Why do you think that the bass is not as popular as guitar?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by BigJH, Jul 7, 2001.

  1. BigJH


    Jan 20, 2001
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    I was wondering why everyone wants to play the guitar, instead of the bass. Everybody on this board made a choice to be different. But why do some many people play guitar. i think it is the same reason that more people want to play Quaterback in football instead of a lineman. You get rewarded and if you succeed it was because of you. Or you are in the spotlight and want to be the center of attention. What are your thoughts.
  2. it's because guitar is more obvious and easy to hear, especially on the radio. bass is traditionally the most subtle in the trinity of rock instruments. unless we're talking about bands whose bassists are slap-happy. which also explains why so many beginning bassists just want to wank away as fast as they can.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    It's just because the first (and only) instrumentalist stars in rock music were guitarists. Hendrix, Beck, Clapton, etc.
    And (almost) all rock music is guitar-oriented, not bass-oriented. So guitarists get the most exposure and so kids want to play guitar (most kids don't even know the difference between guitar and bass :rolleyes: ).
    That's it - I think ;)
  4. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Simple: It's not a "lead" instrument.
  5. And because playing bass is way more expensive then guitar, and guitars are far more accessable.. Guitars are so common that it is easy to pick up a top of the range second hand guitar for nothing, but bass's are more of a specialist instrument and are therefore more expensive and near impossible to find decent ones second hand.
    I bought a Fender Strat guitar at a pawn shop in mint condition for less then a fifth of its value. What are the odds of finding a fender jazz bass for that value?
    And then theres the issue of learning the thing. Far easier to find someone to teach you guitar then bass!
  6. MJB


    Mar 17, 2000
    I don't think everyone has an ear for bass. I asked one of two guitarists in my band how he thought my bass playing was at the last practice. He told me, to be honest, he couldn't hear me. The drummer, on the other hand, has no trouble hearing me. Bass is simply background to a lot of people, they only miss it when its not there, but they don't really notice it when it is there, except for obvious fills, solos, etc.
  7. BassMisfit


    Dec 31, 2000
    Irwin, PA
    I completely agree with you MJB. When were having a practice, i'll occasionally add some unnecessary flashly crap to my bassline, and the drummer goes " wow,that was awsome!". While the guitarist just tries to add even more solos in our songs! :) Oh well what can you do!
  8. Dave Castelo

    Dave Castelo

    Apr 19, 2000

    also add that the Bass AMps are way more expensive and Heavy....
  9. foolfighter24

    foolfighter24 Guest

    Apr 22, 2000
    Guitar players are always the most popular in bands. For every bassist/lead singer, there are like 75 guitarist/lead singers, and guitar is just a plain leading instrument.
  10. KumoriNeko

    KumoriNeko Guest

    Mar 27, 2001
    Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
    Whenever I tell someone I play bass they don't know what it is. =/ So I just say it's like a guitar but better.

    I think people like guitar better just because they are ignorant to the fact the bass even exists, it's hard to hear it in most songs on the radio.

    I've had people ask me why my guitar was missing 2 strings. lol
  11. Dave Castelo

    Dave Castelo

    Apr 19, 2000
    actually, Bass is for rich people :D

    really!, think of it...

    -there are people spending $$$$ in a car stereo just to get a phat bass sound

    -you really need a good discman with BASS BOOST or something and that cost you $$$

    so... bass is elite :)
  12. to put it simply it takes a special type of person to play bass because they want to and not because they failed at an imstrument like the guitar. most people get into music either because they just like to play music or they want something like money or women out of it. and if you're one of the persons who wants more than pure enjoyment from the experience then you'll chose something a lot more popular to get attention. it's not hard to figure out. just tell a girl that you play guitar then watch for her reaction. that's why guitar is more popular.
  13. I think also, that there is a common perception of the bass guitar being an instrument that is not as versatile as guitar. Of course all us bassists know that isn't true. I've only discovered the fact that you can play chords on a 4 string bass, I was amazed and very excited.

    As has been mentioned also, the guitar is an instrument that is more in the spotlight, especially in guitar driven rock and music like that. I suppose people tend to listen more to the huge solo in the middle of the song than the bassplayer chugging along in the background.
  14. My guess is, that's not something JT hears often.
  15. Coz most people are sissies, and only the real men play bass.

    yeah tha'z rite ! we is bad ass m.f.'s ! :D
  16. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    *cough*, err what about our fellow female bassists? :D
  17. :D hehe Im gonna have to use that!

    Damn straight! :cool:
  18. *ToNeS*


    Jan 12, 2001
    Sydney AU
    a common perception by most (if not all) non-musicians and some musicians (particularly ignorant/arrogant guitarists) is that the bass guitar is easy and unimportant. it certainly looks easier to play - 4 fat strings as opposed to the 6 small (impotent) ones on a guitar makes for a simplistic visage to most people. in fact, most people who will dismiss the bass probably only listen to music that is guitar-heavy - rock and metal and alternative. bass isn't really a "rock" instrument... the greatest examples of bass playing will be found in jazz, blues, and particularly funk and fusion.

    good guitarists (that is to say, mature) will always recognize the importance of the bass, in any setting, and will not condemn you to root-noting quarter note passages that a domesticated baboon with gangrene in both arms could play.
    if anything, the guitarist in my band plays more rhythm than *i* do.. he recognizes the potential of this instrument and realizes that by applying it creatively to the music instead of relegating it to some mundane metallica-esque playing, we tend to create some very interesting songs.
    don't forget that's it's still a very young instrument (barely even half a century old, i think), and, given time, it shall rule the world. ah ha ha. ah ha ha. :p
  19. That's an interesting question. I chose the bass cause I like the sound better. I had never even played a stringed instument b4 I picked up a bass. I think most people choose guitar because it's easier to start out on. They are cheaper to buy and there is more tuition available for begginers.

    On a side note, I heard someone say that leading a band from the bass in the best place to lead from because by playing the bass, you can lead the rythm (sp?) and by singing you can lead the melody. Can't really do that on guitar. I don't know, what do you think? It made sense to me.
  20. *ToNeS*


    Jan 12, 2001
    Sydney AU
    it suddenly struck me that most bass teachers are, in fact, guitarists or failed guitarists ... interesting. not many people specifically teach BASS exclusively, which is probably why so many bass players never reach the level of proficiency that they could.

    Disco, i always thought the drums led the rhythm section ? correct me if i'm wrong - playing bass and singing is excellent, however, and ten times as hard as playing guitar and singing. i sing and play bass and it's quite a tough learning curve - but also a great thing to add to your musical arsenal.