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Thread: Bass & singing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
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    Honolulu, HI
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    149

    Default Bass & singing

    While playing the guitar I can sing but have a much harder time when playing bass. Have to concentrate on the rhythm which throws me off. Impressed by bass players that can sing well.

    Have always been amazed with Felix cavilere of the rascals. He sang lead while playing the Hammond b3 organ & bass lines with the organ foot pedals!

    Are you able to sing while playing bass?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    USA
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    Me too! I can sing all day while playing chords on guitar or uke, but on bass, there's nowhere to hide, and mistakes are way more apparent. Much harder to lay down the low end and rhythm while singing, it's kinda similar to singing while playing lead guitar.
    John

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Port Hueneme, CA
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    I believe it is partially because when strumming chords you are playing harmony to the melody.
    With bass you are playing a note you may not be singing.
    Keep Strummin'

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    474

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    On the guitar I play bass lines along with chords for many songs (like the joker) and I have no problem with singing along. It's an automatic thing and I don't even pay attention to what fingers are doing.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Los Angeles, near the Beverly Center.
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    I have to really know the song well to play bass and sing. I finally got "Over the Rainbow" when raoming the hospital gigs we do.


    This is Michael Kohan in Los Angeles, Beverly West near the Beverly Center
    9 tenor cutaway ukes, 5 acoustic bass ukes, 11 solid body bass ukes, 9 mini electric bass guitars (Total: 34)



    • Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children in hospital music therapy programs. www.theukc.org
    • Member The CC Strummers: YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/video, Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheCCStrummers

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    2,566

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    I don't sing much, if at all while playing bass. Too busy concentrating on what I should be playing!
    Just Play

    Sopranos: 1st uke, Lanikai soprano LU-11 - Aquilas | 30's Martin style 0 - Martins
    Concerts: Kanile'a K-2 CP - Living Water | Islander AC-4 - Living Water | Waverly Street banjolele - Worth Browns
    Tenor: Epiphone Hummingbird - Living Water low G
    UBass: Kala FS2 - Pahoehoe

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    The Netherlands
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    379

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    Even though I am not a great singer I do manage to play bass and sing lead on Bongo Bong by Manu Chau.
    The trick for me was to play the song over and over until muscle memory takes over, leaving the brain free to think about singing.
    If your uke is too loud, your neighbours are wrong.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
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    Honolulu, HI
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    Didn't know that A Taste of Honey's lead singer also played bass. Can't imagine playing that funky bass line + singing lead!

    https://youtu.be/zcVwjg6ko6o

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
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    Interesting question, and I can definitely relate. I started out on guitar and had no trouble strumming chords and singing, but I couldn't have sung while I played lead guitar. I now play mostly bass, and the only way I can sing while I play bass is if I only play the root note of each chord. If I try to play moving bass lines I can't sing. So I guess I can only sing when I'm doing one repetitive motion, like strumming, or playing one root note and not worrying about playing other individual notes (because I guess that would be like singing two lines at once?)
    Kala KA-TE tenor uke (currently tuned re-entrant gCEA)
    Kala APB-CTG baritone uke (currently tuned DGBE)
    Ohana BK-35CG baritone uke (currently tuned low-octave ADF#B)
    Various guitars, banjos, and basses

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    474

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    I have tried to play drums and find the whole body coordination required for that impossible. Drummers who sing at the same time must be some kind of aliens.

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