Playing for tips with an Alembic?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by tuBass, May 21, 2003.

  1. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    I was in my favorite resturant yesterday (Cresent city cafe in Deep ellum for those of you in the Metroplex) and there was a folksy/country/bluegrass type band playing there called the New Hokum boys (No, I'm not kidding) They sounded great, good singers and not a single note out of place. I was going to slip them a fiver, but then I noticed the bass player was playing an alembic that would probably be worth over $5000. You know I was thinking, who needs this $5 more, me who plays a $300 yamaha, or this guy? So I put the money back in my pocket and kept listening.

    I felt bad about it later, but was I completly in the wrong here?
    If so, I'll go back next week (they play every tuesday) and give him a $10. I promise.
    Maybe we could make it a lunch gathering for the TB gang in Dallas! I guarantee you'll love the food, it's incredible.
  2. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    I guess that the whole situation is pretty ironic. I would look at it that you're not paying for his bass, but your showing your appreciation for the band's collective work.
  3. Im a sock

    Im a sock

    Dec 23, 2002
    Central MA
    He may have spent all his money on that Alembic..... so he might need it more than you think.
  4. Brendan


    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    This happened to a guy in a band I played with. Spent his money on a nice Ken Smith 5er, a full GK rig, and a Walter Woods head (I remember because I thought it strange a guy was using this kinda gear in the dive we were at, playing Incubus/Staind type stuff no less)... I asked him about it, and it turns out he was living out of his van, because all the money spent of gear shorted him on rent.

    Fools and their fine gear...
  5. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    It's going to take at least a twenty to keep up the mortgage on that Alembic. Shame on you.
  6. geshel


    Oct 2, 2001
    I'd hate to think somebody didn't give money to my friends' band when I've sat in, because I was playing a "fancy bass".
  7. For all you know, all of the money might be going to the impoverished guitarist or something. Or charity.

    Also, it might have been a $450 Kawai (a fine, fine bass) rather than a $4500 'bic.
  8. DaveB


    Mar 29, 2000
    Toronto Ontario
    Let's do the math. The guy is playing a $100 gig with a $5000 bass. Wow...if he gigs twice a week he'll need six months of gigs to pay for the Alembic.If his day job pays him a hundred grand keep your five bucks. If he actually plays to help pay his rent then you should have given him fifty bucks. But how would you know???
  9. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    The logic is lost on me.

    So those of us who have decent day jobs and don't play for a living shouldn't be getting paid when we play?

    If I see somebody out playing with a tip jar, I tip them if I appreciate what they're doing (and can spare it, of course)--I don't try and evaluate whether they really need the money or not.

  10. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    I agree with Mike. Instrument type, day job or not, living circumstance, etc. are all beside the point where tips on a gig are concerned. Tips are a sign of appreciation, plain and simple.
  11. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    Boy, when I first clicked on this, I thought that it was a mis-named thread, that was intended to be, "Tips for playing with an Alembic." Nope.

    Yes, I would feel funny giving tip money to a guy with an Alembic. But as pointed out, that might be all he owns. And besides, as already stated here, the tip should be based on merit, not need.

    Shouldn't this be in Misc. or Off-Topic or something?
  12. jondog


    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    Eat The Rich!!! :bassist:
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    OK, but when they're gone, who's gonna give you a job?
  14. geshel


    Oct 2, 2001
    LOL - I was just gonna say, "Sure, eat me!"
  15. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    I'm not sure about blues/folky/zydeco artists, but it's not unheard of for members of tightly-knit communities to get donations from benefactors. I know a saxophonist at our church who is a professional musician and doesn't make gobs of money, but he was given $5000 to purchase a new horn. A guitarist I know was given $1500 for a nicer instrument. (Both from private parties who wanted to remain anonymous.)Kindness from others is a beautiful thing; you never know where people get their money.
  16. jondog


    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    Cannibals don't need no stinkin' jobs.


    Also, I'm pretty sure that others would just appropriate the wealth (Alembics) as the existing rich are consumed, so the food supply and job situation (Alembic tech/polisher positions) would remain relatively stable.

    Mostly I just like the song. :bassist: Fozzy recently did a pretty rockin' cover of it.