Any input welcomed and appreciated

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by remainthesame, Dec 20, 2012.

  1. remainthesame


    Sep 24, 2008
    I know this has been an issue brought up before by our fellow bassists, but I figured I would give you my story in hopes that maybe somebody can help me figure out what to do.

    Anyways here's my problem, my guitarist keeps telling me I need to turn it down. But I already cant hear myself at all. He turns his amp up all the way and has it facing me and I swear it's like every time I touch my volume knob he has to say something. And this problem isn't just when we play live, I cant hear any of my tracks on any of our recordings. I have voiced this concern before but none of my band mates really cared.

    To test and see if I was too loud (or if they could hear me at all) I decided to play in a different tuning but hitting all the frets as I would have normally, thus making me play a whole step higher than everybody else. And guess what? Nobody said anything at all, nobody noticed. In fact, my guitarist mentioned how great the new song sounded and how it was the best I ever played it.

    So I guess what I want to hear from you guys is what would you do? Keep in mind that I love this band and I really don't want to quit. I just don't know how to tell them that I can't hear myself in a way that will get them to care. Like I said, any input is greatly appreciated.
  2. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    Recordings? Your guitarist is a gui**** who only wants to hear himself. Has no concept of the word 'band'! If he gets to control everyone's input, then I don't think this is the band for you or he has to go!

    By the way, how do you eq your rig? I'm assuming this is a rock (or some sort of) band. This is one of the reasons I don't dig the sound of rock music in general (not all). Just way, way, way too much guitar and the guitarist's need to be heard! They just don't get it. Guitar can be heard using a small 10 watt amp!
  3. I was wondering about your live set-up, but honestly, being buried in the background is extremely insulting to you as a musician. As to how to deal with it, that's hard for any of us to say without understanding the dynamic and personal relationships involved. If it were me, I'd just go ballistic and tell the band you've had a gutful of this treatment. That in itself may wake some of them up, as it seems the guitarist is the real problem and the others are just apathetic. You may love the band, but if nobody can hear you, what's the point?
  4. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    This is a problem we as bassists sometimes see. I have never had this issue and in fact am told to add more volume than I like sometimes.
    Its all about the people you play with or choose to play with. The guitarist is all about him and does not repect the bass and its role in music.

    If you can't sit down and work this out with him or the band you have to decide if you want to remain in this band. If so you can look like you are playing the bass or posing like you are, or you could move on to a band and play with a guitarist who knows how to work with a bassist and the role of the bass in music...its up to you.
  5. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Stewartsville, NJ
    I have to say that you are probably doing something Very Right with your EQ. Like you've gotten yourself in the perfect space Sonically somehow. Here in lies the answer for the OP Or at least a big part of it. IMO. Sometimes just turning your cabinet can make a huge difference. If it's aiming at your guitarist then he's likely to complain. I like to aim my Cabs more towards my drummer.
  6. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    Sounds like DethKlok ;) . If you want to stay go with IEM's so you can hear yourself. What cabs are you using presently?
  7. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    They're deaf. Move on.
  8. charlie monroe

    charlie monroe Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2011
    Buffalo, NY
    You don't happen to play for Metallica, by chance?
  9. remainthesame


    Sep 24, 2008
    IEM? im afraid im not familiar. and at the moment im using a gallien krueger neo 410, with a 1001rb head. more than enough to easily over power him, but my volume knob is set next to nothing.
  10. ACNick

    ACNick Guest

    Oct 23, 2012
    South Florida
    Bummer, man. This happened to me with one group I used to play with. They didn't care that I couldn't be heard. During one practice, I didn't even plug my amp into my cab, nobody noticed. I politely explained to them what had just happened and left. If the guitarist is the problem, talk to him about it. Maybe discussing the issue with the whole band could help. If they can't be bothered to (at the very least) try and find a solution, then is it really worth all the frustration?
  11. RoadRanger

    RoadRanger Supporting Member

    Feb 18, 2004
    NE CT
    You could try putting it up on a couple milk crates so you can hear it better. Guitarists aren't the only ones who don't have ears on their knees ;) . IEM = "In Ear Monitors". I have a cheap ($175) Galaxy AS900 I use when going direct (no amp, straight into the PA via wireless).
  12. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Stewartsville, NJ
    As far as stage volume goes, You need to hear yourself and enough of everyone else to play effectively. The audience also needs to be able to hear(and feel) you especially if they are dancing. If your guitarist is willing to mess up the overall quality of the sound for his own Ego then that's a problem and the Band needs to take action.

