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Keyboardist/sound man wants me to pick one bass to play. Jealousy or does he have a point?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Greg_S, Jan 11, 2017.

  1. ThePresident777


    Oct 6, 2013
    Does he switch sounds on his keyboard?
    Max Blasto likes this.
  2. sawzalot

    sawzalot Supporting Member

    Oct 18, 2007
    I say all this as the combination bassist/sound guy for my band, so I know exactly where your keyboardist is coming from. I call BS on the sound guy/keyboardist. If a sound guy ever told me I could only play one bass I would have to have a serious discussion about whether he's qualified--once I stopped laughing.

    The problem is not with you changing basses. He's the sound guy. Adapting to instrument changes is part of the sound guy's job. If he can't adapt because he's playing keys, then he is in fact unable to do his job and you need a dedicated sound guy. It's actually he that needs to decide if he wants to a) be the sound guy, b) play keys, or c) put up with the extra stress.

    As the sound guy for my band, I have to deal with the same situation and...I deal with the extra stress.

    blindrabbit likes this.
  3. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Simple OP. You can afford it. (Congrats on that by the way.) Buy a digital sound board and run sound yourself. Then you can tell him to shut up. :thumbsup:
  4. RichardW


    Feb 25, 2016
    near Philly
    I have yet to play a gig at which the guitarists didn't bring two or three guitars each. Does your sound guy tell them to pick one? That said, I usually only bring one bass because I prefer the simplicity and I'm pretty sure no one in the audience could tell the difference if I were to swap out basses for different songs.

    The bigger issue, it seems to me, is that you've attributed some pretty dark motives to your band mate. You're successful and he's "dirt poor" (and has a bad attitude toward life), therefore he must be jealous of you? Really? Are you a psychiatrist in your professional life?

    Maybe he's reacting to a perceived "I'm superior to you" vibe he thinks you're sending. Maybe he's stressed about not being a professional dedicated sound guy and who has to run sound to everyone's satisfaction while also handling keys. The point is, how can you know what's in his heart if you don't ask him? Maybe the solution is to pay a dedicated sound guy (you can do that with all your cash ;)). Then your multiple basses wouldn't be your keyboardist's problem.
  5. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    How the Heck does he deal with Guitarists who change guitars a few times a night or more.

    Sounds like Bovine Excrement to me!

    Clearly this seems to be taxing the Soundman's abilities. I ask the BL why it's not a problem with Guitars, but somehow with the bass. Obviously in this day and age, Soundguy can't write his settings down?

  6. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Did the op tell us that his guitarists change guitars during gigs??
  7. gjohnson441496


    Dec 14, 2014
    I think the keyboard/soundguy has a point. I think he's wanting consistency with the bands mix, which I can understand. I have 3 basses that I love to play and I'm doing weekend jam sessions/original tunes with a guitarist. When we first began I was switching basses every week. He suggested that I use my jazz bass exclusively because it sounds better in the mix (we're playing Metallica type music). He was right. The P bass nor the Dimension was cutting it and in the back of my mind I knew this.

    The other thing... are you sure you're not fronting your prosperity and good fortune in front of a guy you know is struggling financially? Nevertheless, I think the keyboard/soundguy has a point. :)
  8. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    How many Guitarists have you played with that had one guitar all night?

    Really, this was a stretch in your mind?
  9. prd004


    Dec 3, 2010
    Sounds like your keyboard/sound guy is a tad, shall we say..... douchey?

    I would prob bring a different bass every time just to annoy him further. I may get kicked out but I can't stand soundmen who aren't willing to put in the minimal effort it takes to tweak a direct bass signal. That's just plain lazy

    A lot of the "keyboard engineers" I've worked with know nothing about bass and treat bassists like second class band members.
    Greg_S likes this.
  10. Reasons it can get annoying...

    1 no one wants to wait for you to change instruments especially if you're going to tweak pedal and or amp settings for each instrument.

    2 they don't want to help carry it lol

    3 no one wants to piss off the sound guy

    4 people don't want to have to remember when other bandmates switch instruments and tunings. This is something I still struggle with. Lol

    5 your bandmates may tweak their tone based on how the band sounds as a whole, you change they tweak.

    I'll tell you our situation. I bring two basses, guitarist brings four or five guitars. And our drummer has had a bunch of kits even within the last year and currently owns two. I rarely ever change basses during a show. For me it's more of a main player and backup type of situation. Guitarist changes a couple times for different tunings but we try to write the setlist to minimize changes. Also all of our instruments sound similar. All of our guitars and basses are the same brand, same pickups, and so on. So when we do switch any change in tone is minimal.
  11. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Dozens.....I've played with dozens of guitarists that play the same guitar all night.

  12. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY
    Tell him to worry about himself
  13. Felken


    Jun 28, 2016
    Ottawa, CAN
    When creating new material or just rehearsing, it should be fine to use different basses.

    But when you're gigging or perfecting the songs you learned, use only one bass.

    I only use 1 bass for everything (except practice) but that's just me.
  14. Seanto


    Dec 29, 2005
    Ummm, most of them actually. As a guitar player myself i don't switch guitars...just one all night.
    John B jr likes this.
  15. obimark


    Sep 1, 2011
    8 Piece band? How do you even hear yourself? If you can, this sound guy must be VERY good.
  16. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Truth. Mixing an 8 piece, plus an undisclosed number of IEMs....from stage while playing?

    Dude has my sympathy.
  17. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    If I've learned anything in life, it's never to argue with the sound dude. Could you choose one or two basses to use with the band, then feed your addiction in the privacy of your own home?
    Imaginary Pony, John B jr and Greg_S like this.
  18. I started reading... didn't get through them all as the theme was evident.

    Overall.. if he's playing and running sound from stage... he's allowed to limit variables.
  19. practice is no big deal, at a gig, yeah. Especially if you go from a 5 string to a 4 & back, passive to active. Bass is tough on vocals, especially a 5 string with bass turned up. You have to keep the bass lows down a little in the system. Current country music uses a lot of 5's. I played & was the sound guy too, its not a easy task. At this 1 gig I played my active 5, when the bass is a little high it would trip the protector on the mains in the system.
  20. DavC

    DavC Supporting Member

    May 17, 2005
    Trinity, FL
    i can see re-EQing the mains master EQ for each room ... a little .. channels should be very close to the same ... please consider the audience ( they don't know , notice or give a crap )

    and yes , i Was a keyboard playing , bass playing , singing soundman ...

    if your bass sounds good thru your rig ... it should sound fine thru the mains , if they're the same ..!

    so he has a digital mixer with presets ... cool ... maybe he should spend more time programming his keyboards ..!! my latest keyboard has a 2,000 page manual ..!