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Using amps from other people on stage : like or unlike?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Thomas Kievit, Jun 15, 2014.

  1. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    I've seen many times that bass players use the amps from other bass players on stage. Sometimes cause their own amp is broken, or in some cases (atleast what I saw) several bands play one after another and therefore only use 1 amp all bass players play on, just to save some time.

    Who of you like this concept? If so, can you tell me why you like it? If not, tell me why you don't like it?
  2. AaronVonRock


    Feb 22, 2013
    On bills that I play which have multiple bands, the bassists almost always use the same rig.

    I like it when it's a good rig. Sometimes it's better than my own, plus it's less gear for me to lug around.

    I don't like it when it's not a good rig for obvious reasons.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2014
    Fuzzbass likes this.
  3. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    I really don't mind other amps than my own. I make them work, mostly(very few exceptions when dialing in a good working tone was a bit more hassle than with others).
    Saves me taking it out and time packing up.
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2014
  4. scotch

    scotch It's not rocket science! Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2006
    Albany, NY USA
    Please see Profile for Endorsement disclosures
    It's called 'Shared Backline' & it's often the only way to make a festival run smoothly.

    Like AaronVonRock said above: when it's a good rig, great! When it's not so great- you have to learn to make the best of it.

    I'm on a plane in a few hours 1/2 way across the country to play a radio sponsored festival with a new country artist. I will be using shared backline with probably half a dozen other performers. It will probablybgo just fine!

    It's not so much about 'liking' the situation or not, but making unfamiliar or undesirable amps work for you as best as possible.
    AaronVonRock likes this.
  5. High Camp

    High Camp

    Oct 3, 2013
    Nowadays when I have to play a rig that's not my own, I use y Tech 21 Vt Bass and set the rig itself more or less neutral.
    In that case I can still get my own sound, without having to tweak the amp all the time.
  6. Bigmuffdiver


    Mar 28, 2014
    Can't stand it. Always a different sound than mine :)

    I don't like tweaking on-stage. I have my stuff sounding how it should sound, so I prefer to use my own amp.
  7. SonnyBassPlayer


    Nov 29, 2013
    My live experience consists only of free played "gig" for emerging/unknown bands in town festivals, some pubs, and contests.
    Sharing amps is almost the only way to do it: in fact, the stage will always be small, there will be 2-4 bands playing one after the other, and there will be very little time to move things on stage.
    So, what it ends up being is every band taking one "piece" of gear: one takes the drums, one the guitar amp, one the bass amp, and so on.

    This led me to take my own amp about once every two times, because other bands didn't even have small combos, and my mag300 was by far the most powerful amp of the area, of course, concerning emerging bands in festival shows, and party gigs.

    So yeah, if it depended on me, I'd say no. But since playing here is pretty hard (no concerts organized for "free" bands, and the very high costs of getting all things "legal" and get payed, I never had much of a choice. Share the amps or stay at home.
  8. You mean, at the end of the show, all I have to do is put my bass in a gig bag and leave? Winning! :bassist:
    BlueShox and buldog5151bass like this.
  9. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    9 times out of 10 i'll find myself using shared or house backline. also 9 times out of 10 the FOH engineer will take a DI signal from before the amp, so as long as i can hear myself, i'm happy.
  10. jj4001


    Dec 27, 2010
    Providence, RI
    I hate hate HATE shared back line when I have to use someone else's amp. I'm cool with it when everyone is using my amp, though.
  11. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    I'm generally cool with other people using my amp. But my band recently provided backline for a "local music festival" that was supposed to showcase a wide variety of genres. What I didn't realize was that the opening band was a young hardcore band. Even with earplugs in, they were deafening. This kid was pushing my rig much harder than I would have liked, and it was distorting and farting out. And he still wasn't loud enough to compete with his idiot guitar player. My drummer was worried about his kit, too.

    Furthermore, and this may sound a little weird, but I was angry at them for using my gear to make such a negative, unmusical din. It was a terrible way to set the vibe for what was an otherwise interesting and enjoyable night of music. No one liked them, and they split right after playing.

    Between the abuse of my gear and the negativity of the "music", I was pretty agitated by the time they got off stage.

    So now I have a new rule. I will backline my amp, but I want to know the genres of the other bands first. That may ruffle some feathers, but there it is.

    And BTW, every other bass player that night sounded great through my rig, and had plenty of headroom.
    D0rk1n likes this.
  12. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    I don't mind as long as it's a rig I like. But even if it isn't, I'll make it work.
  13. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    I don't mind using someone else's amp as long as it can do the job.
  14. deeptubes


    Feb 21, 2011
    Virginia Beach
    Depends. Rental, no prob. I don't particularly like using other people's rigs or other people touching my rig. Hell, I yelled at my best friend guitarist for touching an eq knob. But, I'm like that with pretty much everything I own. If something goes wrong, I know it's my fault.
  15. Dogbertday

    Dogbertday Commercial User

    Jul 10, 2007
    SE Wisconsin
    Blaine Music LLC
    I like it for the most part, less gear, etc. The big thing for me is that I'll typically ask if I can use my LMIII with the house cab. It's usually no problem, and I don't sweat it if it is or if the house amp is a combo. I haven't met a non-dirt cheap amp I can't work with. Except some of the ampeg solid-state stuff maybe.
  16. oldcatfish


    Jan 8, 2011
    Exactly what I use, and exactly why I bought the pedal. One of the best gear purchases that I've ever made.
  17. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    When I had lower-end gear, I loved it. Now that I have pro-level stuff, I'd much prefer to use my own. However, I understand that stage management and logistics on multi-band bills usually necessitates to take one for the team, and I'll make whatever is up there work, particularly if I have FOH support anyways.

    I find active basses are good tools in those instances, since I don't like messing with people's settings other than a volume bump in either direction. If I go up to the rig and it's super scooped or lacking in highs, I can EQ those in so I have a tolerable stage sound.
  18. McFarlin

    McFarlin Supporting Member

    Oct 27, 2011
    Austin, TX
    If it will make set change easier and each bassist is willing, then great. I can use anything, though I do prefer my own rig over most others.
  19. adi77

    adi77 Banned

    Mar 15, 2007
    we have a lot of sharing the backline gear out here.. but i don't like to share the amp i've been given if i mic it..and if i carry my own amp/cab setup (very very rare) i don't let anyone else play through it (or touch it).
    Mosfed likes this.
  20. catgut


    Jan 15, 2014
    Seattle, WA
    More or less this but I use a Darkglass VMT Deluxe. SS or Tube it will get you most of the way on foreign amp configurations. Just small tweaks at soundcheck.

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