1. Welcome to TalkBass 2014! If you're new here, we just went through a major site upgrade. Please post all concerns and bugs to the Forum Usage Issues forum. We will be monitoring that forum. Thank you for all of your feedback.

    The TalkBass iphone/android app is NOT WORKING currently. We're working on it. Tapatalk IS working, so if you need to use an app, use Tapatalk. Try using your browser though - TalkBass is now 100% responsive to your phone/tablet screen size ;)

    Please read the TalkBass 2014 FAQ for lots of great info on the new software.

Real Authentic Jazz Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Pho3nixX08, Dec 5, 2013.

  1. Pho3nixX08

    Pho3nixX08

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hey guys!

    I am looking for a jazz bass for my boyfriend, however, the "jazz" basses I keep listening to sound more punk/rock/70/80s funk than true jazz. What would you recommend for a 1920-1930's traditional jazz sound in a bass? My price range is $200-350USD.

    Thanks!!!

    -----------------------------------
    UPDATED

    Wow you guys are a crazy bunch; a little punchy I feel lol.

    That being said, I CANNOT thank you enough for all your replies! No, he's not an experienced bassist but a great guitarist and drummer for the past 8 years. He opened for a few local bands here up in Maine.
    I really love the Kala-U bass suggested by bkbirge. It's exactly the sound I think he's looking for! A bit out of my price range, but maybe I can persuade the in-laws to pitch in for Christmas.

    I think the Squier Vintage Modified fretless PJ bass with nylon strings is more reasonable, suggested by macmanlou. I also like the foam idea.
    I will discuss these options with him and see which he likes more.

    Thanks again guys and I'm open to any further suggestions, we are both pretty new to this :)
  2. mrbell321

    mrbell321

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2012
    Likes Received:
    0
    20's-30's jazz? an upright, but probably not for $200-350.
    Jazz basses are a line of Fenders that really sound pretty far from what you are calling "real authentic jazz bass" sound.
  3. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    Likes Received:
    4
    Nothing, in the 20-30's you were hearing an upright and you cannot even get a piece of spit unplayable DB for $1000. An upright is also required for the "traditional jazz sound" so much so that you will not get high profile jazz gigs without playing an upright. There are plenty of fantastic options out there to get him but a bass guitar will never be an upright and vice versa, sorry. My advice is to get him a gift card (or cash) and let him pick out the bass he likes most.
  4. bkbirge

    bkbirge Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2000
    Likes Received:
    0
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Steak n Shake
    I'll add to the chorus of "should be an upright bass" for what you want. But if you just want a fun present that gives that kind of sort of ballpark sound you (he) might enjoy the Kala U-bass line.



    You might be able to find used for your upper range price. Be aware though that these are tiny, they are ukulele sized. But they seem to have the real bass sound. Another caveat, I have never played one, just going by the buzz around here on talkbass.
  5. mrbell321

    mrbell321

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2012
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh yeah, the Kala is pretty cool and can be in your price range.
  6. 3234718

    3234718 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2011
    Likes Received:
    4
    I'm thinking there may have been a miscommunication.

    Did your boyfriend say he wants a jazz bass and you're assuming that means the types of basses that were used to play jazz in the 20's and 30's?
  7. bkbirge

    bkbirge Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2000
    Likes Received:
    0
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Steak n Shake
    LOL, have we been Lownered?
  8. mancefine

    mancefine

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2013
    Likes Received:
    0
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Orange Amplifiers and Spector Basses
    Why are you guys being dicks? Clearly she's trying to buy her boyfriend a bass and she doesn't know much about them. Some of you act like people should know everything about everything anytime they ask a question.
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2000
    Likes Received:
    6
    Disclosures:
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    If your price range was, say, $20,000 to $35,000, a Fodera Hybrid might work for that. Otherwise, I'm with the guys who suggested an upright. A good one would also fall in that price range, but you might be able to get a BSO (bass-shaped object) for about $1,000.

    Seriously, some electric basses including jazz basses can get a usable tone for straight-ahead jazz. I'd recommend something with two pickups and active tone controls. Then you can roll to the neck pickup, boost the bass a little, cut some mids and get a thumpy tone reminiscent of an upright bass.
  10. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2000
    Likes Received:
    6
    Disclosures:
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Uhhh ... that's "Richard" to you.
  11. 3234718

    3234718 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2011
    Likes Received:
    4
    I don't see how anyone's being a "Richard". Legitimate questions are being asked for clarification with some humor added in because it's a bass forum. We're a funny bunch.
  12. bass geetarist

    bass geetarist Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Likes Received:
    0
    If he's indeed looking for something that sounds like an upright, you might want to try the new Vintage Modified Fretless P bass, and buy him a pack of flatwound strings (d'addario Chromes are good). This fits your price range (though the strings may push you slightly over), and it will sound closer to what you hear on old jazz records than an actual electric j bass. It wont sound exactly the same, mind you, but if I were to try to emulate that sound with an electric in your price range, that's how I would do it.

    The main reason I suggest this is because it is fretless, as are upright basses. There may be other descent quality fretless basses in this price range that I'm not familiar with, but maybe someone else will chime in...
  13. seang15

    seang15 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Likes Received:
    0
    Stop being so reasonable and helpful!! :)

    This all sounds perfect given the OP.
  14. jim777

    jim777 Tarantula Lobbyist Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    Likes Received:
    0
    This sounds fine and reasonable to me as well. There simply weren't electric basses in the 20's and 30's, so approximating those bass sounds would require a fretless bass (the Fender Precision bass in '51 was the first bass with frets I believe, hence the name 'Precision' ). the one noted by bass geetarist should fit the bill nicely :)
  15. macmanlou

    macmanlou Don't push it. Just let it fall. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    Likes Received:
    0
  16. bachlover

    bachlover Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2013
    Likes Received:
    1
    I'm currently waiting for an ESP LTD B205SMFL. This is a fretless bass (5 string, they also make a 4 (B204?) - probably a little cheaper) that gives the semblance of an upright in the sound it makes w/o frets. ("New York Minute" - Don Henley bass sound). This bass is well priced @ $420 Cdn. eh? I've been told that if I put D'Addario nylon tapewounds strings on it (aprox. $50. eh?) it will be even closer to that dbl bass sound. Got the strings, waiting for the bass, so I can't say for sure how close to an upright it sounds. I'm assuming your BF wants to play electric, so you might want to keep the ESP in mind or look for a used fretless more in your price range if this is too much. Hope this helps. Good luck!
  17. PhatRon

    PhatRon supporting member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2012
    Likes Received:
    0
    no one has even asked him if the boy friend is an experienced bassist or a beginner. The answer to that would surely influence any recommendations. Don't ya think? In the op's posted price range I agree to Squier fretless P. Let's face it, not gonna get that 20's-30's traditional upright sound with anything "guitar"
  18. PhatRon

    PhatRon supporting member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2012
    Likes Received:
    0
    for those of you accusing the "Richards" of this thread do you find it odd that the OP is long gone?
  19. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    Likes Received:
    4
    I would never recommend a VM fretless to any one of my students, they all require a neck re-radiusing in my experience, the necks are not flat from the factory. This is something a rookie probably is not comfortable doing. I would also be shocked if they have a proper sanding block.
  20. tastybasslines

    tastybasslines I'll hump your leg Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2010
    Likes Received:
    3
    You could also add a foam mute on a jazz to temper the sound a little.

Share This Page