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Should I start playing in a band?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by basshead1268, Oct 13, 2003.


  1. Hello fellow bassists! I am wondering if I would be good enough to play in a band. I played bass for about 7 months now and know some songs also I am learning more songs at the moment.The songs I know are:
    1.See you on the other side-Ozzy
    2.Shot in the dark-Ozzy
    3.Believer-Ozzy
    4.Paranoid-Black Sabbath
    5.Is this love-Whitesnake
    6.Have you ever seen the rain-CCR
    7.Hotel California-Eagles
    8.Piece of mind-Boston
    9.Run to you-Bryan Adams
    10.Don't tell me what love can do-Van Halen
    11.Pictures-Kid Rock&Sheryl Crow
    12.Soak up the sun-Sheryl Crow
    13.With or without you-U2
    14.Beds are burning-Midnight Oil
    15.Here I go again-Whitesnake
    16.Alive-Pearl Jam
    17.Enter Sandman-Mettalica
    18.Again-Lenny Kravitz
    19.When I come around-Green Day
    20.You give love a bad name-Bon Jovi
    21.Breathless-The Corrs
    22.Solitude-Black Sabbath
     
  2. Go for it if you feel confident enough with the songs you've learnt, and are prepared to learn more in a hurry if necessary. Be aware that you may need to play them all in a different key though if the singer prefers a different one. I've been caught like that before so it pays to be quick at transposing. Good luck. :bassist:
     
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    As soon as you can find other players willing to give you a shot, go for it.

    Looking back, I waited far too long to get into my first band.

    As some wise man once said, "90% of playing the bass is owning one" :cool:
     
  4. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    basshead1268

    Yes, of course you should start paying in a band!!!
    It might take a while to find players of the same level, perhaps who share similar influences and maybe who are sound people (very important!), but it's definitley worth while. As a bass player it's pretty much all about playing in a group...

    One thing I would say though, not to put you off or detract from your achievements to date, is that playing in a band is very very different from playing with a CD, as you'll find out for yourself. It's a lot tougher! When you mess up in a band the groove may very well fall apart, but the CD will keep on playing regardless!

    Anyway, get out there and start looking, and good luck :)
     
  5. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    UK
    brianrost, I have to change your quote

    "90% of playing the bass is owning the one"

    Right on brotha! :D
     
  6. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
  7. thrash_jazz

    thrash_jazz

    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Definitely! Playing with others is the best way to become a better player yourself!

    There's plenty of tips on finding a band here on the forum - good luck to you! :)
     
  8. Everyone should be playing with a band. Seven months is pretty long, you'll find out that you probably could have played with a band after about a month. Is your gear loud enough to compete with a drummer AND a guitar player AND vocals etc?
     
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Yes. Start playing in a band. Even if it is just rehearsals and jamming for a while, go for it. You will only get better from the experience.
     
  10. tim99

    tim99 Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2003
    Yes.

    You will get better faster playing with people.

    You will get better faster meeting regularly with people who want to PRACTICE, not just play.

    Post a flyer in your local music store listing the type of music you are interested in by band influences. Read some of the flyers that are already posted to see what I mean. You have a list of songs, include that in your post. List the age range you are looking for if that is important. If you need a place to practice, include that. "Bass player seeks drumer, guitar player, singer, and place to practice."

    Burn a CD of your 10 top songs to give to the others to learn. You want to start thinking about separating your songs into 10 song "sets". Learn the songs. Learn the set. Play the songs in order through a set. It is a blast when you get to that point.

    Find a place. Its great if the drummer has a basement or garage.

    Do not play any louder than you have to to balance with the drummer. Some here would tell you to wear ear plugs.

    Play on a regular schedule. My band plays every Monday night and every other Thursday.

    Look for people who want to PRACTICE songs. This past Monday we worked on three songs for 2-1/2 hours. This is huge. Some people never want to repeat a song. If you want to get good, you have to repeat, repeat, repeat. This may take months to find a group who want to meet on a regular schedule and repeat songs.

    Have someone look at your bass string/neck/fret/pickup setup and make sure that your bass is playing ok.

    If you determine that your cable or your bass input jack is causing crackle noises, throw away and get a new cable or jack or do some soldering.

    One more thing. Start learning about powered pa/mixer systems for singers to sing through. One big problem with the band experience is that the instrument musicians may have thousands of dollars of equipment, but many singers show up with no equipment whatsoever, not even a favorite microphone. Ask at your local music store what the cheapest amp/speaker setup is that a singer can sing rock music through for a garage band practice setup. You need to think about this for your practice setup. You need to think about if you are going to play for a party at a frat house or someone's backyard, or someone's swimming pool. Guys with good pa equipment are great to have in a band. Be that guy, or find that guy, or pool together to buy for the band.

    Do it.
     
  11. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    yes, instantly start playing with other people
    i did and it was well worth it
    they say "anything worth doing is worth doing well"
    i say "anything worth doing is worth doing poorly........until you can do it well"
    you dont get to do it well with out sucking at it 1st, so dive in. and hey, maybe it wont suck too bad!
     
  12. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Don't worry about your level of ability. It's a learning process and you'll have some disappointments along the way.

    Playing bass without ever playing in a band is the equivalent of dating by looking at porno instead going out with a real girl/boy.

    Also, don't worry about your song list to get started. If you have to play the "Happy Birthday" song or "Louie Louie" to get started in band, do it.

    It's all called "paying your dues."
     
  13. I'm another baby bassist (so young I don't even have my own equipment yet, but that's another string) with a couple of related questions.

    Some groups play together strictly for fun/hell of it, some groups play just frat parties and local events, and some groups are bent on becoming rock stars. Are all of these types good as long as you've got the time and everyone's dedicated to practice, or do these different ambitions add significantly different flavors to the experience?

    Also, does it matter whether the band plays covers or original material?

    Thanks all.
     
  14. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    fox - it really depends on you and what you want to do
    personally i wouldn't stay long in a group that played together for the hell of it because playing out (even infrequently) can be very rewarding and a great learning experience, but that's strictly up to you
    in a group hell bent to be rock stars expect some level of pressure, frustration and sacrifice
    it really depends on what you're comfortable with when it comes to that, but playing originals is mandatory in such an experience
    playing covers (especially popular danceable covers) can greatly expand the number and type of venues you can play, and gives you the treat of an appreciative audience
    it really doesnt hurt to try a little of each and see where you fit
     
  15. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Yea i say go for it. I first got into a band situation about 2 months after i started playing. Me and my 2 best friends started a band and learned together. Now we "rawk".