Back to playing my 4

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Marley's Ghost, Jul 21, 2003.

  1. Marley's Ghost

    Marley's Ghost Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2002
    Tampa, FL
    Well, after 4 months of trying to adapt to my EssexBG205, I have dropped back to my MIA Hot Rodded P Bass. I just found that, with the exception of a few songs, I was only using the low B as a thumb rest. I play mostly classic rock covers, maybe that is the reason. I just have not yet gotten completely confortable with the five. Anyone else have the same experience?
  2. PhilMan99


    Jul 18, 2003
    US, Maryland
    I went the other way. I play a 6.

    I like the flexibility the extra strings give in selecting hand-positions.
  3. Basho

    Basho Guest

    I found I wasn't using the B much either, so I went to a tenor 5. I use the C all the time.
  4. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    I wouldn't give up so easy. My gigs are mostly rock but I've found that a 5 string is great to have in most any situation. Spend some more time and use your imagination with the B string. You can use the D quite a bit and and the other notes, too. Just because a song you're covering has a certain line, doesn't mean you can't incorporate your style to it. I do it all the time and still retain the basic vibe. I then use the the lower notes here and there to spice up the tune. It's fun and keeps things interested. Our band gigs about 150 times a year and keeping it fresh is paramount!!!!!!!

  5. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Even on songs where the B isn't necessary, it's great to "go low" in bridges, breakdowns, endings, and accenting parts of the chorus.
  6. Exactly. I do pretty much the same thing, as I don't normally like the tone or sound that I get if I would use the low notes (D, C) more in the song, instead of using the higher ones. I also put my hand in different positions, and it makes playing really easy.

  7. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    I'd try it a little longer as well. Even on songs that had no notes dropping below E, I always went appreciated the B string because it allows much easier maneuvering on the fingerboard, especially if you don't want to use open strings.
  8. Yeah, give it a shot. While I can get by with a 4 string jazz bass with what I do (playing in a jazz combo), I find that its just easier to get around on a 5 string for soloing and having a 2 octave neck is great too so the lower horn isn't in the way... Low B string is great when used sparingly! I've also strung my 5 with a high C and that was rewarding as well for soloing...
  9. superphat


    Sep 30, 2001
    i haven't played the essex basses yet, but if the low B isn't GREAT in terms of tension and tone, all of the benefits mentioned above probably wouldn't matter to me.

    Also, if i only played classic rock covers i wouldn't use a 5 string either. However, i don't play classic rock covers:D and i've come to rely on that occasional lower=than-E note and the fat low tone that only a B string can give you.
  10. I'm a 5 String player, but I try not to overdo using the B string. I use it sparingly, but when I do use it, I try to make it count. I find that I use it mostly for playing fifths below, for easy transposing, or for playing the lowest notes of the occasional hymn. Mmost of my playing is still in the E through D string range, which sounds the best for my purposes.
  11. Marley's Ghost

    Marley's Ghost Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 9, 2002
    Tampa, FL
    The low B is not bad on the Essex. I really cannot blame the bass. I have 2 main issues with the 5 - hitting the E when I meant to hit the A (if i'm not paying close attention), and having trouble reaching to the G from the B or E on fast changes. Probably stuff that comes with practice. :oops:
  12. I've went to playing a 4 for shows and a 5 for practice/recording. Just more manageable, little I love the live tone of my SRX500. As does at least 4 of the soundmen here in town, I get tons of compliments on my live..DI'ed tone through the PA.
  13. sethlow3

    sethlow3 Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Nashville, Tennessee
    Keep practicing in BEADG!!!!
    IMO its great for any style. I love to use the lower than E notes when tasty and its heaven to feel reeaaaally low notes after plenty of mids. I had some good inspirations to tough it out on a 5, stay relaxed, and not get lost (ie playing E string instead of A)
    Thumb trailing is a technique used by Anthony Jackson, Adam Nitti and is great for a five. Just look up Adam nitti lessons on line for the right hand technique and apply them to a 5. Also listen to Tom Kennedy with Dave Weckyl and you will hear some tasty use of the low B string.
    tough it out its worth it believe me.

    I had a Turner electroline 5 and it wasn't me so then I found my dream 5: A Modulus Genesis 5 (GREAT BASS)

    Good Luck
  14. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    I jumped from a 4 directly to a 6 and I feel very comfortable on it. The B is good for lower and fatter tones, the C is great for soloing. Me too, i still ocassionally hit the false strings (E not A, A not D, ...), but thats because I only got it this month. A bit of practising will help that (and watch your hands while doing it), dont give up so easily. but I dont understand what makes it hard to reach the G from E on a narrower string spacing? reaching C from B IS difficult! not G from E
  15. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!

    That's funny, for me it's just the opposite.
  16. Funkster


    Apr 6, 2000
    Wormtown, MA
    I have done the same exact thing, I just decided it wasn't for me!!, Besides my 4's having better tone than the 5 I have, I play Classic/covers also and I hardly used it.
    When I'm writing riffs or songs the 5 is awesome for something different but other than that it's a 4 all the way.
  17. NV43345


    Apr 1, 2003
    I only use the six on a few songs, so if there in the set I will play it, but mostly I always play my 95 American Std. P-Bass with the Di Marzios.
    It has great tone and it is passive, so who cares if I leave it plugged in between sets.With the six I am always trying to remember to unplug the wireless and or cable.:)
  18. Tumbao


    Nov 10, 2001
    It's just the antithesis...Playing a 5st is more natural for me. I need an xtra-effort concentration to play my 4st bass. :meh: