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Science Says, "Bassists Are The Most Important Member of the Band"

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  • Science Says, "Bassists Are The Most Important Member of the Band"

    "Researchers have now determined that the bass is the backbone of any song. Turns out our brains can find the rhythm more easily when it is played in a lower tone. In other words, bassists are far more important to a song’s structure that previously thought."

    Data is located here: "
    Superior time perception for lower musical pitch explains why bass-ranged instruments lay down musical rhythms" - http://www.pnas.org/content/111/28/10383

    Article at https://www.simplemost.com/bassists-...rding-science/

    The Mandolin Picker

    "Bless your hearts... and all your vital organs" - John Duffy

    "Got time to breath, got time for music!"- Briscoe Darling, Jr.

  • #2
    True in most pop genre especially in those where the rhythm is of the high / low variety.
    Originally posted by Unconfigured Static HTML Widget...







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    • #3
      I agree, but the right bass note in the right place (usually a passing tone) tugs at my heartstrings way more than any lyric can. I'd like to see the scientific research into that.
      Elson TrinidadSinger, Songwriter, Keyboardist, BassistElson and the Soul BarkadaWeb: www.elsongs.comMySpace: www.myspace.com/elsongsFacebook: Facebook PageTwitter: twitter.com/elsongs

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      • #4
        --
        "Today's production equipment is IT-based and cannot be operated without a passing knowledge of computing, although it seems that it can be operated without a passing knowledge of audio." - John Watkinson, Resolution Magazine, October 2006
        Drop by http://mikeriversaudio.wordpress.com now and then

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        • #5
          Well duh... and not only that. Based on my own exhaustive studies, the fairer half of the human race has a special bass receptor. It's not real close to where most peoples brains are though.





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          • #6
            Originally posted by MikeRivers View Post

            Took me a moment to realize that a bassist is leading them...


            **********

            "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."

            - George Carlin

            "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."

            - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

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            • #7
              Accordions get a bad rap. Musettes and organettos rule!
              He has escaped! Youtube , ​Murika , France

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              • #8
                Great example of journalistic hyperbole, as nowhere in the research is the conclusion reached that, "Bassists are the most important member of the band." Instead, the Conclusion section states, "these studies suggest that widespread musical practices of placing the most important melodic information in the highest-pitched voices, and carrying the most important rhythmic information in the lowest-pitched voices, might have their roots in basic properties of the auditory system that evolved for auditory-scene analysis."

                Granted, the bass player's role in bands is often underestimated by the general public, so by all means, let's give credit where it's due; but let's not overstate the importance of bass either. After all, as the study implies, few people hum the bass lines of songs.

                Best,

                Geoff
                Enthusiasm powers the world.

                Craig Anderton's Archiving Article

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                • #9
                  Mike Mills of REM chose to play bass when he saw a school band play, and the bassist would hit certain notes that made the bleachers rattle. Les Claypool thought bass was a more masculine, sultry instrument than guitar.

                  I think bass is a very expressive instrument and I love playing it when I'm in the mood. When I was really bored of traditional guitar for a while, I played a lot more bass.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bucksstudent View Post
                    I think bass is a very expressive instrument and I love playing it when I'm in the mood. When I was really bored of traditional guitar for a while, I played a lot more bass.
                    Don't know if it's the same for you, but when I play bass, it's very different from guitar. I think I became a good bass player only when I started playing with drum machines, and conversely, getting better at bass made me better at programming drum parts. Although I certainly love to play block chords or a nice lead line on guitar, it doesn't satisfy the same part of me that enjoys being part of a rhythm section.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Geoff Grace View Post
                      Great example of journalistic hyperbole
                      Is there any other kind of journalism left?
                      N E W S O N G ! To Say 'No' Would Be a Crime (Remix) is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Anderton View Post

                        Don't know if it's the same for you, but when I play bass, it's very different from guitar. I think I became a good bass player only when I started playing with drum machines, and conversely, getting better at bass made me better at programming drum parts. Although I certainly love to play block chords or a nice lead line on guitar, it doesn't satisfy the same part of me that enjoys being part of a rhythm section.
                        I don't consider myself a good bass player at all. Coming up as a guitarist, I never played along to albums or played in bands much. My bass playing is the result of having to fill in space where there're no drums or vocals. I play it differently than guitar, but I don't model my playing on other bassists either.

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                        • #13
                          Tony Levin does it, for what I'd aspire to be as a bassist..YMMV.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Anderton View Post
                            Is there any other kind of journalism left?
                            It does seem sometimes as if factual journalism is an endangered format, but then I crack open an issue of Sound On Sound and see a monthly example of it still done right.

                            Best,

                            Geoff
                            Last edited by Geoff Grace; 02-23-2017, 11:14 PM.
                            Enthusiasm powers the world.

                            Craig Anderton's Archiving Article

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                            • #15
                              I had guitar lessons when I was young but taught myself to play bass. I much prefer playing bass these days. Any fool can play guitar but it takes a real musician to play bass properly...

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