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How to "do Bass" in the UK?

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I left Portsmouth for Oz in 1990. Shortly after my last trip home, five years ago, I took up Bass. So I've never been a muso in England.

I'm coming home for a visit in May next year and need some shortcuts for the following:
Places to shop Bass gear.
Jam/open nights.
Gig venues.

And it'd be great to play a few with a local band somewhere.

I'm based in Portsmouth, but I'll have a car and an Australian attitude to distance...

Also, is there a place to hire gear? I'm thinking of bringing a bass with me, but I'll need an amp when I get there and maybe it'll be easier to hire a Bass too.

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Best of luck. I'm sure others can advise you re Jam/open nights, but although you may now have an Ozzy attitude to distance you'll have a job understanding the current problems of parking - you'll know it was difficult in 1990 - difficult at best of times, but now it's almost impossible in some big cities, even in the evenings. And as for London, forget it - you'll have to use public transport to get around now.

I had some U.S. friends stay a few years ago and they were dumbfounded that you couldn't simply rock up to some venue to jam and simply park nearby.

Sorry to dampen your enthusiasm, but best you appreciate this before you start planning things in advance.   😀

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May 7th - June 3rd.

I'm good with the parking and general getting around, it's only 5 years since I've been back.
Recommendations for a specific shop or event/venue would be great.

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16 hours ago, chris_b said:

There's PMT at Farlington, but jump on a train and you'll be in central London in an hour.

Thanks, I didn't know about that one.

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+1 for PMT in Farlington. As for gigs/venues, look up Ricksters gig guide on Facebook. It will have most of the gigs in and around Portsmouth and open mic nights are advertised on there too. 

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