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How's Your Guitar Playing?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by BassFishingInAmerica, Mar 28, 2015.


  1. I'm better on guitar than bass.

    11 vote(s)
    6.1%
  2. I'm equally good on bass and guitar.

    28 vote(s)
    15.6%
  3. I'm better on bass but can play some guitar.

    104 vote(s)
    57.8%
  4. I'm good on bass but can not play guitar.

    31 vote(s)
    17.2%
  5. Give me some time, I just started!

    5 vote(s)
    2.8%
  6. What's a bass?

    1 vote(s)
    0.6%
  1. BassFishingInAmerica

    BassFishingInAmerica

    Jul 24, 2014
    There have been some posts similar to this, but not exactly. With the 2015 baseball season about to begin, I thought this story would be somewhat appropriate. I was doing some recording at a friend's home studio. He had just bought a new acoustic guitar, so he let me try it out. I played a few blues licks and chords, then he says, "You should stick to bass, you're way better at it."
    I already know I'm not a great guitar player, so I just said, "Why is a pitcher terrible at batting?" He says, "What?" I said, "In baseball, why can't pitchers bat?" He said, "Why?" I said, "Because they spend all their time practicing pitching. I'm not a guitarist, I'm a bassist. That's what I practice." I've heard a lot of guitarists compare bassists to guitarists (He can't play guitar so he plays bass, or he got stuck playing bass instead of guitar). But I can't think of ever a time when I've made a comparison between a guitarist not being able to play like a bassist. What's up with that? A band is like a sports team. Everyone has their position. No one asks why the third baseman can't pitch, and no one should be saying the bassist probably can't play guitar. Two entirely different positions, two entirely different instruments. Anyway, I wanted to see how many bassists also play guitar with some level of proficiency. For the bassists just starting out, I think it is highly beneficial to at least learn basic guitar in order to play bass with some expertise. By the way -- Who's on first bass.
     
    Cowboy in Latvia likes this.
  2. I have played guitar for over 20 years but I've only been playing bass for less than 18 months but have become addicted to it like no other instrument I've played and have become pretty decent at it. Currently my bass playing is probably equal to my guitar playing. Last November on a camping trip I was by my lonesome and picked up the guitar for a bit. I quickly realised how rusty I was and that I hadn't really played the guitar in nearly a year. Now I try to pick up the guitar once a week at the least, but I really prefer the bass.
     
  3. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I'm just a guitar owner. :)

    (I could strum some chords around the camp fire, that's my level)
     
  4. the_stoot64

    the_stoot64

    Mar 8, 2015
    Australia
    Equally bad on both!

    I'm fairly solid on both but end up getting bored and experimental.
     
  5. Dojix

    Dojix

    May 24, 2014
    Brisbane, Australia
    Psh, anyone can play guitar, it's just a bass with two extra strings. ;)
     
  6. BassFishingInAmerica

    BassFishingInAmerica

    Jul 24, 2014
    I think this is the dilemma for anyone playing two or more instruments. Do we split our practice time or focus all our attention on one instrument. Why doesn't cello player, Yo Yo Ma, play viola or violin. He probably could, but he focuses on cello to perfect it. On the other hand, there are those who are experts at multiple instruments. So it's a decision we have to make for ourselves.
     
  7. Cowboy in Latvia

    Cowboy in Latvia

    Mar 1, 2015
    There's the old cliche that the worst guitar player gets to play the bass and honestly, it's as useful as most old cliches. I suck when I play guitar but that's because I don't enjoy playing it. When I play bass, I am much more in tune with the general construction of the song and get to craft a line and groove to make it sound better. Give me a bass any day and to heck with those toffee nosed players who think that only a guitar virtuoso can be a competent bassist.
     
    BassFishingInAmerica likes this.
  8. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    I can play all major and most minor chords and would be a pretty ok rock/metal rhythm guitarist. My soloing is the usual penatonic crap on the dots that most crappy guitarists do but the B string tuning screws that up.

    Not good enough to gig but more than good enough to play when drunk/ with drunks around a campfire.

