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Anybody Go Both Ways? (EUB and Acoustic)

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by phlybass, Jul 14, 2005.

  1. phlybass


    Dec 18, 2003
    Greetings to all. I had to put that title on the thread just to pique Paul's purient interest.

    I'm wondering about the experience any of you might have had in switching back to an EUB after playing Acoustic. Here is mine. Sort of long post....

    Personal experience: I had gotten an NS CR4M as my first entry into "Upright" playing after a really long hiatus (40 years or so). I found the TalkBass Forum about then also.
    Previously I had played slab in HS and College.

    It was a fairly easy and fun re-entry into the world of Bass playing. Initially most of the playing was accompanying a female vocalist who played guitar, and usually another guitarist who was also a come-backer.
    Shortly after realizing that I "sorta-could" handle the upright left-hand playing, I also got an acoustic but didn't play it that much, definitely not out on a gig.

    Liked the NS so much I sprang for the EU 5 model and was really enjoying this, IMHO, "Cadillac/Rolls" of the EUB world.

    Then last December, while on school break, I watched the DVD "One Night With Blue Note", and became enchanted with the Acoustic playing on that concert... started playing the Acoustic, and didn't look back.

    When school started up again, I used the Acoustic exclusively in Big Band and Combos and only played the slab on the couple of funk numbers for the Big Band concert, and even used a fretless for those.... an ego thing?

    Anyway, I hadn't played the EUB since December until a couple of weeks ago. I had a noon gig, outside and the temp was going to be about 100 with low humidity. Needless to say I wasn't going to bring out the carved love of my life, so I figured I'd play the NS.

    Well, the Bass upon which I thought the sun rose and set was such a disappointment I couldn't believe it. I really missed the visceral and kinesthetic feedback that I got/get from the Acoustic. I think I've really been taken over by "The Dark Side" and I love it.

    My question is this. For those of you who might "go both ways" (it's OK, were among friends nere), how much are you playing your Acoustic vs. your EUB, and when going back to the EUB from your Acoustic, what are your impressions?

    Thanks in advance for your replies.

    Regards, Alex (aka phlybass)

    P.S. Chris, please feel free to move this to the EUB area if you feel that's where it should go.
  2. I "go both ways": when the music calls for an electric sound, I use my fichter EUB, and in all other cases I use my Pawlowski acoustic upright with a mic only. Oh, and I also bring my EUB to rehearsals when I go to them by bike. So, except for those rehearsals, I do not regard my EUB as a substitute for my acoustic, but rather as a substitute for a bass guitar, which I do not play (anymore).


  3. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I switch between my EUB and URB all the time. I use my URB whenever possible, but my band travels quite a bit and we also do a lot of outdoor jobs and "wallpaper music" gigs. I opt for my EUB if:

    1. Travel space is tight
    2. Gig conditions aren't best for the upright
    3. Nobody cares what I play. Sometimes the EUB is just flat-out more convenient.
  4. Ditto for me - exactly! Lately, I've been using my Eminence a lot more than "the big girl" (assuming the Eminence is considered an EUB, though some say it isn't).
  5. Mudfuzz


    Apr 3, 2004
    Depends on what sound I'm after.
  6. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    Cape of New Jersey
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music (retired)
    Ditto, and also depends on the kind of gig and the stage situation.

    If an EUB is called for: If volume permits and I want the sound to be as close to the real deal as possible, the Eminence is the solution. If I have a lot of competition and need to punch through a loud and dense mix I'll take my homebuilt EUB and lean on its magnetic pickup.
  7. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    I use the stick when having too play quite-to-extremely loud stuff or when travel plans indicate. Mine plays/feels like a bass, so the only thing that I notice is that I am SO happy to get back to the real thing (sound, dynamic range, etc.)
  8. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    I PM'd a longer reply to Alex - but I am in a similar situation, having just bought a DB after a few years of being very happy with an NS CR5 EUB.

    So, I've been practicing every day on my "real" DB - but haven't dared take it out of the house yet!

    But when I have played out, I noticed my EUB felt very different and I was making mistakes and tone wasn't so good.

    My view - although I have nothing like the experience of others around here - is that you really have to concentrate on getting a convincing tone out of an NS EUB....?

    Having started to concentrate on other things with DB, my EUB playing is slipping!! ;)
  9. For those rare times when I need MUCH more volume, I bring the slab!

