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Bass Player Wanted, but...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by NWB, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    Not a want ad here.

    My point (if I really have one) is that I see on Craigslist and other sites for musicians is a common theme among bands/artists looking for a bass player.

    The typical theme is that a group posts an ad looking for a bass player and outlines various expectations of the prospective candidate. Or else, they'll just write something along the lines of simply, "we need a bass player".

    However, when I read these ads I have little to no interest in responding. Why?

    Because they rarely provide any reason, i.e. incentive for me as a prospective candidate. It's commonly a one-sided ad that doesn't describe what they might have to offer me in return for my services. Gigs? Pay? Beer? Creative input?

    They say what they want to have, but nothing about what they have to offer in return. Wouldn't it make some sense to write a bit script outlining some incentive for someone to join your group?
  2. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Yup. Gotta sell the benefits. That's Marketing 101.

    Bands that advertise this way get so caught up in specifying their requirements for whoever responds that they neglect to offer reasons why anyone should respond in the first place.

    And even if they say vague things like "rehearsal space" and "steady gigs". Is the rehearsal space 25 miles from where the prospect lives? Then maybe that becomes a liability, not an asset for that particular prospect. "Steady gigs"... what do these gigs pay? Do they pay at all, or do they consist of being the [unpaid] house band at a weekly open jam? Etc.
  3. echoSE7EN


    Jul 1, 2010
    Balto., MD
    If it's an original project, I ask if they've got examples of their work: myspace (back in the day), or Soundcloud now. Also, I've always asked if writing is a collaboration or singular process. I'm a multi-instrumentalist and need to have some input into the process. R - 5 - 8 is not going to cut the mustard.
  4. Perhaps they want you to ask. Most will tell you things if you ask. The validity/truth is always another story.

    I've responded to many ads where the band was simply awful, which wasn't something that they stated in the ad. ;)
  5. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    Cool. But wouldn't it be nice if the ad stated that you'd be given that opportunity rather then trying coax it out of them?
  6. Raymeous


    Jul 2, 2010
    San Diego
    Like a job interview, which is what it really is, not only is the company interviewing the prospective employee, but the applicant needs to be able to interview the potential employer as well. Seems simple, but like the OP stated, it seems to get lost in translation.
  7. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    In some ways it's like a job interview, but lots of differences too. For a job, the whole reason you're applying (presumably) is to earn money. "I'm applying for your job to earn money" is the unstated and accepted reason.

    The reasons for joining a band are multiple though and can get somewhat complex. It would seem logical to me that if a band is seeking a bass player that they should offer potential candidates some reason to audition for them because it's not as clear-cut as normal employment.
  8. craig.p


    Sep 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    Seems like lots of bands want just a placeholder, or worse, an actor. They've no idea how to assess a player's skills, no idea how a tight rhythm section can transform a band's sound. There was a band around here whose bass player quit and I responded to their ad. They sent me links to Youtube videos with their old bass player. He stank. One finger, sloppy as hell, just barely functional, Mud City. But he moved around a lot. During subsequent discussions with the BL, I asked him whether they liked how he'd played, and whether they'd have kept the guy if he'd decided to stay. The answer to both was an unequivocal yes.

    Well... that response left me with a terminal case of Meh.
  9. Raymeous


    Jul 2, 2010
    San Diego
    I do agree that there is loads more to it than a simple paycheck. My point is that the band needs to offer up some reason for somebody to join the club. This could be strictly money for the more mercenary players out there, or a stake in the creative process, or just getting the chance to play some music you like are also some valid reasons to join a band. I'm not completely cut throat about it. :smug:
  10. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA

    We are so on the same page!:smug:
  11. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    Interesting discussion. The offering on the bands side would be somewhat interpretive.

    If it's an existing project looking for a replacement, there should certainly be examples of the band both audio and visual, and there should be some indicator of both what's required and what's offered. Mainly because there's already some track record and structure in place.

    If it's a new start up, obviously there would be less tangible examples available. And what's required and what's offered would be much more a "work in progress". Those types of projects often structure themselves around who becomes members.

    But good discussion.
  12. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Yeah that would stink... sign-on with a new band and KNOW you're instantly making them a better band, only no one else in the band can tell the difference. Or worse, actually thinks they've downgraded.

    I'm sure Jason Newstead could share some thoughts on that.
  13. bluewine

    bluewine Banned

    Sep 4, 2008
    Most ads don't include what they have to offer because in most cases they don't have anything to offer.
  14. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    Oh...criminy I've seen that before. Pathetic.:spit:
  15. I've been replying to local craigslist ads since 2006. I've found two decent bands in six years there.
  16. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    Bass Player Wanted.

    Us: We are a BAND! Chicks dig us; guys want to be us; we have GUITAR, and VOCALS, and DRUMS! We walk into a room, and people throw us money and drugs! We WRITE songs, and have already gotten an iron grip on the rights to them. We will write MORE songs, and you will give us bass lines, and even a vocal line or two once in a while, and we will LET YOU!

    What more could you ask? Bring your BASS, and it better be a good one! No Squiers or SX's, or off-brand basses here! If it didn't cost more than a brand new Porsche, you have no business playing it! Bring a BIG amp, and don't expect any help loading it in, either! We have our OWN gear!

    Ability? You need to be Stanley Clarke + Jaco + Entwistle meets Geddy + McCartney with a pinch of Sting and a dash of Flea. But we don't want you to overplay. Many of our songs have root notes, and we like root notes a LOT. But you might need to whip out a trick or two sometimes, especially when we say so.

    You need to be committed, have pro gear, pro attitude, be a pro golfer and have at least two tours in pro bowling, and you will need to lend us money from time to time. Must have own practice space we can crash at, and a wife or mommy who will cook for us, and possibly be our girlfriend sometimes when you're not home. She must have the ability to lie well, and cover up hickies.

    We will practice sixteen times a week, and will not have time for much else, including showering, day jobs or getting off any of our addictions.

    We will be gigging quite a bit, once we learn to play our instruments.
  17. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    And then they woke up. :bawl:
  18. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    Mellow - with your posts lately, you may wish to consider the comedy circuit!

    At least I know to not drink any coffee or beer when I see your name attached at the top. I'd be spitting it all over the monitor!

    You've really been on fire as of late!

    I love it!:D
  19. Bows down to Mellow's post.

    On a side note, sometimes bands try to keep things discrete because they may not have told their bassist yet......
  20. Rockinscott69


    Oct 19, 2011
    South Texas
    BWAHAHAHAHA! Gotta love it! Sounds like something some old bandmates of mine would write! LOL!:D

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