Is it possible to play decent jazz walking basslines or bluegrass/dixieland half-time (oom-pah) basslines on bass melodica? Any opinions as to whether a bass melodica player could substitute for a bass player or tuba player at an acceptable level (enough to hold the tune together, not necessarily solo)? I’ve heard that bass melodicas require more air– would playing basslines on uptempo tunes be possible?
I’ve noticed that no one has responded to this so I want to add my two cents. Perhaps you could experiment in a higher range on an alto melodica to play with recordings of some of the styles you have in mind. If the line works harmonically it will be compatible in the bass register. As far as needing more air I have never played a bass melodica but I believe that is the case as many alto owners find they are needing to blow harder for the larger reeds.
All in all I sense you are seeking some input before making the somewhat major investment in a bass. Since they are over $200 US I can see the sense in that.