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What, in your opinion, is the minimum 'gold standard' BPM a bassist needs to sustain in order to be acceptable/respectable?


TJ1

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27 minutes ago, Maude said:

Could it not be said that the bassist is still playing at 120bpm throughout the verse, but just playing no notes?

But is he (not) playing them in the right order? 🙂

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12 hours ago, TJ1 said:

I've got my own ideas on this but it would be interesting to see other people's opinions on this momentous,foundation subject.

That is the minimum finger/plectrum string strikes per minute across all/any notes on the fretboard.

This is a wind up surely??

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7 hours ago, TJ1 said:

 

Genuine and I think important question, particularly for those at beginner level,

 

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I think worrying about how fast you can play is a good sign of a beginner.

There is a correct answer though - fast enough to play in time and tune to the fastest song you want to play.

 

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7 hours ago, TJ1 said:

 

Genuine and I think important question, particularly for those at beginner level, I could have worded it less obnoxiously though.

I'll get my my coat.

 

No need to get your coat. Stick around and you'll find most folks are OK (not that @Teebs fella, but he can't help it 😉). I think a lot of folks are getting a bit short tempered with lockdowns and no gigging, I know I am. 

If you are a beginner then that's great and welcome to the world of bass. 

Maybe you could've asked, 'Is it important to be able to play fast?' Or something along those lines, rather than, 'How fast do you need to be able to play to be respected?' A similar question but worded differently comes across better. 

It takes time to find your feet in some places, that's all.

🙂👍

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1 hour ago, bass_dinger said:

Agreed.  I have taught a teenager how to play the four root notes for a I IV V VIm progression in weeks 1 and 2, and watched her play it in week 3.  One note per beat, and she was very pleased to be playing it.  It was acceptable - not least because the church audience set the bar of attainment very low!

The original question was a good one - it made me think about what "good" looks like to others.  I have learnt a lot (and already knew that I not a fast player!).   

 

 

The original question is not a good one, in my humble opinion.

It is asking for a quantitative answer on a qualitative subject. A pointless exercise.

You might be capable of playing 500BPM but if you try it whilst performing "How long" by ace... you will ruin the song completely.

 It's a ridiculous criteria to judge a bass player by, hence my earlier thought as to whether the OP is a troll.

 

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12 hours ago, Maude said:

Could it not be said that the bassist is still playing at 120bpm throughout the verse, but just playing no notes? The song is still being played at 120bpm while the bassist waits to play some notes in the chorus. Even though the bassist isn't playing the song is never 0 bpm. 

A good point! 


And of course, even I can play rests at 120 bpm.

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I think a lot of people are being pretty unfair to the OP here.  The title might have been badly worded, but it's a legit question.

How many times do you see posts talking about drummers who keep dragging? If they drag, it's because they can't play the part and keep up with the tempo, and it's the same with bass players. What's going to happen if you're faced with a semiquaver pattern at 120 bpm or a fast walking line at 300 bpm and you can't keep up? You can play a nice semibreve, but it's not going to cut it and there's a chance that you probably won't get called again.  

Unlike what's been suggested earlier, no half decent player is going to play blazing fast lines over a mid tempo tune. Just because someone can play fast doesn't mean that they will do it all the time.

I agree with everyone that says a good player isn't measured by what bpm they can play at, but there are times when it is still important.

Edited by Doddy
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4 minutes ago, Doddy said:

I think a lot of people are being pretty unfair to the OP here.  The title might have been badly worded, but it's a legit question.

How many times do you see posts talking about drummers who keep dragging? If they drag, it's because they can't play the part and keep up with the tempo, and it's the same with bass players. What's going to happen if you're faced with a semiquaver pattern at 120 bpm or a fast walking line at 300 bpm and you can't keep up? You can play a nice semibreve, but it's not going to cut it and there's a chance that you probably won't get called again.  

Unlike what's been suggested earlier, no half decent player is going to play blazing fast lines over a mid tempo tune. Just because someone can play fast doesn't mean that they will do it all the time.

I agree with everyone that says a good player isn't measured by what bpm they can play at, but there are times when it is still important.

