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Guitarist-written Bass Lines

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by DarkAvianFind, Dec 17, 2018.

  1. glocke1


    Apr 30, 2002
    Generally I've found guitarists who play bass and write bass lines to be somewhat "odd" in the approach to writing bass lines.

    Local guy to me is a guitar player/drummer who plays some bass and has an approach to bass I find rather odd. I can't explain it properly, but he comes up with bass lines I never would have come up with. They aren't really bad, nor are they overly complex just way different from what I would have done over similar guitar progressions he was playing.

    Years ago I was in a project with a guy who wrote some cool rock originals. He just let the bass player (he had a few over the years) do whatever they wanted. He and I came up with some cool stuff, and frankly I think it's best to let the bass player come up with the bass line 90% of the time. Wish I was still playing with that dude.
    Mr_Moo likes this.
  2. AlexBassMP


    Feb 5, 2014
    My philosophy about that topic is easy:

    I don't care who wrote the bass line if it works for the song.
  3. Just a little follow-up, at our last practice I brought up the sound getting muddied by the elaborate chords and suggested a simpler way to play it (that sounded better to my ears, but I didn't say that) that retained the essence of the part. I was immediately shot down without discussion. Although there were attempts over the last two months, we haven't practiced since.
    Downunderwonder likes this.
  4. Just my 2 cents play it his way and record it and let him hear it, 4 string chords strummed on a bass unless you have the mids up and the bass flat is going to sound like crap imo, you really have to get a guitar tone to get it to cut through the mix
  5. LBS-bass

    LBS-bass Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2017
    A band that can't find a way to practice in two months has a problem that goes beyond one person dictating what gets played. It sounds to me as though this guy hasn't figured out what some of the others in this thread have said, which is that you have to play to your strengths and work within your limitations. He has a "vision" which may or may not be amazing, but if he's requiring advanced skill to pull it off, he probably should be paying someone and be serious and professional enough to assemble a group that is able to practice at least once or twice a week.

    If it were me, I'd be looking elsewhere. He doesn't value what you bring to the table.
    Misfit Wookiee likes this.
  6. Gravedigger Dav

    Gravedigger Dav Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Have him show you.
    But, be aware that, depending on what else is going on in the music, double stops on bass may not sound that good.
    I would also suggest you write your own line and have him play the song with your line and see what he thinks.

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