition. Anything that looks like a blemish or damage to the body finish, is purely down to my photography. Price is £950. I’m in Hoddesdon, Herts. Would really prefer collection but we can discuss shipping if necessary.
  20. 19 points
    It’s been a while, but lockdown has really got me playing properly again. I had one of these about five years ago but (regrettably) let it go as part of a part ex on another P. I’ve been keeping half an eye on eBay for the last few months to see if one would come up again, and on Sunday night my wish was granted! A White, active USA SUB, delivered to my door in short order, and it’s full of unmistakable Stingray zing, and I love it! It’s basically immaculate apart from a bit of wear on the paint which is understandable for something of this age. Very happy.
  21. 19 points
    I went out today, ostensibly to check out a MusicMan Cutlass bass, in Diamond Blue, with maple fretboard. But with a whole day at my disposal and visting a shop run by a friend, I had to check out a few alternatives. My 2 main basses at the moment are EBMM Stingrays. A classic and a special. So the Cutlass seemed a very nice alternative to the Rays. I also played a mapleglo Rickenbacker 4003s, which despite it's rediculous hardware (bridge & string cover-rest), felt very nice to play and was a nicely built bass. But I didn't like the sound of the pickups at all, thick, harsh and a little crude. I had a quick go on a couple of 5-strings, an MTD Kingston and an EBMM 'Ray. Neither convinced me to have another go with a fiver. Alao had another try on a Marleaux Consat 4-string, I'd played before, but still didn't gel with. The Cutlass was pretty much exactly what I expected. Like a passive Precision but IMO, better. I was close to saying I'd have it, when Gary, the shop guy suggested a Jazz Bass. Now I've owned/played a load of Jazz basses but had gone right off them, about 3 years ago. But he pulled out a real nice one, although my intial comment was "not a pink bass!". It was indeed shell pink, with an off white (mint?) scratchplate, being a Fender Limited Edition American Pro Jazz Bass. But what grabbed my attention and got my juices flowing, was the all rosewood neck. A thing of beauty that played as well as it looked. But it had the narrow nut of a Jazz and it was pink! I plugged it in and was surpised at how much I liked the tones available. I mainly settled on middle pickup up 100%, bridge pickup and 75% and varying the tone from 100 to 75%. Then I said to Gary, this would look much better with a tort scratchplate. He agreed and produced one. We slid it into place and it transformed the looks of this bass. Wow, now I was really interested. So Gary said he'd replace the plate and put some Elixirs on for me. Yes please! Trouble was the plate fitted everywhere, except there was a small gap between it and the chrome, control panel. stinky poo! So the original went back on, with the Elixirs and Fender are sending a tort plate for this series, for me to put on ASAP. Got it home and have been blasting along to my tunes and loving it. I've been playing actives for years but my ears are enjoying this passive bass. And my hands are feeling very comfortable on this lovely neck. Just need that tort scratchplate, to perfect the aesthetics.
  22. 19 points
    In my 25 years as a founding member/bassist in KISS tribute 'Dressed To Kill' we were more than aware of the issues here. It was a mutual respect arrangement. We paid tribute to KISS, appeared at KISS product launches and helped promote the band when their UK/European record & PR companies were doing sod all, kept their name alive and spread the word.... We wore the outfits, played the iconic instruments and had the famous lit logo, drumhead logos, pyro, blood spitting, fire breathing etc.... BUT.... our name was sufficiently different (an 'album name' and a play on our 'look') and we NEVER sold any merchandise with the KISS logo or make-up prominently displayed. We ALWAYS made it clear that we were a KISS tribute.... and always supplied our set lists to PRS for the original artist to get fair payment for our live performances. As a result, they treated us fairly, always recognised us at gigs/events and even went as far as to keep a 'secret eye' on anything we were doing song/arrangement-wise. Really.....!! We had it on good authority that they copied a breakdown I wrote into the live version of 'God Gave Rock n Roll To You'.... and their Manager Doc McGhee also asked my direct opinion on adding Beth back into the live set....based on the perceived popularity of the song in our shows....
  23. 19 points
    My amazing jazz, in the super rare Antigua finish. Fantastic condition. All original. Tons of tone. These are so rare now. Beautiful maple neck with pearl blocks. Hardly any wear to the frets. 9.9lbs or 4.5kgs on the bathroom scales. OHSC in lovely condition too. Based in sunny Swindon.