    Also, since I really focused on bass since 1985 and haven't learned much guitar since... I can now pretty much only play Rush, Triumph, Yes, Black Sabbath and a few other older metal/rock band's tunes from the 70's to mid 80's.:thumbsup:
     
    BassFishingInAmerica likes this.
  9. BassFishingInAmerica

    BassFishingInAmerica

    Jul 24, 2014
    Sounds a lot like my playing. I started bass around 1981 and am stuck in that 70s guitar style. Although I've learned many new songs on the guitar since then, they are always older songs from the 60s or 70s (Beatles, Supertramp, Zeppelin, Rush). That's the style I know.
     
    Baird6869 likes this.
  10. Timmah

    Timmah Supporting Member

    May 19, 2011
    Connecticut
    I can strum chords, play rhythm pretty well across uncomplicated genres, and do simple bluesy leads on electric. I'm working on doing country leads, chicken pickin', etc., and I write a little with my acoustic guitar. But bass has always been my first love and my priority, and I practice and gig way more with that than with guitar.
     
  11. TripleDouble

    TripleDouble Guest

    Aug 5, 2008
    I've played guitar for about 30 years, and 20 years ago when I was sick of guitar and stressed out at music school studying jazz, I learned to play me some P-bass just for fun. I immediately joined some bands on bass and started playing rock clubs and hippie festivals, and lemme tell ya, it was a better party than school recitals. I'm still kind of a nerdy "player's" guitarist and am getting to be a pretty accomplished player and like to compose and play complicated weird stuff, but still love playing giant fat rock and funk basslines and avoid trying to be a chops player on bass. I think I'm about equal at both, though in very different musical realms - both offer different musical outlets for me and a different type of satisfaction. I've probably gigged 2x as much on bass though it's not my "main" instrument. I'd urge any highly skilled fancy bassists on here to try playing some riffs on a Les Paul through a ripping Marshall sometime, just to get a sense of what I mean.
     
    BassFishingInAmerica likes this.
  12. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    I play guitar out of self defense. Too many guitarists don't grok why Steve Cropper and Curtis Mayfield are more important than SRV or Page.

    Playing guitar gives a better harmonic understanding than just playing bass offers. Working out arrangements is easier too. So I work on guitar playing like I do bass playing.
     
  13. BassFishingInAmerica

    BassFishingInAmerica

    Jul 24, 2014
    Most of us pick it up for fun ... because it is fun.
     
  14. Kmonk

    Kmonk

    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    I am primarily a bass player but play guitar on some songs with my band and have also played guitar on a theme song for a television show which is under development in Asia.
     
  15. hsech

    hsech Work hard. My Social Security needs a raise.

    Jun 27, 2012
    Central Iowa
    I use to be a 50% six stringer until my right thumb got crushed and I had multiple surgeries and a bone graft. Now it's thumping bass full time with my fingers. I cant hold a pick.

    Harry 3.
     
    BassFishingInAmerica likes this.
  16. Texan

    Texan 667 Neighbor of the Beast. Supporting Member

    Aug 15, 2004
    Houston, TX
    I'm a rhythm player, I feel rhythm and love playing it. I love the sounds of leads, but just don't feel them. I can play a lead, but prefer to stick to rhythm.
     
    oaklandthumb and quickfix like this.
  17. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    I think it would be cool to be able to play some guitar. Unfortunately bass is hard enough and I don't have a ton of time to learn another instrument...beer drinking and golfing to attend to.
     
  18. IPA

    IPA

    May 5, 2010
    Where is the "equally terrible on both, but slightly louder on bass" option?:roflmao:
     
  19. I didn't vote, but my guitar playing is not even close to proficient. Simply because I don't have one to practice on. But I'm not nearly as interested in guitar as I am bass.

    I absolutely hate when people or other musicians for that matter say crap like "bass players are just frustrated drummers and guitarists." I like Matt Freeman's thoughts on the subject, he said "I started out playing bass learning every Who song I could get my hands on, I play bass because I love it. I didn't start on guitar and couldn't hack it then switched to bass, I've always been a bass player." That's precisely the way I feel about it, I'll always be a bass player first. I do respect alot of guitarists, but there's a only a handful I've come across that can play a bass somewhat decently.
     
  20. Smooth_bass88

    Smooth_bass88 Groove it

    I find guitars to be annoying to try and play. They feel like toys to me with their tiny thin strings and short little necks. And what's with that goofy tuning with the B and then another E string. Nope, not for me.
     

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