The bass face

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by anonymous278347457, Dec 1, 2005.

  1. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    Im in a band with a few friends, and the guitarist keeps telling me to pull my "bass face" when im playing. So i just randomly make a agressive face and he is satisfied.

    Has anyone else been told to to this sort of thing?

    admins/mods please move this thread is you think its in the wrong place because it my be kinda off topic
  2. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Columbia SC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    Maybe instead of playing music, you guys should just get together and practice what faces you want to make. That's probably more productive...
  3. Chili


    Mar 8, 2005
    lol, make an aggressive face, does he just like to look at u when hes ur aggressive face lol, i've never been asked that, i've been told my face goes al serious once tho when i play, but no ones ever asked me to put on my serious face, mabe we could both go into the face buisness....the buisness of faces, face twins mabe
  4. The best I saw was a bassist in a band from Hamilton, the bassist literally moved his mouth the way the bass sounded.
  5. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Indianapolis, IN
    I just moved this to Bass Humour and Gig stories.
  6. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    Found this thread and I wanted to chime in because there's something that always happens to me regarding the "bass face":

    Basically, I move into two types of music as a performer: A tropical music band and a rock band. I like the tropical music, but that isn't the music I grew listening to. I learned about it after I got into bass playing. Instead, I spent most of my childhood and teens listening to the current rock and pop hits on the radio. That's why I barely move or make a face when I'm playing Salsa or Merengue. On the other hand, my "tropical" bandmates can't recognize me when I'm playing rock. I say this is a severe case of a "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" trauma. I simply can't avoid it because it's PURE FEELING, and I think that's really noticeable. There's a rock band from a town near here and they're good but they're such posers! They look ridiculous to me. That works for Paul Stanley or Pete Townshend, but not for them. So if you don't feel like making bass faces, don't do that just because others tell you to do it. I've always said that if I was required to dance along with the singers in a tropical band, I'd inmediately quit.

    But there's another catch: IMO, letting your feelings on the music flow works only if all or at least another of your bandmates can express them in a similar way. I'm posting here two short video excerpts of different concerts in which I played. I enjoyed both of them as much as I could, but every time I see the first video I feel as a stupid clown! A quiet guitarist and a headbanging bassist. Meh! On the second video, both of us (but a different guitarist here) move with the music. The good vibe can be felt (I think).

    Anyway, the most important thing here is that music must be first and foremost. If making weird faces gives you trouble with your playing, don't do it. And don't do it for an image. I can tell you for sure that these videos only show pure and natural adrenaline. Nothing planned. No acting (although I must admit that I feel I'm sort of influenced by Ace Frehley, whose stage presence was terrific to me when I was a teenager). If you and your bandmates can combine decent playing with (natural) corporal expression, that's a truly valid approach to live music performance.

    Video # 1. :scowl:

    Video # 2. Much inferior quality but :bassist: :hyper:

    P.S.: Problem with streaming videos is that they start playing after a certain percentage but if they haven't loaded completely, they keep stopping while receiving new fragments. That's very annoying. I recommend you to stop the videos just after they start playing, wait until fully loaded in your browser's cache and then play them. Also can use a download manager to save them in your hard disk and watch them after downloaded.
  7. Nope. :)
  8. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA

    I was trying out for this band... it was a practice obviously... not a gig. And the singer/guitarist complained that I didn't move around/rock out. I was like, "I thought all showmanship was the frontman's deal, and the bassist was suppose to hide in the shadows."

    To say the least, I didn't have any interest in persuing future musical projects with these dudes.
  9. Could someone please enlighten me on what song being played in Video # 1 of Alvaro Martín Gómez's post. It sounds so familiar I just can't place a finger on it.

    EDIT: ok nevermind I remembered the song was La Villa Strangiato by Rush.
  10. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    My ex-girlfriend used to get all hot and bothered every time she saw me play, aparently that's when I'm sexiest, in my zone and whatnot.

    Works for me :)
  11. dharma

    dharma Srubby wubbly

    Oct 14, 2005
    Monroe, Louisiana
    And i've never even seen ya.

  12. same with me, but everytime I see pictures of me playing live, I'm kind of standing straight up with my gut sticking out, and my mouth is open with a draw that makes me look...well...kind of slow.

    But I guess that's what sexy is all about? :confused:
  13. Another female perspective--an attractive guy riding groove on the sexiest instrument on the planet? Mmmm-hmmm. Nothing finer. But it seems I always have to get in line!!! :p

    Wonder if the same is true in reverse? (Once I'm playing again and get up to speed, that is.)
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    I think it is. Like Kim Deal from the Pixies isn't so hot, but if she's playing, all of a sudden she looks doable.
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Or alternatively - switch to being an "air guitar" band - I must say that I still find it hard to believe that they actually have championships for this kind of thing and people win prizes... :p

    Although I must admit that in my younger days I might have admitted to doing this kind of thing - but only after many, many pints of strong Cider!! :D
  16. Diggler


    Mar 3, 2005
    Western PA
    I imagine that your guitarist is alluding to the movie "Full Metal Jacket:"

    "You got a war face? Let me see your war face!"

    "AAAARRRGGGHHH! That's a war face!"
  17. txbasschik


    Nov 11, 2005
    Leander, Texas
    Nope, but I *have* been told *not* to make a "face", and to "quit moving", because "bassists should stand still". I have also been told, "Close your legs. You do not look ladylike." This from a female guitarist who was trained in the old-style country ways...stand very still, with your legs closed. Well...we ain't playin' old school country. We're playing rock, and blues, and that is not sedate country stuff. And I'm not a sedate player. I naturally tend to stand with my legs apart, and I tend to move around. Not, like, crazy or anything, but I move, I dance a little, just from feeling the music. I could not stand still if my life depended on it.

    And, to all of it, I say...PHOOEY!!! I'll do what comes naturally to me!!! If a "bass face" is natural for you, do it. If not, don't. If you have to worry about doing things that do not come naturally for you, then you are not focused on the music, and *that* is the important thing, right? :)

    Cherie :)
  18. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Don't worry, I get that plenty :p
  19. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Yep, I always look like I'm really out of it in pictures, but apparently, the ladies love it, but cameras dont. Hmm...
  20. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I'd say it's true in reverse, a good looking lady in a groove can't be beaten by anything.