Ever break a string?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by JPrinos, Jan 6, 2014.


  1. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    I went to a local bar (The Silver Dollar) last Friday (Jan 3) here in Toronto and saw 3 bands.

    The last one had this bass player using a Fender Jazz (MIM?). His playing was interesting to me. His band was playing originals and his parts were pretty cool and melodic. The only thing was he was playing with a pretty high intensity. He was using fingers and for some of his playing, he emulated a pick style with his fingers. In the middle of is set, he played so hard, he broke his D string.

    Anyone else ever break a string playing? I can't imagine playing so hard to break what is best described as a steel cable.
  2. Purplefowler

    Purplefowler

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Uk
    Yep. Back in the day I was in a Britpop/new wave band and had a g string go on stage. It was one of the scariest experiences! It went with a huge twang and whipped out just missing me. When bass strings go, they go with some force!
  3. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2006
    Location:
    NY & MA
    Doesn't happen as frequently as 6-string guitar, but it does happen.
  4. coughiefiend

    coughiefiend

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2013
    Location:
    Virginia
    Yup... in the 23 years that I've been playing it's only happened twice, but it certainly can!
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  6. Humbled

    Humbled Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2013
    Location:
    East of the Sun
    Two g-strings on the same show in about 1982 or so. I suspect the sets I was carrying had been assembled out of a bad run of .045s.
  7. Bluedevilxx

    Bluedevilxx

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2007
    Location:
    Charlotte N.C.
    I used to break E strings regularly when I first started playing in bands. I used super heavy picks, and I'd go through about one or two E strings a month, all broken at the bridge. After getting a bass with a better bridge and easing up in the attack a little, I've not broken a string in probably 7-8 years.
  8. cnltb

    cnltb

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Ever break a string?

    Yes.
    On my ashbory.
  9. Scottkarch

    Scottkarch

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2012
    Media:
    1
    Location:
    Chicago
    Few months ago.. broke my A string during Barracuda. Broke the core at the bridge.. windings held the string together enough that it got itself wrapped/tangled up in both the D and G string... Swapped to my backup bass in about 8 seconds and kept playing.

    I think I've had it happen 3-4 times total. I play pretty aggressively, fingers and pick.
  10. GLEN18INCHSPICA

    GLEN18INCHSPICA

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    Location:
    Nesconset, N.Y.
    Only once or twice maybe & not since the late 80's. It was probably due to bad strings or a bur on the bridge as I haven't had it happen since.
  11. mimaz

    mimaz Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Media:
    16
    Albums:
    5
    Location:
    Wheeling WV
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Crook Custom Guitars
    Only once in 35 years of gigging. And yes, it left a mark. (on me)
  12. headband

    headband Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2013
    Location:
    Indiana
    Yes, but not in 30 or so years. When younger I played aggressively with a pick. It happened 2 or 3 times.
  13. etoncrow

    etoncrow (aka Greg Harman, the curmudgeon with a conundrum) Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Dunbar, West Virginia
    I have run flats strung thru-body, playing finger style since 1982 and have never broken a string
  14. spade2you

    spade2you

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2007
    Location:
    somewhere in middle America
    Seems that the only strings I've broken were simply dud strings.
  15. JPrinos

    JPrinos

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Another question. When you broke a string, was it while picking or playing with fingers?
  16. ranman1990

    ranman1990

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2013
    Broke an a string first time I ever played
  17. mimaz

    mimaz Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Media:
    16
    Albums:
    5
    Location:
    Wheeling WV
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Crook Custom Guitars
    Since I have never played with a pick.... :bassist:
  18. bass geetarist

    bass geetarist Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Location:
    toronto
    I'd guess I've broken 10 or less in about 20 years of aggressive fingerstyle playing. Probably about 30-40 6 string guitar strings, though I play guitar much less frequently.
  19. Thrust Meatnozl

    Thrust Meatnozl

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2011
    Location:
    Northwestern Kanuckistan
    Back in my road days (early 80s) I would constantly break the A & occasionally the E. I was pretty much a straight up pick player back then & I figure it was just corrosion from my hand resting on the bridge 4 hours a night, 6 nights a week.
    They always broke at the core so suddenly it would just go slack. I was playing a Ray & a 4001 at the time & it happened with 'em both.
    Play finger style now & haven't broken a string in many, many years of pretty aggressive wailing. I suspect my technique may also have improved.
  20. nysbob

    nysbob

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2003
    Location:
    Cincinnati OH
    I broke an E last night.

    I play with my fingers. I break 3 or 4 a year and have done that every year since I started 40+ years ago.

    Most commonly broken is E, but I get 'em all sooner or later.
  21. two fingers

    two fingers Loud Mouth Know It All Blowhard Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2005
    Sure. Several A strings over the years and a few E and B strings. I was actually partially endorsed by a string company (still am technically) and can't use their stuff because I pop their A strings like nothing.

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