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Change strings before a show?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Sonic_Death, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. I have a show tomorrow and I am kind of worried about my strings. I have had mine on for about 4 months now, and although I am still liking the sound I would hate for them to break mid-show. The problem is if I do change them, what if I get a bad string and it snaps mid-show anyway. Kind of a catch22 with risks.

    I get very paranoid about breaking strings during a show and I'd rather not bring a backup bass for a 40 minute set, but I will if I have to. Does anyone think it is worth it to change the strings, or should I leave them.. I'm probably just worrying way too much.

    Also on a side note! Would taping one of the fingers on my right hand help a blister not hurt as much for the show? Thanks for any help.
  2. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    Don't stress. Bring a backup, even if it's just for peace of mind. Change the strings if it will give you peace of mind. Leave them on, if that will make you feel better. Have a spare set in your case if that will make you feel better.

    As a guitar guy, I will inevitably break strings when I don't have a backup. As a bass guy, I've only broken strings 3 or 4 times in the 8 years I've been playing bass... so I don't usually worry about it.
  3. The possibility of breaking bass strings for all intents and purposes should be astronomically low.

    I've -never- broken a bass string during a gig, or session. The only time I have though was purely as a result of my foolishness - I cut a string too short and you can guess what happened when I tried tuning it.
  4. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    I broke a string once during an audition. It sucked. It was the G string on my 5 string... my fingers shifted into 4 string mode, and that was very bad...
  5. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    I'd be more worried about new strings shifting out of tune more than an old string breaking. I've only broken one string at a gig in over 30 years..... and that set of strings was very used for 2 years.

    If you put the new ones on, get them broken in well before the gig.

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Supporting Member

    I would say let the strings settle a day or two before the gig,
  7. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
    I just came from a 1:00 show and changed strings before the 9:00 show.

    I'm not taking a spare axe and wasn't even worried about it untill just now.

  8. SBassman


    Jun 8, 2003
    Northeast, US

    Unless you Frequently break strings, which would be bizarre, leave the strings alone, bring a spare bass, relax, and enjoy your set.
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I change my strings every three or four years, whether they need it or not. I've broken only one bass string in my life, and that was when I was tuning it ... an octave too high (young and stupid).
  10. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND
    I have only broken two strings in my entire bass playing career. And that happened a long time ago. It is something that doesn't really even cross my mind now.
  11. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I used to break my low E when I was doing ultra aggresive (and fast) B-string based slapping/popping.

    Ive changed strings before shows a few times. If you know your strings well, certain brands take longer to stretch out. I notice that when I use Blue Steel, they tend to go out of tune for the first few days. When I use cheaper strings (the ones that are like $20 for a five string), they tend to lock in tune sooner.
  12. JtheJazzMan


    Apr 10, 2006
    i wouldnt change a set of strings just before a show. ive had a few strings that have snapped a day or two after putting them on, i assume it was a factory fault. i would clean them or change them a few days before however, because they need some time to get the tension right in the strings.

    its always nice to have a fresh bright sound for a gig

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