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A bass for a Who tribute?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bassgod76, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. bassgod76

    bassgod76 bass turd burglar

    Mar 13, 2003
    South Florida
    I have a buddy who is looking to form a Who tribute. He can spend up to $1,000 for a bass that would look appropriate for this gig.

    I was thinking either a used P Bass or Thunderbird. Any other suggestions for his budget?
  2. thisSNsucks

    thisSNsucks Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    P-bass with a Maple board or Thunderbird are good choices, but if I were going to form a Who tribute I'd opt for one of these:

  3. MaddAnthony_59

    MaddAnthony_59 Supporting Member

    Dec 16, 2006
    Columbus, IN
    I Channel Surf During Commercials. (Drives my Wife CRAZY!!!)
    I saw a Warmoth Explorer type bass once that was made for a Who Tribute band. It had the Rounded 2+2 headstock. Looked good!
  4. bassgod76

    bassgod76 bass turd burglar

    Mar 13, 2003
    South Florida
    Good info. Wonder how much those go for?
  5. I'd get a P-Bass with a maple board. Or a Rickenbacker 4001...
  6. There is only 1 bass to fit a Who tribute band... (a tad more expensive than $1k)

    Long life the Buzzard Bass :)
  7. ggvicviper

    ggvicviper Fender, EBMM, Rickenbacker, BSX. I'm Marc! Supporting Member

    Jul 16, 2011
    East Meadow, NY, USA
    How about the Dean John Entwistle Spider or Hybrid? :bag:
  8. bassgod76

    bassgod76 bass turd burglar

    Mar 13, 2003
    South Florida
    Maple fretboard???
  9. bassgod76

    bassgod76 bass turd burglar

    Mar 13, 2003
    South Florida
    Very cool. Too bad they mostly come in black. :(
  10. mam1862

    mam1862 Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    Northfield, Ohio
  11. dougjwray


    Jul 20, 2005
    I know the original question focused on looks, but for the sound you can't forget the Rotosound Swing Bass strings. I would vote for those on a black Fender P-Bass with maple fingerboard.
  12. ShoeManiac


    Jan 19, 2006
    New Jersey


    They're offering an affordable take on The Ox's Fenderbirds as well as the Alembic Explorers. IIRC, the Hybrid might retail for about $700.
  13. HIaWATTha


    Mar 4, 2011
    I placed an order for a JAEbird Custom at Cataldobasses this week. Been talking to Carlo for the last week about the specification for it and he is a really nice guy! Building takes about 12 weeks.
  14. Stev187

    Stev187 Peavey MegaBass Club!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Toledo, OH
    My input would be this: for a tribute band, you want a bass that is visually associated with the player by casual to serious fans, but don't think you have to satisfy bass nerds like us. Two problems with The Who: a) long career, so they used lots of different equipment over time, b) The Ox had a million different axes in his arsenal.


    If it were me, I would resist the urge to be absolutely perfect. Just like props on stage, you want to get "close enough" to trigger the visual memory of movies, photos, and album covers in the minds of fans. So, in other words, you need a playable prop. Or two. Or three.

    Some other ideas:

    • Eastwood Stormbird. This one has the non-reverse body but not the Fender-shaped headstock.
    • Dean Metalman 4. Not sure if this is a really giggable bass, but to your casual Who fan, it would "read" like an Ox axe.

    For a tribute band, I'd also be looking for basses you could unload easily after the project is over, unless you really got attached to the sound. Take my view with a grain of salt because I believe the following:

    1. People pay far less attention to your gear than you think they do; they are more likely to pay attention to your clothes, stage presence, and the notes you play than the gearhead stuff we care about.
    2. Properly set up, even extremely cheap basses are perfectly giggable. I played a bunch of gigs on under-$200 basses; as long as a good tech gives them a good working over, most basses can get the job done.

    There are PLENTY of people who don't believe #1 and #2 above, so factor that in.

  15. ko stradivarius

    ko stradivarius

    Aug 14, 2006
    St. Louis
    I mainly use my '79 pbass with maple neck for Live at Leeds. I'll run through the overdrive section of a Pigtronix Disnortion into and SVT and 810 cab...or two. :)
    For Quadrophenia I'll usually use my jazz bass or Alembic Epic. Same if were just doing a "hits" show.

    Really, who cares? Just get the best tone, put on your Entwistle, and have fun.


    Pay no attention to my screw up at the beginning. ;-) I lost it when it went dark.
  16. Sure...check around 9:45...

    I always thought that maple fretboard P-Basses sounded raspier and nastier that the rosewood ones.
  17. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups
    As someone that has owned a Stormbird I would NOT reccomend it, absolutely a terrible bass, probably the worst instrument I've ever owned. Carlo makes several basses that would certainly be right at home for a Who Tribute and they are priced right as well. Beyound that there are good Thunderbirds out there from Greco, Orville, Epiphone (Elitist or the new Classic) and of course Gibson........

    Here's a buddy of mine getting it done right, check the SUNN rig!

  18. bassgod76

    bassgod76 bass turd burglar

    Mar 13, 2003
    South Florida
    Well, I think he's going for the Isle of Wight look with the skeleton suit, so...
  19. Stev187

    Stev187 Peavey MegaBass Club!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Toledo, OH
    This is good info to have; my son has been lusting over one for about a year. Thanks for sharing.