    You Eq settings will go a very long way to solve this problem. IEM's will help but you really need to also walk out onto the floor and hear what the audience is hearing. Or have a good sound man who truly cares what the audience is experiencing.

    Your guitarist is only reacting to what's going on in his little world. He can't hear his leads well enough for his liking.

    Simply aiming your Cabinets away from him and more towards you should help immensely.
  13. A half-step off and no one noticed? I'd find another band
  14. Steve Dallman

    Steve Dallman Supporting Member

    It's your guitar player who can't hear himself. I recently went to two narrow cabinets, stacked, and I can hear myself (and the guitar player) very well. Getting your cabinet up closer to your ears is a good suggestion. Or even tilting the cabinet can help. I have done both. I have some amp tilt stands that fold flat that work great. Usually, I can still leave the amp on top of the tilted cabinet by putting the front amp feet over the front edge of the speaker.
  15. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I can tolerate alot in a band, but ability to hear is so basic to playing in a band that if someone can't do it, I will take my toys and go home. It's like trying to paint a mural with someone who is blind, running a relay race with someone who is crippled, trying to win a clapping contest with someone who only has one hand, trying to sing in a choir with someone who is mute, writing a story with someone who can't read.......I think you get the point.
  16. 4dog


    Aug 18, 2012
    We play bass and until you get to play with higher caliber of players your gonna go through this ,,,aim you cab at drummer or yourself and just know any and all boominess sounds no matter if its an airplane,, freight train ,, or cargo ship will be blamed on you ,hes just a guitar player after all ,, he cant help it.
  17. How old are you guys?

    The trouble with guitar amps is that they are very directional and typcially ahve so much velocity they cant be heard for a few feet. My observation. I defintely aim a cab at the drummers back. And the other at the singer who follows my basslines for her cues.

    I told the "passive aggressive" and deaf guitarist to point his amp at himself alone. The singer was missing cues and my ears were ringing. and they're damaged from close quarters fire. Ak/M4's are gentler than deaf guitarists - ironically.
  18. remainthesame


    Sep 24, 2008
    I think I will talk to them one more time. Give them a final ultimatum. It just sucks because otherwise i have no major problems with my band, and I really don't want to find another band. I love the music, I love the guys and believe it or not I consider my gui**** to be my best friend. I hope it doesn't come down to that.
  19. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    I almost find it worrisome that Im never told anything one way or another about my volume, be it on stage or in the rehearsal room. Id like to think that I just know the appropriate level at which to play, but without feedback I guess I can't be sure. Looks like Im going to have to ask next time we're all in a room together.
  20. Guitarist - Knows the song is important and plays at a volume to complement the song. Even plays nothing if that's what the song needs.

    gui**** - Thinks he is the focal point and that the song is just another opportunity for the world to hear how wonderful his chops are. Usually plays as much as he can as loud as he can, invariably to the detriment of the song.

    As already said, get him to point his amp at his ears, not yours. He maybe doesn't understand that off axis (off to the side or above a line drawn straiht out from the drivers) his volume will be way down compared to on axis (in line with the centre of the driver/s).

    Also tell him to get a volume pedal so he can be loud for lead breaks and back off when necessary. If he whines about it spoiling "his tone" then start looking for another band as there is no hope for him.

    It is all pretty pointless though if he/they a don't notice that you are not audible in any recordings. I know it is said all too often on TB but if you cannot resolve the situation then it is time to move on and find a band that does appreciate your efforts.

    I stopped a song because the guitarist was too loud, it was his first rehearsal with us, and I haven't had to tell him again. (I played lead guitar for 12 years so know a bit about when to be loud and when not).

    Good luck.