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When is Country Bass Playing "Too Much?"

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by plangentmusic, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. plangentmusic

    plangentmusic Inactive

    Jun 30, 2010
    I like to play and write in a variety of styles, and although I'm not the biggest fan of country music I enjoy story telling with lyrics and that perfectly fits into the country genre.

    I'm trying to play bass in a way that's authentic to the style, yet add my "own thing."

    I've just started compiling some examples of my music ranging from rock to dance to surf to samba with acoustic bass.

    But if there's anyone who knows and likes country music, let me know if the tune "I Will Wait" sounds "respectful" to the form. At 3:37 it ventures into "lead bass"... but not too much, right?

    Incidentally, I'm playing all the instruments and vocals on these tracks. (Except, of course, "Nevermind" which has Kim Sozzi on vocals).

    Thanks guys!

  2. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Q: How many country bass players does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

    A: 1 - 5 - 1 - 5 - 1 - 5
  3. Demon_Hunter


    Jun 8, 2008
  4. plangentmusic

    plangentmusic Inactive

    Jun 30, 2010
  5. mccartneyman


    Dec 22, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Managing Editor, Bass Guitars Editor, MusicGearReview.com
    I wouldn't call that "lead bass" at all. Sounds fine to me.Listen to Dee Murray with Elton John. If it fits the songs and doesn't distract, it's valid.
  6. SactoBass

    SactoBass A retired civil engineer who likes all-tube amps! Supporting Member

    Jul 8, 2009
    Lake Havasu City, AZ
    LOL!! That was great!!
  7. plangentmusic

    plangentmusic Inactive

    Jun 30, 2010
    Dee is great, but that's not country! The thing is, there aren't many players who've "created" a bass style in that genre (much like with blues -- there are a few standouts and "everybody else").

    Like you said, it's about fitting the song. But guys who live a breath a style are more picky. Oddly enough, I'm less self conscious of my guitar playing -- probably because I feel it doesn't define me. Funny how that works.
  8. guroove


    Oct 13, 2009
    Buffalo, NY
    It sounds great. At no point does it become "too much." If anything, you could add more throughout the song. I have played bass in many country bands, and often, bandmates will appreciate it if you can "lead" the bands into the next chord with a little walk-up or walk-down. If you want to hear how busy you can get, just listen to some Willie Nelson from the 70s.
  9. plangentmusic

    plangentmusic Inactive

    Jun 30, 2010
    Thanks. Yeah, there's a tendency to sometimes be TOO polite! lol!

    I've redone tracks where I wound up pumping the bass and it makes the song come alive! But that's such a simpler tune I figured it's better to underdo it.

    The Willie Nelson track is cool -- more of a "New Orleans" feel , more of a jam than a pop song. As is always the case, each song has its own personality and it's the bassplayers job to support that. The older I get the less I feel I have to "strut my stuff."

    The track "Nitro" on that page shows more chops, trading fours (on a Squier bass!) -- but it's strictly for fun. Pop bands don't want to hear THAT! :)
  10. lowfreq33


    Jan 27, 2010
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Actually I find that I can do a lot more fills in country than in most rock styles. It all just becomes part of the bassline.


    Sep 13, 2000
    Santa Monica
  12. plangentmusic

    plangentmusic Inactive

    Jun 30, 2010
    That whole song is based on the bass riff! It's the counter melody to the vocal. I'd like to know whose idea it was to have it so upfront -- the bassist, the band, the engineer or the producer. Either way, it worked.
  13. Here's a few tunes to listen to where the bass is happening. Jason Aldean "My kind of party" bassist Tully Kennedy. Gary Allen "Get off on the pain" Bassist Michael Rhodes. Jamey Johnson "High cost of living" I don't know who played the bass on that song.
  14. YoMomma


    Jul 15, 2010
  15. my kinda party has such a great bass grove to it! tullys definitely one of my big influences
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