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Capo for 5 string bass?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Black 'n Tan, Jul 26, 2005.

  1. Any recommendations?

    My son plays in a praise band live and a lot of the "sheet music" has transposition. It's really chord charts. So it might be "God of Wonders" in the key of Em but the lead vocalist has all the instrumentalists transpose up a whole step due to not being able to sing comfortably in the key of Em.

    Is there a specific heavy-duty capo that works OK on a 5 string bass?
  2. play in F#m.

    Honestly, I'm in the same situation when I play at church, and I just play by feel. Maybe it's just me, but I lock myself into a scale and don't need to look at the music anymore. One of the keys in playing in an ensemble is learning to adapt to what everyone else is playing. This takes some skill and lots of trial and error, but it's a valuable skill to learn. A whole step is just 2 frets worth.

    Ok, that being said, it seems that a wrap-around capo would be the best choice. Something like this....


    as opposed to this...


    It just seems like a better design for the bass. Finding one that fits is going to be much more difficult though. Maybe try searching for classical guitar capos as classical guitars have much larger necks than regular guitars. Good luck.
  3. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    I would try a 12-string guitar capo...
  4. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Having played God of Wonders a jillion times in all kinds of keys, I can sympathize. While it doesn't help your son _at all_, I can vouch for the fact that learning to transpose will be his greatest asset while playing worship music. The keys are often changed for vocalists to sing in a more comfortable range, and I've had to do it at least twice a Sunday for the past six years. The sooner he learns to transpose, the better! it's been a huge pain the ass, and I've often wished for a capo, but transposing makes you a more well-rounded player, and you never have to worry about leaving your capo at home. ;)
  5. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process...

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    Playing Bass in worship is lots of fun! *L* same issues..

    Normally, it's the chord charts are in the key of X, and our piano player doesn't like it... so he changed them.. Sunday morning...

    I use to use a Shub C capo made for a 12-string on my 5-string... It's the perfect size and works well.

    Learning to transpose on the fly is also a requirement. If he can write on his own music, transposing isn't too tough.

    The way I learned is to use a "mental capo". I imagine that 2nd fret or whatever is really the nut and work from there.
  6. Thanks for all the advice.

    I'm going to order the Shubb capo for 12 string tomorrow.

    - Bob
  7. TB member Michael Manring occasionally uses a capo, albeit on a 4-string, IIRC. You might try asking/posting in(of all places)'Ask Michael Manring' here on TB.
  8. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    12 string capos are the way to go.

    A classical capo might not work right on most basses since it doesnt follow a curve to match fingerboard radius.