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Bass Players vs Guitar Players

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Czugi, Aug 20, 2002.

  1. Czugi


    Feb 2, 2002
    Don't you guys sometimes feel so little with what you can do on your bass, when you compare it with the techniques and all the chords your friends can play on their guitars? Unless your name is Victor Wooten you can't really argue that what they play is easier, can you? I think bass players are very valuable in a band in terms of compousing and giving out some good ideas though.

    What is it that a guitarist would find most difficult with a bass? Is it the size? Pickin the strings with fingers?

    If a guitar players comes to me and tells me bass players are wan***s coz they only play 4 strings and no chordes, what should I reply?
  2. Yeah, and playing trumpet and saxophone is really easy to 'cause you can only play one note at a time!:D

    Edit: And they don't even HAVE strings!
  3. I would pick up their guitar, think up a few scales, and whip out a simple solo that wouldn't impress any true musician, but usually gets the guitarist going.

    That or I'd play out a Jazz scale a while and solo it out kinda, with alot of neato fretless bass only stuff.

    Or better yet, just don't waste the time impressing em, and use that extra 5 minutes or so of arguing as 5 extra minutes of practice time. Than you can laugh when the guitarist realizes he's a dime a dozen, and that you as a bassist are a hot commodity. (Unless you live in my city, Moreno Valley, which for some reason happens to be the bass capital of the world, where guitarists and drummers are hot commodities, as well as bass teachers.)
  4. JUst say you can't obviously handle the weight and extra thickness of the string's. Eventually guitairst's mature and think that bass sound's really good.
  5. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks! In Memoriam

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    uh, no real instructional value here.......

    off to Misc.

    Chris A.:rolleyes:
  6. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    instead of worrying about what a guitarist does, or how hard what a guitarist plays is, why don't you work on being the best bassist you can be? there's room for _a LOT_ of skill, technique and artistry on bass. furthermore, music is not a competition. if someone really does come up to you like that, just look at them like the idiot that they are.
  7. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    when im at my guitarist's house....we usually play around...seeing who can do cooler stuff....he usually can do more cuz he has more to work with in less room....but no matter what i do on bass....if i let him try he won't be able to do it cuz the frets are to big...

    so each instument is just as important to a band...regardless of skill

  8. ARA punk

    ARA punk

    Jul 11, 2001
    USA, Shelby, NC
    Fighting is pointless, we've all had discussions about what music means to us... and i have a feeling that for most guitarist its the same thing, they play because it makes them feel good. Why cant we all just be brothers!?
  9. steveg


    Feb 26, 2002
    Like alot of bassists, I played the guitar first. But I'm really drawn to the low notes. I hear them better or something, so that's what I'm drawn to in a song. I don't know why for sure.

    I don't think I'm alone in this. I remember reading something about a tumpter player (might have been Miles Davis, actually) asking an older guy why he wasn't comfortable with high notes on the trumpet. The gist of the response was it was because he didn't "hear" in that register. I think that's true for me.

    Anyway, I don't feel limited by that, it's just the way I am. Besides, if your guitarist quits playing and you and the drummer keep the groove going, the song continues. But if YOU stop playing, the song train wrecks. :)
  10. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    I don't agree with the first part of your post at all. We learned a new cover song tonight at rehearsal. I decided that it was too sparse of an arrangement, during the verses. So, I played an arpeggiated tapping part, following the changes of course. The guys loved it. It fits the song perfectly, and fills the space up. I slap on songs, play harmonics, play doublestops and chords, use a pick, use my fingers, slap the strings with the palm of my hands, and other techniques I have picked up over the years. There are as many ways to play the bass as there are the guitar.

    I am no Victor Wooten. Not even close. I've never had a lesson in my life. But I am a creative individual, who thinks outside of the box, and plays for the song. If that requires root eighth notes, cool. If it requires a two hand tapping part, that's cool too. But I refuse to be put inside a box, just because a bass player is supposed to be a guy who plays one note at a time and follows the guitar chords.

