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Bass players and drink!

Discussion in 'Off Topic [DB]' started by conor_maccarthy, Mar 21, 2002.

  1. Just began to wonder why european orchestral bass players always seem to be heavy drinkers; can even drink the brass section under the table. I noticed this after playing with a few different youth orchestras. Everywhere you go, always the same, come end of rehearsal its straight to the bar. Has anyone else noticed this. (Admittedly I am quite fond of a drop or two myself!):eek:
  2. I drink because I like the taste :rolleyes:
  3. That's probably because by the end of rehearsal they've just friggin' had it with the conductor, the rest of the whiny strings, the obnoxious brass, and the out of tune woodwinds, and out of time percussion. Being the only real musicians in the orchestra can take a toll and make one want to escape a little.
  4. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001

  5. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Haven't touched a drop in the last 12 years or so. Before that? Different story....
  6. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Has anyone ever gotten "overmedicated" on a break, only to return to work and suddenly realize, "hey, I forgot how to play"? THAT is a nasty, humiliating feeling.
  7. Monte


    Jan 9, 2001
    DFW Area, Tejas
    And the reason the club I play at will not serve alcohol to the musicians. You wouldn't drink on the job as an accountant, why should a musical job be any different?

    After the gig may be a different story.

  8. nicklloyd

    nicklloyd Supporting Member/Luthier

    Jan 27, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    ever have one of these gigs?

    when is this horn player going to stop....

    how can I get the drummer to not rush the bridge....

    how loud can this guitarist get...

    sometimes a drink can take the edge off a bad gig. I'm not talking about getting loaded; just a drink.

    BTW- more accountants should drink on thier lunch-hour :D
  9. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    Cape of New Jersey
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music (retired)
    I remember playing an AFofM New Years gig at age 16 or 17, had gotten a cold call for it and had to get my father to drive me.

    The trumpet player, "old" to me at the time, but probably in his 30's or 40's, bragged about drinking a pint of cream before he came to the gig so he could drink more. By the end of the second set he was useless. Shame, because he was pretty damn good first set.

    In the 70's my main band, a rock trio with 3 part harmonies and tight arrangements, had a rule. No drinking on the job. These days I might nurse two bears over the night, but that's it, and on a cold call, I wouldn't drink at all. I've seen too many musicians lose their edge and more as a result of booze.

    A good friend in my youth (has several albums out on Concord) had a major problem with the stuff, damn near washed him out.

  10. Gee, Bob, isn't that hard on the nipples? :D
  11. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    Cape of New Jersey
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music (retired)
    Not as hard as getting all the hair off my suit coat.
  12. neptoon

    neptoon Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2000
    Melbourne, FL
    well, i'm also a sailor in the united states navy...that's all i'm gonna say about that ;) i'm more of a coffee drinker...sorry
  13. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    Show up to your day job three sheets to the wind and see how long you last!

    Don't drink and play.

  14. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Joe..."day job"?...whazzatt? But I agree.
  15. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Legal age for drinking is 16 in Germany.
    When I still played classical violin, we used to do summer camps with the youth orchestra in some youth hostel in an area where there was nothing else to do after rehearsals but to meet in some bedroom and shoot the bull.
    The brass usually were the heaviest drinkers, but only by a slight margin.

    Strangely enough I drink much less now since I switched to EB.
  16. yawnsie


    Apr 11, 2000
    Not really, but I've had it when the drummer comes back like that and forgets how to play, or the singer offers to fight the whole crowd. Sigh...
  17. Don Higdon

    Don Higdon In Memoriam

    Dec 11, 1999
    Princeton Junction, NJ
    From a book by Bill Crow:
    Back in the days when "stoned" referred to booze, legendary imbiber Zoot Sims was asked by an earnest admirer "How come you play so well when you're stoned?"
    Zoot replied, "I practice stoned."

    We all have our own gig/booze stories, most of them hilarious. On the other hand, two learning experiences:

    I used to drink heavily on gigs. Thought I was pretty cool. Then I joined Eddie Hazell, a very good guitarist and excellent vocalist (not the dead rock guy). Huge repertoire, Porter, Van Heusen, Wilder, etc. and jazz originals. The key would be wherever he felt like singing. We might start in Bb and suddenly go to B. Or How High the Moon, up, in F#.
    There was no way to stay mentally sharp while drinking. It stopped immediately.

    I also worked with a pianist who accompanied and arranged for Mel Torme, Peggy Lee, etc. He was a raving lush yet played surprisingly well. But when he was sober, he was so good it was astonishing. It was a measure of his talent that he sounded so good bombed; but it was also a measure of how much of his talent he was wasting.

    End of lecture. Johnny Walker black, please?

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