Jump to content
Lozz196

Lesson learned, always take a backup bass

Recommended Posts

Played last night. Checked the bass I was taking beforehand as I always do. Didn’t take a backup for a variety of reasons - new car so not yet sure how much fits in it (was picking up guitarist with his gear too) and the usual “I’ve never needed a backup” lazyman theory.

Gig to the sound check, plugged in, nothing. After some help from the sound guy it turned out to be the input jack, the material was so weak that it had just given up, bending it into position was fine, put the hack plug in it and it bent it out of position with no contact.

Luckily the headline bands bassist allowed both support bands to use their backup bass (insult to injury here, I was meant to be loaning my bass to the first band on who had come over from Germany). 

So to anyone who doesn’t need a backup, in my 30 plus years of gigging I never have until last night.

Lesson learned, always take a backup bass, doh!

Edited by Lozz196
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never took a spare bass to a gig until around a year ago. I’ve never needed a spare before or since but I feel much more comfortable knowing I have a backup I can grab if necessary.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't normally bother with a backup bass but if something's going to fail it is more likely to be the output socket than anything else. Most bent 1/4" sockets are too flimsy for repeated pluging & unplugging and will eventually not spring back and so lose contact, but I've never had an issue with a switchcraft socket. On any bass that can take one but does not already have one fitted (eg MIJ/CIJ Fenders, Squiers) putting in a swtichcraft is the very first upgrade I usually carry out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had an event where I really should have taken a backup bass, my Hofner starting buzzing really loudly, after faffing around for a few minutes trying to get it to stop I found that with the bass slider in the on position it stopped, this meant I had to sacrifice my usual super bright tone but enabled me to get through the event. 

When I got home I could not hear the buzz through my Amplug or the crappy 10 watt amp I use sometimes to practice, I figured the issue must be a bad ground and tightened up the plate that the ground wire rests against and all seemed well next rehearsal.  Anyway the point is I really should have brought a backup bass.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Could've been a disaster mate, glad you were able to play and didn't have to do a walk of shame back to the dressing room 😉

I mainly gig with an upright bass, but I always take my fretless along just in case. I'm pretty risk-averse though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I took two basses to last night's gig, as usual. My car is sat at the dealership while they stare at it and try to work out why it keeps breaking down, so I had to use my wife's 12 year old Suzuki Swift. Super Compact, Rootmaster 800 and bag of leads, etc just fitted in the boot, two basses just fitted across the back seat. Back up bass stayed in the car for the gig, but knowing it was there was good. 

The only time I haven't had a back up with me was our trip to Germany earlier this year where there was very little room in the vehicle taking the gear. Nothing went wrong, but if it had, I'd have been stuck.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I heard about this, bungle is a good lad! Fun fact, if you ended up playing his black Matt Freeman, that was my old bass! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Never mind a backup bass, I’ve forgotten to even take a bass in the past. On TWO occasions!!

Edited by andytoad
  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a problem with the input jack on my 1991 tobacco burst Gibson Thunderbird with ebony fret board. My lead kept falling out of the jack. The quick fix, I duct taped the lead so it wouldn't fall out. 

I took it to my guy who installed a new input jack for $30.00.

I used to always bring a spare bass but have gotten out of the habit. 

Blue

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, FinnDave said:

I took two basses to last night's gig, as usual. My car is sat at the dealership while they stare at it and try to work out why it keeps breaking down, so I had to use my wife's 12 year old Suzuki Swift. Super Compact, Rootmaster 800 and bag of leads, etc just fitted in the boot, two basses just fitted across the back seat. Back up bass stayed in the car for the gig, but knowing it was there was good. 

The only time I haven't had a back up with me was our trip to Germany earlier this year where there was very little room in the vehicle taking the gear. Nothing went wrong, but if it had, I'd have been stuck.

Hi Dave,

I bought a compact 2016 Ford Focus in January. Not much room for gear. Small trunk and the back seat area is also tight for space. Youve probably seen this vehicle, they're real popular in the UK.

I have gotten out of the habit of bringing two basses to gigs. I honestly dont think the case for my Gibson Thunderbird would fit in the back seat.

Daryl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, markdavid said:

I had an event where I really should have taken a backup bass, my Hofner starting buzzing really loudly, after faffing around for a few minutes trying to get it to stop I found that with the bass slider in the on position it stopped, this meant I had to sacrifice my usual super bright tone but enabled me to get through the event. 

When I got home I could not hear the buzz through my Amplug or the crappy 10 watt amp I use sometimes to practice, I figured the issue must be a bad ground and tightened up the plate that the ground wire rests against and all seemed well next rehearsal.  Anyway the point is I really should have brought a backup bass.

