Why do you practice?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by Road Hat, Sep 20, 2022.

  1. Road Hat

    Road Hat

    Oct 9, 2008
    I practice every day, haven't missed in ages. Generally 90% is about being ready to perform, including always standing up, facing away from the amp like on stage, and going over tunes on our 100 song set list. The other 10% is learning new stuff. I joined a music-accountability group on one of our work channels about our practice schedules, and I'm the only one really sticking with it. I'd appreciate any tips I can pass along to these folks about practice motivation and reward.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2022
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  2. WG Plum

    WG Plum Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2021
  3. geophreigh

    geophreigh the artist formerly known as tb-player™️ Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    Mental health. Playing/practicing bass is my happy place.
    Waksfly, Marcury, peiiion and 49 others like this.
  4. Stevorebob

    Stevorebob Well... I Am Here, Aren't I? Supporting Member

    Sep 29, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Because I think I am making progress.
    JRA, retslock, Bass4Brkfast and 27 others like this.
  5. Road Hat

    Road Hat

    Oct 9, 2008
    Thanks for your feedback. Do you have a specific goal in mind that you’re progressing to, such as playing a specific song, or just progress in general, becoming more of a master of the instrument?
    DrThumpenstein likes this.
  6. 12BitSlab

    12BitSlab Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 28, 2016
    Liberty Township
    I practice because I have specific goals that I want to achieve, because it allows me to escape from the everyday stress in my life (which is fairly substantial), and because it makes me happy.
  7. ProbablyTooLoud

    ProbablyTooLoud Supporting Member

    Aug 1, 2020

    1. Get better at bass.
    2. Stay social beyond middle age.
    3. Avoid cognitive decline.


    1. Play better music.
    2. Stay happy longer.
    3. Stay aware longer.


    1-3. Study music in general with bass as the primary instrument. Theory, reading, performance, composing.
  8. making up for lost time at something i am starting to understand now, and rekindling a love for it that i see through an older set of eyes that doesnt mind doing the time to get it.
  9. To endanger nearby people and animals with all the rust being shaken off and flung at dangerous velocities, and to fuel my long anxiety that I should be better at it after all these years.

    But on the right day when the planets align, all of a sudden, I'm DOIN' it, and I enter an instance of missing time when ALL the musical endorphins are goin' off and it's just utter bliss for a few minutes, the best feeling in the world, better than anything else. Maybe I practice trying to conjure that massive rush from the ether one more time.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2022
  10. lokikallas

    lokikallas Supporting Member

    Aug 15, 2010
    los angeles
    As you said I practice to show up prepared for gigs and rehearsals. Otherwise I see little point if I’m not scheduled to play somewhere.
    andysick, HolmeBass and AaronVonRock like this.
  11. roccobass

    roccobass Still funkin’ in the free world.

    Jun 25, 2014
    I practiced more regimentally when I had a tribute rock gig. It was funny, because I was the most rehearsed guy at practice. I just always had to “be ready” Lol. I’d chart out things and remind the boys. That gig ended. If I get another rock gig, I will probably be just as anal.

    My jazz practices are more free form even though I use the real book. In practice, I will go over the more difficult ones from our set list or I’ll just pick a song I’ve never played and try to learn it and pitch it as a new addition.

    All in all it is a rush to knock it all out. It’s about the only thing I’m organized about.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2022
  12. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Inactive

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I've been doing this for 36 years. These days I practice to learn new material.
    RustyAxe, Road Hat, 202dy and 3 others like this.
  13. Datsgor

    Datsgor Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2000
    I got tunes to learn. that's about it.
    Road Hat, HolmeBass, MrB64 and 2 others like this.
  14. Datsgor

    Datsgor Supporting Member

    Jul 29, 2000
    haa... you beat me to it.
    CaribooBass likes this.
  15. bherman

    bherman Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2009
    Grand Junction, CO
    These days, for two reasons (maybe a third in more recent years). 1) To increase my knowledge of music in order to play at a higher level , specifically as applied to the bass. This involves technique, theory, drills to increase my proficiency on the instrument (I play both double bass and bass guitar, both require very different skill sets) 2) to learn material for one of the bands that I'm in - the other is NewGrass and doesn't require much to learn the material 3) this is the more recent - as I get older (I'm 67), I need to practice every day just to keep my hands and arms loose and in good shape to play gigs, as they're more demanding than they used to be.

    Honestly, in my opinion if you don't practice, its going to be hard to perform at a reasonably high level, for an extended period of time (2-3 hr gig). We chose a pretty physically demanding instrument with the bass.
  16. Isaac_James


    May 20, 2021
    Eugene, OR
    Playing music makes me happy. I don't really make money off my music (rather the opposite if you take the cost of all my gear into consideration, it'll take a long, long time to make that up at the rates we earn from shows). So I don't play music to feed my family, I do it to feed my soul. Both are important.
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  17. JeezyMcNuggles

    JeezyMcNuggles Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2018
    Santa Maria, CA
    I suck, but nobody really notices
    I practice to learn songs and get better at playing them before a show. A show that is almost always far too soon for the amount of songs I have to learn.

    All other times I play my bass, I'm doing just that, playing my bass. No goals, no idea of what to play, etc. Just playing my bass. I play my bass everyday. I practice when I have to learn something.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2022
  18. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    To make the voices screaminbb hmmm nnmyn head stop if only for a moment
  19. SunByrne

    SunByrne trained monkey Supporting Member

    Aug 29, 2019
    Pearland, TX
    That right there is a great capsule summary.
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  20. basshawk


    Dec 18, 2005
    Flagstaff, AZ
    To become better... at bass, too.