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What it's like to be a bassist

January 16, 2013, 8:58 pm | This story has an Influence Score of 1279

By kareezafelarca

A bass guitar is a stringed instrument played with fingers or thumb by tapping, plucking, slapping, picking or thumping. It can be the coolest sounding instrument in a rock band. It may seem easy to learn but it can be far more difficult to master.

Edison is a passionate, eager man who loves playing bass guitar. Edison loves listening to rock music of famous rock bands such as Metallica, Incubus, Creed and a local band named Wolfgang. He idolize bass guitarists like Victor Wooten, Ben Kenny, Dave Larue, Billy Sheehan, John Myung and Robert Trujillo. He also loves listening to progressive music such as liquid tension experiment songs and G3 instrumental music.

Edison was 10 years old when he learned how to play a guitar. He did not go to any school or guitar lessons to acquire knowledge. He started to teach himself by learning the basics such as reading notes & chords, plucking the strings, proper posture, etc.  He enjoyed it and playing the guitar had become his favorite hobby.

There was a time when Edison attended a rock fest in a university in Bicutan. The entire show was a huge blast and Edison was so impressed regarding how the participants just blew everyone away with their rock-star performances. Edison knew that he could be as good as these performers. He believed that his talent would go a long way if only he had his own bass guitar. He began to save money so that he could buy one as early as possible. He was very eager to learn and master it.

It was in the year 2007 when he bought his first bass guitar, effects and amplifier. He bought a brown Stagg bass guitar, 60 watts bass amp and a few bass effects pedal. Edison loved to watch youtube videos of famous bass guitarists around the world.  Watching these famous musicians motivated him to live up his passion to become a good bassist. Edison’s learning had various stages and not all of these were good. He had seen his failures as an indicator that he was moving in a positive direction. He kept on practicing himself to become better each time.

After work, he would immediately head back home to strum and play his bass. He would also ask his friends to drop by so that they can all practice together. They all reside in the same city and their homes were only few blocks away from each other. They were all friends since they were young. His friend named Kristoffer knew how to play an electric guitar while his friend named Carlos knew how to play drums. They all loved to enhance their knowledge and skills about the instruments that they were playing. They would meet at least once a week to jam and play their favorite rock music.

None of them had a studio so whenever possible, they would rent one for a cost of two hundred pesos for 3 hours. They also had the option to jam in Edison’s place where there was a spacious garage to set up their instruments. The disadvantage though was it would create noise that would sometimes upset the neighboring houses. They were lucky enough because Edison’s neighbors were somewhat tolerant when it came to noises. Edison was known to be a friendly and cheerful person, and that’s why his neighbors would just usually let him and his band play not-so-loud music during the day. Edison and his band knew their boundaries and would usually stop jamming before 5:00 PM. They then would just sit around, chat and drink beer.


 

Edison loves to showcase his skills at small events. There was a contest held in their office where he and the three of his officemates performed as a band. The audience screamed their lungs out when Edison's band started to play their first song. It was a group effort and all of them did their best not only to make the audience happy, but also to enjoy themselves on that special moment. After the program, Edison received numerous compliments from his boss and team mates. But the most overwhelming part was when they won the 1st place in the said competition. It served as an inspiration to Edison to always give his best shot in every chance that he would get.

Edison also showcased his talent on his own wedding day. He and his band played love songs and a little bit of rock music during the wedding reception. People responded to their performance with amusement and satisfaction. He was very glad that people had enjoyed their overall presentation. He considered that day as the most cherished and significant day of his life not only because he had performed exceptionally well, but also because it was the day that he finally tied the knot with the love of his life.

His wife has been very supportive with his passion in music. Last December 2012, they bought a black Ibanez bass guitar to replace his 5-year-old Stagg guitar. It had been Edison’s long time goal to buy an Ibanez guitar and he was very happy that he finally had the chance to purchase one. Edison’s passion towards music has intensified not only because of his new instrument, but also because of the fact that the people around him have showed appreciation and support ever since he had started his journey to become a great bassist.

Edison is always open to new ideas and continues to learn new techniques. He also reminds himself that one of the most essential things to become a good bassist is to have good communication and interaction with one's bandmates. A good guitar and a good skill will not matter if a person doesn’t have a sense of rhythm or a sense of feel for a particular song.

He describes himself as an enthusiastic guitarist who never gets tired of practicing until he masters something. He dreams of having his own, spacious studio where all his instruments and bandmates can fit in. He also dreams to perform live in front of a huge crowd and be known for his style and ability to entertain the audience.

We can often measure a person by the size of his dream. We can also measure a man’s success by his persistence and positive attitude. Edison’s love for music will go a long way and who knows, he might be the next Dave Larue or Billy Sheehan of his generation.

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