  24. 19 points
    ......but to be fair, I have a good excuse. I almost died! I doubt anyone noticed, but I haven't been around much the past few weeks. About 5 weeks ago I went to the doctors in agony after being up all night with chest and stomach pains, he sent me to the the local hospital just around the corner, where after an examination and explaining my symptoms as best I could (I live in Bulgaria and I'm not exactly fluent with the language) the head doctor said I had to stay in for three days for observation and intravenous antibiotics. Not the worst thing in the world I thought, and sent my wife off for a few supplies. The next couple of days are a bit hazey as there was a fair bit of pain and a lot of drugs involved, but on the second night I was in agony. The Doctor came in late in the evening, gave me a quick examination and immediately bundled me into an ambulance to the main regional hospital about 45 minutes away. I remember I arrived there some time just after midnight, and within an hour or so, I'd had blood and urine tests, x-rays, an ultrasound, and an MRI. Then another Doctor came and examined me yet again and looking extremely concerned uttered the word "peritonitsia". Now, as I said, I'm not exactly fluent, but it didn't take much working out that I had peritonitis, which I'd heard of, but I didn't exactly know what it was. So I whipped out my phone and Googled it, and saw that it has a mortality rate of up to 40%. At which point I thought, oh poo, this is serious! They moved to to a ward and I got to bed about 4 a.m. Then a doctor came around at about 8 who luckily spoke a little English and happened to be the head surgeon. He explained that my gallbladder had burst, which had in turn given me peritonitis and appendicitis, and I would have to have my gallbladder and appendix removed. So at 2 o'clock that afternoon, one day before my 45th birthday, I was in the operating theatre and opened up like a duffle bag. I could go into a lot more detail, but suffice to say the following few days were rather uncomfortable, I couldn't move and had several tubes coming out of various places. Then, after 10 days, just when I thought I was finally going to get to go home, I had to stay in another week in quarantine and have a Covid test. So I eventually got home about 3 weeks after my initial doctors visit with a nice zipper from breasticles to testicles, and strict instructions not to lift anything heavy for six to twelve weeks. As my sixer weighs over 10lbs.....as far as excuses for not practicing go, I think it's a reasonable one. But I'm alive! I can't praise the Bulgarian healthcare system enough. They don't have much funding, the hospitals are run down and resemble Victorian asylums. The bedside manner could be better. But the actual healthcare was superb. I'm thankful that everyone was in the ball at every step of the way. From my GP, to the local hospital, the A and E department and my surgeon. I reckon another 24 hours and I'd have been a gonner. Not exactly how i'd planned to spend my 45th birthday. But at least I was surrounded by beautiful women in nurses outfits being given copious amounts of free drugs.
  25. 19 points
    It’s become blatantly obvious all gear sounds the same. I am talking literally everything, basses, amps, cabs, PA’s, pedals within their respective category, strings. The only thing that makes a difference is the tonewood and compression. Those that think otherwise forgot to ask Santa for the gift musicality for Christmas consistently for their entire life. Also people who mainly play with a pick are superior in every way. This way tone can only be in the Finger - not plural. While I am here, chordal type players don’t count, they can do one to the guitarchat sister site. I am not wrong, I have read every post of every single thread on this site and this is the logical conclusion, hence no poll - discuss if you wish, but....... oh and a happy new year
  26. 19 points
    Mrs S made the basic error of leaving me on my own with time to kill in Nottingham for the afternoon. I made the even more basic error of nipping in to Hotrox in Sneinton. They had this.... I wasn't going to buy it until i realised; a) that it is medically necessary as the binding on a 4003 is a bit sharp on the forearm, and b) that it will annoy Young Teebs. Oh, and; c) it is bloody lovely. Mrs S did the rolly eyes thing until I mentioned (b) then she understood why i had to get it. Of course, I've broken my one-in-one-out rule so expect some major activity in the marketplace shortly. Or I have a kidney if Raymondo's interested.....
  27. 19 points
  28. 19 points
    How aboot this? It's an 80's Fender Performer, not many made.
  29. 18 points
    Today I took receipt of my first bass a Fender Vintera Mustang in sea foam green. Bought the bass from @Grantd who made the process super simple, really nice guy and went above and beyond to get the bass to me, so thank you, definitely buy with confidence. Really chuffed with this bass, should give me a solid platform to learn from and more importantly makes me smile.
