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"Vintage" bassists! Been away for a while?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by BillMason, Aug 13, 2007.

  1. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Who else is older (middle-aged and up) and has been away from playing for a long time, and is just getting back into it now?

    I started in '82 at the age of 12, which makes me 37 now. I played all through middle school, and high school. Two years of taking music at university had me believing that I sucked so I kinda stopped around age 20-21, played for a few months with a group of guys when I was 29, and then stopped again when I had kids. I just started playing again when a buddy of mine, who plays acoustic and sings, started encouraging me to play with him and get some gigs. We've also recently added an electric guitar player and a drummer and are starting to do some heavier tunes.

    Mostly what I play is improvised, I don't really try to copy an original artist's bassline. It's surprising how chops can be regained, and how little theory I have lost! If anything, my ear has improved *significantly* and I have a much more developed sense of taste in what I play than I ever had when I was younger.

    I think it may be more fun now than it ever was!
  2. QORC


    Aug 22, 2003
    Elberon, New Jersey
    I was away completely from it for my entire 30s. When I hit 40, I decided to take it up again. Hell, I hadn't even PLAYED the guitar in 10 years. Stuff was sitting in my basement. Looking back, I regret it, but I was married, doing other stuff and having kids. Anyway, I put out an ad, I bought better gear and 5 years later I'm playing regularly and better than I ever was.
  3. tycobb73


    Jul 23, 2006
    Grand Rapids MI
    I stopped for 19 years while I got my educaiton, married, house, children, etc. Started back up about 18 months ago.
  4. MrRumble


    Aug 8, 2006
    Plymouth, MN
    Stopped in '91 at age 36, started up guitar again in 2000 and back to bass in 2005 at age 50. Rockin hard and loud with my band Power Plant doing Led Zep, Deep Purple, Bad Co. ZZ Top. I am a kid again doing what I love.:hyper:
  5. Pruitt


    Jun 30, 2005
    Danbury, CT
    I started playing in 1980 and played through the Eighties. Then around '90-'91, I decided to stop, as I was very busy with other things. Mainly playing and coaching Volleyball and traveling the country doing it. I figured once my body gave out, I could return to playing my bass. Well, that happened around 2000 when I had knee surgury. I tried to play VB after I rehabbed, but I could never get back to the high level I was playing at before the injury, so I decided to stop playing competetively and just play locally for fun. Once I did that, I needed something else to fill my time, so in the spring of 2005 I pulled my bass back out and started playing again at the age of 43, after roughly a 15 year hiatus. :eek:

    Luckily for me, all the guys I used to play with were still playing and got me involved in the local scene again right off the bat. I've been playing regularly ever since. It's been fun to play again! :bassist:
  6. Geddyfleaharris

    Geddyfleaharris Supporting Member

    I am 43. I did not play in any bands from when I was about 30 or 31 until late in 2006. Always had the equipment and plunked away by myself but just had no time to really commit. In 2005 I started going to concerts again and in the fall of 2006 I saw the Chili Peppers. After that concert I knew I wanted to be part of band again. At first I just thought I would join a cover band and play 1 or 2 weekends a month, maybe make some extra cash. But I ended up hooking up with some guys in their mid to late 30's who wanted to focus on originals. Not that we are dreaming that we are going to be rock stars but the fit was very natural and the band is pretty smokin' if I do say so myself. Playing songs that I have taken part in helping to create is very fulfilling. Personally, I find myself WAY more confident in my playing and being on stage. I find our group gets along and communicates in a more respectful and mature way just as a function of none of us being kids. The other cool thing is that some of the bands that we have played with think it's really cool that we are 10 to 15 years older than them but still play heavier rock and kick a**!
  7. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Hey, cool pics on your myspace site too.
  8. Geddyfleaharris

    Geddyfleaharris Supporting Member

    Thanks for the props!
  9. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Nice Rick too! ;)
  10. Jim Powers

    Jim Powers

    Mar 19, 2007
    Charlotte, NC
    I started around 1969 in a Hendrix style band with some high school friends. Got into it pretty seriously until I decided I'd better go to college, then did a few jams and recording sessions at the school. When I packed up for my first real job, I sold my Ampeg 2-12, wasn't real happy with it anyway. Then thirty (30) years go by .......... last year my new boss guitarist finds out I played bass in high school while we're driving and shooting the s**t. He keeps on me to come over and play, but my son has put my old Epiphone bass in the shop (and we've moved, it was left there for 3 years, found the pickup magnets were dead); frankly, I'm not too interested. He gets frustrated, buys a nice P Bass and Ampeg combo on eBay, then continues to press me to come over, and I figure I'd better go along. A company Christmas party is coming up and they need a better bassist. :rolleyes:

