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Bilbo

First gig played, where and when.

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Thursday January 29, 2009 in the main bar at the Pearl GTL Construction camp about one and a half hours north of Doha in front of a captive audience of about 350 people.  I'd joined the band two weeks before and did a 2 hour set of mixed dad rock, pop and classic rock with borrowed gear.  I'd been playing bass for, erm 2 weeks, although I'd played 6 string for years.

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First live performance for me would have been July-ish of '96. Classic Rock covers at a private first gig in Kidderminster. All infront of family, friends so that eased the nerves somewhat. My bandmates were all nearly twice my age and I only got an audition in the first place as my mate was the brother of the Rhythm guitarist / vocalist..and they were desperate for a bass player. I had only been playing a few months. On one side I had a guitarist playing through a Marshall 100 watt Superbass, and on the side guitarist going through a Hiwatt 100 watt Tube amp... both turned up to 11, while I stood there playing a Washburn B200 LP shaped bass through a little HH 50 watt combo.... Yes that's right.. I might as well have just randomly hit the strings all night , or not bothered turning up at all... it would have made no difference!

However, it was a good first gig, I wasn't *too* nervous, and stayed with the band for about 3 years or so... ( and I got my own back when I turned up to a band practice a few weeks later with my new Trace Elliot bass stack !) 🤪

Haven't gigged for years now , mostly due to having to deal with too many cockwombles and not enough grounded, easy going musicians!

 

 

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Sometime in 73 I think, Little Hereford Village Hall in ..er Little Hereford (which is not far from slightly bigger Hereford). Can't remember what guitar I played (I think I borrowed one) or what amp. We had 3 songs, no vocals and played support to a local rock band (who were pretty good I seem to remember). The audience danced and clapped at the end....what more could you ask?

This is us a couple of years later playing The Angel Hotel in Ludlow. I'm playing my pre Gibson Epiphone through a Matamp head & 2 Marshall 4x12's. Can't for the life of me remember what we called the band tho 😂

Phoenix.jpg

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First proper gig post school was 1996, a battle of the bands at a community hall in Shrewsbury. (My equipment at this point was a pointy headstock Aria ProII and I had a Marshall JCM900 combo guitar amp that I used to line out to a P.A 15incab 😂

got to the gig and couldn’t get the amp to power up, ended up being kindly loaned an amp. 

We came second from last. Guess somebody had left there girlfriend at home 😂😂😂😂

cross between s**t scared and loving every minute of it. Still chasing that buzz ! 

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We played as support to another band that had been going for a while. We were nervous as hell if I remember. Before that, we went to a local Jazz club and performed a really basic twelve bar passage and I remember getting some polite claps. That was me, I had the bug!

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Definitely not our first gig, but very early on in my first band. This was in my let's be as rock n roll as possible phase.                                                                                                                                                                                                       

 

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19 hours ago, ubit said:

Definitely not our first gig, but very early on in my first band. This was in my let's be as rock n roll as possible phase.                                                                                                                                                                                                       

 

37345_462900937924_5119068_n.jpg

Westone Spectrum bass too - I wish still had mine!

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2 hours ago, bassbiscuits said:

Westone Spectrum bass too - I wish still had mine!

I still have it up the loft. Wasnt actually too bad for the day

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Just now, ubit said:

I still have it up the loft. Wasnt actually too bad for the day

In fact that’s reminded me, I’m gonna dig it out and restring it, just to hear what it sounds like through decent gear. Thanks for that 👍

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52 minutes ago, ubit said:

In fact that’s reminded me, I’m gonna dig it out and restring it, just to hear what it sounds like through decent gear. Thanks for that 👍

I played a white Westone Spectrum ST on my first gig! Yours looks like a DX....

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I was a late starter!  Had my first gig in front of real people in 2008 aged 51.  Marconi Social Club in Chelmsford.  Band was called 'Still The Thrill', I'd just bought a 'proper' bass - that Hayman 4040 - and was still concentrating hard where to put my fingers.  Edit - notice Frankenstein's monster on keys.

1stgig.jpg.de0b4af4848d40176c48464229b66a93.jpg

Edited by Paul S
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3 hours ago, bassbiscuits said:

I played a white Westone Spectrum ST on my first gig! Yours looks like a DX....

Definitely a Spectrum. Can’t remember the designation. I had a Hondo P copy and saw this in a shop window in Edinburgh. I borrowed £200 from my then art school girlfriend ( Thanks Jane) and bought it. I paid her back when we got home, but I just had to have it. I thought it was the most gorgeous bass I’d ever seen. As I say I’m gonna have to dig it out and try it with new strings and through the Svt, because it never got the chance all those years ago. 