  30. 18 points
    And so, as a post-script. P and his delightful wife arrived last weekend to pick up the Guitar Bouzouki. And I think he would be happy in me saying he loves it For me, that is a great pleasure and relief in equal measure! P was able to bring his standard Irish Bouzouki for me to have a look at and listen to and that was fascinating. We both agreed that the Guitar Bouzouki has a much richer sound (which would be hoped and expected) and a strummed chord just goes on, beating sub-harmonics all the way, for a long, long time. The neck between the two instruments was quite different, part designed and fully expected and part more of a surprise. P had requested it to be wider and shallower than his original which will always change the curves and feel, but the thing I noticed straightaway was that the 'V' on the original felt distinctly V shaped to the hand further up the fretboard than my build. It doesn't really show on the profile drawings but it does give it a different feel further up the board. Not necessarily a bad feel, but certainly a different feel. Changing that, if P's conclusion was that he wanted that tweaking, is actually a very easy fix and the sort of thing that can be done on a 'while you wait' basis. And there's a crazy coincidence (that I won't go into detail on) that might mean that finding a convenient time to do that would not be too much of problem. But, that said, even at first play, this is P showing how a Guitar Bouzouki should be played. Glorious! And particularly glorious through headphones
  31. 18 points
    Years ago I had a similar white one and I sold it..Within a couple of hours I had around five people who wanted to buy it (I wasn't asking much, around 600 euros if I recall correctly). At the end of the day I got a reaction from a young bassplayer from Holland who said this was his dream bass but he couldn't afford it.. He said that he was going to work during the holidays picking fruit from trees to earn this bass but this would mean that I had to wait another six months and he didn't expect me to keep this for him.. I kept the bass, he worked hard for his bass picking fruit from trees and afterwards he came to see me (his father drove the car and told me that he wanted his son to work for what he desired) and he left with the white Miller bass.. I'm always glad to see one, reminds me of the young boy from Northern Holland...(sorry for the off topic)
  32. 18 points
    The plan was to visit Mark and the boys at Bass Direct to try and buy a US Lakland Jazz they have advertised. That was the plan. What happened was, well, basically my head got turned by a spotless 2011 4003 in my favourite colour scheme and once I plugged it in and heard that Ric "fizz" it was only ever going to finish up one way. The Lakland was lovely but left me feeling completely underwhelmed. It was a gorgeous piece of work and the build quality was superb, but I just didn't feel anything from it. It was (as they say) me, not the Lakland. I need to change the strings but it's a real beauty and fills a gap I didn't know needed filling in my collection. All in all, a worthwhile trip.
  33. 18 points
    Easily solved. Just leave the UK. Plenty more cheap Thomann goodies for me. 😁 Oh, and did I mention the cheap beer, low cost of living, borderless travel, and the right to live and work anywhere in Europe unhindered. I really miss the UK. 😋
  34. 18 points
    I had a get together with a band planned for tomorrow, the guitarist sent through a couple of original tunes and asked me to learn a cover. All done, excited. Got a message from the guitarist this morning to say that it's off, the drummer's had to cancel, and that's the final straw as he's been unreliable recently. No band, no get-together. As far as I know this is the third time this has happened - I reply to an ad and the band breaks up Anyone know any bands they don't like that need a bass player ? Maybe another covers band is nicking your regular slot at the Dog & Duck ? Ex-spouse getting somewhere with their Nu-Klezmer band ? Sick of that residency at the Filmore and you want a change ? Email me the band ad, I'll reply with my schedule of services and we can get to work....
  35. 17 points
    Because so much of what right wingers think is free speech is actually hate speech.
  36. 17 points
    New Hamer Bass Day!!! With HUGE thanks to an amazing friend in WA, USA (who secured it for me and sent it to the UK) I have just received this amazing condition Copper/Gold 1990 Hamer Impact bass (designed by Kip Winger). Less than 200 ever made of this beauty....! It looks, feels, plays and sounds AWESOME!! A really focused, tight but full piano tone with a little edge. 😎🎸😎👍 That makes three Hamer Impacts in my collection now! 🎸🎸🎸
  37. 17 points
    In shocking news, the 72 year-old muso fails to trash his own legacy but instead emerges triumphant. F**k me, he can still sing.
