1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Played my first show as a bassist. Question.

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by bassinplace, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. bassinplace


    Dec 1, 2008
    Played last night at the Voodoo Lounge in the House Of Blues in Hollywood. Fun time! Only had two weeks to prepare so we rehearsed the crap out of it. It came off pretty well. I've played many shows as a drummer, but this was my first time as a bassist. The songs were simple it was just myself on electric and the girl who's music it is, Michelle Kasajian, on acoustic guitar and vocals. The songs are very simple, but I did manage to flub a few notes, at which I'm disappointed, but oh well, I'll try to make it better the next time, which is in 10 days from now.

    Which brings me to a question. How often do any of you flub notes on gigs? Does it bother you? Does anyone have any good methods for staying focused while on stage?

    If anyone's interested in hearing the music of Michelle Kasajian, you can hear some of it here to get an idea of what we were playing. http://www.reverbnation.com/michellekasajian Thanks in advance for your input! :) :bassist:
  2. elgecko


    Apr 30, 2007
    Anasleim, CA
    Congrats! Yes, flubbing happens. The key is to not let the audience know you did by making a sour face or screaming expletives. The key to minimizing flubbage is to be as relaxed as possible.
  3. philvanv

    philvanv Gerbil Turds, Kitsap County Turd Core

    Jul 2, 2012
    and at the bottom it says thank you, and now you can shag off
    Oh it happens,:cool:
  4. waveman

    waveman Supporting Member

    Sep 25, 2008
    I flub notes every night
  5. jamminology101


    Aug 22, 2012
    Indianapolis In
    Endorsing Artist: Glockenklang
    Ive never played out and didnt flub notes....I think anybody who plays for 4 hours and tells you they hit every note exactly in time on every tune probably has a nose longer than pinnochio....hopefully the more you play the same material the # of flubs gets down to a low #. Dont get wasted while you play or the flub factor starts to rise exponentially. ....keep up the good work
  6. I play it again to make it seem on purpose. Even did it on a cd :)
  7. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    Sorry - those are three questions. :spit:

    Seriously, yes, I flub notes occasionally. The better I know a song, the more times I have played it live, the less likely I am to flub anything. I have gone entire 4-hour bar gigs without making a mistake. I have played new songs where I make several mistakes in a single song. At my level, I realistically expect I will make no mistakes per gig, and I am disappointed when I do make any mistakes. But they still happen sometimes.

    Staying focused: I guess my issue could be more appropriatley described as keeping from being distracted rather than staying focused. Pretty women on the dance floor, especially if they are flirting with the band, tend to distract me. But then they really up my overall enjoyment of the gig to the point that I don't remember small mistakes I may have made! :D

    Also, keep in mind the adage about making mistakes while playing jazz. If you make a mistake, repeat it in the appropriate place the next time the verse or chorus comes around. That way people will think it's intentional and that's the way it was written!
  8. Winfred


    Oct 21, 2011
    1. Bassists NEVER make mistakes. It's always the guitarist. :D

    2. "IF" I made a mistake, which no bassist ever has, no, it wouldn't bother me.

    3. Focus? Nah, just know the material so you don't have to think. The less thinking I do, the better!

    Congrats on your gig!
  9. squirefan


    Nov 22, 2009
    Lansing, Ks.
    Besides relaxing, being familiar and comfortable with the material minimizes flubs.
    But, on the other end, being so used to playing with the same band and the same material for many years, my mind sometimes wanders and that's when it can happen. Not that I'm not still putting on a show and giving 100%. It's just sometimes I think of family, friends, that hottie that wouldn't go out with me, that hottie in the audience, etc.

    Another key is quick recovery (again that comes with familiarity with the songs), and putting it out of your mind.
  10. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    My nose is actually very short. I played with a classic rock cover band for about 10 years. We gigged 50 or more times per year. We played from the same 100-song playlist every night (obviously not the entire 100 songs every night!) These were songs that I, you and everybody already knew the bass lines to before I even joined the band. So yeah, by the end of the 10 years I could go an entire 4-hour gig playing this biker bar music without mistakes.

    If there were no good-looking women shaking their butts at me...
  11. squirefan


    Nov 22, 2009
    Lansing, Ks.
    BTW, I like the music you linked!
  12. Basshappi


    Feb 12, 2007
    Once is a mistake
    Twice is Jazz.
  13. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    I agree that "screaming expletives" is a bad idea, but I think the sour-face thing depends on context. I mean, if you're in a six-piece band that is rockin their socks off, and people are dancing and singing along, nobody is going to notice your flub, so there's no point in calling attention to it. But if you're playing in a duo, with people sitting and listening, the flub is going to be obvious to everyone, and I don't see any harm in making a face that says "oops, sorry, my bad." Unless this happens repeatedly, I don't see why anyone would mind -- and it could even have a positive effect by coming across as endearing and "human."
  14. bassinplace


    Dec 1, 2008
    Well, this set was only 40 minutes, which is part of the reason I'm a tad disappointed. We did sound good though and I think we put on a good show.

    Thanks! :)

    That's what I was thinking too. :bag: ;)
  15. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Anybody that says they do full nights (3 hours+) without a single flub is a flat out liar. Distractions happen at every gig or you think about something else, like work or school. The trick is making sure the audience doesn't know it, so no reactionary faces!
  16. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    I practice enough that I'm pretty much flawless at rehearsals.
    At gigs however, with the stress and need to put out a good show, I frequently miss notes and sometimes changes.
    Aw well, a little dance and meet you on the 1. It always works.
  17. lowfreq33


    Jan 27, 2010
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    There's sometimes a difference between "that wasn't what I meant to play" and "crap that sounded bad".
  18. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    You're only ever a semitone away from a note that sounds good.
    I love you fretless. :)
  19. Gaolee

    Gaolee Outta my way! I'm caffeinated! Supporting Member

    Count your mistakes. The first to 100 wins a prize.

    The Charles Mingus attitude toward this was "if it sounds funny, play it three times and call it jazz." I just look at the drummer, and if she's laughing, it means I can blame her for playing in the wrong key.
  20. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I hit wrong notes all the time, and yep, I've deliberately repeated them to make them sound intentional - turn it into the leading note into the correct one. As soon as you make a mistake live, it's in the past, gone - no point worrying about it, just play the note you're on NOW.