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Senior Member
Username: groovelines

Post Number: 696
Registered: 4-2003
Posted on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 - 8:12 am:   Edit Post

Hat's off to upright bassists. A few weeks ago we went unplugged at church - acoustic guitar, upright bass, resonator, banjo, fiddle and mandolin. I had never played upright bass until borrowing one a week prior to services. It was a work out. My left hand and arm were killing me the first few days.
Great fun and happily for me, the bass lines were mostly 1-5 with chromatic passing tones in between.
We did use a stripped down drum kit even though we were playing bluegrass renditions of southern-church standards. Not too many bluegrass purists in Plano, so we avoided screams of outrage.
It's a long way from the skills required for other genres, but I had a blast nonetheless. The bass is still in my music room and is likely to stay there until I'm asked to return it.
After these past three weeks, I've noticed when switching to electric my left hand technique, strength and speed seem to have improved. Not to mention a 34" scale bass feels like a toy after the upright.
Fantastic experience and something that should be tried by everyone, even if you don't think you'll ever gig on upright.

Here's a pic. The banjo, resonator and fiddle players are blocked by a singer. And for the record, I'm watching the resonator player, not my hands! I loath "iMag".

Senior Member
Username: 811952

Post Number: 2046
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 - 8:25 am:   Edit Post

Timely. Monday night at a jazz jam we're trying to get going at a local venue, a friend (Eric Schatz, an excellent musician) talked me into playing Footprints on his lovely upright bass. I still hurt from that! It's been too long since I've even dinked around with an upright in any kind of real ensemble setting, and trying to keep up with drums and horns was way too ambitious for this hack! So, yeah, kudos (and sympathy) to you for pulling it off relatively cold in front of people! :-)

Hope to see you in Chicago next May if the gathering works out for everybody..

Intermediate Member
Username: wayne

Post Number: 199
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 - 8:44 am:   Edit Post

Way to go Mike!!!

My upright is still my Number 1 choice and the only bass I'll NEVER sell.


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