    I show up for a practice, strap on the P Bass, and within 2 hours I recovered most of the 30 years. The guys in the band, who work together with me, are floored that I can play the bass. Whats more I can pick up on almost any classic rock of the era they want to play. The original bass player arrives late, comes down to the basement, sets his stuff down, then picks it up and leaves (he now plays sax, etc). We play the Christmas party and people are looking at me like I've morphed or something, including my wife.:bassist:

    I head out to eBay, get myself the Ric I'd always wanted, along with a few other goodies, then start whipping the guys into shape for the next show. Hey, I'm 53 and the 30 year sabatical was a blessing. All that time I studied bass lines while listening to the radio, and now I think I'm much better at playing what appeals to the audience. Life seems to go in cycles, and it's like a door has reopened and now I've got........g.a.s. again! And it just gets better when you can buy the gear you want.;)
  11. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    Cool post as I thought I was the only one!:hyper:

    I played bass from when I was 10 to 21 VERY seriously. I realized being a rock star wan't in the cards for me, so I completely gave up the bass, went to school, got a good job in high tech, got married, bought a house in the 'burbs, had kids, bought a dog, etc.

    I barely picked up a bass until last year when I was 37. 16 years and maybe played a few hours of bass total!

    Anyways, late last year my 10 year old wanted to learn to play guitar so I bought him an electric 6 string, I pulled out an old bass and the rest is history. I joined two gigging bands, learned about 80 songs I had never played (but generally knew to hear from the radio) in about 3 months and now play 2-3 gigs a month.

    From not playing for 16 years to gigging regularly with two different bands in about 6 months... and I am having the time of my life.:bassist: :D
  12. I stopped right after high school...1970....27 years later picked it back up. It took me awhile to relearn just the basics but I'm in full form now. It's been a long journey these past few years, going through drunk drummers, egotistical singers, and moody guitarist, but I have learned more about music and people as a result. This has been a fun ride and I hope it continues till I'm no longer able to play. My advice to all of you older dudes is, JUST KEEP ON ROCKING CAUSE THERE AIN'T NO STOPPING!!!! :bassist: :D
  13. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Still rockin'

    Nov 22, 2004
    Deep E Texas
    Lots of us around. Between careers and raising kids and getting 'em through college, music sometimes get lost in the shuffle.

    Sunday afternoon I took my Dobro and harmonicas to a town 20 miles away where lives one of my old playing partners. We were in bands together for 20 years (back before the Civil War) and I was a little concerned that he had stopped playing.

    No worries. He met me with a grin and a new $2500 Martin acoustic/electric.
  14. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Great story!! :D
  15. I'm another "reborn bassist." Similar story - played a lot in my teens and early 20s and then focused on education, family and career for a long time. I joined a band four years ago and have been totally into it again - I'm playing better and enjoying it more than ever! As an added bonus, with an established career and steady income from that, I can feed my GAS to my heart's content!
  16. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    LOL, I never really knew GAS until I started playing again at 37 and now with a real job I have money to buy stuff!
  17. Geddyfleaharris

    Geddyfleaharris Supporting Member

    And it's definately not fake! :bag: lol
  18. rfclef


    Jan 19, 2007
    Gervais, Oregon
    :eyebrow: I am 37.

    I just started playing bass though... I am a music teacher who's experience has largely been in the legit realm on tuba. Been playing bass since November with my jazz band at school, and for a few months at church. I love it. I am right now trying to get the courage to post a "hack bass player looking for guys to play with" ad...
  19. BillMason


    Mar 6, 2007
    Go for it!!!
  20. Pruitt


    Jun 30, 2005
    Danbury, CT

    Man, ain't that the truth! lol... I ony ever had the first bass I ever bought the whole time I played back in the 80's. I still had it when I started playing again two years ago. A 4 string MM Stingray. Now I have a 6er as my main bass, a 5 string Variax I use for recording, as well as a 5 & 6 string fretless I use for the odd recording and I'm still want to buy a new 6er and maybe a 7 string. Heh heh... :bassist:

    The funny thing is, I rarely take the 'ray out of its case and it was my only bass for a long time. lol... :help:

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