Man on course to smash world record after playing bass guitar for 60 hours straight in mammoth fundraiser

Mark Edwards
(Image credit: Mark Edwards/JustGiving)

How long can you play the guitar nonstop before the calluses on your fingers start to ache and your mental fortitude breaks down? A few hours? Whatever your figure, it’s bound to pale in comparison to this recent record-breaking effort.

In arguably the most impressive bass-playing feat in recent history, a man from the UK’s port town of Bideford is on course to smash the world record for the longest time spent playing the bass guitar, after he played for a solid 60(!) hours in a bid to raise funds for charity.

Mark Edwards completed the daunting challenge between the hours of 10am August 29 and 10pm August 31, raising £3,900.78 for Children’s Hospice South Wales in the process – an amount that went above and beyond his original £2,000 target.

And, further still, Edwards absolutely shattered the previous record, which stood at 41 hours of solid bass playing – a record set by Edwards himself in 2018. After all, what’s more impressive than playing the bass for 41 hours? Playing it for 60 hours, of course.

As is the case with any world record attempt, there was a set of very strict criteria that Edwards had to abide by, making the already nigh-on impossible effort even more tricky.

For starters, Edwards was required to play recognizable tunes lasting at least two minutes long to a reasonable standard throughout the recital, pause for no longer than 30 seconds between songs and rest only five minutes for every hour completed.

Additionally, the fearless four-stringer was not allowed to jam or improvise, could not play the same piece of music within a four-hour window and had to have a continuous recording of the entire effort, with at least two independent witnesses present at all times. Footage of the world record attempt has yet to surface, but we will be sure to share it when it does.

Supported by his sons Ryan and Danny on the streaming side of things and a cohort of over 30 volunteers, Edwards successfully played through his 86-song setlist for the entire 60 hours, and now awaits for the effort to be verified by the Guinness World Record administrators.

Songs on the setlist included Black Star Dancing by Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, which served as the finale, and Foo Fighters’ Times Like These, which was apparently ditched after it took up too much energy to perform.

Speaking to Devon Live after the challenge, Edwards said, “It feels great now that it's all over, but I have to admit it was a bit of a slog. Your motivation is massive and you just don't want to fail. That last day seemed to go on forever and it was just a desperate battle to the end, but to finish was fantastic.

“You really feel like you've achieved something and it gives you a great feeling of purpose,” he continued. “For this to be possible, you have to have a cause you believe in in order to push all the way to the end.”

Anyone fancy going one step further and beating Edwards’ record? If so, good luck – you’re going to need it.

Completing remarkable feats in the name of charity is something of a common occurrence for the Brit, who previously spent two days and nights walking 100 miles nonstop around his local football ground.

Visit Mark Edwards's JustGiving page to donate.

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month**

Join now for unlimited access

US pricing $3.99 per month or $39.00 per year

UK pricing £2.99 per month or £29.00 per year 

Europe pricing €3.49 per month or €34.00 per year

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Prices from £2.99/$3.99/€3.49

Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.