    To all: Forgive the shameless (and unrelated) plug, but I bought my Eminence from Gollihur Music and I absolutely love it. It was my 7th deal with Bob and it's always a pleasure doing business with him.

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada

    Your tone should be better with the EUB if you are practicing on a Double Bass. The NS is not like a Double bass though. The neck is different, and it plays very much like a fretless bass guitar. The one I had only lasted 3 months before I sold it and started playing Double Bass exclusively.
  11. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I'm kind of at a crossroads with my EUB (Azola). I would like to sell it... I use it very rarely, almost never. The last time I played it was in my living room, for maybe 15 minutes, just to check it out and make sure it still works. Afterwards, I had pretty substantial pain in my left wrist for a couple of days, maybe due to the close proximity of the bass to my body. I've never really gotten around that issue. If I played it more often, I could probably find a way to resolve it. As it stands, it's really just furniture for now, something I keep for the occasional road trip.
  12. Martin Sheridan

    Martin Sheridan

    Jan 4, 2001
    Fort Madison, Iowa
    Bass Maker
    Does this mean you are: "bi-bass"?
  13. Mudfuzz


    Apr 3, 2004
    And if you add tuba and keybass, what you got your self into there is a low down and dirty orgy-bass. :eek:
  14. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I want to add an update from my earlier post. I do not wish to disparage the quality of the Azola basses in any way; it is a great instrument. I bought it secondhand from a pro bassist who had it designed to his specs, and it has served me very well on the road. I wasn't really designed to fit my playing style, but that of a bassist who came from electric bass, so that's no fault of the bass or the design. It plays very nicely, has an absolutely spectacular fingerboard, and sounds wonderful. It does bother me to see it sitting idle much of the time; it seems that a lot of players would be happy to play this bass on a regular basis.

    In addition, with the Azola, you get the topnotch customer support from Steve and Jill Azola. Jill sent me a PM stating her concern that I was dissatisfied with the ergonomics of the bass, and offered to send out a longer bout that would position the bass further away from my torso. This was welcome news, as I'll most likely be hitting the road in the next year or so. Just another example of some of the best customer support in the business.
  15. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    I second Marcus' Azola props... Since I am definitely an EB vet and a DB rookie, playing the Azola still feels "right" to me and it sounds amazingly like my URB...considering that one is essentially a slab and the other a real acoustic instrument (when both are amplified). Being the son of a woodworker, I also just enjoy the simple, clean, high quality aesthetics of the thing. I could stare at the big old slab of bubinga board for days...which comes in pretty dang handy when you're playing "Man Of Constant Sorrow" for the third time in a night... :spit:
  16. LowNote

    LowNote Supporting Member

    Jan 31, 2002
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    I want to add my support for the Eminence bass as well. I also use it regularly when I'm playing outdoors, the stage is tight/the playing conditions are uncertain, or I'm going to have to travel with the band. For my money, the Eminence sounds the most like a string bass of any EUB that I've heard although I haven't had a chance to hear or play the David Gage Czech-Ease. It is also very easy to travel with--in fact, I'm in Scotland as I write this and have the Eminence with me and have used it on local gigs. I was fortunate enough to find a real deal on an older East German ply bass that I purchased to leave over here so that on my future trips, I won't have to travel with anything however!

    Erik Hansen
    Los Angeles/Edinburgh
  17. D.A.R.K.

    D.A.R.K. Supporting Member

    Aug 20, 2003
    i love both, but don't own a db right now for financial reasons.
    to me, besides being vertical, and sharing scale length(in some models) i just don't see much similarity between the instruments at all. especially the ns eub and acoustic db. the design, sound, approach, and technique are completely different for me.
    it's like comparing a bass guitar to an upright db.
    or a cello to an upright db.
    i think the little war between the opinion of the two is hilarious.
    one is an apple, one is an orange imho.
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Nope - I have been practicing and having lessons on DB - but my tone on NS EUB seems to be getting worse...:meh:
  19. Ashley Long

    Ashley Long

    Jan 3, 2004
    I use the EUB mainly when I want to use effects and not have any acoustic sound from the instrument or if I am preparing the bass to the extent where tension may damage the acoustic instrument. I prefer to use the acoustic bass for everything but things such as travel and the aforementioned factors can cause a problem.

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