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Serious question... need help!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Tym2cu_bass, Aug 1, 2004.

  1. Hey-

    I've been away from these forums for like two weeks... odd for me. *not sure if this is OT or Misc... so i put it here*

    Anyway I'm 15, and a sophmore in high school. I've been playing trombone for... er... almost 9 years, sence 2nd grade. I recently started bass 1 1/2 year ago.

    Theres the background info on me. Now when I started T-bone I was small, and didn't have any knowledge on music, i couln't tell a guitar from a bass and a sax from a trumpet. My dad was like, well its time for you to start an instrument, I never got an option if i wanted to play one or not, he was going to make me no matter what. So my dad has played trombone all his life, so I was like, hey, i dont know much stuff 'bout music, and all i've been around is the trombone so I'll try that. Then when I started i wasn't really enthuesiastic about it, it was boring for me, but I was just starting so I was still going to give it a shot.

    Before I knew it I was like in 5th grade and been playing for almost 4 years. I joined the middle school band, it was ok for my 6th grade year. But soon sence everyone else was just starting, I was like high school level compared to them. So HUGE boredum for the next two years, and my dad made me do it, it sucked.

    So when I got to high school I was like this must be better, so I gave it a shot. My high school was one of the best jazz high schools in the state, and I got 1st chair right when I joined.. tells you something. I was forced to take symphonic band as well, I would literally fall asleep in that class, and there were times i really wanted to leave the jazz band too.

    So now here I am, seeking you guys/ girls at TB for more advice. My dad yells at me all the time to practice, and he wants me to be a famous t-bone player... its like hes chosing my future for me. He doesn't want to reason with me, if I dont do what he says musically, I'm grounded. By the way, I dont like anything about the trombone... nor the music i have to play in school with it.

    So when I started bass I was like, "wow, music is fun!" and i've been having fun with it non stop. I dont even mind playing jazz stuff on it here and there.

    Now for the question, What do I do? I cant keep playing trombone... its horrible, and my dads always on me for it, saying "its your only way through college and life!" But if I stop playing it, he'll take away my bass, and pull me out of all the things i do, like C.A.P. I almost think even if i managed to make millions off it, it would still be a horrible life for me cuz i'd still have the t-bone curse. I wish i could quit t-bone and just play bass.

    I really need help on this one.
  2. I'd say stick with it eventhough it's boring now. Maybe you can come up with your own compositions and stuff to stimulate the playing? It sounds like your really friggin good, so I'd stick with it and maybe it will take you places.

    I don't know much about trombone and stuff, but maybe you can ask your band director and see if you can write some music for everyone in the band and then play it. Then you probably wouldn't be bored with everything.

    Hope this helped a little bit.
  3. Eyescream


    Feb 4, 2004
    Knoxville, TN
    Challenge yourself. Start composing, like the other guy said. Any instrument is boring if you let it be.

    Since you're 15, though; you basically have no other recourse. Make it fun for yourself, or your dad can (and it sounds like will) make everything miserable for you.

    Or you might try to butt heads and see how long he lasts. Most people will crack and give up eventually, but it'll be a hard time until they do, and by the time it's done you'll both be bitter and hate each other.
  4. Sonorous


    Oct 1, 2003
    Denton, TX
    Run away.
  5. stu FORD

    stu FORD

    May 22, 2004
    keep playing both, and try taking some music classes on trombone when you get to college... i dont speak from experience, but i hear they are a lot more challenging and worth it
  6. darkspec


    Jan 2, 2003
    Cleveland Ohio
    I'm sure he was kidding, but dont consider that. At 15 you will be arrested when you get caught and sent back home.

    What exactly is it about the Trombone that you do not like? Next to the bass, I love my trombone with all my heart. If my house went up in flames and I could only grab 2 things Id reach for the Trombone and my main bass in a hearbeat. The trombone can be very very fun if you get into it. Try changing the people you play with till you get into a groove of trombone playing you enjoy. Writing some compositions will also work wonders because you can decide what to play on your own. It may also be that you have just out-grown the instrument and lost intrest. I remember growing up and going thru stage after stage till I finally set my heart on music. Just change things up a bit and try to make the whole situation more enjoyable. If you just dread the task and do nothing to make it better, it will only get worse.

    Oh...BTW, not to pull a guilt trip but, I have been playing the same starter Yamaha trombone since I began playing 5 some odd years ago. You should consider yourself lucky that you have the opertunties that you do. Even if they are not to your liking, take advantage of them as best as you can man. You may never get the chance in life again to get the same schooling and experience your getting now.

    /end rant
  7. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA

    I feel your pain. And the joy of your discovery, that music is fun, especially if you're playing something you like, and something that feels "natural" to you. I was in a similar situation, right around your time of life. I was quite the young pianist, and my parents were pushing me to stick with classical music. But it got to where I didn't like playing the piano anymore, at least not the way it was happening. When I picked up a bass for the first time, I knew I was home.

