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Poll: Gigging and over 50 - When to quit?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by stringthrough, Aug 19, 2019.


  1. A soon as my current band(s) dissolve

    8 vote(s)
    1.0%
  2. By 60

    5 vote(s)
    0.6%
  3. By 65

    4 vote(s)
    0.5%
  4. By 70

    10 vote(s)
    1.3%
  5. By 75

    8 vote(s)
    1.0%
  6. By 80

    6 vote(s)
    0.8%
  7. Once I’m physically unable to

    663 vote(s)
    82.9%
  8. When I can only consume liquefied carrots

    96 vote(s)
    12.0%
  1. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member

    I'm advancing in years (64) but continue to gig (~30 times per year). I was wondering what thoughts other bassists in my position have about when to hang it up.

    [Edit]
    I've decide to add a current picture of myself with my current band (doing modern country) for some visual context. (I'm the one wearing shades.)

    upload_2019-8-19_19-53-59.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2019
    bearfoot, Fuzzbass, jmhaslip and 28 others like this.
  2. mapleglo

    mapleglo Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2013
    phoenix, az
    I'm 63, so right behind you. I love playing, so I'll continue to gig until I either can't do it anymore, or people no longer want to hear me play.

    edit - since people are adding pictures, here's me and the band at our last gig:

    harolds010.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2019
    Sav'nBass, halversp, Beej and 27 others like this.
  3. TheDirtyLowDown

    TheDirtyLowDown

    Mar 8, 2014
    Hey! I'm 58, and the second youngest in my main band (6 piece); the oldest
    guys are 65. We've settled into a nice spot of a gig-or-two per month, and it's
    comfortable. I want to keep playing until there's no more gas in the tank,
    air in the tires, or spark in the engine (pick your metaphor). :)
     
  4. Lance Bunyon

    Lance Bunyon

    Jul 17, 2018
    At 53 I hurt after standing for several hours.
    Soon I will purchase a stool.
    Possibly I need to dye my hair more grey.
     
  5. StyleOverShow

    StyleOverShow Still Playing After All These Years Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2008
    Portland
    52A4F7F3-06DF-4263-A64A-E34401F18B2D. Don’t know if I’ll be back next touring season as I wrap up a three active band summer. That’s me on the left.

    My knees are shot, will replace this Jan and my thumbs hurt something awful at times. My 410 cab weighs a ton, not really but it seems like it, and days end on tour can’t come soon enough.

    Besides the physical I think I’m taking some 20-40 yo’s Job who should be out here on the road making their bones.

    Don’t know if I’ll continue to play out or just play for fun. Thinking of going all upright but here in the PNW that prolly means playing in string bands and I’m just too urban for that.

    I’m 70 next April. Have been working paid gigs since 1965 including Vegas Reno Tahoe circuit in the 70’s. Been talking up retirement for 6 months, still can’t believe it myself.
     
  6. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member


    You've paid your dues, brother!
     
  7. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member

    While I consider myself to be a competent hobbyist/ semi-pro, I am concerned it might be the latter, not the former that ends my gigging "career". With an audience generally in the 30-60 range (at my gigs anyway), and being the oldest member in my band, seeing an aging male on stage my not be the most exhilarating sights.
     
    DJ Bebop, SWRnut, DirtDog and 2 others like this.
  8. Last Rebel

    Last Rebel Lone Wolf - No Club Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2011
    Ontario Canada
    I'm 55 and have seen many people older and younger than me who can no longer play for whatever reason ,bad backs mostly

    I have made the switch to all lightweight gear

    And it when it comes to the subs and heavy stuff,we carry that in pairs or on carts
     
  9. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member

    I hear you... I've migrated to lighter gear so as to extend my gigging "period".
     
    Evil Funk and SWRnut like this.
  10. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    Chicago
    I voted to go until physically incapable, which can come at any age. But my legs and back are dying after doing festivals all weekend, and I’m a spring chicken by TB standards.
     
    SWRnut, pcake, Spidey2112 and 3 others like this.
  11. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member

    Good point about possibly becoming physically unable to gig at any age.
     
    EMoneySC2, SWRnut and Bodeanly like this.
  12. BeefPie84

    BeefPie84

    Mar 29, 2019
    Excercise is key! Do it for yourself and your playing career!
     
  13. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    Vermont
    67 here. I guess they’ll drag me off feet first - not sure when.
     
    Old man, SWRnut, Lance Bunyon and 7 others like this.
  14. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    Take a look out at the audience - bet there are plenty of people out there your age. Never mind there are plenty of bands touring stadiums older than you.

    As long as you are having fun and getting the kind of gigs and/or playing situations you want, why would you stop?
     
  15. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    E33452AA-08F8-4C2C-AA76-AB6D23A5BB7E. I’m 65 (at least for a few more monthes:cool:). I play out quite a bit less than i’d like, but enjoy doing so when the gigs come. (I live in a small,remote town,and have zero interest in travelling for gigs).
    I’m still working a fulltime day job, so playing music has always been an enjoyable hobby for me.
    I want to play as long as i find it fun for myself,my bandmates,and the audience. I have done a few things that help make it less like work for me, including using smaller amps/cabs for years, and now, going ampless, just using a sansamp into the PA. I’ve got several basses that are 8lbs or less. Also trying to watch after my general health and welfare. One direction i could see myself going in would be to get out of rock bands and go acoustic, but i really like playing with an electric band.
    It’s just i have to wear hearing protection all the time now. Ah well....
     
    Sav'nBass, Stumbo, DJ Bebop and 14 others like this.
  16. mapleglo

    mapleglo Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2013
    phoenix, az
    Yup, I started using IEM's last year. Couldn't gig without them.
     
  17. stringthrough

    stringthrough Supporting Member


    BTW, nice bass! Citron?

    My heaviest bass is 8.7 lbs and my desert island bass weighs a tad under 8 lbs.
     
    DJ Bebop, SWRnut and woodyng2 like this.
  18. theduke1

    theduke1 Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Manitowoc WI
    6172DFDC-8753-44D5-8AE0-332969978BAC. FCCC7D13-2502-4AD3-B0B3-1EFC0FB7DE98. I turned 67 las month my regular trio, I fill in in my drummer’s other project, and my guitarist other project. Of the three (3) bands I mainly work in, in only one I am not the oldest player
    I have no plans to stop
    My kids say I probably have have 6 gigs on the calendar three days after I’m dead LOL
    My trio
    And my drummer’s project
     
  19. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    I'm 54, playing in a rock band, a jazz combo, and a band that does blues and modern country.

    If you don't like the band scene any more, there are other options - pit band for community musicals, church, etc.
     
    DJ Bebop, SWRnut, bassliner50 and 4 others like this.
  20. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    I would like to try them again someday. I tried them in a heavier trio band, and it actually made the guitar and drums louder (the opposite effect I wanted!)
     

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