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Female Bassists. A question for you please?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by RichBriere, Feb 18, 2003.


  1. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Greetings,

    A quick question for the ladies if I might:

    Many women/girls seem to be taking up playing bass. Why is that? What got you interested in playing?

    And secondly, does it matter how good your gear is.......or do you just enjoy playing?

    Bass-ically Yours,
    RB
     
  2. Rich, my daughter's bassist (Chelsea) plays a Cort, SWR 2002 and Eden D410XLT for their all girl band, Aroarah.

    The Cort is a P+J 4-banger chosen mainly because it was adequate for a first-timer bass, and priced less than a Fender MIM. After she demontrated her skills, she got an Epiphone hollow body electric for Christmas.

    She needed more bass amp, so I got her hooked up with the SWR and D410XLT. This combination is perfect for what they play, and plenty loud. A side observation: the girls don't suffer from GAS. Must be a guy-thing.

    Chelsea plays bass because the band needed this instrument, plus her mother is an accomplished cellist. As it turns it, she's a natural, and an excellent bassist. They write all their own material, which appeals to their age group. They've made one CD already, and are preparing for more studio time in the near future. They have 20+ originals and a few covers so far. The band rehearses relentlessly and gigs regularly around the Sacramento area. I've had them play guest slots twice at my blues bar gig.

    They were backstage at the Rush concert so hopefully the "right somebody" will eventually hear them, and they will take off.
     
  3. john turner

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

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    not exactly bass related, so this is off to miscellaneous
     
  4. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    I knew this would wind up here.:D

    How's it goin' Rich? Still working for Fender?:)
     
  5. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Hi Blackbird, :^>)

    Nope........not at Fender any longer. How about you? What's cookin'?

    I was kind of disappointed to see the topic fall into misc. as well. I think that we, as players, should invite more participation from the female half of the world. It's always been my contention that we should listen much more closely to what women have to contribute musically, rather than to simply "use" them in sleazy MI advertising.

    I do KNOW that more females are getting into bass playing and I'd love to hear from them. Perhaps there's a way to word my question that might keep it in front of more eyes?? :^>)

    Bass-ically Yours,
    RB:meh:
     
  6. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Well Blackbird.......you'll have to excuse me. I thought that you were "someone else". :^>)

    Great site that you have.......mind if I link it to mine?

    Bass-ically Yours,
    RB
     
  7. LizzyD

    LizzyD Chocoholic

    Oct 15, 2002
    Seattle, WA
    Sadowsky Artist
    Well I don't know if I count, since I've been playing for many years, but I can tell you I suffer from the GAS too. It ain't just a guy thing. I always thought having decent gear was important, especially since I never had any early on.

    I started playing guitar when I was around 9-10, and I desperately wanted to be Alex Lifeson or Jimmy Page. And then dating them at the same time....HA! My learning guitar was an old Kay acoustic that belonged to my mom. The action was awful, so I put really light strings on and as such the tone was equally awful. Then my parents reluctantly agreed to spend $75 on a cheapo Memphis electric.

    I switched to bass at 16 because my amp wasn't as loud as the other guitar player's, and the bassist's mom made him quit so somebody had to do it. Typical story, I know. This was in the mid 80's. I always paid attention to the bass lines and was really interested in it all along, so I focused on that. I knew very few other girls who were seriously into playing music, and one of them is now a rather well known singer in the Chicago area.

    And here I am on Talk Bass discussing Roscoes and Bergantinos. If there was a Talk Bass back then, or the internet, my bass playing life would be a lot different. But then who knows if music would even be interesting to me at all, for that matter. I think it's amazing that with the stuff on the radio marketed to kids now that any of them wants to pick up an instrument anymore.

    Let's continue to inspire and encourange the young potential musicians! Those pictures of the girls with Geddy and Alex are TOO COOL! I'm envious. Geddy is one of my idols and I have yet to meet him.
     
  8. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Hi Lizzy........ and thanks for the supportive and encouraging words. I just visited your website and I hope that others will do the same......VERY nice.....cool Woodstock stuff and that inverted pic of you onstage is great!

    I guess that I'll have to begin hangin' my hat in "Miscellanious" more often; in one day I was able to meet YOU and BLACKBIRD.........both terrific players from what I can tell...(see their sites folks).....and great examples of why MORE women should be getting into playing.

    What do YOU hear from young female players Lizzy? What would it take to get MORE of them playing?

    And your comments on "today's music".....I couldn't agree more. When did we turn into our parents, Lizzy? :^>)

    Thanks,
    RB
     
  9. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    .
    I'm not being a cheuvanist (sp?) when I ask this - how does she go carrying around the Eden 4x10. I almost bought one, realised how heavy they were, so looked elsewhere
     
  10. Funny that - but I've also got an Eden 410XLT!.... and yes it's heavy!! - but what a great sound! :)

    I used to have Hartke cabs which I could manage on my own, but I blew the 1x15 and my hubbie decided he was happy to do the donkey work. I'm just debating whether to replace the speaker in case I ever need to carry the stuff myself again. (We play in the same band)

    I got into bass because my hubby got into electric guitar. I already played acoustic - ragtime - that sort of stuff. He asked me to take it up and I said no!... but then a guy at work was selling a bass for £40 so I said I'd give it a go and I loved it. I realised I'd always liked music that had good basslines and i enjoyed the teamwork.