I kind of agree. I can also imagine that in certain genres (speed metal if that is still a thing) it's the kind of question you may be asked if auditioning for a band. Also, I remember reading an interview with Mike Pope when he was subbing for Patitucci on the Chick Corea Elektric band. They opened the set with 'Got a match', which is 16th notes moving at 150 BPM with a fairly complex fingering pattern, doubling the keyboard melody . I'm guessing that if he couldn't have done that, Mike Pope wouldn't have got the gig. I suppose that's a kind of extreme example though as it's pretty much the outer limit of what is possible to play. 

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48 minutes ago, Doddy said:

I think a lot of people are being pretty unfair to the OP here.  The title might have been badly worded, but it's a legit question...

I'd advance that it's equally important, and maybe even more difficult, to play evenly and musically to very slow tempi. It's certainly true in drumming, and often neglected as a quality. Not just slow movements, but also holding off during long rests, only to come back in at the appropriate place. Not everything is metronomic, either, so accelerating the rhythm, or slowing it down, when the piece calls for it, are equally precious skills. Having decently-experienced colleagues helps, if all are to 'ritardando' in sync. If fast playing is needed, one may 'fudge' it with a half-tempo version. If slow is called for, it cannot be replaced by doubling up. The ability to play slowly is a great asset for any musician. Just sayin'. B|

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8 minutes ago, Dad3353 said:

I'd advance that it's equally important, and maybe even more difficult, to play evenly and musically to very slow tempi. It's certainly true in drumming, and often neglected as a quality. Not just slow movements, but also holding off during long rests, only to come back in at the appropriate place. Not everything is metronomic, either, so accelerating the rhythm, or slowing it down, when the piece calls for it, are equally precious skills. Having decently-experienced colleagues helps, if all are to 'ritardando' in sync. If fast playing is needed, one may 'fudge' it with a half-tempo version. If slow is called for, it cannot be replaced by doubling up. The ability to play slowly is a great asset for any musician. Just sayin'. B|

No argument there. Of course it's important to be able to play consistently slow too.

Not everything is metronomic but there are a lot of situations where you're playing to a click, and in those cases it is. Sure you can fudge your way through if you're struggling, but wouldn't you rather be (or hire) the guy that can play it right rather than half arsed?

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20 minutes ago, Doddy said:

...Not everything is metronomic but there are a lot of situations where you're playing to a click, and in those cases it is. Sure you can fudge your way through if you're struggling, but wouldn't you rather be (or hire) the guy that can play it right rather than half arsed?

Again, I'm a drummer, so I maybe react differently. If something's too fast for me, click or no click, I'll play what I can, either dropping 'hits' or half-timing it. I'm now old, and my hi-hat has less stamina than in the past, so I'll do this more and more often. I may well start the song off correctly, but discreetly give my wrists a rest when I can, if it's not going to train-wreck the song. The important thing, for me, is to keep things flowing musically (on drums, but on bass or guitar, too...), and not sweat it if I'm no longer 'up to scratch'. The years spent practising and playing help with this, of course, but I'd say that anyone striving to attain any technical 'gold standard' should be aware that it is an ephemeral achievement at best, even when it's obtainable, so be prepared mentally for the deception when the feat is no longer possible. Play to one's own strengths, and leave the arms race to others, I say. B|

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On 08/03/2021 at 08:47, TJ1 said:

That is the minimum finger/plectrum string strikes per minute across all/any notes on the fretboard.

It would have been a good one to ask Lemmy, but he'd have just replied with his death stare.

Easy to rack up BPM if you're one of those grunge kids that hammers the E string and keep the other three* for spares.

* other basses with more than four strings are available.

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48 minutes ago, Fishman said:

Does anyone know if the Tesco's on Green Street is doing a special offer on their own-brand pale ale right now?

I’m in green street tomorrow, I’ll have a look for you 

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9 minutes ago, Reggaebass said:

I’m in green street tomorrow, I’ll have a look for you 

Thanks man – if they've got those Lady Gaga Oreo's can you grab a couple – they were deffo on special offer the other week

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3 minutes ago, Fishman said:

Thanks man – if they've got those Lady Gaga Oreo's can you grab a couple – they were deffo on special offer the other week

No problem, I might eat them on the way back though 

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19 hours ago, Maude said:

No need to get your coat. Stick around and you'll find most folks are OK (not that @Teebs fella, but  he can't help it 😉)🙂👍

Twerp!

>:(

:)

 

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