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View Full Version : How important is it to have a Bass Drum?



joshynobes
12-27-2010, 08:57 AM
Ive noticed a lot of great uke songs are accompanied by a bass drum in the background. Since the uke doesn't have a lot of "umph" i think the bass drum makes everything sound a lot deeper and full. Should i get a bass drum or am i imagining that the two are serendipitous?


I was also looking at slap boxes too.

SweetWaterBlue
12-27-2010, 09:25 AM
I think whether you need a bass drum, or not, depends a lot on what kind of music you are playing. A lot of YT clips I like don't have bass drums I can hear, but to be honest some do have a standup bass or bass guitar filling somewhat the same (but far more mellow) role. The Foop Jazz Trio has a drummer, but I never see her using much more than the snare with brushes and perhaps a cymble or two. They always sound great:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DIwW8AgfAc


I have an SR-16 drum machine with a few hundred preset drum patterns. I find almost all of them have way too much bass drum for a nice sounding uke accompaniment).

If you are gonna play heavy metal, hard rock, or hard driving country songs, then yeah, you need a bass drum, but you will never hear the uke in such bands.

knadles
12-27-2010, 09:27 AM
I'm not sure where you're finding your examples. Are you sure it isn't just foot-thumping you hear? Something like this might be more portable than a kick drum if you're already using an amp:

http://porchboard.com

That said, there are no right or wrong answers. Only you can decide if you "should" get a bass drum. :-)

-Pete

knadles
12-27-2010, 09:30 AM
The thing about a rhythm box is that you don't really have control over it live. If you ever feel like speeding up or slowing down or just dragging a song out to solo for a while, for the most part you're stuck with what you've programmed.

SweetWaterBlue
12-27-2010, 09:37 AM
The thing about a rhythm box is that you don't really have control over it live. If you ever feel like speeding up or slowing down or just dragging a song out to solo for a while, for the most part you're stuck with what you've programmed.


On mine you can tap the foot pedal a bunch of times to speed it up or slow it down, but its a PITA. I also agree that some of the good uke vids I have seen have a homemade stomp box in them and cajones are nice too.

I Ukulista
12-27-2010, 09:40 AM
I got hold of a great bongo player. My friend Jonno.
When he's not around I just stamp the floor!

OldePhart
12-27-2010, 02:12 PM
(re Foop Jazz Trio clip)

Is it just me or does the combination of a washtub bass and a solid-body electric uke tickle anyone else's funny bone?

Great music though!

Re the OP's question - I think it's much more important how the musicians use their equipment than what that equipment is. I remember seeing one really great uke/"drum" clip where the "drum" was brushes on what looked like a pizza delivery box. Worked great!

John

franulele
12-27-2010, 03:35 PM
Washtub bass & uke, tuba & uke, or just about anything & uke tickle my funny bone. I guess I'm just kinda ticklish, hee hee...

OldePhart
12-27-2010, 04:29 PM
I played guitar and sang in a little bluegrass gospel combo for a while. We had a guy who played a home-made wash tub bass and the blues harp. His bass wasn't as fancy as the one in the video - he used an old mop handle and some braided picture hanging wire.

John

Howlin Hobbit
12-28-2010, 12:42 PM
man, that FoOP vid was way good!

I wanna just steal that drummer.

Ukuleleblues
12-28-2010, 12:59 PM
You can always sit on a cajon and kick it wiht your heel when you play. Sounds great!

magritte
12-28-2010, 05:13 PM
man, that FoOP vid was way good!

I wanna just steal that drummer.

Yes, indeed. I play brushes with a jazz quintet...you can't beat that sound when it's done well.

Glenn Godsey

the52blues
12-28-2010, 05:26 PM
I use a Porchboard bass ( http://www.porchboard.com/ ) Basically just tap your foot (or feet) on the bar and it transforms your taps into a very low bass thump which has no speed controls since you control it by simply tapping your foot. It sounds simple cause it is!

OldePhart
12-28-2010, 05:37 PM
I use a Porchboard bass ( http://www.porchboard.com/ ) Basically just tap your foot (or feet) on the bar and it transforms your taps into a very low bass thump which has no speed controls since you control it by simply tapping your foot. It sounds simple cause it is!

Yeah, I bought one of those at the Dallas guitar show two or three years ago. I haven't used it much 'cause we have a drummer plus a guitarist that fills in on the odd djembe now and again. Might have to dig it out of the closet if I do more solo vids, though.

John

SweetWaterBlue
12-28-2010, 05:44 PM
man, that FoOP vid was way good!

I wanna just steal that drummer.

I wish I could play the uke about 1/20th as well as Steven Straus.

pulelehua
12-28-2010, 07:54 PM
"How important is...?" is one of those questions that makes me shudder a bit, if I'm honest. Nothing is important by its nature. Not even by genre, I'd say. If there is a hole in your sound, fill it. But don't go in assuming you need thing X before you begin. People with a lot more skill and wisdom than me have said a good song needs a ukulele. That's it. Everything else is colour.