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Would you be offended if a band asked you to play a P bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mantis Tobaggan, May 23, 2020.

  1. Mantis Tobaggan

    Mantis Tobaggan Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2015
    Tampa, FL
    If you went to an audition and you really wanted to be in the band and the BL has a P bass and asked you to play the P bass with the band, would you be offended? The band is really good and poised to make money. Also you don’t have to bring your own gear. This is the bass and rig:


    More info: The gear is mine and I am the BL. I am playing guitar in this project. I love how a P sits in the mix. If the guy shows up with a P, we’re good. If not, and all else is cool, I may ask him to play my bass with the band. And no, I wouldn’t expect him to maintain the amp, and yes, I will be transporting the rig.
    Last edited: May 24, 2020 at 9:51 AM
  2. stefanb


    Sep 14, 2017
  3. Jeff K

    Jeff K Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2005
    Memphis, TN
    I'd rock it! Although it wouldn't be a problem for me, since I have several nice P-Basses.
    DaleLeo, superdick2112, GregC and 8 others like this.
  4. mike57


    Feb 12, 2009
    Our Fair City, MA
    I'm in!

    It's BL's show. If hears the P thump when imagining the band sound, then that's what they'll want played.

    Wanna play your Fodera 6er exclusively? The gig's probably not a good fit then.
  5. I’d negotiate for playing a Jazz-type.
  6. I'm in! I love the cord. :)

    More bands should do this, IMHO.
  7. luciens


    Feb 9, 2020
    I wouldn't be offended, but I'd be highly suspicious of the gig. The problem with borrowed gear is that there are typically a lot of strings attached to it.

    The main one being that it's going to go away suddenly at some point. You have to keep in mind that the owner of the gear (whoever it is) is going to get into a huge fight with somebody else involved with, or in, the band at some point in time. A spat over a girlfriend, a drug deal gone wrong, or some other personal or financial disagreement is 100% metaphysical certitude guaranteed to happen.

    What's key, though, is that the fight will be bad enough that the owner will quit and disappear, though he may not come back for the rig right away. Eventually, though, he'll break into the rehearsal house one day, or just show up with the pickup and a couple of friends when ya'll are practicing and take it and all the cords and the works, home with him. He'll literally rip the bass off you, yank all the cords out of the wall, the board and everything without saying a word and off they'll go. And you'll be standing there without a gig rig at all.

    The other problem is, if the rig isn't yours, that's leverage they'll have against you artistically and logistically. They will abuse that leverage as an excuse to abuse you (until the aforementioned fight causes the rig to go away altogether that is). Again, 100% metaphysical certitude that this will happen.

    So personally, I'd just pass on that gig from the get go. But if not, I'd still be asking a ton of questions on the phone before I even showed up to the audition. My first question would be if it's ok if my jazz bass would be an acceptable substitute and if I could bring my own amp too.

    I'd go from there according to their answer....

    Last edited: May 23, 2020
  8. pravus


    Feb 5, 2013
    Denver, CO
    Yes. There is nothing magical about a P-bass and if the band is actually interested in my talent then they will also accept my choice of musical instrument.
  9. mike57


    Feb 12, 2009
    Our Fair City, MA
    My only question would be - do I have to lug the Ampeg around?
    JKjr, 6tzguy, Pete Langford and 48 others like this.
  10. JohnMCA72


    Feb 4, 2009
    If anybody is going to expect me to play a specific bass, or use any other specific gear, then I'm going to expect them to pay me more.
  11. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton My P doesn’t have flats or tort Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    I wouldn’t be offended, but I’d be skeptical and don’t know if I’d take the gig. It seems like that’s going to be the first in a list of requirements.

    There’s nothing wrong with wanting a specific sound. Will the BL try to dictate what I do and don’t play? Will he try to write the basslines? Will he try and tell me how to dress on gigs?
  12. BLDavis

    BLDavis Master of Snarks. Supporting Member

    May 21, 2009
    Ellenboro, NC
    Would I be offended? Hell yes. I've spent many years and thousands of dollars acquiring quality gear. And my basses are set up by me-for me. If my rig aint good enough for them then I guess I'm probably not either.
    But I'm old and set in my ways.
    If I was younger and needed a gig, and it was a good rig like the one pictured, I might go for it. With the stipulation that it's THEIR rig. Which means I don't lift it or carry it or set it up on stage. Or pay for repairs. Or tubes. Or strings. I walk on stage, tune-up and play. Done.
    And I'd still be offended.
  13. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    I don't have a straight P but I have come to turning off the bridge pickups in my P / J and P / MMs pretty much all the time. I'd be psyched and happy to join a band of talented folks that was going to get good gigs.
  14. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I think I would probably ask if there was a reason it had to be that particular P bass. I'm not fond of the thicker neck, but I have a "Duck Dunn" style FrankenP with a J neck and would prefer to bring that if they just want a P look or tone.

    If they had a very sensible reason why it had to be that one, I suppose I would play it, especially if the project had a lot in its favor otherwise. If they have no sensible reason, I don't know if I'd be "offended" but I'd have my doubts about the project.
  15. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    you didn't get the gig ;)
    dSay, Ed Bloom, Stingray5 and 17 others like this.
  16. roborend

    roborend Supporting Member

    Jun 10, 2012
    Rock Island Illinois
    Looks swick
    TN WOODMAN and Mantis Tobaggan like this.
  17. Mvilmany


    Mar 13, 2013
    Upstate NY
    I would happily play their P Bass if if was nicer than my P Bass, and had flats on it that were broken in.
  18. I guess I would want to know what they feel is not right with my sound.

    And their answer would probably have a lot to do whether we are well suited to each other. Because sound is important to me.

    It wouldn’t freak me out, either way. Life is full of compromise.

    I’ve been in bands where the BL dictated a lot more than the type of bass. And I’ve enjoyed them, for a whole slew of reasons, they were worth it for me. There were other bands were I didn’t feel like compromising.

    It really depends on a bunch of factors.
  19. Jazzish


    Mar 5, 2006
    Not at all. I would love playing that 63 RI through the SVT. Iconic rig.
    JKjr, coy garcia, dSay and 26 others like this.
  20. emblymouse

    emblymouse exempt Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2006
    If they are paying enough they have the right to request.
    JKjr, coy garcia, petrus61 and 21 others like this.

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