Bass: (n) a voice, instrument, or sound of the lowest range
Tom was my friend.
I think that’s why we hated each other so much.
There are people we meet that we were never meant to be linked with, but because of projects, proximity and maybe even personality, we get slammed together with them in an uncomfortable relationship of tension. Unwilling to call them adversaries, we resort to the generic term, “friend.”
Tom and I sang together in a quartet. It was a group of our own making, and considering the fact that we were just teenagers, we did a good job of holding it together and doing more than practicing–on occasion actually performing in front of living people.
Tom wanted to be in charge of the group, but unfortunately, I already held that position–with accompanying diadem. So there was always friction about every decision and every musical composition we selected to mutilate in our inimitable style.
When Tom joined the group, I sang bass. There were many reasons for this.
First of all, I was the only one who could sing a Bb below middle C, which is mandatory for those with testosterone tones.
I also thought the girls really dug guys who sang low, feeling confident they were masculine simply by hearing them warm up on scales.
Tom didn’t think I was a good bass singer. He was always trying to undermine my efforts.
One day, he brought in a record to introduce us to a song that had a very low bass note, which was showcased in the middle of the tune as a solo without accompaniment. He coyly asked me if I could hit the note, and being young of years and mostly insane, I insisted it was within my range.
Honestly, it wasn’t within anybody’s range unless they were in a recording studio with the help of knobs and buttons.
So the first time we sang the song in public, Tom waited for that part to come along, where I was supposed to growl something in the basement of human vocals, and when the music stopped and it came my turn to lay in the part–well, let us say that I didn’t even come close.
Tom was ecstatic.
No one could really say that I missed the note, since I was not even able to frog out anything near its pond.
Tom later convinced the other members of the group that I was not a bass singer, and shortly thereafter, I left.
It was only a few weeks later that Tom and the boys returned to me, asking me to sing again–since I was the only one who knew how to read music, play piano and arrange vocals.
They now wanted me to sing lead instead of bass, and we launched the group again.
A few days passed of peace and tranquility.
And then Tom decided I couldn’t sing lead …
Thank you for enjoying Words from Dic(tionary) — J.R. Practix
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