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How should "bass" be pronounced?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Frank Martin, Feb 18, 2004.


  1. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Hi everyone!

    This is a question that bothers me ever since I have first heard some English-speaking guy on TV calling it "base guitar" (of course that was many years ago). Now there was a thread at Basses about an even weirder idea (namely calling it barse instead :rolleyes: ).
    (It is pronounced differently in my country, more like what i think it should, so that is where my question comes from).

    So: it is now pronounced as "base-" or "bace-" or "bays-geetar". Shouldnt the word "bass" be pronounced like "mass" and "pass", which have the same letters except for the b?

    What do you think?
     
  2. with a silent b.

    mmmmmm !!!
     
  3. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Deptford, NJ
    bass (base)- the instrument we play

    bass (b-ass)- fish
     
  4. When I was in Germany they all pronounced it b-ass and couldn't understand why it made me so mad! I made them all say b-ase around me! :D
     
  5. In English, it should be pronounced as "base". But many European countries will have their own dialect, such as Italian (bassa) or French (basse). So I think it's natural for them to pronounce english words like their respective counterparts.
     
  6. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    yes, both are written the same... the only difference is that you got used to calling it "base" like the most. There is a proverb in my country: "one fool makes a hundred" - that means there only has to be one fool, who starts it, and then the rest follow :p I prefer bass as "b-ass", and dont care for those fishes :p :D
     
  7. BustinJustin

    BustinJustin banned

    Sep 12, 2003
    NYC, LI too

    um, how many of who make what?
     
  8. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Uhmm ... Have you heard a Frenchman or an Italian speaking (or trying to speak) English? It makes me want to laugh and makes me want to cry at once... well ok many in my country cant speak English properly, an accent is audible, but with these people, it is disastrous...

    This is not about pronouncing English words like the words they have in their language, but more about an acquired bad habit that goes against the rules of grammar - at least that is my opinion.
     
  9. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Ok sorry, its 10pm here and I've had classes from 8 in the morning minus one hour and a half of getting up and getting there... and I have not slept well the night before, too, so I am sleepy and tired and make lots of mistakes ... but you still get the basic idea fo the post, dont you? ;)
     
  10. hvacfreak

    hvacfreak

    Feb 12, 2004
    D2 account is Imagesandwords , US EAST , I play alot too , lol
     
  11. BustinJustin

    BustinJustin banned

    Sep 12, 2003
    NYC, LI too
    (simon voice on)
    "i dont want excuses"


    ok ok i got ya
     
  12. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Simon says... :D :D hmm yes i think i need some sleep for tomorrow... will be back in the morning. Bye and good night!
     
  13. lbanks

    lbanks

    Jul 17, 2003
    Ennui, IN USA
    :D Barse
     
  14. Electricmayhem

    Electricmayhem

    Dec 18, 2003
    NH
    It would probably be easier if they switched it to "base".

    Ever tried a google search by putting in "bass"? You get a whole lot of fishing sites, that's what...
     
  15. Oysterman

    Oysterman

    Mar 30, 2000
    Sweden
    I guess you can't blame people who pronounce it like the fish, especially foreigners (= people who don't have english as a first language). I did it myself back in the day. I mean, where's the logic in the other pronunciation if you look at the spelling? "Mass" isn't "mace", "pass" isn't "pace". Then why the heck should "bass" be pronounced as "base"? Hmm? :meh:

    Oh, I forgot - languages aren't logical.
     
  16. Man, you are all insane! This isn't an actual discussion. OF COURSE its pronounced 'Base'. If you are speaking english you pronouce it 'Base'. That simple.
     
  17. Hmm, well, my mom speaks French and my grandparents are of Italian origin, so I think I have! ;) I get what you're saying, though. True, I guess it should be bass and not base, but not everything makes sense in language and grammar.
     
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    But why be so "anglo-centric" - so if we talking about Double Bass - I much prefer the term "Contrabasse" where the last part is pronounced like the fish!! ;)
     
  19. Even funnier and more disastrous is English people trying to speak French. :spit:
     
  20. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member


    I agree - I just can't do the accent!! I can read in French and I often find I can understand conversations in French really easily - but I keep my mouth shut, as it just sounds so "wrong" with an English accent and after so many years - I just can't talk any other way, without feeling false or posey ....:meh: