What instrument do/have you double(d) on?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Rhaco, Jun 6, 2019.

  1. Rhaco


    May 22, 2019
    I've basically played with two kinds of groups: those that were borderline reverential of bass players because it took them forever to get a reliable one as they limped along scrambling to cover the low end or using hired guns (we'll call these "good," bands), or bands who considered the bass role to be largely ceremonial; I mean, it's not like you're a singer or a guitar player. Anybody can play root notes right? And that is clearly all you add (we'll call these "bad," bands).

    IME, in the latter type of band, you will inevitably be asked to cover something stupid. Fifteen years ago, when I was regularly gigging, claves were the flavor of the week, but I just recently watched a talented, but clearly long suffering, bass player cover a ukulele part at an outdoor gig.

    So long as the check clears, with enough zeros on it, I'll morris dance for all I care. So my question is: what was the most eyeroll inducing doubling you've ever had hoisted upon you, or conversely what song do you cover something fun on?

    For me,
    Eyeroll: gotta be melodica. As Chris Hardwick put it, "the finest of the plastic reeded instruments."
    Good times: At a lot of weddings I'll do one tune on the bagpipes, if requested. That one is sort of cheating though, since it's not like my band forced me into picking them up. If we are talking things I didn't want to play, I had good times playing a bodhran in a band that played two Irish tunes where a bass wasn't appropriate.
    mikewalker likes this.
  2. mrcbass


    Jan 14, 2016
    Sacramento, CA
    Unless you count me using one of the e-drums rims to knock out the clave part of "All Right Now" when I'm waiting for the bass part to start, nothing on stage as electric bass player. There seems to be a lot of songs that hangs the bass out for some portions which makes me consider adding a small percussion arsenal to my gear.

    I did have a project where I was adding some simple KB parts for a few songs, but that never made it out of the garage.

    When I was in school, I played horns - all the brass and actually played, trumpet, trombone, baritone and French horn all in one recital (brass quartet just passed the horns around for each piece).
  3. Rhaco


    May 22, 2019
    Right? I just started gigging again after moving to the Midwest oh, so a lot of country, and every single song goes one verse without the bass. I think it's supposed to sound dramatic when we come in, but it just sounds redundant to me when it happens 40 times during a show.

    I like the idea of tossing some kind of rhythm kit together for portions of a song rather than the whole thing. You've got my gears turning now.
  4. A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away I was tasked to play Eb Tuba on Wednesday’s, which became German night. Yeah, green short pants and the whole deal.
    mikewalker likes this.
  5. mrcbass


    Jan 14, 2016
    Sacramento, CA
    Yeah, my new band has several of those and you're right, once in a while it has the right affect, but half the set? I tend to build songs anyway, so sitting out just leaves me trying desperately to look cool while I'm waiting to come in (FAIL!).
  6. Wasnex


    Dec 25, 2011
    For a couple of years in the late 90s I ran a country band that was part of a 45 member Air Force band. One year for fun, I decide to work up some fiddle parts for our 20 minute feature in the annual holiday show and ask one of our other bassist to sit it in to cover my normal part.

    The hardest tune we did was a record lift of this recording...of course the drummer ran away with the tempo and made it almost impossible for me to play.
  7. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    In my old originals band I swapped back and forth between bass and guitar/guitar synth at will, and there was no other bass or guitar player. The most fun synth patch was steel cutting lathe.
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  8. Rhaco


    May 22, 2019
    I'm sold!
  9. Rhaco


    May 22, 2019
    Haha, love those moments. End up sitting there pretending the singer milking the third time through the chorus for all that it's worth is the most interesting thing you've ever heard, even though you've been listening to them practice the emotional way their voice catches at the end a few times a week for months.
    mrcbass likes this.
  10. I also play guitar, tenor guitar, mandolin, mandola, octave mandolin, mandcello, congas, djembe and cajon. Not a virtuoso, but I can fake it.
  11. biguglyman


    Jul 27, 2017
    Pownal, ME
    Double on keys, Casio digital sax, harmonica (yeah, I got the "Bob Dylan" thing).I used to bring an old MiniKorg2 to gigs and set it all up with it's own amp and everything just to do the siren at the beginning of Riding The Storm Out by REO. Did enough keyboards that I went out and bought a specific, higher end Yamaha that allowed me to split the keyborad, then pan one hand to each channel thereby giving me separate control over the bass (left hand) and keyboard (right hand) part. My current bands LS/BL also plays keys, but I still slide over once in a while to cover stuff like the intro to Closer To The Heart. Years ago used the digital sax and keyboard to cover some Seger and Can't You See (flute voice on sax).
  12. Rhaco


    May 22, 2019
    I read somewhere that whenever magazines like Rolling Stone try to do a "greatest harminica players" poll Dylan always wins, despite his, you know, lack of ability to play the harmonica. That always helps me chill when I'm having trouble getting something complicated down. We'll sit there flogging ourselves because we aren't strong at improvising with -7b5 arpeggios past the 9th fret even though the vast majority of our audience, even those enough who are interested enough in music to actively vote in a magazine poll about musicians, think Dylan was a virtuoso. It's a very soothing/perspective giving thought.

    Love the idea of rocking the digital sax. I must admit, I'm a little jealous.
  13. EdwardofHuncote

    EdwardofHuncote I Still Dream of Jeannie

    Aug 21, 2013
    Mandolin. Upside-down and backward from bass.
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  14. Pirate Captain

    Pirate Captain Elitist Jazz Snob ********

    Dec 22, 2016
    ...hey! I play the pipes too! (I think the rhythmic element inherent in piping is helpful for bass players)

    ...as for Melodica, I'll take Donald Fagan and John Batiste's opinion on that instrument over noted musician Chris Hardwick
  15. Not lately, but in a previous band I played drums, then guitar and vocals on one song.
    Oh yeah, played Mandolin on one song at a wedding. Had to tune it down a little, the strings were killing my fingers.

    My current drummer wants to do a 'drum battle' similar to Godsmack.
    Sounds fun, but there's NO WAY I'm dragging a drumset anywhere for one song...
  16. Guitar and Saxophone.
  17. Londo Molari

    Londo Molari

    Jan 1, 2014
    2 blocks east of Mars
    Decendant from the Clovis culture. "Emitting that wonderful bass effect since 1970".
    Cittern, electric 12 string, bass pedals, electric 6 string, timbales, Mellotron, Theremin.
  18. nilorius

    nilorius Inactive

    Oct 27, 2016
    Riga - Latvia
    None, i have 3 fretless basses 2 different 5str., and 1 different 4 str.
  19. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    I have a kazoo on my mic stand. I'm thinking about pulling a Geddy and adding a small key setup, mostly for synth bass.

    I've done both drums and guitar as well. Fun because I get to play them and don't have to tote them (I occasionally work as a drummer and the loading, setting up, teardown and loadout of the kit is something that I've really come to hate with a passion - the hardware bag/case weighs as much as any bass cabinet and it takes ten trips to get everything into the car).

    I want to find a bassist to sit in who knows "Devil Went Down To Georgia" so I can bust out my long-neglected violin and play that song properly. I think people would go bonkers. Can't get the band to bite, though.
  20. Bodeanly


    Mar 20, 2015
    In one of my projects, I do everything but lead vox. Not live though, so I don’t think it counts.