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Hi. I'm Matt... I've become obsessed

Discussion in 'Welcome Forum - New Member Intros' started by mdurell, Mar 10, 2006.


  1. mdurell

    mdurell

    Mar 9, 2006
    Boulder, CO
    I stumbled upon this site while researching the purchase of a DB. Thank goodness too! The DB forums contain a goldmine of information compiled and well organized by a group that clearly love the instrument and want a noob to succeed.

    I've played guitar and studied music for 19 years and I must say that since I've decided to take on the DB beast I've encountered nothing but enthusiasm and a true culture that welcomes newcomers and offers none of the snobiness found in other instrument's circles.

    Now, how did I get 'here' (think larger sense)?

    I've been in the IT industry for 14 years or so and have been blessed with abilities that have allowed me to make a pretty decent living throughout this period of my life. In recent years, however, I've grown increasingly dissatisfied with the culture and the stress and have "decided" to take a new path.

    For years and years I've regretted not completing college and not focusing on music. In the 19 years with the guitar I've never stopped studying and learning. I would say that throughout that period I can only recall a few periods where I went at MOST 2-3 weeks without playing and studying. Generally I play, practice or study nearly every day. I'm an avid jazz fan.

    With all that study I should be a better guitarist than I am though. In reality I am pretty good (certainly above average but I'm no Pat Martino) but just don't have the personality and confidence required to 'succeed' in those circles. Guitarists, I've found, are pretty competitive while I'm just not. Additionally the guitar, in general, doesn't really get the respect it deserves as a serious instrument.

    I've decided to go back to school and focus on a music degree but the guitar just never felt like the 'right' instrument for this purpose (though I love it dearly and can't ever imagine not playing). I feel I just lack the motivation to learn what I'll need to learn with guitar being my declared primary instrument. Besides there's too many guitarists anyway.

    My experience on bass is limited to a short stint as a bass guitarist for a local not-too-serious band. They needed a bass player and I wanted to play with other people (outside of a few open jams) for the first time in 10+ years (they already had a guitarist, big suprise). At first I wasn't sure if I would enjoy playing bass guitar but I did recall playing a friends at an open jam at a party a few months prior and had fun with it. After the first rehersal I discovered that the bass really fit my personality well. Not being one to take center stage it was quite enjoyable to sit in the background and guide everyone with the foundation of the groove. There's something about being the glue between the rhythm of the drums and harmony of the rest of the group that really appeals to me. I especially liked the idea of being able to reshape harmonic structures down in that range (these guys mostly wrote 3 or 4 chord songs with no discernable 'B' sections in the changes... so I worked in these structure changes in the basslines). I loved that there was nothing else down in that range to step on my toes (and vice versa). It was a very liberating experience. Still, I never had the opprotunity or inclination to buy a basss guitar rig (that rig was borrowed).

    Fast forward to about 2 months ago and I found myself with my wife enjoying a student/faculty quartet jazz performance here in town. Watching the bassist that evening it occured to me that this instrument might just be the beast to tame me. I'm not really sure why I had never considered it before. I've always been drawn in it's direction and, whenever I see live jazz, I always focus more on the bass than anything else (though a good pianist can be quite a distraction if they reharmonize well). As I sat there listening and enjoying, I realized that I needed to seriously consider this as my primary.

    Since that time the more I have thought about it the more right it feels. Last week I made the commitment and found myself a teacher (who happens to be the busiest musician in the Boulder area... this guy is EVERYWHERE and gigs EVERY NIGHT--another benefit of DB I quickly figured out is that you can actually work!). I'm now in the market for a decent student bass and stumbled onto this site.

    Thankfully the folks on the DB forums have passivly steered me away from the cheap chinese bass path I probably would have ended up on. This site is truly an amazing resource and the last several days here have proven very fruitful.

    My wife and I leave for our honeymoon next week and I have a solo road trip planned shortly after we get back. I plan on spending a few days in the city and touring New School and perhaps checking out the double bass shops the city has to offer (any suggestions?). I will be getting something when I return from that trip (unless I find something in the interim, I am getting the word out that I'm in search of a decent DB in a major way). There is a local shop in Denver that has several basses in stock including a very tempting Christopher 302 (hybrid) for just shy of $2k. It might just be my first DB.

    I figure I'll buy a good electric bass guitar rig when I'm ready (2 to 4 years I figure). Right now I'm thinking it will be a 6-string fretted for doing solo chord-melody work but that's a ways off. For now I have my guitar to scratch that itch.

    I'm excited and scared of what I'm getting myself into but I'm making the commitment! Wish me luck!
     
  2. Tampabass

    Tampabass Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2006
    Tampa
    I know you are, but what am I?
    hi, Matt: If you're going to NYC and you're interested in double bass, you MUST go to the David Gage bass shop. It's one of the best (if not THE best) double bass shops in the world -- many, many basses to check out and extremely knowledgeable staff. Best to call ahead and make an appointment with them. i think it's davidgage.com