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I'm turning into a snob/RANT!

Discussion in 'Bass Humor [DB]' started by sevenyearsdown, Jan 13, 2012.

  1. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    I find the more I study double bass, the less I can deal with the rock musicians I was used to playing with. I just walked from one 50's style rock/swing band because the sloppy slacker approach of the band just drove me crazy, and now the same thing is happening with my string band that I very much enjoy. The further I get away from straight-up rock bands, the more I find the terms rock & musician to be two words that rarely justify being put together now.

    Really feel like I'm outgrowing everything I used to do in bands, and I'm far (very far) from considering myself a good upright bassist. Funny part is the more I get frustrated with others, the harder I want to work to become better and more varied in my own abilities.
  2. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I was just having a similar conversation with someone. You might find over time that it's less about being a snob or elitist, but more about the fact that you're working on eliminating some habits that those people enable.

    I played a gig last month with a piano player who I've known for 10+ years. Great guy, more work and good work than just about anyone I know and he's carried me some years when things were thin, but his time and respect for form are terrible. When I started playing with him, I didn't notice that much, in the middle of that period, I started thinking that it might be bad for me to play with him because I was struggling to solidify my own time-feel issues. Now, it's just a tough night that I usually don't enjoy musically, but I do for other reasons 1/2 dozen times a year or so. If it was more often than that, I'd have to think about whether it was instilling bad habits in me.

    Your ears, technique, habits and professionalism are just transitioning, that's all. There are some rock musicians with great skills and habits, by the way. But there are many, many more who self taught to the extent that enabled them to join a band (and get some chicks) and then stopped developing themselves.
  3. waleross


    Nov 27, 2009
    South Florida
    I studied String Bass many years ago and fully understand what you are going through even though now I don't play or own one anymore. My fretless reminds me that I need to work on my intonation, etc.....I first started with the electric and then migrated to the string bass, now I just play the electric. . It takes a while to get a good sound and you need the dedication to really make progress. The problem with the electric bass is that all you need to do is turn on the amp and you get a sound. The upright is a different culture as well as a different instrument. Keep playing and don't worry about being a "snob"..................................:cool:
  4. hdiddy

    hdiddy Official Forum Flunkee Supporting Member

    Mar 16, 2004
    Richmond, CA
    I think it's also that your relationship to music is changing because DB requires you to put so much more care into it. It's no longer just a laissez-faire thing that's easy to produce. You start to notice how lackadaisical your bandmates are and how little attention the put into their sound - it becomes a turnoff. There are only a small percentage rock musicians who are serious about their art. The rest just wanna have a good time. It's not just rock, it's just people who aren't as serious about music as you are. Yeah it's fun, but when it's good, it's even MORE fun.

    You're in love with the sound, you're in love with the instrument, and you care about what you produce. Might as well stick with playing with people who feel the same way, regardless of musical genres.
  5. bejoyous


    Oct 23, 2005
    London, Ontario
    After you eat at Milestones it is hard to go back to McDonald's...
  6. Raka


    Aug 28, 2008
    It's even worse. It can happen for every style of music, independant of rock, jazz or classical. If your mates don't develop at the same rate as you do, there will be tensions, because there will be a moment that these differences will be installed in your mind, and fun can be difficult to have. And no fun means trouble.
    I'm playing in a aficionados "jazz" trio and since the begining my primary concern has been that we all make similar progress. The second one is to deal with Gb minor key.
  7. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    The irony is that I'm probably not any more talented than any of the guys I play with, but I prepare myself to be able to walk in and do my part without a lot of slipping up.......whereas the rest of them seem to have little interest in the details that give music its dynamics.
  8. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    You know, I've come to believe that "talent" is over-rated or at least over-estimated and assumed. As I've gotten to know some really great players, regardless of instrument, I've learned just how hard they worked and still work to sound as good as they do.

    Actually, if you think about it, acknowledging the someone's discipline and hard work has paid off musically is a much better compliment than simply calling them "talented", which implies it is something they lucked into.

    You're going through something completely normal, though it can be a bit uncomfortable. It's an indication that you are on the right path. Keep it up.
  9. I believe that it is also a good opportunity to learn about yourself and how you deal with people. I try to look at those people I play with that drive me nuts and see what about them is bothering me. Then I try to see how that's really because in some way they exhibit tendencies in myself that I'm not too pleased about. It's also a good opportunity to learn about professionalism in music. You'll probably never get away from musicians that you feel aren't taking it as seriously as you, but you'll usually have to put up with them and bring your best to the music regardless.
  10. Clef_de_fa

    Clef_de_fa Guest

    Dec 25, 2011
    I feeled the same for the past ... 4 years. I went to college to earn a degree on the classical DB and before that I played a lot the EB, studying jazz and working a lot to be on part technicaly with guy like victor wooten, alain caron and John Patitucci but I obviously aren't as good as them I'm just good enough to replicate what they do.

    But when I see a rock/pop/punk/other mainstream player I heard very simple music and very bad technic ... and that make me grind my tooth. Often it is more important their look on stage than what they play.

    So I feel like I'm not at my place on TB.
  11. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I read a Nat Hentoff quote on John Coltrane this morning that made me think about this discussion:

    "...He was just a human being like you and me - but he was willing to practice more, to do all of the things that somebody has to do to excel..."

    I'm not John Coltrane and I doubt you are either, but that work is..well work and it takes something out of you. Trying to play with people who don't have the same respect for what you're working through is tiring at best.
  12. Raka


    Aug 28, 2008
    And at worst, a feeling that you are wasting precious time.
  13. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I would go a step further to say, at worst, could interfere with your own process.
  14. Marc Piane

    Marc Piane

    Jun 14, 2004
    A few people have alluded to it. I have been very serious about music for some time. My biggest challenge is realizing that not everyone came to music in the same way and that's ok. I used to regularly unintentionally make people (especially singers) feel stupid for their lack of knowledge. As funny as this can be to us instrumentalists it doesn't help make beautiful music.

    So the short of it. I used to be SUPER snobby. I have been making a concerted effort to be less so. I think of the making of the Goat Rodeo Sessions video where they talk about how Stuart Duncan doesn't read and that he and Yo-Yo Ma are from different worlds and could have gone through their entire lives having never crossed paths. As they point out... it's all music.
  15. sevenyearsdown

    sevenyearsdown Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Sanborn, NY
    A lot of good points are coming out of this thread. I doubt I'll ever be an accomplished double bassist, as most of my study is done on my own. But I've never stopped being a "sponge" with music. I still get that feeling from starting a mess with something out of the book, and then working hard over and over until I can play it.

    Another point that has come to my attention is that I play much better, and strive to play much better when I'm not the best player in the room. When I start to feel like I'm outgrowing the people I'm playing with, I tend to get bored and lazy wanting to move on.

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