Is having a Bass useful?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by bluesholyman, Jul 29, 2018.

  1. bluesholyman

    bluesholyman Tele-Afflicted

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    I am setting up for writing recording and while I have Band in a Box, part of me feels the need to have a bass around, just to get the natural sound of it direct. I tend to be a minimalist so I debating on whether there is a need there or its just another toy....

    Curious how other guitarists who are writing see the usefulness of having a bass guitar in the arsenal...
     
  2. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

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    I was just thinking this morning that there should be a thread about guitar players having a bass.
    I mean, we already know how to play them, almost, right?
    Bass never seems to get much respect, but playing it well is one hell of an exercise for a guitar player.
     
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  3. Otis Fine

    Otis Fine Tele-Holic Platinum Supporter

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    In my opinion, yes. And it doesn’t have to be expensive to sound great. My Douglas and pink SX bass are proof of that.

    7BBE2B8A-3237-488D-AC8E-41FB44DEAE3C.jpeg
     
  4. voodoostation

    voodoostation Friend of Leo's

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    I believe in having a variety of instruments at my disposal. Harmonica, kazoo, mandolin, banjo, bass, bouzouki, rattlers, cajon, dobro. I prefer the tactile sensation. I also believe every instrument has its own built in set of songs just aching to be released. Call me a nut, but you have to play them to release them. With the bass, playing it along with what you already laid down seems to come easier, because it's your rhythm and tempo already ingrained. YMMV.
     
  5. Deeve

    Deeve Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Briefly -

    GET YOURSELF A BASS

    Now I'll step back to see varieties on this response

    Peace - Deeve
     
  6. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

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    Thoughts..
    (keep in mind I started on bass and took up guitar later)

    It will help you understanding of chord structure and harmonic movement. With guitar you are playing and moving the entire chord, playing bass you a playing a component of the chord, you have options some are good some are bad, as you learn what works, you will take that knowledge and apply it to how you voice guitar chords, and lead lines.

    If you have a serviceable bass rig gigs are easier to come by, if you rely on gigs for money this can be a life saver during a dry spell, there also seen to be more pick up calls for bass, and it's easier to learn a new style, to nab a gig. just make sure you are playing bass not four string guitar when you sit in.

    If you have a bass on site, jam sessions and writing parties are more fun and often more productive. You can often get a bass line sketched out right away, or having some one contribute on bass will take a idea in another direction.

    It need not be expensive, I came across a Affinity P-Bass yesterday, that simply needed a truss rod tweek and perhaps a slight shim , to be a great player (the strings were fine) $60 in a shop, small practice amps for writing/recording can be found for $25 to 50 the larger ones with 25-30 watts and a 10 are fine for jams and small gigs (these often have a line out) Older 1x15 combos are dirt cheap now, as class D/Neo amps are replacing them.. gigable amps are often less than $100 , if you don't need to move it much they are fine for band work .
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2018
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  7. Toadtele

    Toadtele Tele-Holic

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    I agree with Deeve. Get a bass. You will use it. I’ve played quite a bit of bass here and there. Especially when writing. But I’ve had two bass players say I play like a guitarist not a bassist. Don’t know what that means. Bassist are jerks
     
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  8. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Yes, you need a bass. The minimalist in you will appreciate being able to say 'yes' when somebody asks, "Do you have a bass?" It saves a lot of explaining.
     
  9. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yep. I have three. I make quite a bit doing pick up gigs on bass too. So it can be a profitable skill.

    Constructing bass parts and interpreting chord progressions can lead to lots of musical insights.

    A robot bass is not the same.
     
  10. tonyp145

    tonyp145 Tele-Meister

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    I love playing bass. Buy a bass and learn the bass parts to a few songs you like, it will make a huge difference in both your guitar playing AND your producing. Studying the bass made me a better all-around musician.

    There are some good, inexpensive options. My personal favorite is the Ibanez SR series like the SR300 or 400. You can usually find one used on Craig's for about $200 or so, depending on how fancy. These are good sounding basses and easy to play if you prefer thin necks (I do).
     
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  11. Jsil13

    Jsil13 Tele-Holic

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    Quite a few years back I played bass in my roommate's grunge band. Mainly just playing it like a big guitar, but a few years later I filled in with a country band on bass for a few months. That time around I tried to play it like a bass and it was difficult and fulfilling when you get things right. I've been playing guitar for over 20 years and it's definitely my main instrument, but it's good to have experience on bass. I don't write songs around bass lines or anything, but I can always track my ideas before I hand it over to a real bassist.
     
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  12. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Indispensable!
     
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  13. craigh9

    craigh9 Tele-Meister

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    I have a bass IMG_2856.JPG
     
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  14. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    Get a Squier vintage-y bass for cheap and you’ll be happy. Added bonus: if you go rehearsing and the bass player is lazy, you can bring it along ;D
     
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  15. djh22

    djh22 Tele-Holic Ad Free Member

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    ^^ what He said ^^

    I looked at used, Squiers, b-stock and clearance from Rondo, but picked up one of these from Thomann. Shipped to VA, it was a little more than $100 (your exchange rate will vary).

    [​IMG]

    Last month at our rehearsal space, a real bass player offered me nearly 5 times that.
     
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  16. Paul in Colorado

    Paul in Colorado Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I got a cheap Hagstrom bass used back in the '70's for little money. It's been a great tool and has done a lot of gigs by me and others. I later got a good P-Bass for gigging, but I still keep the Hagstrom around.
     
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  17. bluesholyman

    bluesholyman Tele-Afflicted

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    I was totally expecting a mixed bag of responses but they seem almost wholly in favor of having a bass....good to know. I was about to decide against it only because I felt like it would take some focus away from the guitar. But it seems that the other things you learn with it help your playing...
     
  18. ClashCityTele

    ClashCityTele Tele-Holic

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    I've played guitar for 40 years & I've had a bass almost as long. You really need one for home recording. I've even written songs with just bass & drum machine. I figure that if it sounds good like that, it's going to sound twice as good once I've added guitar. I have an old Teisco/ Kawai late 60's bass. it was £20 (lol) but I px'd some 7" punk singles & got it for £18. It was a wreck, so it was my first mod job.
     
  19. bluesholyman

    bluesholyman Tele-Afflicted

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    Right after I posted the thread, I headed to a local store to see if a clearance bass I had seen was still there...it was. I read all the reply's on the thread and brought this home. It was clearanced because it had been knocked over (you'll notice something missing off the headstock if you've see a black eagle before) and it had been dropped, smashing the endpin into the body. A few other chips here and there...got it out the door for < $250...it was a new item clearanced because of the damage - but it plays just fine, sounds good. I figured it was the best deal I could get since new these were about $600. I'll do some creative woodworking on the headstock and fix the endpin.

    IMG_0703.JPG
     
  20. Toadtele

    Toadtele Tele-Holic

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    That’s cool. Dig the binding on the neck
     
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