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When do you become a bassist?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Larseman, Dec 19, 2018.

  1. Larseman


    Oct 31, 2018
    Picked up bass 2 years ago at the age of 55. Love it! But I realise I'll never be a Pino, Jaco, Flea or Victor. When asked, I tell people that I play the bass, I'm not a bassplayer and definitely not a bassist.
    So when do you become a bassist, if ever?
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    You generally become what is described by a given label at some point a long while after you've stopped caring about achieving that label. ;)
    robmclucky, rd2rk, richntiff and 28 others like this.
  3. Oddly

    Oddly Unofficial TalkBass Cartographer! Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    I think you become a bassist when you start playing jazz, classical or possibly showtunes.

    If you avoid all that and just play regular music folks want to listen to, you're a bassplayer.

    Also, technical ability doesn't have a damn thing to do with it.
    If you play with all you got, and feel and bring the groove, you're there.
  4. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    bassist: a person who plays a double bass or bass guitar.

    There you go.
  5. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    When you decide you are one.
    Artman, SteveHeissner, PWRL and 9 others like this.
  6. chadhargis

    chadhargis Jack of all grooves, master of none Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    I didn't start playing until I was 38. I'm 46 now so I've been at it for 8 years. Like the OP, I will never been a master and I'll be a life long learner. I do, however, consider myself to be a bassist, bass player, or whatever you call it....because I perform regularly, hold down the groove, and keep a tight pocket. That's what bass players do.

    Do you have to slap, play jazz, or classical to be a "real" musician. Nope. You need to do nothing more than make music...whether that's beating on a cardboard box or playing in a symphony.
    Artman, jmon, retslock and 7 others like this.
  7. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    I restarted at age 52 - couldn’t play my way out of a paper bag at that point. after a decade off from a wrist injury.

    5 years later, I was playing in decent size churches to services with 1,000 people (the first service at the biggest place I play). I’m constantly booked - I play as much as I want. Starting at 55? If you work at it, you can do a lot with it. Persistence is the key.
  8. Kro

    Kro Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    New Jersey
    I couldn't disagree more.
  9. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Welcome to TalkBass!!!!

    Don't sweat the labels. I guarentee none of the people you listed sweat the labels.

    Pretentious bass snobs sweat the labels. Don't be that guy. :D
    juancaminos, richntiff, JRA and 5 others like this.
  10. saabfender

    saabfender Banned

    Jan 10, 2018
    When I was 17. I was playing trombone in school bands and was playing bass in a band with the guys. The jazz band bassist (who later died quite young - heck of a nice guy) was very sick and couldn't play the upcoming festival. I had to learn three songs, including "Bass Folk Song", in just a few days. I had to become the bassist then.

    Not as exciting as Whiplash, I realize.
    Nashrakh, Larseman and Russell L like this.
  11. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

    It’s an elaborate ritual involving the sacrifice of a small animal and consumption of its blood from a human skull
  12. Skeezix


    Sep 28, 2005
    Jacksonville, FL
    Until you get the official certificate, you are nothing.
    Nothing I tell you... Nothing.:spit:
  13. Wfrance3

    Wfrance3 Supporting Member

    May 29, 2014
    Tulsa, OK
    Cliche’ alert -

    1. Fake it until you make it.
    2. Personally,you can call me anything you want (except late for dinner).
    3. I have called myself both bassist, bass player, adjusting for who I’m talking to accordingly.
  14. Inky13


    Nov 13, 2016
    Buffalo NY
    Micguy. Apropos of nothing, every time I see your avatar out of the corner of my eye, I think it’s four guys paddling a yellow canoe. Just had to let you know. :cool:
  15. hotrodjohn

    hotrodjohn Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2009
    When you start getting the chicks
  16. Element Zero

    Element Zero Supporting Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    roccobass and Mantis Tobaggan like this.
  17. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    When Atlas Fang, Grandmaster of the House of the Apostles of the Temple of the Abyss Esoteric (see below) sez so - and not one minute before!


    P.S. - He sez: “Feel the love, bro. Yer in.”
  18. I'm 65 and have been playing since I was a teenager. I'm currently the bassist / bass player / whatever in a successful classic rock band.
    Call me what you want, I call it fun and will keep learning and playing until I die.
  19. hotrodjohn

    hotrodjohn Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2009

    Ah Grasshopper, that is the eternal question...
  20. db59

    db59 Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2015
    TB POLL :

    1) Bassist
    2) Bassplayer
    3) Obligatory carrot entry.................arggghhhh
    Pops OB and Larseman like this.

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