I was getting a buzz humming noise at the last two gigs. I thought it was a grounding problem. I took the amp to our sound techs house ( our BLs husband) and we started to trouble shoot. 

 

We set everything up with DI just like at a gig. No hum and no buzz. At yesterdays gig the hum buzz came back. It was something in the compression software in the PA. It was just a matter of turning off some weird phantom signal in the software.

I'm all good now.

Blue

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, markdavid said:

I had an event where I really should have taken a backup bass, my Hofner starting buzzing really loudly.

I really should start gigging ny German Made Hofner Club Bass. To be honest I've never understood the controls on it. Very confusing for me.

Blue

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, bassix said:

I heard about this, bungle is a good lad! Fun fact, if you ended up playing his black Matt Freeman, that was my old bass! 

Yeah we were chatting about that, I used his other MF, the white one. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Bluewine said:

Hi Dave,

I bought a compact 2016 Ford Focus in January. Not much room for gear. Small trunk and the back seat area is also tight for space. Youve probably seen this vehicle, they're real popular in the UK.

I have gotten out of the habit of bringing two basses to gigs. I honestly dont think the case for my Gibson Thunderbird would fit in the back seat.

Daryl

The Focus is one of the cars I'm considering to replace my Mitisubishsi Outlander which has proven itself to be very unreliable. If I can get enough gear into a Suzuki Swift, a Focus or similar sized vehicle would be a breeze!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always take a spare bass to every gig. The last time I had to use one was about three years ago when the strap button came away from the body of the instrument. 30 seconds later, I was playing again. I’d never be without one. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Bluewine said:

I really should start gigging ny German Made Hofner Club Bass. To be honest I've never understood the controls on it. Very confusing for me.

Blue

Much less confusing than most people think, Bass slider in the On position switches off the bridge pickup and cuts the treble, Treble slider in the On position switches off the neck pickup, both switches in the On position switches off both pickups, both sliders in the Off position allows you to use both pickups.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Always take a second bass. Needed it on a couple of occasions too. You never know and better to have and not need, than need and not have 👍

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always take a second bass to a gig but never a spare amp. I guess one day my lucks gonna run out, but theres only so much you can get in the boot of a Skoda Fabia. 😧

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I never used to take a backup because ‘what’s likely to go wrong with a passive p-bass’ etc. But then I watched a video of one of our guitarists breaking a string mid-song, sourcing a new one from his case and then replacing, stretching and tuning for the rest of the song, all whilst stood there on stage because there was no backstage and no way off.

From my point of view at the time, I noticed it happen as I was stood closest to him, I hit my bit-of-grit pedal to cover the loss of rhythm guitar, I caught the eye of the other guitarist (who couldn’t hear what had happened) and made the ‘something has gone wrong - look over there’ face just in time for him to clock it and cover the solo that was otherwise about to be very obviously missing, and from then to the end of the song we just got on with it. But three things happened as a result...

We saw the video and cringed. We covered it just fine but it still looked pretty naff.

I realised that even if I had a spare string, I really wouldn’t want to have to do that!

The guitarist who didn’t have the mishap and always brings a spare guitar (and whose band it mostly is) told the other that if he didn’t bring a backup from now on, he wasn’t playing! Although he didn’t tell me the same, I voluntarily pledged to join in.

So now I have a basic-but-fettled Ibanez in a cheap-but-adequate TGI bag with a strap, a lead, some picks and disposable earplugs. If the worst came to it and that’s all I was left with, I could still play - though thinking about it now, a tuner would be a good addition - I’ll go and chuck one in the bag.

Not needed it yet... fingers crossed I never do!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, markdavid said:

Much less confusing than most people think, Bass slider in the On position switches off the bridge pickup and cuts the treble, Treble slider in the On position switches off the neck pickup, both switches in the On position switches off both pickups, both sliders in the Off position allows you to use both pickups.

Great, now I'm more confused than ever.

So on means off at the Hofner plant?

Blue

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, FinnDave said:

The Focus is one of the cars I'm considering to replace my Mitisubishsi Outlander which has proven itself to be very unreliable. If I can get enough gear into a Suzuki Swift, a Focus or similar sized vehicle would be a breeze!

I'm worried about your Thunderbird and if it will fit on floor of the back seat passenger area.

Daryl

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Bluewine said:

I'm worried about your Thunderbird and if it will fit on floor of the back seat passenger area.

Daryl

My T Birds are long gone, I've still a Jazz and Precision, but they haven't been out of their cases for over a year now. I've been playing my Ibanez sixes instead. Perfect for the Dead stuff I do with the Dudes, and my hands have got used to the wider necks now, so it would be hard to swap between 4 and 6 strings now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...