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Bass: Hobby or Job????

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Sufenta, Mar 3, 2006.

  1. Sufenta

    Sufenta Trudging The Happy Road of Destiny

    Mar 14, 2002
    The Signpost Up Ahead.
    Just wondering which of you on this forum has the 'privilege' of playing bass for a living. I certainly don't, but is it correct to envy those that do? Simply a Friday afternoon thought.
  2. Bedroom warrior here.
  3. For me its a way of life.
  4. Altitude

    Altitude An ounce of perception, a pound of obscure. Supporting Member

    Mar 9, 2005
    Denver, nee Austin
    I get paid for doing it, but it's not my primary occupation. I'm not sure how that classifies me. I'd love to say it's a hobby that I manage to self-fund, but I'd have to stop buying gear for quite a while in order to catch up with myself...
  5. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    Toronto, Ontario
    Endorsing Artist: Elixir® Strings
    It's my life. Yea, I have a job, I goto school, but my ambition is bass.

  6. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I would call that semi-pro.

    I would like to move up to the semi-pro category, but currently it is a hobby.
  7. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    I did this for a living for many years. Living right outside of NYC, I was lucky enough to land some great gigs. My bass brought me to concert stages in Austrailia, Japan, Europe and everywhere in the USA. I've played on the Tonight show, Top of the Pops in the USA and Australia, and a ton of other TV shows. In 1992 the Gulf War broke out and my tour was cancelled. I was out of the country for six months and returning in February, my phone wasn't ringing. It was at that point I thought about a new career. I started doing wedding gigs. That was the worst experience of my life. I started hating music. I started working in another field and eventually started my own business.
    The problem is that there is no middle class in the music business. You are either on top of the world or scrounging. I wanted a wife and family and being on the road 250 days a year makes that very tough.
    I am glad to say that this choice has made it possible for me to live in a way that allows me to buy nice basses, do the gigs I want, live at home with my wife, and put a recording studio in my home. You get tired of airports, hotels, hanging around for hours waiting for the show and yes, even the groupies get tiring after a while.
    I do miss the big sound stages with big crowds and all that goes with that but not enough to want to go back to being a road warrior again.
    Music in now an avocation for me instead of a vocation.
  8. jimbob


    Dec 26, 2001
    Charlotte NC
    Endorsing Artist: Acoustica Mixcraft; Endorsing Artist: DR Strings
    Semi-Pro, hoping to be Pro by the end of summer.See band link in my signature
  9. ThunderFingers


    Feb 20, 2006
    It's been my full time job for the past 15 years now.

    Keep rockin'. :bassist:
  10. Sufenta

    Sufenta Trudging The Happy Road of Destiny

    Mar 14, 2002
    The Signpost Up Ahead.
    Cool. Thanks.
  11. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    It's been a passion, but not a vocation. If I played bass for a living, I would spend much less time talking about basses and much more on theory, technique, and reading.:eek:

    Heck, that sounds like work!:bag:
  12. its a hobby. i havent even played with anyone yet. just my cd player.
  13. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US
    I'll never have the skills to call myself a pro.

    I play gigs on weekends, and get paid for them, but that's the extent.

    I have to honestly call it a Hobby - one I intensely love - although I wish it was my full time job. [then that nasty r-word - Reality - gets in the way] :)

    But, while I'm on this planet, I will use my remaining time to aspire to get Better, while enjoying the journey and the cover gigs.
  14. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Never a paid gig yet. Not in 5 years of playing. For me its a priveledge, period.
  15. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    Self-supporting hobby. I see some have called that "semi-pro", but I prefer my title. My bass playing does not contribute to my family's financial well-being, just to my mental well-being! And I'm very happy that by being self-supporting it doesn't detract from my family's financial well-being, either.
  16. It is the Hobby I love the most , I love playing and I always will, But I have a regular and corporate job I wear a suit and tie every single day that let me enjoy my hobby and buy my dream basses from time to time.

    BTW , Great thread!!!


    Jun 13, 2005
    Los Angeles
    i second that, but there is only room for one true jedi-bass-master and we all know thats me. sorry:smug:
  18. It's a hobby for me. My band plays out, but we don't get paid very often. And if we do it's not much. We don't have any plans on becoming pro or anything. It's just something for us to do that we all enjoy.
  19. KSB - Ken Smith

    KSB - Ken Smith Banned Commercial User

    Mar 1, 2002
    Perkasie, PA USA
    Owner: Ken Smith Basses, Ltd.
    It was my Living for almost 20 years. During the end of that 20, I started.. well.. the rest is history..

    Now, I am back playing but mostly for fun with one exception. I am only playing Double Bass in Symphony Orchestras or jazz gigs with the occassional Chamber orchestra. The only Electric bass playing I get in is at my testing bench. http://www.kensmithbasses.com/ft/assemblysection/cantstop.html

    My son is in College now as an Electric Bass major. If he goes into playing full time I hope he does well as it's a tough world out there and not what it was when I was a NY Pro.

    In my business now I deal with working Pros every day and can really relate to them having been there myself. Like they say, it takes one to know one. I have the highest respect for musicians that make it their sole living.
  20. alanbass1


    Feb 8, 2006
    Used to be pro, but now it's a self funding hobbie.....