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Nick Beggs' comments in new Bass Guitar Magazine re. auditions+image

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by The Mock Turtle Regulator, Mar 2, 2003.

  1. in the current issue (Geddy Lee on the cover).
    amongst stuff about how difficult it has become to get sessions, touring work etc.,

    "A very famous female singer, who recently auditioned for bass players, declined the opportunity of using some of the best players in the business for a girl who could barely play, because she looked good".

    who could this female singer be?
    I'm guessing Mel C, ex-Spice Girls, having heard on the grapevine about someone who auditioned for her in the past.

    explains why the people who play on records often don't do the tour and vice-versa....
  2. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    A few years back-
    Thru the grapevine, I heard Paula Abdul(or her 'people') gave the cabash to a very, very happenin' bassist for similiar reasons.
    IMO, that's vile...whatever, I can't change the world, right?

    Personally, I got dissed, too.
    Once upon a time, there was this very popular Alternative Rock band in-town that needed a bass player; my then-gal pal(bass 'student' of mine) used to go & check 'em out...fact is, she even sat in with them on a couple tunes.
    I told my girlfriend to relay to them that I was interested in an audition...to make a long story short, I got no audition & they wanted my girlfriend(who had been playing all of 2 years).
    Can I help the fact that she looked a whole lot better than me while playing the bass in a black bra?

    You're right on about who plays on the recordings vs. who's seen on-stage...on the other hand, Nashville, IMO, takes this to the nth degree.
    Very capable 'road musicians' usually get das boot when it time to do the recording.
  3. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Unfortunately, that's part of the biz...

    But, consider this: there are "artists" out there who "sing" and "dance" their way into ultra-popularity, but in many of our opinions (as musicians with discerning ears and a penchant for talent), these "artists" have as much talent as an armadillo on the side of a Texas highway.

    There's also a theory in the biz that "artists" are paid to look the image us common-folk dream of.

    If it's that way for the artists that millions of screaming fans pay billions of dollars to see, why should it be any different for a hired-gun?

    Just an observation...
  4. I'm thinking it's Pink, actually. The bassist she got previously only had punk credits, and we all know about the required chops level to play that...
  5. I've got mixed feelings about image vs. playing ability for choosing members for a singer's live band.
    I can see why image counts a lot- Pink or Mel C or Robbie Williams wouldn't want to take to the stage with a bunch of fat, balding 40yr-old bespectacled session guys.

    there was an interview with Andy West of the Dixie Dregs in which he recalled auditioning for Billy Idol, and then seeing the guy they picked was 6'3" , skinny with spiky black hair, and thinking "what am i doing here?"- surely he could see that coming?

    on the other hand, I wonder why the live band members don't get to play on the records- in these cases the material isn't very demanding technically-
    does this mean that the home listener is more discerning than the concert-goer?
    or just the album producer more discerning than the
    live band musical director?

    I suppose the album producer is more comfortable with their usual session guys they can rely on to come up with good basslines etc. and record them in the minimum amount of time.
    but it's usually the live touring guys that get the endorsement deals/ magazine interviews etc.

    is that Janice Tanaka or something, who was interviewed in BP?
    mind you, Pink's music doesn't require amazing chops.
    but her bassist does seem to have slightly suspect looking technique- always picking over the end of the fretboard.

    maybe I should email Nick Beggs and find out who it was.....
  6. What's wrong with picking over the end of the fingerboard? Unless you're trying to sound like Jaco, it's a great place to play.....
  7. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I think you're on the right track with the album producer being more comfortable with his usual session guys & recording them with minimal time & hassle.
    The session guys don't usually want to tour(don't wanna risk losing their bread & butter gig)...so the willing go on the road in order to get those scraps.
    I have a friend in a road band(Martina)...his 1st big road gig was with Tanya Tucker; he once told me how she still didn't know who he was after 3 months of being on-stage with her!

    Going back in time-
    How'd ya like to have been the guy hired to dupe Jamerson's lines live on-stage?
    ...I wonder how many of those guys gave up & began using their ax as an oar.
  8. Mel C was on TOTP last night.
    it looked she did have a new bassist, who interestingly was playing (miming) with a pick near the end of the fingerboard, like Pink's bassist does.
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Along the lines of JimK's first post, I remember reading an interview with Stu Hamm on how he had auditioned for Cher's touring band, only to lose the job to a 6'3" heroin junkie looking dude who could barely play his way out of a paper bag.
  10. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    so ideally, if you looked good, and played even better - you'd be a lock for any touring gig?

    time to go get some tatoos, an ear piercing, and some new clothes :D
  11. "so ideally, if you looked good, and played even better - you'd be a lock for any touring gig?"

    this is what Mel C's previous bass player looked like- Kim Kahn, I think she's currently playing for Crispian Mills ex-Kula Shaker, which could be taken as proof she can play, seeing as Kula Shaker had quite upfront basslines..
    maybe Ms.C thought her image wasn't "punk" enough.....

