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loud drummer = bassist's nightmare

Discussion in 'Off Topic [DB]' started by Bijoux, Mar 24, 2002.


  1. Bijoux

    Bijoux

    Aug 13, 2001
    Denver-CO-USA
    I saw Geri Allen's concert the other day with Billy Hart and Robert Hurst, what a pleasure to hear a drummer with such an amzing range of dinamics, yes he was loud at times but in that context I prefer to say he was intense because when it came time for bass solo he would play very softly and participate and exchange ideas enhancing the bass solo that way, how can we explain that to all the local drummers that keep on hammering those drums so loud almost to the point of making your solo feel unwelcome, something so simple and obvious, some people just don't grasp that and make you feel like why do I even play music.
     
  2. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    Nice trio! I love Geri Allen. I haven't had the experience of drummers bashing thru my solos; usually they turn down the intensity a bit too much, IMHO. I had the distinct pleasure of working with Bob Moses awhile back. He's a guy who's capable of Elvinesque energy. During my solos, he backed off on the volume somewhat, but what remained was the intense level of involvement. He was really f***ing with me, in the best way possible. Very invigorating!
     
  3. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    Hey Ed; Bobby used to spend a lot of time here, haven't seen him in awhile, but he usually pops up once a year or so. Last couple of times, he was using branches and twigs in lieu of drumsticks. There's less activity in the jazz vein than there used to be; the latest for me was Dave Benoit about a month ago:rolleyes: . But there is a great core of jazz musicians here that works fairly steadily. It's the same as anywhere, there's a few players who make a living at it, and then a bunch of guys trying to make it. The most successful ones are willing and able to play any style. Maui has been very good to me. There's also a bass guy named Bob Harrison living here who's great; he's worked with Airto and Flora, Allan Holdworth, Joe Farrell, and a bunch of others. If you ever find your way out here, by all means touch base with me, I'll show you around.
     
  4. Playing with a really fine drummer -- one who really listens and responds -- is really more fun than a bass player should be allowed to have.

    While I do play with some really good local drummers, I lucked into a gig a couple months ago with a really fine professional player based in Milwaukee (but usually on the road with national acts) named Ernie Adams. I really didn't belong on that bandstand, but Ernie "adjusted" his playing to complement mine perfectly (and kicked me in the ass quite often). I must say that I rose to the occasion (playing with guys like that will let that happen). It was like the difference between driving a Ford Taurus and a BMW. He picked up on (or initiated) everything, ESPECIALLY dynamics.

    I grinned for long time after that gig.
     
  5. Joe Taylor

    Joe Taylor

    Dec 20, 2001
    Tracy CA
    Have you tried talking with the drummer perhaps he/she does not realize that you are having your part walked on. Something simple like duing this part can you play a little softer so people can hear my part. You know phrase it nicely not like "Hay dude hold it down!!" then offer a drum solo as a bribe, I've never seen a drummer that did not live for a solo. Or if you all hang out togather find a nice song you like where the drummer uses dynamics to enhance his part and point out how nice the the use of dynamics helps the part out.

    Or fire the guy and tell him that is he want to play loud all the time go find a marching band to play in!

    Joe
     
  6. lermgalieu

    lermgalieu Supporting Member

    Apr 27, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Our drummer hates to solo. He thinks drum solos are usually boring. He's a really good drummer too, so sometimes we trick him into it. Its easy - everyone just stops playing, and maybe picks up a percussion instrument.

    As far as the loud drummer thing - its usually (in my experience) more about the drummer not listening, and it feels even louder than it is because nothing is in synch. Communication is the key here - its not just a matter of them listening to you, its a two-way thang.
     
  7. JazznFunk

    JazznFunk Supporting Member

    Mar 26, 2000
    Asheville, NC
    Lakland Basses Artist
    My solution is to just not play ANYTHING for however long into the form it takes for the drummer as well as the band to calm down. Even if it's 8 bars into the tune (an exaggeration, yes), I wait to play until all is calm. That usually gets everyone's attention.

    edit: I use this when soloing, not comping. If the drummer's too loud when I'm comping I just try to either visually get his attention or I'll play really quiet in hopes he will pick up on it. Of course, if everyone's still banging it out and not making an effort to change, then you just have to kind of go with it. :-/
     
  8. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    That can sometimes work pretty well. There's nothing quite as LOUD as silence from the bass player.