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Playing metal on bass. Right or Wrong?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by truecanadian04, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. truecanadian04


    May 4, 2011
    I've played bass for about 8 years off and on. I love metal for its aggression and power. Bands I look up to and inspire me to play are Pantera and Slayer. I've noticed every time I go to music stores or around the music scene people don't treat me with the same respect. For example; when I pull my pick out to jam, people will tell me real bass players don't use picks or when I want to talk about distortion pedals, people just tell me to leave that up to the guitar player because bass players don't use distortion. Also people are always telling me to change my style if I want I play bass for a living because there is no room for metal bass players. Luckily I have a strong back bone and a **** you attitude. Do other bass players have this problem? Or am I blind with my love and passion for metal bass.
  2. Unrepresented

    Unrepresented Something Borderline Offensive

    Jul 1, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    "Metal" is what you make it. There are plenty of respected metal bassists out there. Do your thing, make your own "metal" if need be.
  3. Haters hate. Let them. If it makes you happy, do it.
  4. F--- em'! As a fellow metal bassist your doing everything just fine. If they're that quick to dismiss you over such superficial things as how you pluck the strings, I don't think that speaks highly towards them as musicians.
  5. Hamlet7768

    Hamlet7768 Here to chew gum and rock. Still have gum.

    Jun 5, 2011
    The hell with them. They said the same stuff back when Geezer was plugging in a wah pedal. And pick style's fine an' dandy; I wish I could play half as well with a pick as with my fingers...
  6. Drunk Heffalump

    Drunk Heffalump Tone that I have. Skill? Oh, that? Well....

    Feb 28, 2009
    Great White North
    OMG Now that I think about it Lemmy NEVER used overdrive ever.....

    It'll take a while but hang in you'll find people who get it soon enogh. I hear ya though and I'll never understand why so many people tell you you have to play bass this way or that way.
    Had the worlds 2nd most obnoxious singer tell me that any chimp with boxing gloves could play bass. I took it off and handed it over and asked him to play 2112. Silence, then I played it, more silence.

  7. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    Personally, I do not like any effects on bass but if you like them you should use them as long as they contribute to the band's sound. Pick or finger style is also a matter of personal preference.
  8. chee666


    Jul 24, 2008
    **** i'm a Dee Dee Ramone style player since i'm 13 i'm now 41 i have fun and could care less what people at a music stores or around the music scene think of me. Little do they know i also have sung lead and wrote every song in every band i have played in for the last 28 years. And i'm a great father and husband. Don't let them get to you kid just ask Cliff Williams and Ian Hill.
  9. Please. Ignore them. There are better things to waste your energy on. Plenty of.known and respected players use a pick ... or don't. Lots of awesome metal players. If this is what people bitch to you about, then it's their limited vision and their loss!
  11. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    We do not play for respect. We do not play to make a fortune. We do not play to meet women. We do not play to become famous.

    We play because we must.
  12. eight0eight


    May 31, 2009
    Boston MA
    I used to have people give me crap about using a pick but I always pointed out that I could play finger-style as well. I choose my method of attack based off what I think the song needs and what I feel like. The fact that we can do both is not limiting in any way. I wouldn't want to look at myself as purely a "metal" player or purely a "jazz" player though. When jamming you need to take the song and instrumentation into account. Doesn't mean you need to drop your style completely, just adjust to the instruments and musicians around you. Not every song needs fuzz bass, but a surprising amount do:)
  13. two fingers

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

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Bwahahaha! Good stuff.

    Seriously though. Stanley Clark was probably "wrong" until he got mad respect. Cliff Burton? Same story. Victor Wooten? Yep.

    In fact, Victor Wooten once said something brilliant at a camp of his I attended in 2001. "The guy who sold horses and buggies probably thought the car was wrong too." I'm sure you get the point. There are narrow minded people out there. Many have agendas. Either way, do your own thing.

    I'm not a big metal fan. And I rarely play with a pick. But I KNOW HOW to play with a pick because I won't limit myself to just one technique. And some metal bass players are freaking amazing at what they do. Do YOUR thing and don't let others' opinions keep you from it.
  14. people over-generalize and stereotype ignore them!


    this is my current pedal board...you should see the looks i get as we set up for gigs...lol (I have twice the pedals of my gui**** Player)


    my big gig rig (Built the cabs myself)

    I run two separate signal paths to two different heads, which are connected to two different cabs...I play Double and Triple stops...i play with both a pick and my fingers...I write the majority of the music in almost all of my projects.

    Sometimes i showboat...other times i fade into the background...i play what benefits the music...but you will never catch me playing simple roots notes and or just following the guitar player


    and i play a brand of bass that most other players wouldn't touch!

    i could give a rats' backside what other players are doing, or what other people in the scene think of me!

    My heroes are Geezer Butler, Chris Squire, Geddy Lee, Al Cisneros, Lemmy, Justin Chancellor, and Steve Harris....any of the bands they are in would suck and the music would not be the same without their contributions to the mix.

    Don't let anyone pigeonhole you or tell you how or what you should play...or what style you should use

    just play!

    I love it when i come stage after a gig and most of the haters have to eat crow..lol
  15. ^^^this.
  16. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    ....What Snakeman and everyone else said. +100x

    I played Metal professionally for 14 years. I made a living at it, paid my bills, put myself through college and grad school, and got to see a good bit of the world with my Trace Elliot and My Rickenbackers. All tose friends of mine who were doing the double thumb and pop thing....They worked day jobs and rarely played out. When they did, it was a coffee house or party somwhere.

    Follow your heart, play what you like, and do it 110%. I still play metal to this day, old fat and happy building instruments and playing what I love to play, so get on with the Mayhem and pummel em all!!!
  17. Dave W

    Dave W

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Nothing wrong about it, it's just another music style that some people may or may not like.

    As for the pick vs. fingers comment...a real bassist can do both and uses whatever means to get the right sound for the song.

    Oh, and :bassist:
  18. I get the same looks for playing classical runs...

    "is that even real music?" (in response to Invention #7 b JS Bach)
  19. SDMFJay


    Jan 27, 2011
    Rule #1 Be yourself and play what you feel is right. There are a lot of close minded people in the world and the ones usually to say something discouraging don't know squat about playing an instrument to begin with.
  20. If you want to make a living playing bass, you'd likely have to play covers of music you might not enjoy. If you're playing for you, there are no rules. Since I have a nice day job, I like being able to play what I want and how I want.

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