We love writing about stringed instruments and if you’re looking for more information about compact guitars that you can travel with, check our article on that. Also, make sure to read our guide on cheap acoustic guitars if you’re the type of person that likes to play anywhere but you don’t want to ruin your instrument and pay a lot to repair it.
It puts your ego into perspective
If you started with the guitar and you didn’t quite like it, you have more chances of becoming a great bass player. But there aren’t many bass players that have made a name for themselves. That may be because most people approach the instrument as if it were a guitar.
And a guitar player doesn’t care much for the overall sound of the band. What’s more important for the guitarists is to make their instrument heard. They blast their volume and leave no room for keyboards or other sounds, even covering the lead singer. But in the world of the bass, that’s a no-no, especially because this instrument has a lot of power.
A bass player is a more responsible person that has little space for noodling because of how loud the bass can get. The best bassists aren’t those that blast the volume, but those that focus on improving the whole sound of the band. By doing so, they show they care more for the quality of the music and less for their ego.
Spending time to improve your knowledge and enhancing the sound of your band makes you a better musician. It will help you put the music first and will make you a better person too.
You can choose whom to play with
Because most people don’t want to play the bass, you will have the opportunity to find a lot of bands that lack a bassist. And if you know how to play the bass and the guitar too, you’ll have even more to gain. If you went further than most players and studied the bass, you will earn more than you might believe.
Knowing how to play the bass will make you a better musician, and a better composer and arranger too. Although he didn’t like playing the bass initially, Paul McCartney of The Beatles revolutionized the role of the bassist and wrote some of the most iconic pieces of music.
You could say that he drew the short straw, as The Beatles had 3 guitarists and one of them had to take up the role of the bassist. Fortunately, his ego didn’t stop him from becoming one of the greatest artists in history.
The bass is one of the easiest instruments to start playing, and after a couple of lessons, you are ready for some gigs. Of course, you will need to learn a lot to become a great bassist, but you can play simple songs at first. There will be probably a lot of groups begging you to join them if you can keep a rhythm and pluck some strings.
And because there seem to be thousands of guitarists for every one bassist, you will have the possibility to work with whoever you choose. If you don’t like a group, don’t worry, you will probably find a better one rather fast. Bands need good bassists, and if you are one you’re lucky.
You learn to be a better composer
Some of the best producers, music composers, and arrangers started as bassists, and that’s no accident. They have strong knowledge of music and the expertise to back it up. Bass can give you the basics of that knowledge. When you put in the time to learn how the bass works in a musical composition, you are able to understand the crucial components of the arrangement.
This will help you acquire more and more knowledge and create more diverse music. Certain bands put a lot of focus on their production, and that is the case for Radiohead. They have harmonics that have remained constant across the years. Listening closely to their songs and examining their tunes, you will feel how crucial the bass lines are.
And if you want another story of a successful bass player that become a great composer, check the music of Roger Waters, who was Pink Floyd’s bassist from the beginning until they split up. He was also their co-lead vocalist and most importantly the conceptual leader. Albums like The Wall are legacy of how a bass player can influence the world of music.
Many of the people listening to music groups performing have little to no idea of the importance of the bass. Some of them don’t even hear it well. But the bass serves two crucial roles in a song – it provides the rhythmic and the harmonic foundation. A consistent rhythm is like the pulse of the band, and when it’s smooth, it’s delightful to listen to.
Play it because you love it
When watching a live concert you will often see the bass player having the most fun. Why is that the case? You could argue that the bassist has the easiest part to play and that allows the player to move more freely and engage with the audience more. But that’s not always the case.
Bassists love slapping the strings, hearing the low frequencies and making the instrument growl. Furthermore, when you go to a concert, you feel blasted by those low frequencies that come out of the giant subwoofer cabinets. They feel like they make your entire body tremble. That’s what bassists players must feel with every occasion, metaphorically at least.
And the bass doesn’t only sound good, it also looks amazing. Bass guitars will catch your eye and make you feel an instant attraction to them, no matter what instrument you’re playing. Furthermore, this instrument adds the depth that every song needs.
When you put your headphones on and start listening to a nice groovy song, chances are the bass line is the one that makes you enjoy it the most, although it may pass unnoticed.