  38. 17 points
    I love that this was edited by one of the mods As a flag waving, T-shirt wearing techy I'll bite. Mic that rig up and pump it through a really good Class D, Neo speakered, festival sized PA rig and it'd sound just as good. So it isn't class D or lightweight neo speakers, it is something else. I'll tell you my theory, in the olden days speakers and amps were designed to enhance your bass sound (guitar sound even more so but this is Basschat) They didn't need to be clean and undistorted they just had to sound good. People built cabs and tried them out with bass and the ones that sounded best or most popular got made and sold. Theory wasn't really worked out until the 70's and didn't get through to instrument amp design until much later. The truth is we don't much like uncoloured sound for bass and most of us aren't very good at finding the eq to achieve it so a nice old Trace that gives us the Trace sound sounds better to us than our own attempts to recreate it. The second thing is that we like things that are loud, too loud to be sensible but there is joy in just cranking up an old monolith of a speaker with an amp with the frequency response curve of the Cairngorms. Sensibly we'd scrap the backline, use in-ears or at least floor monitors and let the PA do it's job but for some that's no fun. There's also a lot of self delusion, I used to have fun in my old rear wheel drive cars with cross ply tyres sliding round bends double declutching because the synchromesh was rubbish but I can't really pretend those cars were 'better' than those I drive now. One day soon the computer modelling will be so good we won't be able to tell the difference but that is still a little way away. Until then if you love an old Peavey stack and don't mind shifting it then the important thing isn't technical perfection so go for it and enjoy.
  39. 17 points
    Hopefully you won't get fooled again.
  40. 17 points
  41. 17 points
    Blimey, once you start looking they turn up in all sorts of places!
  42. 17 points
  43. 17 points
    TBF I'm a bit dissapointed that several BC members seem to be seriously advocating pulling out of a contract you've committed yourself to. If it was another BC member you'd stiffed (might yet be for all anybody knows) I'll bet it would be a different story. 'Man up, pay up and deal with it' would be my advice.
  44. 17 points
    Hey gang! I've finally joined the pre-CBS club. Never thought it would happen... Not original: refin, replaced jack, and a couple of wires. The rest is as-is. Weighs 9lbs-ish, it's resonant and has that midrange. Gigged it last night, and it's lovely.
  45. 17 points
    Ted Nugent seems to be generally quoted with the famous quote of "if it's too loud, you're too old". However, following a recent conversation with a pub landlord and customer it seems then the modern day version in smaller gig locations should be "if it's too loud, you really are too loud". . . Some background - we played a gig at a new venue for us that's had regular live music for a long time. After sound check the landlady came over and told us we sounded really good and were the best band they'd had in for a long time. Obviously we're all smiling and happy but a bit confused as all we'd played was a few sections of three songs to set the sound up for each instrument. I asked her what it was she liked - she replied without hesitation that we weren't stupidly loud and she could hear herself think when we were playing and also her customers when they ordered. We got a decent crowd and seemed to go down well and spoke to her about possible future gigs. She said she really liked us but that she was almost certainly going to stop having live bands completely. Her reasons were really interesting: Too many of them are too loud - deafening the staff and punters and increasingly annoying neighbours Poor quality sound - guitars drowning out the vocals, bass making things shake around the room and everything sounding a bit disconnected One of her regulars joined the conversation and backed her up. He obviously knew a bit about live sound and he reiterated that bands were getting louder and louder (he mentioned they seemed to be able to do this even with small combos - which is true of course with so much modern gear). The thing that annoyed him the most was the imbalance of sound, only vocals in the PA, PA sounding 'thin' and lacking clarity and the dreaded guitarist and bassist continually turning up to drown each other out whilst the drummer thrashed away regardless. Neither of them thought the musicianship was poor - although they said they often couldn't tell because of poor vocal quality. They both also said that vocals were the single most important thing for most everyday pub gig goers and they couldn't understand why bands seemed to pay so little attention. Soon after we played another gig where the landlord said something along the same lines. He felt he was losing customers because his local bands were simply too loud week after week. He was always telling them to turn down but they always said they had to be that loud because they couldn't hear what they were playing. He said he was not booking any more bands this year This morning I saw a thread (not here) where someone was saying he was in a new band playing weddings and corporate functions but probably wouldn't be in the front of house mix. Another player then said he needed a really powerful amp that went really loud. I see this 'it's great, goes really loud' quote all the time from people playing small gigs and also so many players saying that the PA is just for vocals. I can understand that 'volume' is all part of the dynamics of playing live but surely it should be 'controlled' rather than the mayhem unleashed by so many pub bands? It amazes me that people still think, in an age where quality PA is easily available for not too much money, that being insanely loud is something to aspire to and that they don't seem to really care about setting a band up for the audience rather than themselves. Putting everything into the FoH mix allows you to balance the sound across all instruments so that the audience can hear everything clearly - especially those all important lead vocals. It also allows everyone on stage to pull back on volume so they aren't deafening each other and can hear what everyone else is playing (adding stage monitors or in-ears is a bonus but I realise that's often too much additional expense or is taking up too much floor space). The lead guitarist in my band sets his Mesa Boogie combo to 5w and never needs any more volume. So, apologies for the long post but it genuinely worries me that more & more gigs will disappear if bands don't get their sound in order. . .
