Discussion in 'Music [DB]' started by pietro5, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. pietro5


    Jan 31, 2005
    Hi, I'm Italian, and I play my double bass in a "chicago blues band" (guitar, harp, drums and DB).
    You know, all these instruments are amplified, everyone but my Double Bass! :crying:
    Can somebody (better if he's one who play double bass in a blues band) tell me what is the best method to amplify the bass? I mean microphones, pick-ups, amplifier, and so one:
    For example like Bill Stuve!
    Bye Pietro, ITALY
  2. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    Go spend some time with the 'Newbie' links, located right at the top of all of the different forums. you'll find volumes written. Then come back and anyone here will be happy to answer a more specific question about amplification.

    Welcome to TB.

    Got a teacher?

  3. ctxbass

    ctxbass Supporting Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    Central Texas
    Hi Pietro,

    I would say that first you need to make sure your unamplified sound is right. Make sure your strings are high enough so that you get plenty of attack and little sustain. Gut strings will work best for this, but I have gotten a good "old Chicago blues" sound with steel strings too.

    Microphones tend to be troublesome in loud situations.
    I have found the Underwood pickup to be very reliable and easy to use, but there are now many others available as well. A tube (valve) amp will be a big help if you want the "vintage" sound.

    As Ray Parker said, there is a wealth of information available in these forums. I came here with one question about a year ago and found an invaluable resource.
  4. FunkySpoo

    FunkySpoo Supporting Member

    Feb 6, 2002
    I use the K&K Bass Master RB for Rockabilly. It's great. It has a wing transducer and a second transducer that goes under the finger board to pickup the slap clicks. If you don't do any slapping the you wouldn't the RB and just go with the Bass Max.
    Here's the K&K site
    I highly recommend getting it from Bob Gollihur at:
    I was in a swing, blues band and with the Bass Max I could get very loud with very little feedback which can be a huge problem, especially on a small stage.
    Hope this helps.
  5. pietro5


    Jan 31, 2005
    Hi guys, I'm Pietro, from Genova, ITALY.
    I play my 3/4 double bass with a "Old Chicago Blues" Band (Harp, Guitar, Drums and DB).
    The question I ask you is: have you any suggests to amplify well my instrument and what is the best configuration to have a rough sound, like '50 registrations of Sugar Ray, Muddy Waters and Little Charlie albums? (I mean microphones, amplifiers, pick ups....and so one). Do you suggest to buy a 18''-21'' amplifier, to have a very nice sound? Should be better a Subwoofer, like a Fender one?
    If you are "old blues" lovers, do you know what are gears and close ups of any blues double bass player? (BILL STUVE, LARRY TAYLOR, RANDY BERMUDES, MICHAEL "mudcat" WARD, JOHN PENNER, MOOKIE BRILL...)
    Thanks for any reply!
  6. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    I've seen Stuve, Taylor, Mudcat, Mookie, Ronnie James Weber plenty.

    Most of these guys use gut strings and Underwood pickups. The K&K Bass Max mentioned already is a good alternative to the Underwood.

    Amps vary but GK 400RB or 800RB heads are the most common. For cabs I see almost anything used: Hartke, Peavey, Flite, 10", 15", etc. Probably some sort of 4-10" box is the most common.

    But in the end, the pickup and amp don't matter one bit. What is REALLY important:

    1. Having TOO MUCH bottom end this causes feedback. Roll off some bass EQ, you don't need it.
    2. Dampen the strings below the bridge, most of these guys use a block of foam or stuff a towel in there.

    This of course is for live shows, on the recordings they just mike the bass unamplified.

    Hope this helps.
  7. Packinmn


    Jun 21, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    Brian, did these guys stuff these things under the tailpiece? or under the string afterlength? This tip has come up a couple of time in the past few days so I am curious how this is best accomplished... thanks for you help!
  8. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I've seen both. One guy (can't remember his name) had a nerf football crammed between the tailpiece and the table, and a towel of some sort wrapped around the after length. While this didn't look very "hi-tech", it produced the desired result - there was not a lick of feedback, either.
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Amplified drums!!! ?? :eek:

    You got your work cut out! ;)

  10. Bruce, he clearly stated only the instruments were amplified... :D

    Whatever amp you use, get a stomp box eq to dial in your sound. Just dont give up pietro. Thats the problem with todays so called blues-most everyone plays the bass guitar. Everything sounds too metalic/electric. We need more thumpy thumpy...