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"PRO" bassist for WORKING cover band... CL ads

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by hrodbert696, Feb 15, 2014.

  1. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Just been noticing this pattern lately. I'm not on the search for a band, but I like to scan the CL listings just to see what's going on out there. And I've noticed that almost every ad that specifies the poster is only interested in a "working cover band," that poster is a bassist. They also generally insist that they are "pro" bassists, only interested in playing with other "pros." Everyone else... guitarists, drummers, singers - doesn't say they want a "working cover band," they say they want to play something that sound like Godsmack and Tool, or else that they want to play ZZ Top etc.

    Is it similar where you are? What is it about us bassists that we post our ads this way?
  2. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    I see the same thing ads for all types of musicians not just bass players. Recently, I have been seeing a lot of ads stating that musicians are looking for bands that are not interested in gigging but if it happens, they wouldn't oppose to doing them. I also see a lot of ads where bands are looking for musicians but the ads state that they are also not interested in gigs. They just want to get together once a week and jam.
  3. KidChar15


    Mar 16, 2013
    The "just getting together to jam" ads always make me imagine it will be like the jam at Doyle's house in the movie "Slingblade." Edit, actually, it's Linda's house, not Doyle's, but if you tell him that, he'll whoop you.
  4. obimark


    Sep 1, 2011
    I have posted exactly this ad. The reason being simple. I am only interested in a working cover band. (And I assume the only thing it needs to be working is me, the bassist)

    Because, I have wasted WAY too much time with startups- playing the same 10-12 songs over and over that never went anywhere, arguing about setlists that should have been set and locked before the third rehearsal and just generally going nowhere in someone's sad excuse for an ego/nostalgia for their youth trip. Therefore I want a ready-made situation or close to it.

    IME- I provide a somewhat unique ability that is still somewhat in demand (ie 10 guitarist/and would be singers for every one bassist) Therefore, I am letting people know right up front, I am not going to show up and play away with a waste of time band that most likely will never gig. If you are missing the singer, and the drummer and the bassist, you DON'T EVEN have a band to begin with. You have a dream of a band.
    Been burned too many times. Also I require band video, and a band webpage as well as the set-lists in my ads before I even waste an iota of time.
    The reality is 90% of ads on CL suck. Period. YOu have to be really do your homework up front.
  5. I've been noticing the same kinda thing in my area too. I'm on the I 81 corridor in Md. which covers the area between Winchester Va. up to Chambersburg Pa. I also check out the Balto. Md and Wash. DC areas just for grins and giggles. (Too far from me to be intrested but pretty lively for the band scene.) I'm not looking for a band (playing in three right now) but if I was , I could understand this attitude due to my last 3 or 4 years in the band scene where I'm at so here's my take on it. In the last few years , I have run screaming and kicking away from a couple bands. I have dealt with a drummer that told me "I listen to you guys for my timing." Had two lead singers (both karaoke kings) that couldn't get through a song without having a lyrics sheet in front of them. Even with sheets with breaks and ques written out for them , they came in late or had to be prompted. Had one guitar player (who had some pretty good blues chops) That couldn't come close to covering a rock lead break. Every break was a blues jam. Another guitar player that played songs differently every time and when he was called on it always started an argument. The old "I've been playing this song for 20 years " crap. So , if he's been playing it for 20 years , why cant he get it right? He kept betting me that he was right. He now owes me over 40 bucks lol. At any rate , these guys were definatly NOT pro level or anything close to it. Hey , I'm not that great a bass player but at least I learn the songs and don't go off on a tangent every time I play them. So that's my take on the pro thing. As to the working band thing , I'm guessing that most bass player know a fair amount of songs and don't want to spend 4 to 8 months woodshedding with a bunch of guys before getting out to play and make some money. I'm currently in two active bands. The first one , I was given a song list and had about five weeks to learn any stuff I wasn't current on. Never got a chance to rehearse before going on stage. The second one I'm going on stage for the first time tonight. Got a set list and about four times practicing with these guys. their old bass player moved out of the area and is coming back to do some songs with them tonight so I didn't have to learn everything but I have 90% of their set list down. This will give me a few weeks and a couple more practices to button it all up. With the exception of two really long southern rock songs that I am not at all familiar with , this should be no problem. So , yeah , if I was looking for a band I would want a working band and some folks on at least a semi pro level. I have blithered enough. Next?
  6. Joebarnes


    Oct 4, 2011
    Surrey, BC
    Best I can guess is the bass players need money and want to step into an immediate paying situation. I still haven't figured at what point you can call yourself a "pro"; I've seen some people who gig constantly that I can play circles around and occasional open mic players who would give anybody a run for their money in terms of chops.

    I have played gigs and been paid money for playing those gigs and I sure don't consider myself anywhere near "pro". Maybe its a mindset?

  7. With bass, it's fairly easy to switch styles. And it's usually a supportive instrument. Going from ZZ Top to Godsmack on bass is merely a matter of tuning down.

    With guitar, playing bluesy slide solos and controlling high gain distortion are two different disciplines.

    So I think bass attracts a different kind of player who will place a different kind of ad.

    Guitarists who honed their skills on Godsmack haven't done so looking for a pay day. They just like playing Godsmack.

    And most bassists probably didn't pick up the instrument for the love of being in the lime light.

