Absolute Gear for working bass player

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by StringMan50, Nov 17, 2005.

  1. StringMan50


    Jan 12, 2004
    What gear must profesional bass player have in his arsenal ?
  2. Discgraham

    Discgraham Guest

    Jul 6, 2004
    Bellingham, WA
    Precision or Jazz bass
    DR Hi-Beams

    Oh yeah, and skill.
  3. sdguyman


    Jan 31, 2003
    San Diego
    A BASS
    An Amp
    The Knowledge of how to make sound come out of his instrument.

    Sorry man I couldn't resist. Everyone is going to have different opinions. I guess if you are a pro-studio guy, you may want to have a Jazz and a P bass, a tube amp and then maybe a solid state amp to choose from.

    Just different strokes for different fokes.
  4. mark beem

    mark beem Wait, how does this song start again??

    Jul 20, 2001
    Alabama, USA
    Knowledge will get you farther than gear.. Have your chops down.. Be able to sight read... Develop your improvisational skills
  5. marc40a


    Mar 20, 2002
    Boston MA
    A good set of headphones.
  6. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA

    A good P-bass and a good modern sounding bass (these days a 5 string is pretty handy on the modern tip, but make sure the bass still has a solid warmth to the sound), a tuner, a reliable amp that you know how to get a good sound from quickly, and ideally can carry yourself, a good sounding DI, and enough of a supply of strings that you'll never ever show up to a rehersal/gig/session with dead strings, extra batteries for anything that needs them.

    If you're going to be trying to join a rock band, having some components to add to a collective PA can be very helpful, even if its just for rehersals.
  7. Eilif

    Eilif Grooving under the MDW runway.

    Oct 1, 2001
    When/if this thread reaches a couple of pages, we should have an attached poll to find out how many of those who post are actually "professional" (i.e making a living as) bass players.


    Hence, I will offer no opinion. I would like to hear what is said by those who make their living as a bassist.
  8. mark beem

    mark beem Wait, how does this song start again??

    Jul 20, 2001
    Alabama, USA
    Ok then..

    Bass, strap, strings, cord and at the very least a good, reliable combo amp with a direct out..


  9. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    Ooooh! I can answer this one!

    A bass and any sort of amp/speaker capable of putting out at least 300 watts. That's about it. It's nice to have a Fender of some sort, but many bassists prove every day it's not necessary to own a Fender. Studio bassists, yes, they should own a Fender or two. Live bassists can pretty much use anything.
  10. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    I don't see what money has to do with it, frankly. You can be a "working bass player" at a semi-pro ("trying to go-pro") level, be busting your ass doing sessions and club dates and not clearing a dime, and your opinion on this thread would be perhaps more valuable than someone who eeks out a living playing a standing gig at a hotel (or whatever).

    I, for one, have never made a significant amount of money playing music, but have been in a band signed to a major, and have in the past worked very very very hard at the "business" of making music. Money and art don't get along.
  11. Joelc73


    Nov 13, 2000
    I'd add a good DI to the list if he/she is a gigging bassist.
  12. Lonnybass


    Jul 19, 2000
    San Diego
    Endorsing Artist: Pedulla Basses
    -Emergency repair toolkit that goes with you to every gig and includes a few screwdrivers, allen wrench set, pliers, wire cutters, etc.

    -Extra 9v batteries

    -A heavy duty electrical strip

    -Duct tape

  13. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    I have worked as a session or working player, and still do.
    Early on, I payed attention to interviews of my favorite session bassists like Wimbish, T-bone, and Randy Jackson on their reccomendations and my experiences now has the same.

    Multiple basses; active and passive 4's, and a 5, and always have a backup for your main players. Flexibilty is key, and having basses for specific jobs keeps employers happy.

    Amps; either a modular that you can strip down or add to for small or big jobs, or I think even better is having a big rig and a small combo, because you can use one as a backup if need be. Again probably a backup head if for you modular because you never want to be caught with no working amp.

    Tool box that has emergency stuff; a DI box, plenty of batteries, spare cables and replacement jacks both for cables and a bass, various size screwdrivers and a couple wrenches, cutters, extra strands of wire, and most important a soldering iron, spare fuses, tubes, power strip and an extension cord,

    A good reliable vehicle.
  14. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    A good bass, quality amp with a good DI, quality mic and stand if u sing, cables for the mic and bass, extra bass strings, tools in case something breaks, tuner, working vehicle to get u there, good attitude, practice, practice, practice

    Always a good idea to have backup equipment for all i listed above, especially the cables and bass.

  15. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    All you really need is knowledge. Some places already have basses and some houses have their amps/PAs in place. That is extreme, but you did ask for essentials.

    Realistically, you need a bass, amp, chord, strap if you stand. A tuner, backup bass, and some sets of strings would be really nice.
  16. lefty007


    Jan 19, 2004
    Miami, FL
    1- A wide, comfortable strap.
    2- Earplugs.
    3- An understanding and supporting wife/girlfriend (because the low $$, the long hours, and the groupies!!!)
  17. RBrownBass

    RBrownBass Thoroughly Nice Guy Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2004

    It's possible (in fact, it's quite likely) that most of the gigging players here care as much about the gigs they play as the guys who do it for food, clothing and shelter. After all, the big guys are getting paid well for their work- we're the ones who struggle to fit our gigs/rehearsals/practices in with our real jobs/lives. Time is money, and we have less of both because we love playing.
  18. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor Guest

    Aug 28, 2003
    Good DI
    Spare strings in the truckloads
  19. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    A monkey and a plywood violin.
  20. Fretless5verfan


    Jan 17, 2002
    At least one hand.