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Late Starters: What can be achieved

Discussion in 'Ask Janek Gwizdala' started by Steve Amadeo, Jul 25, 2007.


  1. Steve Amadeo

    Steve Amadeo

    Nov 14, 2005
    Wallasey, UK
    Hi Janek,

    What are your thoughts on this? A player who has been playing for 14 years but who started at the age of 21, has been touring and recording with a variety of different bands and songwriters since then, has a wide-range of playing experience but still feels like a very basic limited player (he's a good player in the setting he plays in...) He has dreams of being 'free' on the instrument, to play what he hears and feels, to develop his own voice and write and perform his own music, to aspire to something personally greater than he has ever experienced before...

    Is it possible for a player to build on that experience, even in his early to mid 30s (or maybe older) to achieve excellence as a musician, despite the late start and despite the nagging doubt that says "you should have learned this stuff as a child and now it's too late"? I have this odd fear that you reach a certain age and kind of miss the boat.

    What do you think?

    All the best,


    Steve
     
  2. DocBop

    DocBop

    Feb 22, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    I just started playing DB which for me is like starting over. My DB teacher was highly recommend and is a busy DB player doing Jazz and classical work. He told be he didn't start playing music till he was 30. It all about dedication and beliving in yourself.
     
  3. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    I don't think there's any right time to start developing your own voice on an instrument.

    I think it happens when it's ready to happen.

    You might be 50 years old before something really comes to you that you can call your own. or something that is your own that people recognize you for.

    There are some people who do their own thing all their lives and don't get recognized for it until very late in life. The guys in Buena Vista Social Club didn't start touring and making records until some of them were 80 years old. That's a rather extreme example, but you get the point I hope.

    Take your time, find out what it is you want from music, learn where you're at with yoru instrument, and find out what needs to be done in order to get where you want to go.

    Normally there are some technical issues to overcome when taking something to the next level, and then you have sonic ability within the context of your playing. All of which needs nuturing and developing over time.

    Bottom line is, it's never too late. And the old you get, the more you understand about life in general so you're not dealing with that aspect of things so much.

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I'm 46 and the only thing that slows me down from learning new instruments these days is not having the time to spend on it. It's a pretty good investment in time to become good. But if you're willing to spend the time, there's no reason age should enter into it.
     
  5. DGbass70

    DGbass70

    Jun 1, 2005
    Rochester N.Y.
    So there's hope for us "old people"..........hahaha
    I'm 37 and i have been a "rock" bassist since i was 18/19 years old.Now i just got a gig which has a little bit of these styles(gospel/latin/funk) so i guess i'm on the learning stages again.
    What do you recommend..any tips.
     
  6. janekbass

    janekbass

    Jan 28, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Founder and CEO of http://janeksbassstudio.com
    I would suggest going out and buying records in that style if you don't already have some, and really getting the sound of the music in your ear.

    Transcribe some bass lines, check out what the drummers are doing, and find out what you like, and don't like, and what fits your style of playing.

    If you're playing gospel music I would highly reccommend checking out fred hammond who is not only a multi platinum singer and artist, but amazing bass player too.

    Easy,

    Janek
     
  7. DGbass70

    DGbass70

    Jun 1, 2005
    Rochester N.Y.
    Thanks Janek..........i'll check him out.
    I've been already checking out some Gospel bassist and i'm digging some of the stuff i've seen.We'll see what happens.
     
  8. Steve Amadeo

    Steve Amadeo

    Nov 14, 2005
    Wallasey, UK
    May I add Joel Smith to the list of incredible Gospel musicians? He's an incredible bass player and drummer. I have an album by the Hawkins Family called "New Dawning"... the grooves are stunning.
     

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