Arican fretless sound?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sweet thunder, Dec 3, 2005.

  1. I'm taking a job in Tanzania for a half a year. I figured I'd buy a fretless, and learn the local [bass] language.

    Do you folks know the gear behind that warm vocal African sound? In my mind are those stellar Salif Keita, Papa Wemba, Super Rail Band, Richard Bona, etc. albums. I've probably committed cardinal sin number one by grouping together performers from different countries. . . but, hopefully the list helps you get the gist of what I'm aiming towards.

    Also to mention, as always, I'm broke. Is there a way to get that sound on the cheap? I currently play double bass, and electric, but this is my first foray into fretless basses; and suggestions are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance for all help.


    Sweet Thunder
  2. I had a Dean Edge fretless 4 for a short time- it was among the best-sounding(& playing)I've owned, which includes Warwick, Musicman, Spector & Stambaugh. The Stambaugh is the only one I can say is DEFINITELY nicer all around. I guess you could say it was cheap; I traded a 12-string acoustic guitar worth about $200+a gutted 1x12 combo-turned-speaker cab(which I had traded a rackmount compressor for- the seller had originally asked $50)- so about $250- $350, depending on how you value my trade bait...
    Bottom line: Dean Edge- a very nice fretless, fairly common on the used market.
  3. Though I'm not familiar at all with the artists you mentioned, I do have a basic understanding of the sound you're going after

    if you have the time, I recomend a Carvin b4 kit. A nice vocal(esque) tone at a great price. And if its not quite what you're looking for, I'm sure you could get a different set of pickups that would work more to you're liking, and it would still be less than half of a boutique bass.