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Metal Bassists less respected?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by BassPanther, Jun 1, 2002.

  1. Reading around Talkbass I read a bunch of posts making jokes about metal (any version). Now, it's cool to joke around, that's what makes life fun. But sometimes I get the feeling that Metal bassists just aren't respected as other bassists. I understand that metal is more straightfoward music and the basslines aren't complicated. But if a bassist is filling the role in the band then shouldn't we respect him/her? I know in metal music the bassist generally gets pushed back but isn't that the fault of the bassist or the band?

    Just looking for some thoughts.
  2. What kind of metal are you listening too? I play metal because of the intricate fingerwork, odd times and endurance needed to play the stuff!

    Oh yeah, I've never felt frowned upon or put down because I play metal. Then again, I do play loads of funk, blues, jazz and ska.
  3. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    Man, dissing metal is essential. It's so serious and pompous, you gotta give it the finger. Besides, a lot of us (myself included) play metal. If you can't have fun with your craft, when can you? I think us metalhead rag on it, and everyone else joins in. There's no denying some metal guys can really play, it's just like ripping on anything else...all in good humor. A bit of it isn't but you just gotta ignore that.
  4. rubberband


    May 17, 2002
    some metal bass players are pretty good, the guy from anthrax is insane(i forget his name, just listen 2 got the time) but i don't think they get the right amount of respect becuz there being overlooked cuz of the guitar players.
  5. supergreg


    Jan 20, 2002
    Listen to Geezer. If somebody said that he was a bad bassist they would be flat out telling a lie.
  6. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    As much as I love and respect Geezer, he was a guitarist before he played bass and it's very obvious in his playing.

    I never say that "metal bassist suck" cause there's a lot of good ones (i.e. Steve Harris, Tony Choy, Steve Digiorgio, the dude from Whiplash ect.) But there are TONS of lousy ones.
  7. You've got a point, you can't take the stuff you do too seriously.

    I think you've got something here. There are a few great bassists in the metal world...but there are LOADS of mediocre and even bad bassists. Whereas you don't hear about that many within the realms of funk, blues, etc.

    Another question: what does it mean to play the bass "like a guitar" I never understood that phrase.
  8. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    If you listen to bassist a lot, it's something you'll eventually pick up on. It's more of an approach that you can tell. It goes beyond "playing bass with a pick" or something like that. A lot of guitarist switch to bass for one reason or another. (a lot of the reason is because they can't find a bassist for their band) There's different approach's to playing each instrument. A lot of times, reformed guitarist will take the same approach with the bass as they did with the guitar. I'm not saying you can't solo or you must conform yourself to a certain spot when playing bass. (but even soloing on a bass is different than a guitar) But when the bass is in it's supporting role, that's when you here what a lot of people refer to around here as "groove".

    Geezer takes a lot of the same approach's he took with guitar. Listen to all the pentatonic runs he does. Again, nothing wrong with petnatonic runs, as a bassist in rock, you are going to need them. But he plays them, as though he was playing them on a guitar. Again, I'm not putting down Geezer's playing or anything, cause I love both him and BS, but I really consider him a guitarist with 4 strings.
  9. Midnight,

    I might be dumb, but you still really haven't answered my question. I understand groove and many other of the "bass terms" but how are the approaches different (other then chords and such)?
  10. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001

    No offence, but I've heard Geezer speak of himself as a musician who fell in love with the bass. That pretty much sums it up. You can say a certain "style of playing" has been used a lot by rock guitarists or what have you, but you can't logically pin a style to a specific musical instrument. By that logic I could play Kazoo like a guitarist. It just becomes more and more ridiculous the farther you take it, yet it remains theoretically possible.
  11. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    Don't worry bro, no offense taken. Geezer just sounds like a guitarist playing a bass to my ears. I'm not saying it makes him suck or he isn't filling his role in Sabbath. He's actually influenced some of my playing.
  12. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    You think metal bassists get a bad rap? What about some of the top 40 acts?
  13. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Not because you like it then?!

    Odds time signetures I can understand, that's interesting to play.
    'intricate fingerwork' - I kinda dig that, but I wouldnt say it's something you'd specifcally find in metal.

    ...but 'endurance'!!!!! You make playing music sound like an athletic excercise. No Pain No Gain type thing!!!

    I agree with a statement made up above: Metal does need to be riduiculed. These big hairy men wielding axes looking deadly serious... come on, it's pretty laughable when it comes down to it.

    My guitarist is a true metaller, he has CDs by a band called 'Goatsnake' - that IS a silly name or what!


    People take music too seriously sometimes.

    Anyway - metal bassists are no better or worse as a group than bassist from any other genre. IMO of course!
  14. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    One thing I've noticed about metal is even though you usually don't play any intricate runs usually, you have to be really tight. Listen to Judas Priest's bassist, he isn't going to get his name mentioned alongside Vic Wooten or Vic Bailey, but man, is that dude a tight, stop on a dime bassist.

    I agree though Howard, some of these metal bands do need to look in the mirror every once in a while and realize how absurb they look and act. *cough* most black metal bands *cough* I mean, it was cool when Kiss did it cause they weren't doing interviews at www.mourningtheancient.com trying to explain how society is a burning cesspool under the burden of Christainity, blah blah blah and expecting to be taken seriously.

    It might sound like I'm dissing metal in the above paragraph, but I'm not. I actually love metal. Some of my favorite bands are JP, Nevermore, TON, Testament, Slayer, and Athiest. I just listened to my Moonspell album last night and it floors me like always. It's just that I try to distance myself from the metal scene cause I don't care much for the mentality that a lot of metalheads have.
  15. [​IMG]all hail Joey DeMaio! [​IMG]
  16. I read a couple interviews on that site, and it made me sick...some people have seriously not seen the light of day, have they? :( I think they're the reason (or part of it) that people make fun of metal.
  17. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    I've never heard of them but if their bass "owner" (Phil Lip-scum ;) ) has "technique" even moderately resembling the pictures of him in the ads for Yamaha RBX basses I've got to say, yes, as a Metal Bassist he should get less (NO) respect.

    Disclaimer before the mob forms: There IS plenty of Metal I DO like (I listen to everything) but THIS guy........Damn?!?:rolleyes:
  18. Locrian


    Jun 6, 2002
    FWIW I love Goatsnake.

    Is metal the only genre of music to have bands with silly names? Is metal the only genre of music with artists who take themselves too seriously?

    This kind of stuff is everywhere.

    My problem with metal bassists is that they are buried in the mix too often. I can't hear them.
  19. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    There are worshipers and haters of all forms of music, but punk, metal, and rap/hip-hop are hated more than most for various reasons. Whatever. Worship or hate of any particular genre of music is just shallow. There's good, bad, and mediocre in all forms of music, but of course life is so much simpler to understand without all those shades of gray.
  20. BillyBishop


    Feb 7, 2001

    So your saying a guy should get no respect because of the way a guy holds/wears his bass?

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    Primary TB Assistant

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