It was an accident that I ever played bass at all.
I was a recent transfer to Upland High School (my third HS) when it happened. I was sitting in shop class and there was a tap on my shoulder.
Hey, do you play bass?
I turned around and it was a guy with long blonde hair. I realized instantly that my long hair left him with certain assumptions about my own musical acumen.
Nah man, a little guitar is all I've ever played.
Can you play scales?
My look said, fuck you.
Cool, you're in my band.
I don't have a bass.
I do. We're jamming tonight.
That was how I ended up in a high school cover band called Confusion.
It was an awful bass he bought for ten bucks at a yard sale which was fine, because I was an awful bass player.
In the coming months I would play with my church worship band to get better.
Eventually, my dad saw the earnestness with which I pursued this musical endeavor and he bought me a Washburn.
The bass I still own.
That bass has been through a couple of shitty cover bands and one angry ex. It survived a machete attack and being tossed off a second story balcony. See: angry ex.
It survived almost two decades of neglect.
Then, Craigory happened. Craigory plays drums. He suggested a long time ago that we get together and jam. While on tour with Skinny Lister and Brasstracks I decided it might be fun. So I ordered a new bass amp (the last one did not survive the machete attack).
Last night I plugged in to play with another human for the first time since I wore a uniform for the US Air Force.
We fucked around with a few songs, jammed on some improv of our own.
Then I remembered one of the only songs I know.
Hey, I recognize that song.
I kept playing.
Who is that?
And then... we fucking jammed.
After the first go round it was obvious how not good we were together. Yet. But it was obvious how good we could be.
Trying to emulate the work of two gods while being a fucking homeless man's knockoff is humbling and exhilarating.
Who the fuck am I to try to play a Jack Bruce song? A fucking asshole is who.
We tried a couple more songs; nothing of note.
Craigory's wife came in and made a comment that what we were playing before made her stop and take note.
Fuck it, let's do it again.
So I turned my amp up to 11 and we fucking played it like it was ours.
Was it good?
Will it eventually be?