THE LOW DOWN
B A S SC H A T
THE BASSCHAT FORUM IS ALIVE W ITH ANECDOTES
ABOUT LIVE GIGGING, SAYS SILVIA BLUEJAY
P
redictably, gigging is a very important aspect of a Basschatter's
life, and this is reflected in the way the forum has ongoing
threads dealing with playing
live from different points
of view. There is an entire
section, Gigs, where you can post
your forthcoming dates for the
attention of fellow Basschatters
who live nearby, and a subsection
for showing your band's live
photos and videos. General
Discussion carries long-running,
often highly entertaining threads.
'How was your gig last
night?' reveals a variety of
scenarios, from the funny to the
embarrassing to the downright
unpleasant. There are a couple of
recurrent apprehensive pre-gig
thoughts in the minds of those
who play in pubs or other small
venues: will the band have an
audience, or will we play to the
“ PRACTICALLY EVERY SINGLE BAND
REGULARLY RECEIVES YELLED
REQUESTS AS IF THEY WERE A JUKE-
BOX OR A DJ”
proverbial two men and a dog? And if the punters are actually there,
are they going to dance, or at least show a degree of interest in the
band? There are obviously other concerns as well, such as promotion,
logistics/load-in and out, payment, technical glitches, what the sound
will be like on stage and out front, and whether a bassist using a music
stand on stage will be mercilessly pilloried on Basschat the following
day. Despite all the above worries, most Basschatters consider their best
gigs to be not necessarily the ones where they play flawlessly, but those
where they (and usually also the punters) have the most fun.
Another, hilarious General Discussion thread is 'Funny things that
people say to you at gigs': punters' comments can be mind-boggling as
well as side-splitting. Needless to say, alcohol is often a factor. Besides
the usual requests (often mid-song) by members of the audience to
sing with you or play your band's instruments, a punk covers band
receives a request for some Pet Shop Boys, a Thin Lizzy tribute band is
asked to play some Led Zep, a Red Hot Chili Peppers tribute is asked for
Metallica, and a Blondie tribute apparently had too many Blondie songs
in their setlist. Practically every single band regularly receives yelled
requests as if they were a juke-box or a DJ. Sometimes, the yells are of
misplaced disapproval: one band was asked to 'stop playing heavy metal'
while halfway through a pretty faithful rendition of 'Suddenly I See' by
KT Tunstall.
And yet, things can get surreal when you are complimented for
playing songs that were actually never in your setlist, or when Jimmy
Page's mum is in the audience, incognito, and you speak to her as if she
was a little old lady who might object to loud music. And then there is
the 'knowing' punter who observes that your Fender looks weird (of
course it does, because it's actually a headless Status). And the one who
describes a double bass player as a cellist. Another double bass player
is deemed way too short for his 'big violin', and yet another is asked if
he can play the instrument 'properly' (with a bow, perhaps? The punter
never explained). Meanwhile, an electric bassist is, for some reason, not
fat enough to be a bassist in the first place.
The list could go on, but Basschatters have a sense of humour and
do their best to be impervious to insults; check out your local next time
there's a band on - one of us may be on bass!
Info: www.basschat.co.uk
0 1 8
BASS GUITAR MAGAZINE
previous page 17 Bass Guitar 2015 Issue 118 June read online next page 19 Bass Guitar 2015 Issue 118 June read online Home Toggle text on/off