Bass Player Without a Car

It’s about to happen. I’m about to become–at least for some time–a bass player without a car.

It was bad enough when the wheel wells became occasional greenhouses. But recently, mechanical problems with the neutral safety switch and a locking caliper were threatening to cost us $800–the brakes needed “doing” as well–and that was just too much. We had already put off some sort of transmission work (I’ve forgotten exactly what it was) and we have to top off the oil with some frequency.

So for at least a month or two, I’m going to be a bass player without a car. Now really, I’m going to have a membership in iGo car sharing, so I won’t really be completely without wheels. But I have often wondered what it would be like to be a bass player without a car.

Adding to the “aw, this is easy” factor is the stark reality that I don’t have any gigs lined up. That makes it easier to not be able to get to gigs. So really, there’s not much of a story here. But I thought I’d write anyway, just to see if anyone cares to make any comments. Are you a bass player who has really managed to do any substantial amount of gigging while using public transportation, bumming rides from friends or managing to do all your work within walking distance of home? Tell us about it in the comments!

UPDATE: Oh, never mind. We’re fixing up the Subaru. I’ll still have a car that fits a bass, at least for a while longer.

UPDATE to the Update: Well, the work’s been done and life is nearly back to normal. But our mechanic has had trouble getting the parts he wants. The new shift cable is too long–requiring a little extra nudge on the shifter from the driver before going into reverse. And that’s the one he got from Subaru. And it’s hard to find the right calipers for the brakes, I am told. We’ve got over 180,000 miles on this 15 year old Legacy Outback. Will we make it to 200,000? What does Crocodile Dundee suggest?!

I would love to hear stories from bass players without cars. Have I told you how I fit my bass into my Dad’s Datsun 280Z when I was in high school?

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2 Responses to “Bass Player Without a Car”

  1. Ian says:

    I’ve always made sure I had a car here at home, but when I lived overseas (in Russia) for a year, I had no car, and for most of the time, no bass. But I did some playing, mostly using a borrowed bass, and a very nice one at that. We got around on bus, tram, and train, and it generally went well. And luckily, the gigs we did always had amplifiers (this was a jazz group, usually playing in pretty large halls), so I didn’t have to cart anything but the bass itself.
    Once though, we were catching a train to another city for a gig, and it was dead of winter (as it so often was there…). I got off the tram with my borrowed 150 year old bass, and crossing the mounds of snow dividing the lanes of the street, slipped flat on my back. Amazingly, I held on to the bass and kept it above me – I had a pretty sore butt, but the bass was not scratched.
    Good luck to you!
    -Ian

  2. […] of the opportunity to blog while I wait for someone to come jump start my car. Why oh why do I still have this car? No matter. I’m making the best use of this time as I can, even if I’m not practicing. […]

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