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A different way to look at expensive gear

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by pklima, May 11, 2011.


  1. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
  2. Venom of God

    Venom of God

    Oct 8, 2007
    Australia
    I can't afford to constantly be buying expensive clothes because literally all my money that doesn't go on rent/food goes into bass gear..
     
  3. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    I have a similar issue with modern country music. There's just something that seems less than genuine about a guy wearing a $6,000.00 pair of Anaconda skin cowboy boots lamenting the loss of his job when the mill closed down.
     
  4. PSPookie

    PSPookie

    Aug 13, 2006
    Lubbock, TX
    But, Anaconda is the material of choice when one is out ropin' steers.
     
  5. elavate7

    elavate7

    Jul 8, 2009
    its all about "THE POCKET"
    to me, its about sound. at the end of the gig, its all about how you sounded. pple in the crowd have no idea what brand your gear is let alone the difference between bass and guitar lol
     
  6. dj150888

    dj150888

    Feb 25, 2008
    Belfast, Ireland
    I play the gear I like without much concern about what people think of it. I've never had anyone who's not a bass player comment on any of my gear, apart from to say my bass is, "pretty".
     
  7. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    Sure, most of the crowd will not know what brand your gear is or even notice much about it unless you have something really attention-grabbing like a Krappy tripleneck, but...

    If you have a sunburst Fender P-bass they'll (at least subconsciously) see that you have a bass that looks familiar, like one that lots of successful bands use. If you have a pointy ESP they'll see that you have a bass that looks familiar, like modern pointy-guitar-genre bands use. If you have an entry-level Kramer from 1990, they'll think you're either not serious enough to spend good money on gear or not successful enough to afford it. That might make a bigger difference in how they perceive your sound than the actual difference in sound between the basses.

    The same way few people will have a clue of what brand shirt you're wearing, but they all can tell if it looks "boring old man" or "trendy douchebag" or whatever.

    But the real question is, if you play a $3000 bass while wearing $30 shoes, will girls really think your bass probably cost $30 too?
     
  8. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    Ha, so you're one of the guys that post is about! I was wondering if they're really real!
     
  9. ClutchGomez

    ClutchGomez

    Jan 15, 2011
    Madrid
    LMAO :D:D:D:D:D
     
  10. NOAH_FX

    NOAH_FX

    Aug 12, 2010
    Ottawa, Canada
    I care about gear.. Honestly, I don't care about clothes... Like at all.. I'll dress to what's acceptable for work/gig or whatever, but do I care? Not one bit.. I buy a pair of shoes and abuse them until they die... Than buy new ones... It's just not something that matters to me.
     
  11. elavate7

    elavate7

    Jul 8, 2009
    its all about "THE POCKET"
    i kinda get what your saying. but idk....most pple in the crowd arent paying attention to your gear. maybe how it looks, but not the brand. they are listening to the music! as for the money issue. i play a rogue 5 string (which obviously aint expensive), but sounds great. im in my gfs band, and she dont give a crap about the brand of my gear, just as long as it sounds great and have the low end she wants!
     
  12. dj150888

    dj150888

    Feb 25, 2008
    Belfast, Ireland
    Usually, I'm on stage with a bass worth a few k, wearing an expensive pair of boots, and a £2 tshirt and £10 pair of trousers. I'm not too worried about sending out mixed signals. The sort of person who's concerned with how wealthy or poor I am, I have no interest in having in my company.
     
  13. TRichardsbass

    TRichardsbass Banned Commercial User

    Jun 3, 2009
    Between Muscle Shoals and Nashville
    Bassgearu, Music Industry Consulting and Sales. Tech 21, NBE Corp, Sonosphere.
    As bass players we all are basically window dressing for the guitar players and lead singers.

    As for women, if you dress decently they will not notice you for it but when they notice you they will judge you on it. They won't care about your bass, especially if its a common one, because it doesn't do anything for them.

    Now, buy that purple sparkle, mirror pickguard beauty, and they will notice your bass. They will call it a guitar, but they will notice it. Then they will ask you about it or complement it, and then you will be noticed. Then, of course, if you are wearing shoes that scream, "KMART" forget the after show lovin'.

    I am the leader of my band. I get noticed usually for my songs and singing. Everytime I take out my Kubicki's or Steingbergers, which are all black, only the male guitar geeks notice. When I strap on my Vaccaro Gen X in surf green, the chicks can't stop coming up to me. They all love the color and the look. The sound, while great, isn't close to the Kubs or Steinies live, but it is a noticeable bass.

    As for musicians in general dressing like they just got out of bed, I recently had a conversation with a local young band and they told me "its their look, a look, like band XXXX" To which I replied, "No, its not a look, its a statement. A statement that says we don't have an original bone in our bodies and we don't care about how we look, and not in a good way."
     
  14. dj150888

    dj150888

    Feb 25, 2008
    Belfast, Ireland
    Tom, I've nothing but respect for you, from discussion in the "how to succeed as an original band" thread. I'm aware that you know your stuff, but on one minor point, I'd disagree.