  46. 17 points
    I was playing keyboard in a pop-reggae band a few years back (well, we thought we were reggae but really we were a rock band with a passing offbeat acquaintance) and one of the doormen round town booked us to play at his nephew's christening. He wasn't offering much but he was a nice lad and we already owed him a few favours for 'well-timed assistance' around town, so we hop in the van and troll down to Brum for a play. We rock up outside this old community hall about 6PM to meet Mustafa, and after a minute he comes out dressed in this incredible full-length black and red leather robe, which makes him look like something out of Star Wars. That was Red Flag No 1. Red Flag No 2 was the polyrhythmic music playing at punishing volume inside the hall. We go inside only to find ourselves walking into the middle of a traditional Ghanian christening ceremony (or whatever the equivalent is) and that was the point where we instantly realise we are not going to go down well. We're sat down over at the back of the room with the other men and given a plate of rice that nearly takes my head off (our singer causes a minor scandal by sitting with us instead of the women, but I think we got tagged with the 'musician' exemption) and Staf introduces us to approximately 350 members of his extended family, who are all absolutely lovely and just as totally baffled as to why we're there. The ladies are all sat in circle of chairs in the middle of the room with the kid in the middle, the men are sat around the edges, and the actual ceremony is being conducted by two MCs, one man and one woman, who will quickly become MC Tall and MC Short respectively. They're taking it in turns to shout through a PA turned up so loud it's become a fuzzbox; there is a second PA playing music at a volume where my eyeballs are vibrating; I do not recognise a single tune all evening. Every few minutes MC Tall or Short will double up on the shouting tempo and the women all get up and pull huge wads of dollars out of their pocket, which they then throw at the kid. The ladies are all stunning with incredibly elaborate hairstyles and the men are wearing the same leather robes as Staf - this is clearly a big occasion and everyone is putting on their best 'look how much money we have' display, which explains the throwing of the dollars. We are under-dressed, hungover, and trying to make awkward chit-chat at the top of our voices. Eventually the ceremony is over and we set up on the community hall stage, planning to make this the shortest set of our lives. We have a quick argument about what to play, which ends with us scrapping everything from our set that isn't the reggae material. Our singer is already nervous after the men's section faux pas and we've not been able to understand a single word of the ceremony so far so we have NO IDEA what is happening. We're gamely vamping away at our best imitation of an authentic roots band but are keenly aware that our material is aimed at a spot several thousand miles and a different hemisphere away from what the crowd is expecting, and it's just dropping into the abyss of stares. The crowd is polite but clearly expecting something which is not happening. Second song in and we're contemplating dropping the rest of the set and legging it. Singer is visibly wilting under the stares of an entire flock of matriachs perched to stage right; I'm getting extremely interested in the top of the keyboard, which I have never examined so closely before. My nose is scraping the flat keys at points. Suddenly MC Short is on stage with us and grabbing the mic off the singer. What fresh hell is this??? We're expecting to be cut off unceremoniously, but instead she starts shouting at the crowd with a variation on her earlier theme. This lady is about 60 and barely four feet tall, but she can shout for God and with the backup of the PA she is reaching pitches that are melting my fillings. Every dog in a twenty mile radius is starting to howl. At her instigation, the entire front row of (stunning) women gets up as a unit to start throwing dollars at us - I'm beginning to have some very complicated feelings indeed. After she feels the crowd are sufficiently harangued we get the mic back and play another few songs which are met with respectful applause if not much actual interest, so we take the hint and finish up. We've picked up about 600 dollars in ones and have to carry them in a basket along with our gear. As soon as we finish the party is back on and everyone is off their chairs and dancing; hundreds of kids have appeared out of nowhere to do the old church hall skidding