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So, You Wanna Be a 'Pro' Bassist?

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by dtripoli, Feb 12, 2013.

  1. Check list
    In order to qualify as a "Seasoned Musician"
    You have to have:
    1) Played to an empty room
    2) Been stiffed for your money at least twice
    3) Arrived at a gig and been told, "sorry, we double booked"
    4) Played a wrong genre gig i.e, metal band at a jazz club, country band at an R&B club
    5) Repeatedly waited a minimum of 2 hours past your start time to play
    6) Gone to an audition for a "professional band" with "professional" members and find out its rank amateurs playing bad covers
    7) While playing, someone spills something on you/your bass/your amp, falls into you, throws something at you, yells obscenities or wants to kick your ass for no apparent reason.
    8) Played your personal worst performance ever yet been told by at least 2 people you were amazing
    9) Stayed in a mediocre cover/tribute/original band for at least 1 year and played only 1 gig with them....and it was bad
    10) Lastly and most sadly, you have to have had at least one instrument or gear stolen

    Once you've completed the above check list you may officially refer to yourself as a 'Seasoned Musician'
  2. poor Jaguar :(
  3. tmntfan


    Oct 6, 2011
    Edmonton canada
    1) Opening for a touring act just the keys/vocalist, we are full cover band; nobody there but her parents. She played then we closed.
    2) ****** bars…
    3) 2nd gig after we released our EP, damn bar owners.
    4) Jazz/funk band in a metal battle of the bands
    5) University reunions (several occasions, different faculties)
    6) Auditioned for a Mexican surf band
    7) Not yet
    8) Swing dance, hadn’t slept in 2 days (literally, I was surviving on a redbull every 4 hours) was told my playing was very relaxed
    9) Did that , then we got our **** together now it’s good
    10) P-bass special while in college.
  4. I bet you were counting sheeps jumping over your bass neck!:D
  5. 1) Too many to count. Back in the 80's, playing 6 night a week, Mondays - Wednesdays were brutal.
    2) Stiffed lots. Once the band was fired after 20 minute on a Monday night (yet the crowd LOVED us) On the road in the middle of nowhere with a blown tire and no spare, and no money to get it fixed. Found out the reason we were fired was because he was going to weekends only the following week.
    3) Happened regularly on the road in the 80's. Only got rough a few times.
    4) Hard rock band booked in a country bar. Spent the afternoon in the hotel room learning country songs to play that night. Made it through the week, but it was pretty intense.
    5) Played after Doug & The Slugs who were doing a "dinner show". They were supposed to start at 8, didn't get on until 11. We were supposed to start at 10:30 and play 'til 2. Wound up doing a 1/2 hour set to finish the night.
    6) Again, too many to count.
    7) Yep. Was on stage when some goof jumps on stage and starts screaming into my mic. He stumbles, falls off the stage, thinks I pushed him. He starts trying to hit my with my own mic stand. I yell for the bouncer who shrugs his shoulders and refuses to do anything. Found out drunk idiot was the town drug dealer. I actually had to apologise and buy HIM a beer just to get him to stop.
    8) yep. A few times.
    9) Before I could tell that there was no hope, yes, I stayed in more than one band way longer than I should have. Now, no gigs no play.
    10) Full monitors and PA head out of my truck in the driveway. Got lucky and it was covered under my house insurance. Lots of small stuff... mics, cables, tuners...
  6. Factor88


    Jun 21, 2011
    What if you have been playing for so long and for so many gigs that you can't remember some of these things happening, even if you know they probably did. For example, I cannot for the life of me come up with a concrete memory of being stiffed. Certainly it would not have been in the past 10 years because it isn't in my records. My records from years previous were lost in a flood.........

    Also, I know I have NEVER had a major peice of gear stolen. I am sure cables or maybe a mic stand have be appropriated by other musicians over the years.
  7. seang15


    Aug 28, 2008
    Cary NC
    Check times ten! Sweet, I am a pro!! "hyper"
  8. BassByBaldSteve


    Nov 17, 2011
    Raleigh, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Fodera Basses, Aguilar Amplification
    It is borderline depressing how accurate the OP is.
  9. I meet all criteria easily except I have never had any gear stolen. I have however lived in a dilapidated bus with six other filthy degenerates for nearly a week and/or shacked up with a random chick to avoid aforementioned bus living.
  10. 4dog


    Aug 18, 2012
    I wanna #!!!!!! Lol sadly have been through all of that and more.
  11. I'm not "pro" and have experienced all of that. :bassist:
  12. ..but you do qualify as "seasoned"
  13. funkingroovin

    funkingroovin Conquering A-D-D,and all the other notes as well!

    Apr 19, 2009
    Apparently,I've been a pro for years! :bassist:
  14. Ha, I guess so! 20+ years will do that to you, I guess.
  15. Should you add: "Go on a band tour/road trip in which A) the vehicle breaks down in the middle of nowhere, OR B) a band member almost gets arrested"?

    Sadly, both of those have happened to me (it wasn't me that almost got arrested, though), and on the same trip as well.
  16. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    Add: playing for a room full of fist-fighting Marines, pushing one back into the foray with my boot, and never missing a lick. Sheez.
  17. Axtman

    Axtman Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2008
    Seattle, Washington
    You forgot:

    Played 2 songs only to be shut down because you were too loud. This after telling management that you are a rock band and they saw you schlep amps in to the space.
  18. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    Well it looks like I've been a pro bassist for years!

    ..and you can add this to the list:

    Showed up on time for load in at a festival gig and had to wait at least two hours to get on stage due to the the previous bands going over their scheduled stagetime.
  19. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    I have been playing for 35 years and the only things on the list I have experienced are 1, 2, 6, 7, and 10.

    1) "Played to an empty room." Only happened once, during a snowstorm when the club owner insisted that we play anyway. We played to the doorman, bartender and waitress. Two people actually showed up after our first set. We usually played to about 400 people at this club.

    2) "Been stiffed for your money." Oddly enough by two different band leaders, never by a club or promoter.

    6) "Gone to an audition for a "professional band" with "professional" members and find out its rank amateurs playing bad covers". Happens quite a bit. Now I won't even consider auditioning until the band sends me some recordings or has a website where I can listen to them.

    7) "While playing, someone spills something on you/your bass/your amp, falls into you, throws something at you, yells obscenities or wants to kick your ass for no apparent reason." Happened once when my old band was setting up for our first gig. Some drunk kept yelling "I heard you guys suck". When we started playing he was screaming and pumping his fist in the air. After the first set he came up to me and said "you guys don't suck". When we were getting ready to do our second set he started with the "I heard you guys suck" again. The club manager threw him out.

    10) "Lastly and most sadly, you have to have had at least one instrument or gear stolen". Again, oddly enough, by a former band member. Never by anyone else.
  20. Jarrett


    Jan 19, 2004
    Waxahachie, Tx
    All but 9. I wouldn't hang around that long if the goal was to gig. But on tours, I've played to many empty rooms. Been stiffed for money several times, once at gunpoint. Double booked, check. Walked into a honky tonk in Waco to play once, we played Funk Rock. Hurry up and wait is the name of the game, especially on tour. Plenty of #7's. Almost had it set on fire once on stage. 8 is a given. 10, stole my car with my whole amp in it. Luckily carried my bass in with me.

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