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Thread: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

  1. #1
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    Default Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    When I watch Randy playing bass guitar it sometimes seems like his right hand isn't doing anything much at all as he sort of bends it over the strings from above. Can't see his fingers. His left hand is obviously active on the arm thing on the guitar (sorry don't know what that's called)

    When I watch Timothy playing bass guitar I can see his right hand and fingers really moving making it far easier for me to pick out his bass line.

    As a non-muso kind of person please tell me if I am right and that Timothy is far more demonstrative as a bass player?

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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    I've never really paid attention, but now that you mentioned it, Randy is very gentle with his bass!

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    Stuck on the Border MaryCalifornia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    I read/heard in an interview that in his early years, Timothy played it with a pick like you would play a guitar, then he switched to the fingerstyle he plays now "to have more control." I'm guessing when they were learning to sing lead while playing bass - not an easy feat - they went with what was most comfortable. You could check out videos of Sting and Paul McCartney to see how they compare to Randy and TBS. I don't know anything about music, but it looks to me like the way Timothy plays sort of helps him keep time.

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    Stuck on the Border shunlvswx's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    That's interesting MC. I didn't know Timothy use a pick first before he started using his fingers.

    Timothy seems to be into it when he plays. He makes it looks soo easy when he's playing. I have to watch a clip of Randy playing since I don't know him that well since I'm only knew of the current lineup.

    Its so rare to see bass players use a pick instead of their fingers. Paul and Sting usually use picks. Its interesting that Paul's bass kinda looks like a guitar.

    I have seen bass players who do sing and play at the same time. I think its not as bad singing and plunking at the same time then it is playing the drums and singing through the whole song at the same time.

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    Border Desperado Shadowland07's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    Tim used a pick at tonights show (Banker's Life) on the song "Life's Been Good." Don't think he usually does at all.

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    Stuck on the Border MaryCalifornia's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    Fascinating. Thank you for taking note, Shadowland. I will look for that in LA!! Might have to go back and check out some LBG videos, if they're still up.

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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    It's not that rare that bass players play with a pick.

    Here's what I find weird:

    Paul McCartney always played/plays with a pick, and everybody worships him.
    Chris Squire almost always played/plays with a pick, and everybody worships him.
    The legendary session bassist Carol Kaye played/plays with a pick, and everybody worships her.
    Peter Cetera always played with a pick when he played bass, and everybody respects what he did in Chicago.

    Gene Simmons always played/plays with a pick, and everybody bashes him because he does - no matter how musical his basslines are.

    All these "I'm a serious musician" snobs can be rather dumb sometimes.

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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lamorna View Post
    I've got it. Randy's right arm barely moves as he plays from the wrist down whereas Timothy's right arm moves a lot with forearm, elbow and upper arm guiding his playing hand. It's been fun comparing.
    I haven't watched any videos while contributing to this thread, but I seem to remember that Randy's left hand doesn't move that much either. I think his fingers move from one string to another or one fret to another with as little "theatricality" as possible.

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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    I think very broadly speaking playing bass with a pick gives you a more thunderous, attacking sound as opposed to picking, which is why the likes of Gene Simmons, Chris Squire (immense bassist, one of the best ever), Ian Hill etc do it.

    Going back to what someone said about Randy looking like a spectator, I agree (not that that's a bad thing!). During the outro to the Hotel Cali video (the one with the HOTE DVD generally regarded as the music video for it) there's a long shot of the four guitarists: Glenn, Joe and Don F all absolutely going for it and then Randy just stood there a yard or so back from the rest almost motionless. It reflects on him as a person I think - he always was really timid and I think didn't realise or believe how important he was. I think though the Eagles kinda needed someone like that, especially when they went global around HC, to keep them grounded despite all the fame, drugs, money etc. I think TBS, whilst similar in a lot of ways, has a lot more of a wild side than Randy. Just looking through the F1 DVD, I could never imagine Randy doing the jumping through Dirty Laundry or running across stage to play with Joe during LITFL. I think that all kinda relates back to playing style - Randy's reflects his private, timid, shy attitude whilst TBS's is a bit more open and funky.

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    Stuck on the Border shunlvswx's Avatar
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    Default Re: Bass Playing Style (Randy and Timothy)

    Like Joe said in HOTE, Randy never knew how great he was. I think I read somewhere that he didn't like to be in the spotlight. He wanted to be in the background.

    I guess I use the wrong word because most of the bass players I've seen always uses their fingers that why I said its rare to see bass players playing with a pick. I guess I should had said majority of the bass players play with their fingers.

    TLR. Don't forget also the guys jumping around the stage during Funk #49.

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