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Am I too old to get started in this?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ski_rush, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. HalfStep


    Jun 23, 2019
    I'm 67 and just started 6 months ago! A long lived dream (Although I've been playing guitar for several years.) May I suggest to get some bass lessons. A local music shop would be a good place to get lessons and a lot of "advice" as you make friends from going once a week. A teacher will keep you focused, advancing and motivated. Also, have the teacher teach you theory not just bass lines to a few songs you like: Like going through like Hal Leonard or a little drier version Mel Bay series. This way you will know how to play with other folks. That's where the ultimate fun begins!
    Iofflight and Bruiser Stone like this.
  2. lucas303


    Mar 11, 2019
    I started less than a year ago, shortly before my 41st birthday.
  3. catcauphonic

    catcauphonic High Freak of the Low Frequencies Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2012
    Seattle WA
    I picked up the bass as first instrument at 42yo. Started with a cheap Craigslist deal that included a book, tuner, cable and practice amp for $100. Within a year I knew it was going to be a 'rest of my life' hobby, so at that time I started to invest in a nice upgrade to my instrument.

    Within 2 years while looking for an intermediate drummer to jam with (also via CL) I somehow managed to ace my first audition ever for a startup band! Upgraded my amp and cab situation soon after, we've been gigging monthly and are currently working on our 2nd album.

    I'm now 50. Almost 2 years ago I joined another startup original project. We also gig monthly and are currently in the process of mixing and having out first release mastered.

    Nothing beats playing with other people to grow your playing in leaps and bounds! I can't imagine what I'd be filling up my time with these days if it weren't for picking up that instrument in my 40s.

    Enjoy your musical journey, as ours are all different.
    DeltaTango likes this.
  4. mntngrown

    mntngrown Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2007
    The lost Sierra
    I did not read all the replies, but would add that you probably have been learning bass subconsciously while listening to your favorite music. I can't help but focus on the bass lines when simply enjoying a song. I grab my acoustic bass and try to replicate it if I'm home. The physical mechanics will come along gradually.
    I sold my gear in my early 20's and bought my next bass at 54. I'm 68 and have a paying gig this Saturday. The good lord willing I will gig into my 70's. Many do.
    Clecoguy and ELG60 like this.
  5. Shafty


    Sep 4, 2019
    Houston, Texas
    I'm 45 and just getting started again after 20 years. I'd be quite happy to have those extra two years. :)

    All kidding aside, you may find, as I have, that a little extra maturity will make you a more motivated and serious player than the last time.

    Oh ... and I bought an Ibanez GSR205, and I love it.
  6. TexasHeat


    Jun 6, 2015
    I'm 57 and started playing bass in earnest 2 years ago. I'm having a blast in 2 very different bands. As others have mentioned, joining a band is a great way to really learn the instrument and how it fits in musically.

    Good luck and have fun!!
  7. TNCreature

    TNCreature Jinkies! Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2010
    Philadelphia Burbs
    Damn, I wish that I still had the energy that I had at 49!
    I am 55 now and play in 2 original bands.
    Look at it this way; what would it add or take away from your life to play music as opposed to not playing music.
  8. Axtman

    Axtman Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2008
    Seattle, Washington
    So long at you are above ground, you are not too old to learn a musical instrument. (Some coal miners may beg to differ.)
    lucas303 likes this.
  9. HECK NO !!! A bass player friend of mine plays 3 times per week, sings about 1/3 of the lead parts, NEVER misses a note & he is 76 !
    mntngrown likes this.
  10. Mannyinnewyork


    Sep 28, 2016
    New York
    Too old? Nope. Most of what I learned took place in the first five years I was playing. That was fifty years ago. Work hard, practice and you’ll be rocking way before you’re as old as I am (70 in a few weeks).
  11. bmac314

    bmac314 Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2015
  12. twinjet

    twinjet Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Sep 23, 2008
    That last bass reminds me of the G&L Kiloton.
    jd56hawk likes this.
  13. minddrain


    Dec 17, 2018
    I will say, personally. A lot of those on-line “Learn” bass things were not as good for me as free stuff I could find. I had even bought one of the Hal Leonard books. To me it can’t match on-Line free resources.
  14. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I started at about 38, not much different in age from you. I'm now 48 and have three running projects: Granite State Rhythm (R&B/funk/disco event band), Six Cowards (contemporary alt-rock covers, shifting towards originals), and Mugshot Monday (hard/classic rock covers), all of which gig at least occasionally. But you do have to put the time into practicing if you want to play out. If you don't, do what you enjoy.
    Bruiser Stone likes this.
  15. Bartrinsic

    Bartrinsic Supporting Member

    Jan 6, 2018
    San Diego
    Dude, you killed my top 3 musical goals! The 4th on your list is panning out nicely for me and I started lets say older than OP. Definitely go for it. I recently rented a Yamaha TRBX174EW 4-string in Maui from Bounty Music (definitely do that if you are planning on a stay in Maui!). These should be one of your try in store options -- I found it quite competitive in tone and feel to other new sub $300's. It took me a while to find the knob sweet spots, but it was my first time trying a P/J configuration.
    "Yamaha TRBX174EW " Gear
  16. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I had a similar experience. I started in my teens and was dedicated enough to play in bands for my whole life, but the times that I made appreciable leaps in my proficiency were the periods where I was able to dedicate time to daily practice.

    OP: I’ve been a bassist since 1987, but I’m picking up the guitar for the first time at age 48. It’s never too late!
  17. Broke


    Sep 9, 2015
    I bought a bass and started lessons at 44 years old. I am 48 now and play in 2 bands. Brother it most certainly is NOT too late for you. I'm a musical idiot and if I can do it, you can do it.
    B-Lo likes this.
  18. zubrycky


    Aug 22, 2011
    Short answer: You are not to old to start, OP.
  19. B-Lo

    B-Lo One day I'll figure out how to play this thing... Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2017
    Northern Alabama
    Started at 42 with zero prior musical background. I don't gig out per se, but I do play in church and jam with friends and I'm having a blast. I regret not starting sooner, but I don't think it's ever too late.

    I took a little different approach from you...I purchased a more expensive bass for the expressed purpose of making sure I stick with it. I'm the type of person who doesn't believe in wasting money so I knew if I invested a decent amount of $$ in piece of equipment, I wouldn't let it just sit around so that's what I did.

    I'm still sticking to it so I think it worked lol.

    My first bass was a Squier Affinity that I purchased on a whim. I tooled around with it here there but didn't take it seriously. I wanted to get more serious, so I purchased a considerably more expensive bass to make sure I'd actually play it and take it seriously.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
    minddrain and Bruiser Stone like this.
  20. Bruiser Stone

    Bruiser Stone Supporting Member

    Dec 7, 2017
    I started a little over two year ago at 39 and my playing is really starting to turn a corner now. It’s not the best approach for everyone, but I happen to agree with this sentiment:

    Yes, find a bass you can afford, but also one that you don’t want to put down. Learn music you already like, but keep an open ear for unfamiliar songs/genres, and you might be surprised where your musical curiosity takes you.

    And by all means, hound other musicians to jam with you. I found a very laid-back but talented church thing and it has done wonders for my ear and confidence.
    B-Lo and CereBassum like this.

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