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A bass player with only one bass...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by martybernal, Nov 19, 2010.

  1. I have been playing for 30 years and have had the enjoyment of owning many quality and crappy basses over the years. Having done that, I find that I have never been able to play any of them as well as my primary bass. So I go through the cycle of selling them and eventually try some others again later. I was wondering if anyone else here has had this experience. I only own one bass now and have finally convinced myself to stick with it because I can play it to the best of my ability. Any other bass in my hands and I feel like I struggle and fight it.

  2. kjpollo


    Mar 17, 2008
    Sorry to say, but I really cannot relate. I'm sure you'll find many players who do exactly that, but I'm not one of them.

    We've been playing for almost the same length of time, but I've never found "The One". The closest I've come is with my Clement custom and I really do love that bass. But its not the only one I play. In fact, this weekend, its not coming to rehearsal for the first time in a long time.

    I just added a couple of more or less "budget" basses- a T-20 and a Schecter Model T- and I need to hear how they sound in the mix. This'll also help me decide if both are staying around for the long term.

    Right now I have 9 basses and I admit that I struggle to find the time to play all of them. I dont have to "fight" any of them and I really dont want to move any of them along, but the reality is that I need to upgrade my amp rig, I have little cash to spare and I have some basses that dont get played as much as they should.
  3. christw

    christw Get low!

    May 11, 2008
    Dayton OH
    MAD SCIENTIST (Dayton Amp Co)
    My P Bass and my old Ric 4001 share a spot. When it comes to my best tones and most comfortable playing, they top the list. The rest, I just like. That's why I'm getting another 4001.
  4. Sifl


    May 14, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I like having only one bass. A Hoppus sig with a Jazz neck. I do wish I had another one for practice though. I only need one type of bass and that's a P.
  5. I've only been playing about 15 years, but I've gone through a few basses and now I've sold and traded my way down to a Squier that's in pieces right now and my trusty Fender Jazz. My guitarist and longtime songwriting partner put it this way-"If you keep trading around and acquiring gear just because you've got the bass bug, you'll never find your 'sound.' Even if your bass is a 200 dollar Squier, if you keep playing and practicing with just that guitar, you'll sound amazing on it like nobody else can."

    I found my "one," totally know what you mean.
  6. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I was like this for a few years with my 2003 American Series Jazz. I bought other basses, some of which I liked, but none seriously challenged the Jazz for "numero uno" status. If I weren't so GAS afflicted, I probably would have remained content with the Jazz and the Precision I added a year later. But I've gotten into G&L recently, and my SB-2 and new JB have easily surpassed the Precision, and possibly even the Jazz.
  7. Studiodawg


    Oct 25, 2007
    I prefer a minimum of two basses in case one has an issue at a gig...I'm of the school that it doesn't matter what bass I'm playing because I'm a bass player...
  8. Oh, how I wish I could settle on one bass. Life would be so much simpler in a logistical sense.

    But I am a slave to variety. Different tones, usually having everything to do with different woods, body styles, pickup configurations, neck dimensions, and all those other variables, are my weakness. Having worked in a music store for a few years and now a collector with a room full of stringed instruments, I long ago got used to just playing whatever happened to be in my hands at the moment and quickly adapting.

    Hats off to you guys who fall in love with one and retain fidelity to it. I'm a gear slut.
  9. richnota

    richnota Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2005
    Santa Cruz
    I have 20+ instruments but could as easily own one. I enjoy the familiarity and nuance of my main bass (a Rob Allen). The others? Are simply there for the sheer pleasure of it.

    I have been cutting back lately...if the bass wasn't getting played, its out the door. Will I get to one or two or three? Probably not as long as i frequent this forum.
  10. tdub0199


    Mar 4, 2010
    Atlanta, Ga.
    G.A.S. plays a major part of my life.... but right now I'm ONLY using a P Bass.... and love it!!!
  11. Bassdirty


    Jul 23, 2010
    I like to have at least a few...however, I am always buying new ones and selling other ones to find what I like [at the time].

    BTW..what bass is it that you've settled on?..
  12. I only have one bass mostly due to the reality that my other (sizable) financial obligations permit me only one. But, it's a nice one: a Nordy vJ4.
  13. Blah114


    Feb 7, 2008
    I agree and disagree.. I agree that we can have that "one bass" that plays the best.. but to bring only 1 bass to a show is insane, to me.. the day you do that, or I do, I will have a string break mid-set.. etc..

    sometimes, the best sounding basses don't play the best.. I think Rickenbackers play horribly.. but I love their sound.. I don't play one anymore, but it sounded amazing.. my Pbass is like playing a baseball bat.. the neck is so thick.. but its sound is amazing.. my highway one Pbass blows everything away for playability, but sounds muddy compared to the american standard P bass I use.. lol.. can't win.
  14. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    I own a few bass guitars, but depending on the point in my history, I only really used one at a time. My first "real" bass was my MIJ 75 reissue Jazz. I played that as really my main bass for about 10 years. I picked up a carvin fretless years ago, but that mostly stayed home. A few years ago I got my Nordy, and that has taken over top spot. I keep my old Jazz in it's case, and it's never really crossed my mind to sell it. That bass is about a killer a 4 string as I could want. One day, if I ever decide to make a 4 string my main instrument again, I'll put my Nordy in it's case and pick up my Fender. I don't get rid of the fretless because it is nice to have one sitting in reserve for those rare times I feel like playing it or even gigging it.
  15. amimbari


    May 6, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    1 main and 1 backup....I have over a dozen "collectible" basses but only one is my stage player, the rest are there to someday make someone else happy.

    I have never played a bass with a baseball bat neck or a skinny toothpick neck and had it fight with me as long as the string height is where I like it I don't care what the neck is or who makes it.

    To me it is just a lesson in remembering the basses characteristics....hell I even LOVE my neckdive-from-hell Warrior bass because of the great feeling neck.

    but to be more on topic with the OP, yes I am a 1 bass player. ( the "one" is derived from the one that has the tone I like in the mix on stage )
  16. GianGian


    May 16, 2008
    That is nice, but I feel that it is always good to have a back up, just incase something happens.
  17. DiabolicLow B

    DiabolicLow B Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2009
    Ontario, Canada
    I can relate, I have been playing for 23 years and have owned as many as 10 basses at one time but only ever played one consistantly.

    About 2 years ago I purchased a Dingwall AB1 and loved so much that I have sold almost everything else and that includes Lakland, Warwick, MM Bongo, MIA Jazz & P...

    I kept an old Yamaha as a back-up for gigs but now I want another Dingwall!
  18. maxiegrant

    maxiegrant Bassist in Transition

    Nov 26, 2007
    Sellersburg, IN
    Any bass I play sounds like me playing it. It takes me a few days to get used to the feel of a different bass, but I like to switch things up from time to time. There are always new sounds to be found out there.
  19. dhomer

    dhomer Commercial User

    Apr 9, 2009
    Hickory Corners, MI
    Owner, Gigmaster Soundworks, Auth. greenboy designs builder, MI
    I'm in the one-bass-only camp. Practicality is the guiding force in nearly everything I do. I sold a cheaper fiver and my 4-string when I got my USA Peavey Millenium fiver. It does everything I need to do.. A couple weeks back I turned down an opportunity to snag a neck-thru 5-string Carvin... $150 w/case at a local thrift shop.. Reality is, I don't need it! There is only one scenario of which I would buy another bass... If I rejoin my bud's 50's showband, I'd have to get a Fender...
  20. tom-g


    Oct 2, 2007
    I have two. That is two Jazz basses I have owned for more than thirty years. I have tried but never owned many different basses. For me it's a Jazz.

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