  12. it turns out that Mel C's new bassist is Grog- singer/bassist for 90's goth band with over-the-top operatic vocals Feline.

    could very well be that Nick Beggs was referring to her- Feline's basslines consisted of root-note eighths.



    meanwhile Kim Khahn's credits http://www.tornado.pair.com/melaniec/v2/info/band/kim.html
    show that she played on Mel C's new album- as well as touring with former Stranglers singer/guitarist Hugh Cornwell.
    strange- i wonder what the circumstances are concerning her not touring with Mel C despite doing the recording....

    also another ex-Mel C bassist, Midus Guerreiro http://www.tornado.pair.com/melaniec/v2/info/band/midus.html 's activities are intriguing (she also played with Tanita Tikaram).

    -she was recently playing with London band Jayme Fall (and was featured prominently in their promo photos) but didn't actually play on their album.
    she's since left them to play with ex-Hearsay Kym Marsh.
  13. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    Great thread!

    As it seems to me, most of the guys who concentrate on the "image" seem to be lacking in the playing ability department. I've never bought into it, just be yourself, and let the playing do the talking. If I have to sell myself short by projecting to be someone I am not, then I don't want the job.

    In my younger days, bandmates used to give me crap about not dressing like the whole hair band thing. Looking back, who's laughing now? At the moment, the whole image seems to have come around to my style, short hair, and normal dress. I recently shaved my head, that also seems to be a bit of a trend at the moment, but that wasn't my intentions.

    I know Stu is an ugly fella, but I still can't believe he got shot down for a nobody.

    I wonder if Rush would turn one down if they weren't ugly enough for their standards????

    Oh yes, and to the chick with the SR5........yummy! Now that's my kind of woman!
  14. Chris Chaney (now with Jane's Addiction, as featured in a recent BP issue) is an interesting case-
    he's done a lot of studio work, and touring work as well- Alanis Morrisette being the most prominent.
    however, I haven't heard any particularly inspired playing from the guy- Alanis Morissette's 2nd album's basswork sounds like run-of-the-mill stuff- nothing of note on the new Jane's Addiction single either.
    -a reliable generic studio player, but he's bagged the live gigs too- even with Tommy Lee's methods of mayhem, which you'd have thought would require a tattooed Twiggy Ramirez type.
    he is fairly good looking, with his pretty-boy hairstyle- I wonder if he'd have got the Alanis Morrisette gig if he looked like, say, Joe Jackson?

    the general view of Darryl Jones' gig with the Rolling Stones is that of it being akin to "bringing a bazooka to a duckhunt"/ driving a Ferrari at 40mph in the slow lane, but in a way it's a reward for his previous achievements that he's got such a high-profile, high-paying gig, even if the role he plays in that situation isn't very demanding.

    I wonder what would happen if Adam Clayton was to quit U2- very high-profile, high-paying and very easy gig- i'd say much easier than the Rolling stones gig.
  15. revisiting the Mel C band page above I've found that Grog has since quit Mel C's band to play with Kelly Osbourne-
    so what happened to Josh Paul (Suicidal Tendencies/Infectious grooves)?
    has he found a better earner, or was he fired for not having the right look?

    ps. I've found Midus Guereirro's homepage-

    -she's played for Hugh Cornwell like Kim Khahn- they must share gigs.
  16. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Why should anyone be surprised by any of this superficiality?

    It's (always?) been this way for a while. If the CD doesn't sell, they get their money through merchandising.

    I/some of us complain about the lack of style or chops in POP, will we ever learn there's many sides to this industry. We have to choose which side(s) you want to be involved with.

    It is tough to ignore the trends and showbiz though.
  17. PhatBasstard

    PhatBasstard Spector Dissector Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2002
    Las Vegas, NV.
    Keep in mind, the big reason the Nashville Studio guys get the studio stuff and the road guys don't, is not because of chops.
    It's because of RESTRAINT, and knowing the routine of how to QUICKLY cut to the chase of getting down a great track.

    It's a special talent that most musicians don't have the long term patients for. To also be creative while still subtle. The road guys are still going to be tempted to add too many licks. Plus remember, the Road guys are just copying the stuff that the Studio guys have already created.

    Just because they may have dizzying chops doesn't mean they'd be good in the studio for Pop/Country sessions. There are obvious reasons why some of our bass heros aren't called for these sessions.:bassist:
  18. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Oregon, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    Take a look at Twiggy (aka Jeordie) out of Manson dress. That's him in the middle.


    That's a funny picture for several reasons. :D

    Edit: btw, this is the new APC lineup, with Jeordie and the ever-uncomfortable James Iha.
  19. :D I'm so glad to see he's smartened himself up after escaping from the evil clutches of that horrible Mr.Manson. he just needs to get a sensible haircut, and tuck his shirt in, and he could be a nice respectable young man:p
  20. i heard manson kicked him out cause he didnt want to dress messed up 24/7