dance which apparently transcends culture! Huge baskets of homemade fried fish and curried rices have started appearing round the edges of the hall and we eat as much as we can physically carry back to the table. It's all delicious but so hot my hair starts curling and I spontaneously develop sunburn, which the kids all find hilarious. Staf is crazily happy that we played as he seems to think we are megastars rather than the chancers we are, and we're just happy to have been asked to do it so we decline our fee and take petrol money instead, reasoning that the story will likely pay for itself in beer over the years. We donate the dollars to the kiddo as a gift because we're all fairly drunk on Star Beer at this point and getting them changed seems like hassle. Some of the stunning girls from earlier are starting to give us the eye but my daddy taught me never to hit on a girl when A) you're at someone else's family occasion and B) her daddy is roughly the size of a car, in the room, and giving you the death glare, so prudence becomes the better part of valour and we make a swift exit. In reality it wasn't actually that desperate considering we were playing to an audience who had absolutely no interest in what we were doing, but it was hell of a night at the time. Don't think I've ever felt so out of place before or since. The food sure beat the hell out of my family dos though! I'd do it all again just for another crack at that buffet, even if my fragile little English stomach meant I spent three hours glued to the toilet next morning...
  47. 16 points
    I have fond memories of Sid, my 70RI CIJ Precision from my first punk band Kismetik, a decade or so back. Nice narrow, almost J-like nut width and neck, and my fave style of Fender P logo. So when I spotted this pretty rare, late 1990s surf green edition online I dived in. Also I have been under pressure from Mrs C (who ranks basses purely based on colour) to replace 'Minty', my now-sold 62RI surf green Jazz ... oh and @Happy Jackwouldnt sell me his surf green 54P Lull. Well thats my list of excuses ...
  48. 16 points
    Ebay isn’t the problem. People are the problem, exploiting systems put in place to protect buyers and actually using them against good sellers.
  49. 16 points
    On the 22nd December 1989, I narrowly scraped into the 80s with my first live performance. It was a less than impressive slot as the band that played the Sixth Form Pantomime in our school production of Cinderella... I'm not sure if she'd have wanted her shoe back after that racket! Fast forward through thirty years and I've definitely had a lot of fun sharing some great, and occasionally not so great stages, with some amazing friends, meeting many of my best mates and generally having a blast. Not sure if I have another thirty years in me but I guess the fun is in the finding out. And 2020 is already looking pretty good for the first few months. Rock on! *Fun fact but the top 3 photos were the same bass, a Fender Precision MIJ 57RI from 1989 that lasted until I went online and discovered GAS. The bottom right photo is a Fender Precision MIJ 57RI from 2016 that shows how life sometimes goes full circle!
  50. 16 points
    A singer friend of mine and myself were starting a new project, writing songs together. We would meet at mine to write and record a bit of guitar and bass. I was playing guitar but I wanted to stick to bass, so we auditioned guitarists. This guy comes in, and within seconds we realise he can't even play. He was having trouble shaping chords with is fingers... and you could see he was feeling very nervous and embarrased. Singer is giving me this look like "we're done here"... but I felt sorry for him, so I took one of my guitars and showed him something simple to play, and I played another guitar and singer sang a bit... then moved to bass... and over all I taught him 3-4 little things and we played for another 30 minutes or so. Then he left, apologising for his lack of preparation and he laughed at how silly he was for thinking he could do it. Then he says he had only been learning guitar for 2 weeks... I emailed him a couple of days later to see how he was. We laughed. He was a cool guy, he just jumps into things with lots of enthusiasm and not enough preparation sometimes We became friends, I encouraged him and eventually he went on to form his own band. I played a couple of gigs with him as a dep, recorded a bit, I went to his wedding... so yeah, cool audition ha! stinky poo guitarist at the time, but I ended up with one of the coolest friends I've got.

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