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Have these Lockdowns improved your bass playing?

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7 minutes ago, chris_b said:

+1

You've got to hit the ground running.

Particularly if live music is going to be happening again in out door pub venues by end of May Spring bank holiday! 😉

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I've practiced less but when i do pick up the bass i have so many ideas and styles i want to play better. I've been pushing myself a bit more on chord phrasing if that's the correct terminology. Not great at slapping style so i've mucked about a bit with some of that picking up on some Marcus tricks and Henrik Linder from Dirty Loops. No expert and will never be at their level but its nice to fool around with.

All in all i've been listening to styles i normally wouldn't play or attempt to play. 

Been playing my Overwater 6 fretless a lot more too not so much for the fretless but more for the 6 string options.

This is what i used to do before i rekindled my interest in playing in bands.

Dave

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I played with a couple of former band mates at a rehearsal studio a few days before Christmas. We are hoping to get a few gigs together sometime. I put my bass in its case when I was leaving the studio and haven't opened the case since. Zero motivation to play with nothing on the horizon.

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19 hours ago, chris_b said:

+1

You've got to hit the ground running.

This. With all the talk about less venues and/or the inevitable stampede to book gigs when venues do reopen, do you really want to be the guy who holds the band back because you didn't have your sh*t together in time?

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28 minutes ago, odysseus said:

This. With all the talk about less venues and/or the inevitable stampede to book gigs when venues do reopen, do you really want to be the guy who holds the band back because you didn't have your sh*t together in time?

This is pretty much standard for any time though. I’ve always made the effort so that guy isn’t me, and get quite annoyed with others when it’s obvious that I was the only one to give up a lot of my free time, because I actually care. 
 

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14 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

This is pretty much standard for any time though. I’ve always made the effort so that guy isn’t me, and get quite annoyed with others when it’s obvious that I was the only one to give up a lot of my free time, because I actually care. 
 

+1 I always make a point of trying to be the most well prepared person in the room.  I learnt that hard lesson when I was a teen and sometimes didn't get the job, so promised myself to always be in top of what I've been given to learn.

I don't know how many 'auditions' I've been to where I know the material I've been given to learn much better than the people in the band.  So it's a 'no thanks' from me.

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25 minutes ago, dave_bass5 said:

This is pretty much standard for any time though. I’ve always made the effort so that guy isn’t me, and get quite annoyed with others when it’s obvious that I was the only one to give up a lot of my free time, because I actually care. 
 

When I was playing in bands, I put in the work so that;

a) If it went wrong it wasn't me.

b) If it went wrong, I had half a chance of holding it together while other people recover.

In the best band I was in, we all  made the effort. And it showed.

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Me being in a band where only I made the effort, as good as the band is musician wise, its taken lockdown to realise how emotionally draining it all is. Probably a big factor in me not doing much too.

Most musicians are inherently lazy, don't live in the real world - and thinks the world owes them a living. Minimum input, maximise take.

Edited by EBS_freak
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4 minutes ago, EBS_freak said:

Me being in a band where only I made the effort, as good as the band is musician wise, its taken lockdown to realise how emotionally draining it all is. Probably a big factor in me not doing much too.

Most musicians are inherently lazy, don't live in the real world - and thinks the world owes them a living. Minimum input, maximise take.

This, to me, is a genuinely sad reflection. I must have been lucky not to have encountered this.

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What @dave_bass5 @inthedoghouse and @Lfalex  resonates with me.  I always had a day off work before rehearsals so that I could learn and practise stuff for the following day and the drummer and myself have been pretty strict about only bringing in others that share our dedication.  We have a guitarist now that seems to be as keen as us but we had to let the previous guitarist go as he had too many family commitments.

We are serious and have no time to be wasted by others that aren't.

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8 minutes ago, BillyBass said:

What @dave_bass5 @inthedoghouse and @Lfalex  resonates with me.  I always had a day off work before rehearsals so that I could learn and practise stuff for the following day and the drummer and myself have been pretty strict about only bringing in others that share our dedication.  We have a guitarist now that seems to be as keen as us but we had to let the previous guitarist go as he had too many family commitments.

We are serious and have no time to be wasted by others that aren't.

100% with you there, Billy.  I don't spend countless hours at home perfecting whatever it is I have to learn only for others to let the side down.

That's exactly the reason we decided to disband our originals band before Christmas - two of us had total commitment and the skills to go with it, the other ('drummer') had neither.

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My playing has definitely improved. During the first lockdown, I was waiting for an operation on my right wrist. It was scheduled for 9th March and was understandably cancelled. I couldn't play for more that a couple of minutes due to RA. Last September, I had the op, they put a bar into my wrist and 12 weeks later I was back on bass. I'm playing for at least an hour a day and enjoying it. This must be the first time they put a bar into a Scotsman and not the other way around. 😀

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The thing I found that impresses other musicians most is if they play you one of their own songs and you can join in with a bassline that fits.

It doesn't have to be flashy or harmonically complex.

