I love bass and good bass players.  Good bass lines provide excitement and groove.   What I don’t like is the heavy repetitive thudding computer bass coming at you from the place next door or down the street.  You don’t hear the rest of the music, only the bass.  It is not a natural bass. It is annoying and unmusical.   It is computer-generated, not coming from a real instrument.  And it is very loud and low.    If it’s nearby, it can rattle the foundations of your house and you can’t escape from it  (the C.I.A. once experimented with extremely low bass tones to destroy buildings.  Just like earthquakes, which exude low bass energy).  At my old home I had some gangster-type, scary & disrespectful next door neighbors who slept all day, stayed up all night and blasted it.   We did not get along well.

A few decades ago this would never have happened.  Back then you had rock, jazz, classical, and what not where the bass was natural, Fender,  Ampeg bass, upright, whatever.  But the sound was natural, not forced or computer-generated.  I remember the summer (was it 1994?) when Digital Undergrounds hit song “The Humpty Dance” came out, you could hear the car blasting it from a quarter mile away,  that rolling bass sound going up and down.  Actually I didn’t mind that so much, and still enjoy playing it when I deejay dance parties.  But the current crop of deep and heavy synth bass–mostly in hip hop and house music– is something different.

This was happening late last night as I was trying to sleep.  I didn’t know where it was coming from.  Turned out it was from an apartment building down the street.   10 p.m. curfew?  Wasn’t working.   Thud, Thud, Thud.  Idiotic sound.

If you plan to put a subwoofer in your car, take my advice and put it in the trunk.  I ordered a high-end sound system in my last car, with subwoofer, and all it did was make all the interior plastic parts rattle.

Final question:  why do drivers who play their music really loud like to drive with their windows down and force unwanted bystander listening?

That’s my two cents.  Hope I don’t sound like a curmudgeon.  Is there anyone else out there who feels the same way?

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  • http://betsymoyer.com Betsy

    Aw Tom! I feel you.
    I once lived on the 7th floor above a bar in Philadelphia called Woody's. The bass thudded like that every night of the week. I had no choice but to accept it and forget it. On more than one occasion I awoke at 2am, thinking that my heart had expired, but it was just the end of the night at the bar.

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