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Why havent i had interest in playing bass these last few days

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  • 2 months later...
I would like to know if my lost of interest in playing bass is temporary or permanent?


Hopefully it's temporary. :)


Losing interest for a few days isn't at all uncommon. Don't let it get you down.


How can you get back into it? One way is to pick a song that you really like, and set a goal of learning how to play it... then spending a half hour or hour a day working towards that goal.

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I've played bass most of my life. I consider it my second instrument to guitar and have played it long enough to play it as a bass, not as a guitar. I do have a solid foundation in its placement within music too since I was formally trained in playing violin and in and orchestra where the separate string sections were clearly separated into sections.


I do find playing bass solo quite boring. I need to have at least drums or a chord pattern going to get into grooving on it.


Most of what I play is all original music. I occasionally play cover tunes with friends but few have played long enough or seriously enough to acquire the skill of improvisation and the ability to write music. Its a skill that is learned at an early age and takes many years to get past the copycat mode of writing music.


When I write parts on bass I begin with a completely clean slate, no preconceived ideas whatsoever. I may begin by following the chord changes but eventually find the hidden notes that exist in the realm between rhythm and drums.


If I had more formal training I could probably write parts based on chord structures and how one chord contains notes of another chord and how a bass doesn't have to stay on the root not of every triad (something guitarists commonly do when playing bass)


The thing I love about bass is its ability to bridge chord changes using notes aren't necessarily being played by the rhythm and also playing beats that aren't part of chords progression. Keyboard players often do this. A good Jazz keyboard player can outline a basic chord yet never play the root triad which comprise the chord.


What you wind up with is a completely independent part, which when played solo may sound like a completely different song, yet when its played along with the rest of the instruments it fits like a glove into the rest of the musical composition.


Typically I hear these bass parts buried within the drums and rhythm parts and it simply takes a little time drafting them. In fact its fairly hard not to play the right notes and its simply a matter of finding the right neck positions to play them most efficiently.


The real test comes down to recording however. When you're in the right groove with your thoughts thinking far ahead of the music you'll come up with riffs that lead into changes which you can only come up with during the actual performance. Guess you could say its like a sports team making a desperate play to score points in the last remaining seconds and actually wind up pulling off something truly incredible.


This is somewhat what its like to write music as its being played. You conceive the ideas mere seconds before you need to play them, size up the fret board, figure out how you can span the strings and frets with your hand like a spider then simply walk that tightrope. The satisfaction you get pulling off things off like that is what keeps me coming back to it.


Frankly I couldn't conceive of most of the parts I play on bass without all these elements clicking at the same time. I need to be out there hanging 10 on the front of the surf board risking a wipe out any second then exerting just enough discipline to not overindulge on taking risks. You have to go out to the edge of that stage and walk its edge to know where that edge exists and risk falling off it. You cant be afraid to crash and burn, you in fact become quite expert in recovering from it, as well as reeling in at the moment you begin to loose it, but you know all the great stuff occurs right on that edge so you're lead back to pushing yourself right up to like a moth attracted to light.


When you loose the inspiration to play an instrument its usually because you've either lost the trill of walking that edge or you relied on the wrong things that get you there. If you've played in bands and always used others to maintain a competitive edge it can work well, but its never as good as competing with yourself.


Best thing you can do is pull out some old recordings where you really nailed it before then ask yourself why you aren't the person you used to be. Of course age and lack of regular exercise can play a big part there but there must be a hunger strong enough to motivate. Sometimes it can take a week or more to ramp up to it too. You may tell yourself for days you are in training for another great performance without even playing but all along, even when you sleep you are gearing up to playing better then you ever have. Then when its time you simply do it as though everyone in the world is watching and you prove to everyone you still got the mojo, like a gladiator in the theatre and give them exactly what they came to see.


Of course you can simply go out and do some open mic nights playing bass too. You may stumble a few times but it will surely put you back on the play list.

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  • 4 months later...
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I've owned basses but never really got into it as I did with guitars because I don't think it's a "melodic" instrument but more like a supplemental low-end to melodic instruments. That's just me. Although I have been looking into "bass guitar theory" stuff so I could get some interest in playing the bass again. I think banging on drums is actually more fun, per se than playing the bass. Maybe I need a bigger amp so that way I can "feel" the bass. I think "feeling" the bass is key to having interest in playing it again. I found it a bit fun when I tried out some 1x15 300 watt amp combo at guitar center. I can't make noises in my apartment, that's why the bass is sitting around unplayed.


Regarding "bass theory"; is it always played on the same frets as guitars? I would assume so? I'm only going by power chord stuff. Let's say my guitar fretting is on fret 3, must the bass line be on fret 3 as well? I'm sure one can always improvise as long as it sounds right. How about if I'm actually playing actual guitar chords (A, B, C, D, etc.). How do I fret on the bass? Isn't the bass played "per string" not so much as a chord, the way a guitar is played?


How about bass "chords" do they even exist like with guitars? I can play the bass, but as far as knowing its chords and other "theories" I never looked into it. I always played by ear.

Edited by samal50
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