 

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8 minutes ago, Stub Mandrel said:

The thing I found that impresses other musicians most is if they play you one of their own songs and you can join in with a bassline that fits.

It doesn't have to be flashy or harmonically complex.

 

Very true - which is how I got the job in the last band I was in.

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Nope. Been home schooling as well as having long covid, so actually had less time to play than normal. ☹️

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3 hours ago, Lfalex v1.1 said:

When I was playing in bands, I put in the work so that;

a) If it went wrong it wasn't me.

b) If it went wrong, I had half a chance of holding it together while other people recover.

In the best band I was in, we all  made the effort. And it showed.

Exactly this.

I've done deps when I didn't know what was coming next and been told by band members, "I was following you"!! Looking like you know what's happening seems to fool more people than you'd expect.

After the first lockdown I started rehearsing with 3 others to put on a tribute show. Me and the drummer turned up knowing the songs and arrangements. . . . and had to spend the next 4 rehearsals teaching the other 2 (including the band leader) what they should already know.

Why am I still getting involved in these situations?!

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10 minutes ago, chris_b said:

Exactly this.

I've done deps when I didn't know what was coming next and been told by band members, "I was following you"!! Looking like you know what's happening seems to fool more people than you'd expect.

After the first lockdown I started rehearsing with 3 others to put on a tribute show. Me and the drummer turned up knowing the songs and arrangements. . . . and had to spend the next 4 rehearsals teaching the other 2 (including the band leader) what they should already know.

Why am I still getting involved in these situations?!

Slightly off-topic, but following on from the direction the conversation is taking,  in the good band I referenced, we used to write independently, then convene at the singer's house to thrash out song structures. Once decided, we'd quickly record it on an old cassette recorder (!) and give everyone a copy. When we actually got to a studio, we'd all have a good idea how the new songs went, and no expensive studio time was wasted getting people up to speed.

Also; We never drank before performances. All profits were reinvested into materials and studio recordings to sell, so we became largely self-financing.

Shame it ended.

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37 minutes ago, chris_b said:

. . . . and had to spend the next 4 rehearsals teaching the other 2 (including the band leader) what they should already know.

Why am I still getting involved in these situations?!

Yup. A disappointingly common experience...

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1 hour ago, Lfalex v1.1 said:

Also; We never drank before performances. All profits were reinvested into materials and studio recordings to sell, so we became largely self-financing.

We did that too, enabled us to take many opportunities that bands which split the money at the end of the night & went on the fosters couldn’t. 

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4 hours ago, inthedoghouse said:

100% with you there, Billy.  I don't spend countless hours at home perfecting whatever it is I have to learn only for others to let the side down.

That's exactly the reason we decided to disband our originals band before Christmas - two of us had total commitment and the skills to go with it, the other ('drummer') had neither.

When i switched to keys in June i was up and running by Sept, our first rehearsal with the new line up (a new bass player). Me and the Bass player spent a lot of time leaning against the wall while one or two others listened to Spotify on their phones and worked out what they had already been playing for months. 

I get that some have more free time than others, but when you join a band you are making a commitment to do whats needed. 

Edited by dave_bass5
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Just now, dave_bass5 said:

When i switched to keys in June i was up and running by Sept, our first rehearsal with the new line up (a new bass player). Me and the Bass player spent a lot of time leaning against the wall while one or two others listened to Spotify on their phones and worked out what they had already been playing for months. 

Arrghhhh!!  It drives you crazy doesn't it!  And drives me out of bands ...  When they hold their phones to a mic so they can listen to a song over and over when everybody else had learnt it inside out at home!

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2 minutes ago, inthedoghouse said:

Arrghhhh!!  It drives you crazy doesn't it!  And drives me out of bands ...  When they hold their phones to a mic so they can listen to a song over and over when everybody else had learnt it inside out at home!

Yeah, you’d think they would make a point of doing this in their  own time and not mine, 

ive had to do it myself a few times (i put my phone up against  the pup, works just as well, and impressed my guitarist when i first did it) just to prove a point. When I’m right it’s ‘well we arent trying to get it exactly like the original’, and yet, they are listening  to it.......😂

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2 hours ago, dave_bass5 said:

Yeah, you’d think they would make a point of doing this in their  own time and not mine, 

Using rehearsal time for learning songs is a big waste of time and money.  Songs should be learnt at home and rehearsed and nailed in the studio.  

Edited by BillyBass
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3 minutes ago, BillyBass said:

Using rehearsal time for learning songs is a big waste of time and money.  Songs should be learnt at home and rehearsed and nailed in the studio.  

And it costs nothing to at least get the song in your head so they’re are no ‘you sure we didnt miss a bit out’ moments. This seems to be the biggest issue, rather than notes. 

Quite often the drummer would tell us ‘I had a quick listen in the car on the way here’. 

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51 minutes ago, BillyBass said:

Using rehearsal time for learning songs is a big waste of time and money.  Songs should be learnt at home and rehearsed and nailed in the studio.  

So much this.  Drives me insane when people turn up to rehearsal asking what to play.  

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