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How did you afford equipment as a teenager?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Ottsworth, Apr 10, 2011.

  1. spanndrew


    Oct 14, 2013
    Atlanta, Ga
    I worked and saved my money. Cut lawns, watch peoples kids, wash cars, walk dogs, bag groceries, whatever you can do. Also say no to the friends that ask you to go out and see a movie or eat every once in a while. It all adds up.
  2. Big Hoss

    Big Hoss Up note, down note, blue note, brown note...

    That's no joke. It gets worse as an adult when your taste veers away from McDonalds and Taco Bell to more sophisticated and expensive menus...

    Save up, get the gear, get the gig, and THEN use your gig money to have some fun...
    blindrabbit likes this.
  3. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone Banned

    Feb 23, 2011
    Alms from my parents, earning a bit of money from singing in the local church choir, and in my later teens educational economical support from the government and royalties from the Danish musical copyright agency Koda from playing originals at live concerts.
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2015
  4. Part time job(s), saving money from gifts, asking for gifts to be musical equipment (or funds to be able to put towards it), etc. I've always been surprised - even as an adult - how cutting back on frivolous spending can result in a lot of savings. For example, I just stopped buying beer - both for drinking at home and going out for them - for a few months last year, and wouldn't you know it, afterwards I had enough money to treat myself to some new pedals and albums I was wanting to get. :)
  5. MonetBass

    MonetBass ♪ Just listen ♫ Supporting Member

    Sep 15, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    I bought my first bass after getting a job out of college. Before that, I was fortunate enough to be able to use the schools' basses (a '72 Fender Jazz in high school, a Peavey T-40 in college). My guitar was a $60 garage-sale Kustom K200A and my parents bought me a $70 Crate 10" guitar amp. Don't get caught up in GASing for gear until you can afford it.
  6. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    Paper route.
    Bus boy.
    Shoveling snow.
    Grocery store.
    Cleaning cellars and attics & garages.
  7. skwee


    Apr 2, 2010
    Layaway. 35$ a week to the music store until bass was paid off.
  8. Tonetodiefor


    Feb 25, 2014
    Marin County
    Single parent situation for me as of nine years old. I started working every summer at age 13 on construction sites cleaning, sweeping, moving lumber, etc. That was in the summer of '68. I was paid $.75 per hour and I saved up enough that summer to by my first amp and bass. The remaining summers all the way to my senior year, I eventually learned how to swing a hammer and how to build a house. I earned more money by my senior year than any other kid in school. I had a number of very nice basses by my senior year as well as amps and speakers and even a car that I bought when I was 16. All paid for by myself. I lived own my own at age 18 and even paid my own way through two years of college.

    I'm not saying you should try that same path because it was very hard and often I felt physically overwhelmed and dead tired. I learned how to survive at a young age when my father abandoned our family and left us broke and homeless. I wish that on no one as it caused much pain for my mother and siblings. Somehow though, it was the armor I needed to grow up. Unfortunately I gave up some of my childhood along the way.

    Be patient and don't be afraid of some hard work. Best of luck!
  9. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    Saved birthday money. Cashier at a local market. Bussed tables at a local diner. Did data entry at a local business... unfortunately the whole "patron of the arts" thing has gone the way of the dodo. You gotta work.
  10. Busted my butt as a Barback in an Italian Club back in the 70's back then cases of soda came in Bottles and the case the bottles were in were heavy wood with metal corners, Beer was in bottles and kegs were Kegs all kept in the basement yeah busted my butt. When I had nothing to do I just didn't stand around I got shipped off to help with dishes in the kitchen. This was after school saved every penny first for EQ then lessons what kept me there? They had live bands and I was drooling over the basses that were on stage.
  11. JackANSI


    Sep 12, 2006
    I came from a family of musicians. First bass was a loaner from my grandmother. Once I decided I liked playing bass, I just asked for one and got an Ibanez (can't remember model). Then later fell for a Yamaha BBN5 and saved up for it doing odd jobs.

    Thank you all for reminding me how f'in lucky I was. Truly humbling.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015
  12. SERPENT865


    Jan 1, 2007
    Wichita , KS
    Had junk untill i got a real job. Young ones with expensive equipment = Rich parents.
  13. JulienneFrankus


    May 4, 2015
    A bandmemeber of mine would buy used gear from cocaine addicts. He got like 3 tube amps, for $300 a pop.

    Buying everything at MusiciansFriend is TOO expensive.
  14. Winterglo


    Aug 29, 2015
    I'm going to sound ancient but, ;; When I was 15, 1978, I saw a Hofner solid body short scale bass in the PX/Store in Germany. It was $135.00. A fortune for me at that time. I got a summer job through the Military for $1.90 an hour. At the end of a summer of mowing grass, trimming trees, buffing floors, cleaning public restroom, etc, I had half the money. I didn't even consider an amp, I just wanted the four stringer, bad. I was very disappointed. One day as I walked into my house, my parents were acting very strangely. Not talking, looking away. I thought OK?? Went into my room, and that shiny little bass was lying on my bed. I still have it.
    Danomo likes this.
  15. Riverrunsred


    Jan 20, 2010
    Central FL
    Rich girlfriend ?
    Just an idea.
  16. hopsbb


    Nov 8, 2014
    I started my musical journey at a landfill.Went with my father one day to take off some trash and there was a guitar case just laying up on a big pile.Reached up and grabbed it and there was an acoustic guitar inside.Took it home and a friend of my dad came over,cleaned it up and put strings on it.Played it for a while and the got just about everything else as Christmas presents.I was 13 at the time.I used to pick up alot of gear at flea markets and yard sales back in the day buy it seems harder to do that now a days.Once I started working at 16 in a grocery store I saved up and bought what I wanted.
  17. dangerdude


    Apr 24, 2019
    Started out with the trumpet. Did some gigs with the trumpet to save some money. Went to a shop with my uncle and we looked what we could get for 100 € back then. He said, choose solid build quality over looks. So I ended up with my seafoam green Yamaha Attitude Plus. Not the prettiest one, but very lightweight and superb neck. Although I bought many other basses over the years, I will never sell this one :)
  18. denhou1974


    Mar 6, 2008
    I couldn't afford anything. I used speaker wire to connect my bass to the line input of my home stereo. No jacks or anything, just wire and electrical tape. I ended up working odd jobs and saved up for a 15 watt practice amp from a local pawn shop. I think it was about $50. When I joined my first band I had an old 100 watt Peavey and a homemade cab that I bought from a friend for $200. It was crap gear and I could never hear myself. I put up with that for about 10 years. Didn't start getting quality gear until I got into my first cover band ($$$).
  19. I started piano lessons at 8. There was an old upright in the basement (free). Mowing lawns around the neighborhood got me $3.50 a pop. I pumped gas during Summers at a Marina when I was 12 & 13. I guess the law won't let you do that these days. 14 & 15 I was working at a BBQ restaurant that I rode my bicycle to and from. Steakhouse at 16, Pizza joint at 17. By then I had been gigging since I was 14, (first on the Wurlitzer that my Grandfather gave me, later on a $280 bass into a traditional 2-15 piggyback Bassman that I bought with my own money, but that was hit and miss as far as money goes back then ("There ain't much money in it boys, but the exposure will be great". :D .
  20. bassdude51

    bassdude51 "You never even called me by my name." Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2008
    Central Ohio
    Work a paper route for 2 years to buy a crappy bass. ($7 dollars a week)

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