First Musical!

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by Bassic Playing, Apr 3, 2014.

  1. Hey guys.

    So a couple of weeks ago I auditioned for the bass part in my universities musical, which this year is Rent.

    Fast forward to today, and I have just been issued the bass music for it:bassist: Super excited, looks like a lot of cool parts, a chance to play some fretless, an excuse to get an octave pedal :D and a lot more reading than I'm used to.

    Anyone out there have some fun experiences playing musicals?
  2. smeet

    smeet Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    Woodland Hills, CA
    I LOVE playing in pit bands. Rent is a great show to play too. There's a couple of challenging songs that are driven by the bass, and the reading isn't too hard. I've done a few shows (Rent, Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Forbidden Zone, and currently, Thoroughly Modern Millie). I'd love to do more. Millie is the hardest one I've done. Some difficult reading in C# (7 sharps!), B, etc.
    There are double sharps, E#, B#, A#, and other nasty notes. Incredible for really learning your fingerboard and getting your reading together. And there's a cool camaraderie that develops among the musicians who just met to play a bunch of shows and sound really good with very little rehearsal.

    Have fun... I'd love to play Rent again.
  3. Thanks! Yes, and while we're the 'pit band' technically, I think the director is putting us on stage as some dirty hobos actually, which should be cool. I was a little nervous about the reading, but since flicking through the book I realise that I'm up to the task.

    Being mostly a folk, metal and jazz kinda guy, I'm really more used to grooving and improv, I think this will be a change of pace that will really expand my playing.
  4. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    "Spamalot" pit orchestra gig

    This was my latest. I've been playing the spring musicals at San Marino High School for 14 years. I've never done RENT but it looks like it would be a blast. Break a leg!

    Thank you for your indulgence,

  5. smeet

    smeet Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2006
    Woodland Hills, CA
    Spamalot looks fun.

    Man, I was just listening to some of the music from Rent. Some strong and depressing stuff there...

    This is the coolest bass part in the show:
  6. dtsamples

    dtsamples Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    Wilmington, DE
    Yeah, huge amount of fun. Enjoy it, going to be a blast. Santa Fe is your time to shine...
  7. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Here's "the big fretless number" from when I did Rent last year. There's another tune in there that sounds much better on fretless but the book doesn't specify it. I believe it's also played on fretless in the original cast recording.

  8. I do anywhere from 6 to 12 shows a year, and I love it! Always different music, always a challenge, and almost always a lot of fun. The most recent was Dirty Rotten Scoundrels - fininshed this past Sunday night. Really good score, with decent bass parts, and a truly funny show.

    Rent is a fantastic show. I've never had an opportunity to play it, though I've seen it on Broadway. Basically a live rock band on stage with the actors, and great songs.

    Favourites? Jesus Christ Superstar, Rocky Horror, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Smokey Joe's Cafe, Spamalot, Joseph, Once On This Island, Seussical.. aw heck, I like most of 'em. Sound of Music gets pretty boring by the third or fourth time through The Lonely Goatherd, and the Johnny Cash show was pretty undemanding, but I like the songs. :)

    Hardest for me? Definitely Sondheim. I did Assassins a couple of years back. Nasty keys, and key and time changes about every four bars...

    I'm sure I have the usual pet peeves about show music. Things like lots of double flats or sharps, badly copied parts, where you can hardly read them, parts where each player's bar numbering is different, stupid repeats over pages... It makes you relly appreciate the well written stuff!

    Bassic, enjoy your run! I hope you get to do more. :)

    BTW, my avatar is from Legally Blonde...
  9. Thanks guys! Yea smeet, Sante Fe is a cool one (as well as being a great beirut song).

    Elgecko, which song are you referring to? I'd really like to get a bit of fretless play time.
    The rest of the band are killer musicians, and the leads are gret singers, so i think wel'll really sound spectacular. Ill be sure to update with some sound clips closer to the date
  10. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    You'll See, big 11.

    Good luck!
  11. Yes, while skimming through it I have come across a couple instruction that are completely baffling, but i guess that's just the nature of the beast

    Thank you, I'll look out for t :)