Edited by ubit
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1 minute ago, ubit said:

Definitely a Spectrum. I had a Hondo P copy and saw this in a shop window in Edinburgh. I borrowed £200 from my then art school girlfriend ( Thanks Jane) and bought it. I paid her back when we got home, but I just had to have it. I thought it was the most gorgeous bass I’d ever seen. As I say I’m gonna have to dig it out and try it with new strings and through the Svt, because it never got the chance all those years ago. 

Do it! I bet that'll sound ace. I flogged mine back in the day for a Charvel with a pointy headstock which in turn got sold for a precision. 

They were cool basses tho. Loved the look of that massive pickup.

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Just now, bassbiscuits said:

Do it! I bet that'll sound ace. 

They were cool basses tho. Loved the look of that massive pickup.

I wonder how much £200 for a bass would be in today’s money. I loved it at the time, but once I was able to afford a Status, that was the start of my journey into really good basses

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It’s funny, pointy basses we’re all the rage back then.( early eighties) I nearly bought a sort of Explorer, but not as cool as it was a too pointy bass, but opted for the  Westone. Thank feck! 

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My 1st gig was on keyboards with a hastily-put-together band at school 6th form in 1981. We were doing 60s/early 70s protest songs after a screening of that scary anti-nuclear weapons doc wot got banned... We weren't very good!

1st gig on bass was 3 months after I'd decided I was actually a bass player, and had worked out how to do it using an acoustic guitar. We'd had 2 rehearsals, written 6 songs, of about 10 minutes each (!) and Jez (later of the Utah Saints) lent me his Gibson short scale bass and IIRC, a Carlsboro combo.

We played for around 2 hours (we did some stretching) at the Tartan Bar at Leeds Uni in 1983, and we didn't get booed off - which was rather surprising...

After that we played many parties, where we'd start playing a song, any member could nip off, put a baked potato on, have a bath and we'd still be playing the same song when they came back.

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41 minutes ago, ubit said:

I wonder how much £200 for a bass would be in today’s money. I loved it at the time, but once I was able to afford a Status, that was the start of my journey into really good basses

Likewise. I was in a funk/metal band when i had the Charvel (my first real band that did more than one gig!) but once I started dabbling in old Fenders things changed rapidly...

My wallet hasn't been the same since. 

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10 hours ago, Paul S said:

I was a late starter!  Had my first gig in front of real people in 2008 aged 51.  Marconi Social Club in Chelmsford.  Band was called 'Still The Thrill', I'd just bought a 'proper' bass - that Hayman 4040 - and was still concentrating hard where to put my fingers.  Edit - notice Frankenstein's monster on keys.

1stgig.jpg.de0b4af4848d40176c48464229b66a93.jpg

That's two of us playing first gigs on Hayman 40/40s. Mine was black though, so it's not my old one.

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8 hours ago, tauzero said:

That's two of us playing first gigs on Hayman 40/40s. Mine was black though, so it's not my old one.

Was yours a heavy one? Mine was, had to move it on when my back went from 'acute' to 'chronic'.  Lovely thing, though.

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17 hours ago, bassbiscuits said:

Do it! I bet that'll sound ace. I flogged mine back in the day for a Charvel with a pointy headstock which in turn got sold for a precision. 

They were cool basses tho. Loved the look of that massive pickup.

I will keep you posted on how it sounds. I’m at work just now, but will get on it when I get home 👍🤘

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I think this is the pointy culprit, although I don’t remember it being an Aria  the body was way too small and looked stupid  this looks almost respectable, but in real life it was silly looking, but very of it’s age!

 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, ubit said:

 

I think this is the pointy culprit, although I don’t remember it being an Aria  the body was way too small and looked stupid  this looks almost respectable, but in real life it was silly looking, but very of it’s age!

 

 

 

CBB8C359-9078-490E-BF23-E68B3C4EF4A7.jpeg

I had one of these in black and red. Looked stupid but played and sounded great 😂.

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4 minutes ago, Deedee said:

I had one of these in black and red. Looked stupid but played and sounded great 😂.

I thought it just didn’t suit me as it was too small. I tried a Steinberger stick bass once too, with the same result. The Steinberger was awkward to play as you had to physically push back with your playing hand otherwise your fretting hand would push the bass back. You don’t realise that your arm does this until there’s no body to push against. 

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22 minutes ago, ubit said:

 

 

 

 

CBB8C359-9078-490E-BF23-E68B3C4EF4A7.jpeg

I have to add, when I was in my late teens, I thought this was the most amazing looking bass that I’d ever seen. Amazing how your tastes change. 

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Aria Pro II. That’s a name that conjures up the 80’s. are they still in business? You never hear about them nowadays 

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