    I used to play guitar and enjoyed gigging for free just for fun. The novelty has worn off. Now I play bass. If I have to gig, I just want to go thump thump thump, take my money, and call it a night. No startup bands for me, no thank you.
  8. squirefan


    Nov 22, 2009
    Lansing, Ks.
    I think the true pros don't need craigslist. They should have an agent/manager, reputation, resources, references, etc.
    K.C. has some excellent musicians, but ironically the music scene is pretty horrible.
    Craigslist here is more like a forum where people extol their professionalism seeking like-minded, while everyone else posts the re re re re's to their ads.
    I'm sure some find people to jam with, though, but their ads are not the majority of posts.
  9. I think it's a way of trying to work past the 'delusions of grandeur' that so many people have. I check CL and Bandmix in my area all the time, mainly for fun, but if something cool actually showed up I'd be interested. I live in a musical wasteland... I've seen guys post links to soundcloud, or uploaded music on Bandmix. They claim to be long time players, gig experience, etc - and their stuff is, I mean - GODAWFUL. I'm not a monster player by any stretch, but these guys are horrible. So, the search for 'pro level' is trying to weed out these guys.

    Of course, then on the flip side you have guys who think they are 'pro level' looking for a 'pro level' situation, and they are horrible too :D

    Musicians tend to carry alot of ego - many many think they are much better than they are.

    My favorite are the guys who paint themselves as a lead guitar player, rhythm guitar player, vocalist, bassist, keyboards, drummer, mandolin, sitar, extensive knowledge of music theory, blah blah blah. They can play anything really well, they just want to play. Love reggae, funk metal, classical, alt rock, country, outlaw country, pop, pop metal, pop punk, Americana, blues, bluegrass, jazz, roots, classic rock, hard rock, djent... Influences include Billy Sheehan, Mozart, Pat Metheny, Lynryd Skynrd, Motely Crue, Avenged Sevenfold, Bach, Pat Travers, Pat Benatar, Beatles, 2 Live Crew, Limp Bizkit, Korn, Gordon Lightfoot, etc... Typically their 'bass playing' consists of root notes, and they can't carry a tune in a bucket. I'm not saying those people don't exist, because we all certainly know that they do, but if they do, they are most likely working as a professional musician in some capacity already, not posting on CL looking for 'like minded musicians to jam once a week'
  10. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    These ads could just be "testing the market," where a player is already in a band, maybe getting a bit bored, and wanting to see if there's something else out there.
  11. I see those "PRO/Working only" ads a lot in my area, and they are usually from bassists or drummers. Sometimes a guitarist. But usually bassists and drummers. I am not sure exactly why that is, though.

    The only thing that always hits me is the whole PRO thing. I guess I'm of the opinion that if you're a true PRO level player, you probably wouldn't need to look on CL for a gig. So I guess it kinda sends up a red flag for me, maybe it shouldn't, but it does.

    I've learned to HATE the CL musicians forum. It always seems like it's a bunch of people with way over-inflated egos forcing their demands/conditions and searching for the "perfect band" because they think they're so talented.
  12. Bufalo

    Bufalo Funk in the Trunk Supporting Member

    Jan 6, 2005
    Harrisburg, PA
    The thing I realized after both posting and reading many of those ads is that the basic logic is flawed. If the cover band is WORKING already, chances are good that they already HAVE a bassist. Why do they need you?
  13. obimark


    Sep 1, 2011
    True enough, but you might be loooking for another gig... although your chances of finding it on CL are very, very slim to begin with...

    I think someone hit the nail on the head- a good bassist can play a wide variety of genres fairly easily.
    IME- I can cover anything from pop, funk to rock, soul, classics, reggae, heavy metal, 80s, hard rock, country etc... Most singers, gui****s can't.
  14. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    Because it is an honest assessment of what I am looking for.

    I guess maybe I don't understand the question.

    Why would I write that I only want to be involved with working professionals or why would I limit to that group?
  15. MrLenny1


    Jan 17, 2009
    My experience of responding to CL ads has been
    most of these guys have never gigged. They have no discipline
    of a set list, song forms etc...
    My tried & proven way is jam sesssions & hanging with
    the guys who gig on a regular basis.
    No offense to the CL guys who are trying to play out.
    It's a tough scene with very little work compared to 20 years ago.
  16. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    Aug 11, 2012
    Upstate NY, USA
    Too much time on Talkbass. :ninja:
  17. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    My question wasn't, why would PEOPLE post an ad like that -- my question was, why are these ads always BASSISTS? I don't think I have ever once seen an ad that reads "Pro GUITARIST looking for working cover band." It's always the bassists who assert their own professionalism and that they're only interested in established working bands. That's what piqued my interest.

    I think there may well be something in that.... :D
  18. JohnMCA72


    Feb 4, 2009
    It's because bass players don't have girlfriends to support us & sponge off of!
  19. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Supporting Member

    Perhaps it is because bassist are harder to find and more in demand than guitar players. Therefore, bass players can be more picky. Just sayin.
  20. ChrisB2

    ChrisB2 Bass... in your fass

    Feb 27, 2008
    TalkBass > Off Topic
    ^ Yes, bass players can be more selective.

    I've seen this type of ad posted by drummers too.