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Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by project_c, Dec 17, 2014.
To some guys the only right bass sound in a jazz setting is an upright. I play in a post bop quartet off and on and the drummer, who is a good friend, is of that ilk. I've threatened to beat the snot out of him.
I would have understood and respected that, but unfortunately he kept referring to some rock band he'd been playing with and saying that's what a bass should sound like. He had no idea about different bass tones in different settings, or flat wound strings, or any of that stuff. I seriously just wanted to kick him in the nuts. The guy could play drums, but he was clueless.
He may have been more experienced at something, but I guarantee it's not jazz....
Get rid of that drummer. Or refuse to play with him. Whatever. Do it fast.
He may have chops, but he's not a musician.
You let a drummer touch your amp? that was silly.
If you played sax, would you have let him grab your horn and adjust your reed?
You don't want to shut out advice, especially from more experienced players. In your shoes, I'd listen to advice and consider it. But "your bass just doesn't sound right" isn't advice. Unless you liked the idea of more grit in your tone, I'd have thanked him for that suggestion, maybe asked him for the names of a couple songs that had that tone so I could listen to them to hear what he was after, and told him I'd think about it.
But coming over to adjust your amp was over the line, and he should have known it (or he did know it and was having a go at you). Calmly but firmly say you heard his opinion, gesture to the drum kit, explain that those tubs are what he's playing tonight, and invite him to scuttle off back behind them before we have trouble.
Can you play drums?
Great points, I did spend some time thinking about the tone of my bass that day after all that happened. I'd played with him a few weeks before that in a different setting, and I was playing a jazz bass with roundwounds and he loved my tone then, but there's a time and a place for that tone, and this was not it..... I think ultimately he come to a jazz session wanting to play some 80's jazz fusion nightmare at 250bpm, and act like a know-it-all primadonna, and that's really not what those sessions are about. Every other musician I've played with in that room has been pretty humble, regardless of skill / experience, and nobody (apart from the band leader) ever really feels the need to hand out advice to anyone else.
Don't ask, just walk over and start tuning his drums. Maybe he'll get the message.
Not worth getting physical about. Don't play with him again...simple.
I wonder why you kept it shut this time.
Complain about his snare tone. It's to high or to low. Reach into your pocket and pull out a drum key and move toward his kit and watch the fear in his eyes. A good drummer will spend hours tuning a snare drum to get the right tone, and yes that tone generally changes with music style.
OP, bring you Double Bass next time!
A good drummer can do that in just a few minutes.
How long do you spend tuning you bass?
I would have said "hey drummer, keep your gd hands off my amp". I like to keep it simple.
I actually keep a drum key in my bag. Guess what I would have done?
You shouldn't started adjusting his drums: Move the stool around, detune the toms to get a thunk sound, and then tell him he's doing it all wrong.
I would've walked over to his kit and started "re-tuning" his drums, loosening the snare and changing his stool height. (call it a stool, not a "throne" as they call it lol)
BTW the "idiot" in "idiot drummer" is superfluous, it is implied when you say "drummer" hehe
Gotta ask the OP - when you say "jazz," what do you mean - bebop, cool, hard bop, out, Steps Ahead, Weather Report, latin, "smooth," neo-bop, new traditionalist, etc. etc.?
Jazz is a huge universe.
Also, how did this drummer sound to you, and were you able to groove with him? (I'm guessing not…)
Maybe he's more "experienced," but did he pick up on the vibe in your room, with those players and those tunes AT THAT TIME, and make things better among all of you, then and there?
Was he communicating with the players and their music?
Sounds like an A-hole to me. Avoid at all costs, unless he's offering you a gig (and maybe even then, avoid nonetheless?)
We're always not the best judges of our tone(at times), so I do welcome feedback. This guy sounds like he is WAY out of line though.