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New band wants me to bring a non-tube amp because it looks cool

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by JimmyM, Dec 11, 2019.

  1. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    And I'm going to. No muss, no fuss...no whining about tone.

    OK, there was a little whining about tone. But after using a PF-50T and PF112hlf on our gigs (blues and jazz is our thing), I decided to bust out the Micro VR Stack with them for the first time last weekend. All of them raved about the sound but especially the look, and asked me to bring it to all our gigs because it looks like a tiny SVT.

    I suggested using the cab with the PF-50T, and the BL says, "Then it won't look like a tiny giant Ampeg. And if you ask me, you sound better with this than the other cab."

    He was smiling, but he was serious. And he was right. It won't. And I did.

    I get it. I love a tight looking stage with a little gear scenery, and I like bringing the gear that sonically works best for the band overall. The 210av is my best cab for the job but the Portaflex and SVT looks do clash. Certainly not going to rush out and buy new gear for a new band but I'll bring whatever they think works best from my stash. It makes everyone feel good about the job you're doing if you bring the gear they like best. Now I'm definitely going to bring the tube amp if the stage is big enough to where I can hide it, but that's not always the case with us.

    The hard part is when band members want you to use something they own that's a piece of crap, I'll grant you that. But when you do a lot of fly gigs you get used to having to play whatever piece of crap gets thrown at you, so I'll at least try it and see what I think. Maybe I can get an idea of a sound they're looking for with my own gear. And maybe that piece of crap turns out to be better for the band than your stuff. But as long as they don't expect me to spend any money on pleasing only them, I'm cool with giving it a shot.

    I know it's still going to bug some of you. But by and large, it doesn't happen often, and I really don't mind trying something new on occasion. But if it does, then what I suggest is to only own stuff you enjoy playing on. That's a major reason why I don't mind bringing what they want.
  2. foal30


    Dec 3, 2007
    New Zealand
    Nobody tells me what to do or bring

    Except for Mrs Foal

    And Mum I suppose

    The kids actually if I think about

    I'm probably at the beck and call of my Grandson too.

    Darn it
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 13, 2019
  3. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I hear you. Especially about the grandson.

    But it's fine in my case...that's the only gear request they've made. It's Ampeg so it's all good to me. And they actually like how I add a little bit of mild overdrive on occasion so I'm using a pedal without any complaint, and I can use any bass I want as long as it's a Fender with dead strings, and that's been largely my choice because it works for everything they do and I love a good Fender. Might try to sneak the Longhorn into the mix in a couple months, but you have to work other bassists who are very much into Fender bass players into a Dano slowly.

    And I have to get the exact thing the grandkids have assigned to us at Christmas down to the letter or I'm gonna hear about it, which is a million times harder than sneaking the Dano in! :D
    AstroSonic, Davbassdude, MCF and 8 others like this.
  4. tukulnana


    Nov 3, 2019
    bobyoung53, Daniel Piper and JimmyM like this.
  5. two fingers

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

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I agree with you 100%. If someone can convince me that something I already own is better for the gig, I'm gonna run with it.

    And if you refuse to...

    1) ...even hear them out before telling them to shove it or....

    2).... bring what's best for the gig just so you can prove that nobody tells YOU what to bring ....

    .....then I am very glad I'm not in a band with your overgrown 4 year old butt. :D
  6. This is an incredible story!
    I’ve never had a band member give a hoot about what my amp looks or sounds like. I’ve even posted pics of my gear on here just to make sure it’s even a visible entity and not just a figment of my own imagination :roflmao:
    Pilgrim, Davbassdude, smogg and 11 others like this.
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I chose that gear ONCE :D
    /\/\3phist0, pcake, Lobster11 and 2 others like this.
  8. Jwood

    Jwood Supporting Member

    Jan 20, 2011
    Richmond, Va
    Yea, sometimes the visual effect of what we do is a bigger part of the overall performance than we’d like to admit. I think flexibility is key to being a good musician and helps you get more calls for future opportunities.
    BazzaBass likes this.
  9. I saw a band last week that used one of those onstage and it looked and sounded great (although I don't know how much of the bass that I was hearing was coming from the amp vs the PA).
    bobyoung53 and Bassdirty like this.

    MYLOWFREQ Supporting Member

    May 13, 2011
    New York
    If it looks good, it sounds good. ;)
    jj4001, Cheez, kentiki and 4 others like this.
  11. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    I've only had that once, when I was switching over to barefaced cabs. The drummer in my LOUD band straight out refused to believe that these little cabs did all that heavy lifting. We have a beaten up, crappy but huge PA in that room and he was certain i figured some magic way not only to route my bass signal through it, but come up with a great sound. He said he felt the bass because it was so punchy and while jamming, was able to take my suggestions on bassdrum patterns. After he checked for any cables leaving my equipment towards the PA and finding none, he insisted on me bringing these cabs from now on.
    Before that rehearsal, I was afraid my rig might not cut it in that environment.
    tekhedd, S-Bigbottom, P_Robyn and 4 others like this.
  12. AlexanderB


    Feb 25, 2007
    I have a handful of gigging basses, two amps and a mix of cabs. All good quality items, nice looking and fully functional. As we have a very open and communicative "musicianship" in the bands I am in, I find it perfectly natural to discuss what tools to use.
    "Would be cool with a five string for that song."
    "Could you do that on the fretless?"
    "I really like the OD you used on the last band practice."
    Etc, etc...

    Never gotten an "ultimatum" or hard headed requests.
    If someone wants to discuss the sound of a song or our artistic choises, I am listening.

    Working with less competent or strong willed and inflexible (it seems that combo is quite common!) band mates, I might have been less flexible...
    Pilgrim and Evil Funk like this.
  13. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    @JimmyM - you handled it the right way.

    As for me, I don’t really care what I end up playing as long as it sounds good and gets the job done.

    And just because appearances and brand names mean zip to me doesn’t mean I’m naive enough to think it doesn’t matter at all - or to anyone else.

    If it’s no skin off your nose then there’s no reason not to give the kid what he wants. That’s what’s called being the adult in the room. :thumbsup:
  14. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    A wise man.
    MegaSwing and EatS1stBassist like this.
  15. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    "Nobody tells me what gear to use" sounds a lot like (the more commonly heard) "Nobody tells me how to play." I just don't understand this way of thinking. Just because you're the one playing the bass doesn't mean that you're the only one with a legitimate opinion about what sounds (or in this case looks) best for the band as a whole, and that's what really matters.
    murphy, bobomatic, Flooflox and 11 others like this.
  16. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    Jimmy, I'm good with you bringing a non-tube amp, as long as there's concessions about your stage wear...

  17. jazzbass_5


    Sep 1, 2007
    NY, Albion
    Jimmy, don't own crap gear (your own words, no disrespect). Then you're always bringing something decent.
    Rich67 likes this.
  18. ugly_bassplayer

    ugly_bassplayer Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2009
    Your making a thread about using an amp kinda like. Haha

    1st world problems.

    Jim Carr likes this.
  19. 2BitHack


    Nov 11, 2014
    Street clothes are not a good look on stage, you should consider dressing up a little.
  20. gully_jones

    gully_jones Stone cold groovy man Supporting Member

    Aug 26, 2012
    As long as the checks are clearing and your musical integrity isn't besmirched, carry on.

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