This is a long one so I hope you have patience with me... I began to play bass in the 60's, never had a lesson, just got involved in bands and learned the songs by listening to them over and over. I never improved my playing but played in several bands because it wasn't hard figuring out the songs. I eventually played guitar for a group while attending college. After college, I began to work full time, had two children and watched them grow up. Although I jammed with friends, I had essentially stopped gigging. In 1999, after my oldest graduated from high school, my wife suggested that I take lessons because I never felt comfortable telling people that I played bass because I didn't think I was very good. After five lessons, everything came to me very clearly. Practicing scales and other stuff taught me so much that I became very excited about playing again. I answered all sorts of ads and auditioned for several groups....all of them wanted me so I could pick and choose. I went out and bought all sorts of gear to make up for the 20 years of lost time...Aguilar, Ashdown, Fender, Kinal, Lull, Avatar, Ampeg...I had lots of money to spend because I had been working for so long and my kids were almost out of the house. Well.....I found out that I don't like hanging out in niteclubs anymore. I used to do that during my younger years but because I had been raising kids for two decades, had stopped going out. I also started getting up earlier and earlier from the years of having to go to work in the mornings. I still wake up at 5:00 on Saturdays and Sundays no matter how much I try to sleep in. Everybody who gets old realizes that there are many many opportunities that came across their lives that were wasted because they'll never come back around again. Beautiful women, great jobs, etc.....and that's where I am right now and writing to you guys to ask for guidance. I am feeling disgusted with myself for wasting so much time. I wish I had been smart enough to figure out that I needed to take lessons earlier in my life. I was too insecure to admit that I needed help....or too stupid to realize it.... I'm playing with a couple of guys who are good musicians and we've worked very hard putting songs together...many of our material is original and sounds very much like jazz. That's how much I've improved...to be able to play jazz and original music. I can figure out songs instantly on the radio because of the work I've put into practicing the bass. I can play with anyone even if I don't know the material because of my ear and my training. However, all this makes me feel angry with myself because I don't feel like playing out very much anymore. I enjoy going to bed early, even on Fridays because I like waking up early, having a cup of coffee and watching the news. I'm struggling with what to do because the band members want to eventually play in clubs. I tried out with several other bands hoping to find one that doesn't want to play out very much but they don't seem to be around....everybody wants to play out. What I like about playing in a band is to work on the songs....the beginning, the middle and the end. Harmonies, stops and starts...all that stuff. Jamming doesn't give me this. I called the band and told them that I can't practice this weekend because I need to really decide on what to do. Some days I get so pissed off with myself that I start thinking of really weird things such as....breaking all of my gear in a fit of rage. I currently have an Eden WT 550 amp, Bergantino HT and EX 112 speakers, an Avatar CB 112 speaker, Kinal MK 21 bass and a Fender American Deluxe Jazz. I used to have a MIA Fender RI Precision which was beautiful and the best sounding bass that I've ever owned. I got rid of it because while I wanted one when I was younger, never bought a Fender because I didn't think that I was good enough to play one. Buying one when I was 52 years old just made me feel worse. It takes a long time and hard work to get a band to play very very well and to get a good reputation. I don't know if I have that time...how many bands are out there with 60 year old rockers? As we age, our bodies cannot take the stress of living as well as when we're younger. Playing until 1:00 am., loading up, traveling home at 3:00 in the morning...that stuff used to be fun years ago. My quandry is that while I don't like playing out, enjoy listening to the recordings of our gigs. I like them so much that I listen to them over and over. I only remember the good parts of the gig and not the other things that it involves like loading up, traveling, setting up, breaking down and going home. Will I reget it if I quit?