    Things evolved - I upgraded my gear and joined a band and have never looked back.

    As far as GAS is concerned I'm pretty happy with my lot but then my lots pretty good stuff - mostly 2nd hand. I don't yearn for anything although I am looking in to buying a pedal tuner and another bass at the moment. :D

    I think the best way to get women playing is for them to see other women playing.
     
  11. I don't even like carrying 2X12''s that much, but those are OK. 4X10'''s, well, that's out of the question.
     
  12. LizzyD

    LizzyD Chocoholic

    Oct 15, 2002
    Seattle, WA
    Sadowsky Artist
    I have help carrying my gear too, my husband is the drummer in my band! Unfortunately that also means I help carry HIS gear...but much of it is in smaller packages so I can handle it OK.

    Uh, I just re-read that last sentence and I hope it doesn't get mis-interpreted. ;)

    I just traded in 2 Hartke 4.5's for 2 Bergantinos. One I can lift, the other I need a hand with. That's the only thing I can't do myself, and if I had to do a gig on my own my 210 can probably handle it.

    I agree with Bassbarbie - girls need to see more girls rocking, and there do seem to be more every day. Then it won't seem like a men's club anymore. I'm not sure if I like the "women in rock" or Lilith Fair sort of thing any better, because women don't need singling out, just equality. When you see male and female classical musicians side by side in an orchestra, it doesn't look weird.

    I guess rock and roll has historically been testosterone-based, but to me it's just music like any other style. Some might think that if you took the sex out of it, it wouldn't be rock and roll any more.
     
  13. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    For what it's worth, my Girlfriend owns and operates a PA systems for a living. It's not a small system either. I only just fits into a large van, the subs are double 18's, the mid highs are double 15's with horns (ie-HEAVY). She unloads and sets the gear up all by herself, pulls a darn good mix, then packs it all up and carries it all back to the van by herself. She's the exception to the rule I guess, but it shows that it can be done.

    I bring this up because from what I've seen, this has been the main obstacle for females getting into the industry. The females I've come across have all been fantastic players and usually have better ears than men.....so I'd like to see more of them
     
  14. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    "This has been the main obstacle".......sorry Pete, but with ALL due respect I don't think that lugging gear is the main obstacle by any means. IMHO, (and I'm certainly not proud of it), as in MANY other businesses, MEN are usually the main obstacle. :(

    RB
     
  15. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    in all honesty, that's not true here in Sydney. We've welcomed women into the frey for as long as I've been playing (15yrs). We have quite a lot of females musos, particularly bass players and guitarists, mixing it with the boys on an even playing field. The only criteria is that they can play well enough, but that same criteria applies to men as well.
     
  16. RichBriere

    RichBriere Guest

    Jan 1, 2003
    Upstate NY
    Ya know what, Pete? I'm going to have to clarify my point and apologize. The music "industry" is where my disappointment lies and, certainly, not with the "players". I should have been more clear on that. Thanks,
    RB
     
  17. leanne

    leanne

    May 29, 2002
    Rochester, NY

    I sort of played guitar but it just didn't do it for me. The bass seemed more interesting, and then I heard Mike Watt playing on the Minutemen's Double Nickles on the Dime and then I knew I had to play bass. :)

    What does that have to do with being a girl? :confused: Yes, it matters as far as how it sounds, feels, etc. Should chicks not care about how they sound? Of course I do "just enjoy playing" but part of playing is the sound that comes out... Anyway, at first my gear didn't matter much, though, I just wanted to learn. I didn't know how I wanted to sound yet. But I knew that I'd want to upgrade eventually, and I did. And I plan on doing it again. :)

    Btw I've got a Mesa Boogie 15" cab that I can't carry by myself.

    Leanne
     
  18. Um...your girlfriend carries 2x18 cabs by herself? :eek: :eek: Don't consider this a sexist comment, but HOW? Even if they're not as heavy as I'm imagining, I'd be very curious to see a 2x18 compact enough that one person could actually carry it alone...
     
  19. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    They're on wheels. But to get them in and out of the van, or up stairs, or into a stage, she flips them end over end. It can be done I tells ya......
     
  20. stephanie

    stephanie

    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    'Why is that'? I don't really know why because I can only speak for myself. I suppose women have the same reasons to pick up the bass as men. Whatever those reasons may be. What got me interested in the bass was the feel of it and the sound. It's always been my favorite instrument at concerts because you can feel it beneath your feet, riding up through your body. And I enjoy the lower frequencies, it's quite meditative.

    Girls get GAS too :D

    Well, I'm not going to speak for myself here because I don't have any gear worth mentioning LOL

    ...And everyone...men and women...should enjoy playing...if not, what's the point? What's the point of having good gear if you don't enjoy playing to begin with?