A question for the 7 string folks...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by DeLorean, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. Whenever your lowest open string is mentioned, it is being called F#. That leads me to believe that you are viewing it as tuned in 5ths from the high C on down (rather than in 4ths from the Gb on up). While the end results are the same, I have been wondering why for a while, so am asking. How did that convention come to be?
  2. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I'm not sure what you're asking... The tuning follows the same configuration as any bass....

    E A D G
    B E A D G
    B E A D G C
    F# B E A D G C
  3. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    Is it a semantics issue?? Gb vs. F#???
  4. Subculture13

    Subculture13 Jamming Econo

    Apr 9, 2003
    Toronto, Ont. Canada
    My admittedly limited schooling on technical matters taught me of the circle of fifths, of which the bass guitar adheres to perfectly. The 7 string is no different with the F#.
  5. It is sort of a semantics issue. The bass is traditionally tuned in fourths, hence the circle of fourths (which is also the cycle of fifths when read counter-clockwise with the Gb replaced with the F#) being as useful as it is. I am just wondering why the F# was chosen rather than Gb, while they are enharmonic (does any other field have a synonym for synonym in its jargon? Hmm...) the Gb would seem to have been more appropriate for an instrument tuned in fourths.
  6. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I don't know... Maybe because "F#" sounds more optimistic than "Gb"??

    Maybe there's a psychology issue here that follows along the "glass half empty or half full" line...

    I dunno... :meh:
  7. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Because F# to B IS a 4th. Gb to B is not; it is an augmented 3rd. Technically, by defininition, the interval between any G and any B just above it can never be a 4th of any kind. It's always a 3rd--sometimes a weird and unusual kind of third, but a 3rd nonetheless. That's just how it is. Any interval of a 4th that has a B--*any* B--as its upper note *must* have some kind of F (flat, natural, or sharp) as its lower note. Again, by definition.

    So Gb would have been *less* appropriate in your terms, not more.
  8. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification

    Richard is right on, no symantics involved at all.
  9. Thanks, that makes sense. I knew someone would come forth with the (obvious in hindsight (aren't they all though...)) answer. I need to review my interval studies.

    (and spelling it seems, missed the symantics correction...)
  10. Electricmayhem


    Dec 18, 2003
    Wait a second...

    I guess you could either have a higher or lower string on a seven, but I was thinking anything thicker than a B string would be too hard to play.

    Thanks for educating me. Sometimes I am stupid. :)
  11. Life is strange sometimes. This may get long, but please bear with me and keep reading. The first (well, second, since this has become the first) was going to be a private message sent to Richard and Pacman, but more happened along the way (I post from the office (I am the network admin here as my day job, it leaves me a lot of extra time to pursue my music dreams...))...

    Richard and Pacman, if we ever meet in person I owe you a cup of great coffee (or whatever you wish). Thanks to the way the answer was presented, I was able to realize and correct an error I had let creep in and didn't notice (for an embarassingly long time), and even was able to identify when and how I had let it happen. This led to something akin to an epiphany. I say akin to because I tend to think of an epiphany as one of those big, bright lightbulb moments. This is was more of a one-of-the-lightbulbs-on-a-marquee kind of moment, not so bright in and of itself, but with its partners a pattern and a lot of light becomes visible. Maybe I need to expand my definition of epiphany, though.

    I was talking to the author of a book, a page wasn't making sense to me and having access to him, I asked him about it. He started to explain, and was talking about stuff not referenced on the page. It took a moment to get him to understand what I was getting at, he was thinking of the page as he intended and so read it as he remembered writing it. What was there wasn't what he had written, but he knew what he had wanted there and even reading it was reading into it what he had meant rather than what it said. Once I got him to read it without the 'what I meant' filter in place, he agreed that it didn't make sense (the publisher blew it, no one caught it in the proofs). This reminded me of the importance of peer review in the scientific world (I may be a bassist and computer geek, but my education was in microbiology and biochemistry), and is exactly the reason for it. It is easy to get too close to ones research and/or results and not be able to see them without whatever mental filters we put in place. Please keep bearing with me, I am almost finished...

    I have often wondered why people react so differently to me online than in person. I really do speak pretty much as I type these messages, yet in person people don't react negatively towards me as they tend to here (the problem occurred on usenet twenty years ago as well, so it isn't a new phenomenon to me). This is where the aforementioned pattern in the marquee lights comes in, my own filters cause me to read what I type as I meant it. In person, I rely heavily (maybe too much so) on vocal inflection and a little body language to get my meaning across. Obviously, none of that comes across in the text everyone else sees. Sometimes the painfully oibvious, even that which I have observed in the past, needs to hit me in the face a couple times for me to notice it. I guess the short version of it is that I need to not expect others to read what I write as I would read it (with the knowing what I meant filter in place). For example, my previous posts in this thread really have been a question with the reasoning (faulty as it was, because of the aforementioned error) leading up to the question spelled out. It seems they read to others as something else. I will try to be more obvious in my messages in the future.

    As an aside, I have had a giant "Woo-Hoo!" (borrowing the term) this weekend. I had ordered a new HexaBuzz, and it arrived almost two months early! I'll bring it up in the Basses forum (with pictures if my digital cameral hasn't died...) on Monday. :hyper: :bassist: