Washtub Bass & the Blues

A forum devoted to the discussion of playing bass with the blues.

Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Fri May 07, 2010 2:20 am

Saturday, May 1st, Snakehead Run played at Lake Anne Plaza in Reston Va. Then I played again with Ian Walters and Friends at Sova Coffee House in DC. The videos of the perorformances are the first that I can say I really like my playing on. They sort of show what can be done with the ol' tub and the Blues. :-)

Ian Walters plays piano blues, Jeff Hawkins joined him on guitar. Joe Gonzales played drums, and I'm on Washtub.
Here is a link:
http://www.youtube.com/user/Gutbucketee ... BB9683359B

Snakehead Run plays acoustic blues and jugband music:
Step it Up and Go = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IicCB6iCkYc
Statesboro Blues = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQIj54c0MZU

Check out the Snakehead Run myspace page for more Snakehead Run:

http://www.myspace.com/dennyandmarkblues/

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Aka Jim Bunch
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby Buffalo_Bill » Thu May 13, 2010 2:08 am

Wow! I had no idea such complex bass lines could be played on a washtub rig. You are a meistro Bro!
What kind of string do you use, and when do you play a conventional bass?
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Thu May 13, 2010 1:32 pm

I go back and forth from using a standup bass G string (it has to have a wound core), or a bike Derailer cable. What you heard is the G string.

Nope, don't play a regular bass. When I have tried I kept trying to hit the notes by bending the neck back. But, it didn't move. :-)
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby jeffl » Thu May 13, 2010 7:12 pm

I jus' plain like yer band Jim. I'm spoiled, 'cuz I love my band too, but my own experience gives me a great appreciation for those special opportunities like yours. I've played in straight amplified blues bands and I like those things, but I also like lineups that give you the freedom to broaden your playlist beyond what dance clubs force you to include.
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Thu May 13, 2010 7:24 pm

Thanks - I love playing with Ian Jeff and Joe !
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby jeffl » Thu May 13, 2010 8:13 pm

I play in an 8-piece band. :D We use harp/boards (me), mando,drums, washtub, 12 string/percuss., and 3 guitar players who also play accordian,mando,lapsteel, etc. We've gotten good at squeezing onto stages. Half of us have gigged for over 45 years.

We don't play enough blues for me, but it's all fun anyway. We're jus' a buzzed up social club that accidentally got good enough to get asked to play some places. We play everything from 40's classics to Muddy Waters, Kinks,Stones,Dead, Talking Heads, blah, blah. It's really alotta fun.
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby Buffalo_Bill » Thu May 13, 2010 8:14 pm

gutbucketeer wrote:I go back and forth from using a standup bass G string (it has to have a wound core), or a bike Derailer cable. What you heard is the G string.

Nope, don't play a regular bass. When I have tried I kept trying to hit the notes by bending the neck back. But, it didn't move. :-)
Amazing! I guess regular steel cable don't sound good.
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Thu May 13, 2010 8:48 pm

Regular steel cable that you buy from the hardware store is rougher. It cuts up your fingers something awful. A number of people use it, but you have to wear gloves.
Others use weedwacker line, parachute chord, or venetian blind chord.

I can play all day without gloves when I use a G string or the bike deraileur cable, because they are both very smooth. :-)
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Thu May 13, 2010 8:50 pm

Jeffl: What's the name of your band? Do you have a website, or myspage page?
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby jeffl » Thu May 13, 2010 9:51 pm

Fountain City Jam Club. It's a town on the upper Mississip, on the Wisconsin side. Nah, we don't need no stinkin' website. We don't have any fans. :lol: We jam at our host's house every Tuesday-- he's set up a nice big room with a drum platform & overheads. We only play out about 6-8 times/yr; fundraisers,benefits,civic functions,and we play at only one club. We've given our meager earnings and tips to local charities so far, but we're outfitting a barn to play in and host concerts, so that could change. It's actually turned into a pretty good band (this lineup's been together about 5 years) , so we're getting asked to play for bigger gigs, and this has raised the issue of needing to ask for more money so that we're fair to our competition.. the other bands in the area. We're a schlock jam band with some pretty good veteran musicians. It's a closed group.. no droppin' in, except when invited. We appeal to college kids and old hippie-relics. I've learned alot of different music playin' with these guys.
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby gutbucketeer » Thu May 13, 2010 11:41 pm

Sounds exactly like the type of group I would like to be in :-). It's always fun when the music is in control and takes you where you want to go.
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Re: Washtub Bass & the Blues

Postby jeffl » Fri May 14, 2010 12:31 am

Big bands have their own pros & cons. We've been together long enough that our communication is finally comin' around and we're gettin' good dynamics. It is nice havin' that big fat sound thumpin' when we heat up.
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