Hey, well I am 17.... I got my bass when i was 12, played for around 2 years then stopped.... about 5 months ago I picked it up and decided I wanted to go back to playing hardcore practicing and up my skill level in hopes of joining a band, my buddies are 2 hardcore guitarists. Anyways, the problem lies here... I dont really like any of the major bass genres. I dont really like funk, blues, jazz... I on the other hand like pop-punk, harder punk, and rock. While practcing, I seem to have hit a wall.... I mean I can sit here for hours and rip out other bands riffs which can sound cool or just be hiting 8 notes and moving on to the next note but really how should i be practicing? Is this the right instrument for me? The other question is, if i were to upgrade my bass, what should I be looking for? I do have small hands but not tiny. I want something that will play well into my older amp. And I was hoping for a good sound for punk, rock, pop stuff. in the 200-400 dollar range maybe. Thanks for any input. Mike.