    The kind of look that attracts women is totally dependant on the style of music you're playing, and different looks will attract different women even within one style. Some girls really dig the, "just out of bed" look, some girls like the understated, "dressed by K-mart" look.

    Hell, I notice a difference in the sort of women that talk to me depending on how long I have my hair at the time!

    One tip, white guys with dreadlocks attract some weird women! I don't miss that at all lol.

    For the record though, from a "creating a band appearance" perspective, I do care what I wear, but from an attracting women perspective? Not so much, its not so difficult when you're young and Irish!
     
  15. None of my stuff was TOO expensive. I think the two most expensive pieces in my entire arsenal were my LH1000/HyDrive 410.

    Even my SR5 (although upgraded) is OLP, not musicman.

    Needless to say it just seems to fit when I wear a band shirt I paid no more than 10$ for, an old busted pair of New Rock boots (Got those for free actually) and a chain kilt goth kids used to wear back in the day.

    If the appearance suits the sound/image, go for it.
     
  16. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    Heh. I think cheap gear these days sounds, works and looks a whole lot better than the cheap gear of a few decades ago - that's why I picked on a 1990 entry-level Kramer, not on a modern Rogue or SX.

    I certainly don't think we should all play expensive basses or wear expensive clothes. I do think that playing an expensive bass while wearing cheap clothes... well, it's kinda funny when you think about it in those terms.

    It sometimes does make sense, though, see here:
    Do you play metal or something related? In those genres that's not mixed singals, it's pretty much the norm (except for the expensive boots). It's just what that culture expects you to signal.
    Hahaha, yeah. That sums it up real well.
     
  17. dj150888

    dj150888

    Feb 25, 2008
    Belfast, Ireland
    In my main band, I play metal, in my side band, I play R&B, funk, 70s disco and the likes. In both, I use similar gear, in both I wear cheap clothes and expensive boots.

    The expensive boots are because I find them comfortable, no other reason!
     
  18. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    No they won't. Unless said person in the audience is actually a musician, most people are just going to think you play the big guitar. Nonmusicians may have heard the names Fender, or Gibson, aside from that, its mostly a world unexplored by them. You can be up there playing a $5000 Sadowsky, and a bassist not in the know is going to think you play some offbrand bass theyve never heard of.
     
  19. TRichardsbass

    TRichardsbass Banned Commercial User

    Jun 3, 2009
    Between Muscle Shoals and Nashville
    Bassgearu, Music Industry Consulting and Sales. Tech 21, NBE Corp, Sonosphere.

    Since you are young, and Irish, I'll cut you some slack. ;)

    However, there is no woman on the planet who really digs the just got out of bed look unless she is sloppy herself and, well, sort of the kinda girl you don't want a long term relationship with. As you said, your look attracts different types. I, for one, prefer ones who are smokin' hot, clean, have some income and I am pretty sure don't sleep with every band that plays at the bar. I also prefer girls with a minimum of Tattoos and piercings who know that its "supposedly" not "supposably."

    All women judge you on your appearance. In order, the things they look at are:

    1. Your shoes. Believe it or not, that is what they look at first. Have an expensive pair of old school, cool, suede Pumas? How about a cool pair of ostrich or faux ostrich boots? You are doing okay. Have a pair of Massimo sneaks from Target with Massimo written all over it? Already on the not so sure list.

    2. Your shirt. The T-shirt should be either of a real, cool band, or something from a real, expensive store. The shirt have a cool design and say Armani A/X? Wow. Does it have the same exact look but have the name Kirkland Signature? How about that Hanson shirt you got at their last show. You are done. Look like Charley Sheen? Winning! :D;):D

    3. Your smile. If your mouth is full of brown, super crooked teeth, you are done. They don't have to be perfectly straight in the teeth, but they should be as white as you can get 'em.

    4. Your smell. If you smell, and not in a good way. Done. If you have a pleasant smell, yum. Too much cologne? Done. Wearing the same cologne as every other "Jersey Shore" wanna be? Done. Covered in Axe, TAG, or other Body sprays? May as well just go home or be relegated to girls from Jackson, NJ.

    I always tell people to cultivate a band look because of how it effects them musically. Having a look does have some other bennies as well. I find a neat, clean, body fitting T shirt, a pair of properly ripped jeans and either those cool Pumas or a cool biker boot not only has a great look on stage, but also works very, very well with the ladies....

    My cologne? Well, I don't reveal that because I don't want every human in the world to smell like me. But it does cost over $200 a bottle, and, to paraphrase the young lady from a show last month, "What is it you are wearing? Oh my god, that is soooooo sexy man smell. MMMMMMMMMMMM"
     
  20. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    You're right about the Sadowsky, but I do think that the 1990 Kramer will register with a lot of people as looking like something old that nobody wants anymore... something you might see in a really old video. The pointy headstock will look sorta familiar. Or, at worst, girls will think it's "like something my loser ex from six years ago had sitting in his bedroom, I don't think he ever really was in a band". Heh.
     

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