So I guess I am a failed guitarist…

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Dan_reeves, Jul 24, 2021.

  1. Dan_reeves


    Jun 14, 2013
    I actually started on bass, so not really. But I have tried to branch out to guitar and just am not a big fan. I do like working/repairing them though. Just not really playing them. Part of it is I have big hands - like XL or bigger glove size, so it feels a bit clumsy to me. Part is that I realize the learning curve and would rather just devote that time to playing bass. And part is that I just gravitate more to the bass line than really any other part of a song, with the except of lyrics/vocals. So I kind of add that up and say what’s the use? I am not broken up about it or overly frustrated or looking for tips or anything. Just maybe acknowledging it to myself (and any sucker willing to read this)? Anybody else walk this path?

    BTW I respect the guitar, enjoy guitar music and recognize its place. I just think it’s ultimately not for me.
    Pdaddy1978, Loring, Ellery and 6 others like this.
  2. Congratulations! :thumbsup:

    I am a neverbeen guitarist.
    Do not want to go, weeedely weeedely weee, I like Boom boom boom.
  3. Gothic


    Apr 13, 2008
    I've been playing guitar probably a bit more than bass and devote myself to it for short periods. Never manages to really hold me. I return to my beloved bass and everything falls right in place, everything feels right, things are as they should be. It's kismet.

    Apparently, I'm just drawn to the bass more and I'm more than fine with it. I'm proficient enough at guitar to never need a guitarist for my recordings though which is a big win in my book.

    What a wonderful world. Now all I need is to win the lottery and I'm golden.
  4. theduke1

    theduke1 Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2010
    Sussex WI
    By his own account so is Paul MaCartney
    Loring, The Owl, mikewalker and 2 others like this.
  5. Jefenator

    Jefenator Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2008
    I think of guitarists as failed bassists.
  6. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    Yup, pretty much. I don't play guitar. I've never had the "finesse" for it. I can strum an acoustic just fine, but I've never been able to get an electric guitar to do what I wanted it to. Bass, bass guitar gets me. I give it what I got, and it gives me what I want. I feel into it, and it speaks. Plus, the bass makes the song about 90% of the time.
  7. Eddie Jones

    Eddie Jones

    Sep 18, 2019
    Sylacauga AL
    I could play the guitar 15 years ago. Life made me quit for about 15 years. Picked it back up and could not translate what I knew to my fingers. But the bass seemed to come naturally. I had a good chordal and theory foundation and my fingers seemed to know just what to do. I will never go back to the guitar. Bass is the bomb.
    MynameisMe and Gothic like this.
  8. Michedelic

    Michedelic MId-Century Modern

    When I was a kid, I was given a nylon string guitar. I didn’t mess with learning anything, certainly no lessons. Then the E and B strings broke, and I gravitated to thumping around on the lower ones, essentially attempting basslines. So, there was a calling. When I started hanging out with a slightly older kid in the neighborhood who played guitar, it was a foregone conclusion what would happen next. But after about three years of just learning riffs(I totally missed the Beatles thing, and was deep into the Cream/Hendrix/Zep/Sabbath era), and not really understanding how songs were put together, let alone chord chemistry or theory, I borrowed a steel string acoustic and a Cat Stevens songbook with chord charts(don’t laugh), and got to work. Now I can play quite well, sometimes showing the guitarists I’ve worked with their parts. I’ve progressed with writing and theory knowledge, and playing any guitar will improve dexterity for bass. My noodling with slide helped me move into fretless. The attitude of indignantly sticking to bass only I find childish and self-limiting. You don’t have become an expert in everything, but the experience on other instruments can only enhance your bass skills.
  9. I've been recording solo a lot lately. I have been learning how different instruments fit into an arrangement. This has required me to play some guitar. I never was too good at it, but now that I am really listening for how it fits I am gaining ground. Been learning a lot of rockabilly licks :)
  10. I think of bassists, guitarists, flautists, even some drummers as musicians. Which instrument you gravitate towards doesn't matter as much as whether or not you give it your best effort and make good music. A great musician can make great music with an inferior instrument or no instrument at all (like Bobby McFerrin who becomes the instrument). Many of us started out on one instrument only to discover their voice was elsewhere. There are some who seek to play many instruments well or to at least have a good working knowledge of them in order to compose playable parts for each one. There is no litmus test for instrument choices that grade you as a success or failure. (Thank God!!!) If there was some of us would've quit a long time ago. Hope this helps to confuse the issue even more. :roflmao:
    b/o 402, Grunthor, Road Hat and 4 others like this.
  11. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    Yeah, playing bass is easier.....only four strings and all, that's what I keep hearing.
    Loring likes this.
  12. dbsfgyd1


    Jun 11, 2012
    Mascoutah, IL
    Sounds like you’ve already decided it’s not for you. That said from the guy with somewhat above average sized hands, classical guitars have larger finger boards and for me are much easier to finger than my Taylor 510 and or my strat that have been spending way too much time in their cases.
  13. vinlander


    Jan 9, 2021
    I am a guitar player like my father, but could easily have followed in the foot steps of my uncle and 2 older cousins and have been a drummer...
    I guess it is why I always have been into bands with strong bass players and I always had one bass or two to dabble on
    I am into bands that have strong rhythm section even before paying attention the the guitar playing
    mikewalker likes this.
  14. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010
    I wonder if I should start calling myself a failed alcoholic? Oh, I'm a failed vegetarian too...

    This is fun!
  15. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    Playing a 5 string is harder than a 4 string bass or guitar - the whole "what do I do with a middle string?" is something that most bassists and guitarists don't have to face.
  16. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    Bass for forty years, drums for 39, guitar for thirty. I like em all.
  17. El_Charro


    Aug 11, 2020

    I love electric guitar when someone else is playing it, but I could just never gel with it intuitively like I do the bass…(Granted I am still terrible, but I at least enjoy practicing where guitar felt more like a chore)…

    I feel like bass is a much more primal sounding instrument so I find it much easier to try to connect with on some emotional or spiritual level (never felt that trying to play guitar)…

    Thanks! \m/
    Pugosaurus and JeezyMcNuggles like this.
  18. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    My parents started me on accordion 60 years ago. I stopped that after several years. I taught myself piano guitar and bass but only played guitar and bass out. I found it easier to find opportunities to play with others when I play bass so I eventually switched over to only bass for bands. I still played piano and guitar for myself.

    Three years I had a minor stroke that messed a bit with my right side and pretty much ended my guitar and piano playing but I can still manage to play bass out.
    mikewalker and WestyBassBob like this.
  19. WestyBassBob


    Mar 2, 2020
    I cannot play guitar. I’ve tried. Chords are painful and picking just doesn’t work with that string spacing.
    As soon as I started bass I wondered why I hadn’t tried it sooner.
    Jason Schulhz likes this.
  20. Davbassdude


    Mar 16, 2012
    It seems like the only thing I can do really well on guitar is play the blues. I can sing and play a few tunes easier than singing while playing bass. However, when I play guitar, I never use a pick and only fingerpick, because...I'm a bass player!!!