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How do you explain what a bass is to someone?

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by vibhas_2310, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. vibhas_2310

    vibhas_2310

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    Hi,

    So I've been playing bass for a while now and I love it!

    I was thinking about this...how do I explain to someone who has no idea about music what a bass is.

    I guess the guitar is engrained in everyone's mind and the drums are obvious and there's a percussion instrument in pretty much every culture.

    I've tried explaining that the bass is just like a guitar except it exists in the realm of lower frequencies...blah...blah...blah

    Any really simple way to explain what a bass is to someone who doesn't know anything about music or musical instruments?

    Would love to hear your thoughts...
  2. BBox Bass

    BBox Bass Supporting Member

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    If they're really clueless, I don't think there's much you can say that will make them get it. This past Saturday, I was accosted by a very drunk woman after a show. She carried on and on about how great we were. When I finally got free and ran to the bathroom, I heard her move on to the guitarist. She said to him "And what's your name? And the drummer's name? And the singer's name? And...the other woman's name?" I at least thought she would refer to me as "the other guitarist". Nope, I am now The Other Woman!
  3. remainthesame

    remainthesame

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    If they don't know, I'm not going to bother explaining it.
  4. jdwhitak

    jdwhitak Supporting Member

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    it's a guitar on steroids :)
  5. Gaolee

    Gaolee The Fat Violin Supporting Member

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    One is a really big violin. The other is a guitar that got through puberty. That's all people who need the explanation need to know.
  6. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

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    It's a bigger, deeper sounding guitar. Pretty simple, actually.
  7. erigod23

    erigod23

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    The glue between the drums and the guitar.
  8. Hamlet7768

    Hamlet7768 Here to chew gum and rock. Still have gum. Supporting Member

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    +1 Was going to say this. David Ellefson explained it this way.
  9. Unrepresented

    Unrepresented Something Borderline Offensive Supporting Member

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    Like a guitar only without the self esteem issues.
  10. DagoMaino

    DagoMaino Supporting Member

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    It's similar to a tree... that's all.
  11. bassteban

    bassteban

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    I do not try to explain. If one is capable of understanding, they likely do already- if not, my bass is still a bass.
  12. ChopperDave

    ChopperDave Hai-ohhhhhhh! Supporting Member

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    "Yeah, sure, I mean, it's like a guitar, I guess. It has strings and all that, but the notes they make are much lower. Some players just play along with what the guitarist is playing but lower, others treat it like a melodic or a lead instrument, and some use it just to groove on, like [hums familiar Motown bass line]. It's both a melody and a rhythm instrument, that's what makes is spec--oh, you want to go talk to the singer now ... okay ..." [skulks away and orders another Canadian Club]
  13. 2cooltoolz

    2cooltoolz Supporting Member

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    A fellow TBer once said:

  14. Gundecker

    Gundecker

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    Quote the lines from Sly and The Family Stone song;dance to the music.
    When you say " add some bottom..." Yeah that's the bass! If they don't know the song well...
  15. Goatee220

    Goatee220 Bassist/Goalie Ordinaire Supporting Member

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    I quote the Chili Peppers: "If you have to ask, you'll never know."
  16. the ombudsman

    the ombudsman

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    "It's a big guitar with only four strings for those who can't play regular guitar." :bawl:
  17. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member

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    I'm the guy doing the boom boom in the back that makes you wanna dance.
  18. jimmybc91

    jimmybc91

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    Just ask them what they dance to. =]
  19. jimmybc91

    jimmybc91

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    +1 haha beat me to it! :bassist:
  20. 10cc

    10cc

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    You can just simply say its a kind of guitar that's easier to play

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