I picked up my first bass about 7 years ago and I've been taking lessons for the past 4 years, but I've never been in a band and I've never really played with a group before.
I found a group of older guys on Craigslist (back in November) looking for a bass player for some low-key jams and sent them a note. I wasn't able to make their first get-together in November, but they sent me another note this week and I told them I'd be able to make it.
There were three guitarists and a drummer. The drummer and two of the guitarists are in their early fifties (they traded off vocal duties) and the other guitarist is probably mid to late thirties (I'm 33). Both older guitarists have played bass in bands before.
Basically I showed up, we did a quick intro, plugged in and off we went. I play enough guitar to recognize the chords and I just plugged away at root notes. We played some pretty easy chord progressions (two or three chords for the most part). Before I knew it, we'd been playing for two hours. Man, that felt great. Well, aside from my fingers and my shoulder . . .
We took a little break and one of the guitarists told me I should turn the bass up a bit (I thought that never happened?). A handful of songs later and we were all packing up. They told me I did a great job and they want me to come back again.