    That may be somebody else's idea of a bass player, but it's sure not mine.
  11. Selta


    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
  12. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    no, i've got way more options than they do. slap, pluck, tap, fretted, fretless, clean, distorted, arpeggiating chords, strummed chords, doublestops, single notes, notes/doublestops/chords+harmonics, effects, bass synth, synth + bass. i can pluck one note and hold it and it will have the same power as a flurry of wankery soloing, or i can double a wankery solo at the same octave, an octave lower, or even two octaves lower. my basses have a great deal more range than any guitar, are much physically harder to play - certainly harder to play properly.

    :rolleyes: my name is not victor wooten, and i can, and will, argue it all day. my parts are _non-stop_ movement that has to be consistent and in time. my fingers, and my fingers alone, are totally responsible for everything you hear coming from me. i don't have distortion to hide behind or smooth out and compress the sound i make, i don't have effects to make my boring meanderings sound interesting. what i play determines what the guitarist _can_ play, with one note i can control his output.

    have you ever heard clean, uneffected electric guitar? it sounds like a 7 year old girl whining for a cookie. :) my clean, uneffected basses sound like a pissed off rhino with an rpg. which would _you_ rather be? as for distorted, well, one of the guitarists in my band is thinking about getting bill conklin to build him a doubleneck with a 6 string bass neck on it (short scale, of course, wussy :D) because he likes my distorted tone so much.

    well, i write 95% of the lyrics in my band, i co-author or am the sole author of all the music, arrange or co-arrange all of our songs, i engineered the recording sessions and i usually lead our rehearsals. what instrument you play has no bearing on the amount of contribution you have, nor should it. having a musical vision is all that is required.

    well, my basses all have 7+ strings. a few of them are fretless. they all weigh at least 12 pounds, some of them are up to 16 pounds, other than the doubleneck, of course, which weighs ~26 pounds. the scale length of all of my basses is almost 50% longer than most guitars, the strings are around 2x the thickness of their guitar counterparts. every one of these factors makes bass harder to play than guitar.

    like i said earlier, you shouldn't reply - music is not a competition. don't be so insecure. learn your instrument and how to make music with it. work on developing your artistic vision for yourself as you develop your skills on bass, and give it time.
  13. Stu L.

    Stu L.

    Nov 27, 2001
    Corsicana, Texas
    OK, here's your VS. match. Lets play football. Wooten seems to me like he would be a good wide out, probably runs fast if his hands move that fast. Claypool is the obvious QB, as he looks like he could run like hell when needed, and you need good arms for his parts. Juan Nelson at center to keep Claypool from becoming one. I'd just worry about a defense with Zakk Wylde and Kerry King coming after me. Oh yeah, Lemmy could be our manager.

    Come on now. It should not be a "my part is harder because...." or "I'm better than you". Play your bass. Dont argue about who's better. I play with an awesome guitar player, who knows he's better than me. He still doesn't brag, I've actually learned alot from him.

    At the end of the day, your you, and the other guys are themselves. That's it.
  14. Whenever the bassist vs. guitarist debate comes on, I cannot help but think about how Bernard Sumner, guitarist, let Peter Hook, bassist, take such a lead role in both Joy Division and New Order. Their "typical" roles get inverted, sort of. Interesting case indeed IMHO.
  15. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I have one and only one comment for any guitarists who makes comments when they are unsolicated.

    It is quick, easy to remember and cuts to the bone:

    "mine's bigger"
  16. That's going in my sig, man. :D
  17. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    :D cool. i'm glad someone dug it. :D
  18. The bass-player gets little respect but we're always in demand. I was invited into my first band (8th grade) before I could even play it. I was already in demand just because I had one.
  19. Pharmecopia


    Jul 31, 2002
    a good guitar player is a dime a dozen, a good bass player is way harder to find.
  20. Pharmecopia


    Jul 31, 2002
    another thing, bassists use chords as well. :cool:

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