studio bassist

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by spidersbass, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. spidersbass


    Nov 29, 2004
    Downtown L.A.
    how do you become to be a studio bassist for hire? i wouldn't mind doing that, that would be pretty bad ass. anyone know how to do that (without having to go to some school)? :eyebrow:
  2. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Vancouver, BC
    Read anything that's put in front of you incredibly well the first time and flawlessly the second.

    Have great time and feel no matter what you are playing every time you pick up the bass.

    Play most styles of music authentically and be able to convincingly fake the ones you can't.

    Have a really good Fender style fretted 5 string, a fretless and an upright all of which you are very accomplished on.

    Understand at a very high level the recording process and own a studio preamp, compressor and various effects.

    Play any paying gig that is offered to you and show up on time for it.

    Get along well with everyone.

    Know a lot of good jokes.
  3. Kid Charlemagne

    Kid Charlemagne

    May 29, 2002
    Learn to read music.

    Get a good ear.

    Develop a great technique (don't bother about the speedy stuff, that won't do you any good. I mean a good clean picking, plucking and fretting technique!)

    Listen to a lot of music of different styles. Learn how to play it. Not just mechanically, learn what makes it work!

    Have good gear in good shape. Fender och fender-style instruments are still preferred by most producers. A good preamp and also a small tube amp are useful.

    Get to know a few producers. Keep in contact with them and remind them of how good you would be for their next project :)!

    Develop social skills. There are fewer situations that can be more stressful than recording music. A lot of money is being spent, the producer has the record company breathing down his neck, the artist is under enormous pressure. If you are a relaxed guy who brings a nice vibe, connects good with the others and don't get bothered by the high-strung people around you, you have good chanses to get called in again.

    Don't be too proud. A lot of the music you will have to play won't be very appealing to you. And you usually cannot afford to turn down a gig.

    Always, always be on time. No exceptions.
  4. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    I think personality has more to do with getting lots of work than playing ability. Lots of people can do the job, few get lots of work. Obviously you need to know your stuff, be familiar with many of styles, and everything else mentioned in the other posts here - but the work most musicians get (at least in my experience) comes from reputation. Jaco couldn't get any work at all the last year of so of his life.
  5. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003
    Jump in a time machine, and go back to 1970.
  6. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    These 2 should've been closer to the top. This is how I get most of my studio gigs. The talent thing's obvious.