    What I did was, pull the wool over my parents' eyes, until it was too late for them to do anything about it. That would have been for two, maybe three years. During that time, I continued taking piano lessons, but pushed the piano playing onto the back burner. However, I "used" it, for certain purposes, which included studying bass clef notation (which was not my favorite clef up to that point), and studying various properties of the bass, like tunings and alternative tunings, fingering, that kind of thing. When my parents gave me money for books, I spent it on a bass instead, and used the library to cover it up.

    My feeling at the time was, that if my parents were bold enough to try to force me down the path that "they" wanted, I was bold enough to fight back. But, the fight had to be carried on at a "clandestine" level, 'cause that was just the nature of the contest. It was a battle of wills, and there was no way I was going to lose. Especially since, I finally found a musical instrument that was "exciting", and "interesting", and whenever I was playing the bass, all my scholastic headaches seemed to disappear, and I could be at peace with the universe for a while.

    Well, it worked for me. It's a dangerous game to play though, and it might not work for everyone. In my case, bass playing came so naturally to me that after about two years, I was able to demonstrate some reasonable level of competence to my parents, so much so that they were pretty blown away the first time they heard me play. I was doing stuff like the Moonlight Sonata and the 1812 Overture as bass solos. Basically anything that I used to play on the piano, I could more or less "instantly" translate to the bass. Once my parents heard that, there wasn't much they could say or do anymore, except support my efforts. They weren't "happy" about it, but they realized that I had to be pretty darn dedicated to get that far that fast.

    And I was. I played for somewhere between four and six hours just about every day. For a couple of hours I'd listen to classic rock on the radio, and try to play along with it, to develop my ear. For the next couple of hours I'd study fingerings and do stretch exercises. Then I'd take the bass to the practice room, and work on theory, and try to translate piano stuff into bass stuff, and vice versa. I found several people who were willing to show me the bass "tricks", like slapping and popping and tapping and that kind of thing. I found a guy that had an upright, and got him to show me the differences between that and my electric. I used every trick in the book, to get up to speed on the bass as quickly as possible. By hook or by crook, I was going to learn that instrument and make it my own.

    If you're that dedicated, or you imagine that you might be, then this approach might work for you too. Just a thought. As you say, having fun is one of the most important aspects of playing music (IMO). Whatever you decide, I wish you the best of luck with your music and your career.
  8. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    This is exactly what I wanted to say!
    And some more tricks:
    When they are at home, play the trombone well audibly and visibly or keep the bass-playing silent and as much hidden as possible; when they are not, you can play bass ;)
    Try to find the fun side of the trombone, too.
    Uhmm.. thats about it ;)
  9. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    Once again, I'm left with my cynical belief of that it should be a requirement to hold a Master's in psychology before you can become a parent. :rolleyes:

    Trombone is your only way through college and life? *** is that suppose to mean? It sounds like your father is trying to live vicariously through you. He doesn't understand that by pushing you into something you don't like, you may end up resenting it. (not to mention him)

    My father has been a bassist longer than I've been alive. He never pushed me into music. Other than playing trumpet in school band, I never really persued music until I was around 13 years old. It was a decision that I made on my own. Now I'm a semi-professional musician, and my father couldn't be more proud. I have no negative cognitive associations when I pick up my instrument because I wasn't given any negative conditioning.

    BTW, if you father decides to pull some BS, such as not paying for your college tuition unless you major in music, do everything you can to pay for it yourself. Try to get any financial aid/scholarships you can, or even join the military if you have to. He is ruining your life if he tries something like that.
  10. Matthew Bryson

    Matthew Bryson Guest

    Jul 30, 2001

    It sounds like maybe Dad is saying he doesn't have the money saved to send him to college and he's hoping that he can get a music scholarship - which might not be a bad idea.

    I think that you should also consider what good things playing the Trombone in the school band program does for your bass playing - Playing Trombone has you reading music in bass clef, it has you training your ear to hear different pitches so that you can position your slide to correct intonation problems - that will serve you well if you want to play a fretless bass. Your learning general music theory as well as some jazz theory / standards. It will all make you a better bass player, so I say; Keep it up!
  11. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    First off, always remember that there are two sides to any story. Your dad probably sees the situation quite differently than you do. So, the first step is to sit down with him and talk this out calmly and rationally. You need to tell him how you feel without accussing or blaming him for anything.

    Then when he tells you his side of things, be sure to listen.
  12. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    They have Federal and State grants, along with Stafford and Perkins loans to help pay for college.

    Betting on a scholarship is a bad idea, IMO.
  13. Ya... I'd join the military. I love planes and **** like that so ever since I was in 2nd grade I've always thought about joining the air force to be a pilot. When I told my dad that, hes like, "Why would you wanna do that? Thats a total waste of GOD given talent. If your going to join any branch of the service you should join to be in the Band of the West." That really pissed me off when he said that; especially when he tried to bring God into this.
  14. You obviosly dont know my dad, I hate to say it but there is no talking to him once he has his mind set. I wouldn't even have started this thread if I could talk to him reasonably, infact if he did consider listening to me, I might actually enjoy the t-bone or something. He's the same way with politics. Right now, me talking to him would be like trying to pursuade him to vote for Kerry.