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Does anyone play in a whole step down, because they like it better, or how they sound

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by BassSurfer, Mar 9, 2008.

  1. Yeah.. so i started to experiment with new tunings.. and i tried a whole step down for the first time in YEARs.. and man.. i love how it sounds.. i can get a better tone on my jazz, and ( obviously ) its easier to play, considering tension and the thickness of the strings themselves. Does anyone else do this, or like playing in a whole step down..
  2. Yeah lots of people downtune...I pretty much do it whenever I want to play DOOM and just bust out the fuzz and play really REALLY slow riffs.
  3. yeah true.. i just love the overall tone of downtuning
  4. Darkstrike

    Darkstrike Return Of The King!

    Sep 14, 2007
    I have a bass that sounds like ass unless its in DGCF, but when there plays like a gream and growls like a demon.
  5. fenderhutz

    fenderhutz Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Harpers Ferry WV
    I tuned down to CGCF (basically D with dropped C).

    Everything at www.tellhazelrun.com is in that tuning.
  6. bonzo4880


    Sep 16, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    i do it because the band i am in, the guitarist tunes down a whole step to make singing a bit easier. i had never done it till i started playing with him. i only really notice it on the low E string. i am considering going to a higher gauge string to increase string tension, i think it would make playing some of the faster parts a bit easier.
  7. Foxworthy925

    Foxworthy925 Guest

    Feb 24, 2007
    Bay Area, CA
    Yeah, for the dm band I'm in, we all play in C# standard. That's everything dropped a step and a half, and man is it different. I actually would like a bit less of a drop, because it would let me use smaller gauge strings (which I feel more comfortable on) but with the same tension as the larger gauges I'm using now in this tuning.
  8. yeah even not in the Electric Wizard, Sleep kind of things.. i still use it for the growl and playability.
  9. 4goingon5


    Mar 10, 2008
    For a long time, I would play in drop-A# just due to the style of music I was writing. Now, I tend to stick to either Eb or D because there is still that low boom, but the "tight" sound remains.
  10. cheapimitation


    Mar 23, 2007
  11. Foxworthy925

    Foxworthy925 Guest

    Feb 24, 2007
    Bay Area, CA
    Yeah, I'm in the market for an extended range bass. If it's a fiver though, one decision that's conflicting me is whether I should go with an extra high like yours, or an insanely low string. Hmm, I've been sweeping a lot more lately, and I do tapping parts in several of our songs, so having that extra high A string would be nice. I should go play around on some different models- I might even find that I like 6ers, which would solve both problems at once. hmmm....
  12. Hawaii Islander

    Hawaii Islander Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2007
    Rio Rico, AZ
    Both my basses (jazz and p-bass) are tuned DGCF. I love the way they sound and play. They sound decent in standard tuning as well, but I like the down tuned sound the best. ;)
  13. Six month ago I started experimenting with DGCF tuning. The experiment's over. I'm not going back.

    For me, getting that low D is worth it. Not having to worry about changing the patterns I've got engraved in muscle memory if I went with a hipshot to just downtune the E string is also worth it.
  14. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    I keep my Ric tuned down a half-step so I can play along with Hendrix CDs.

    A couple of bands I knew tuned down a step because it was easier for their singer to sing.
  15. Lazylion

    Lazylion Goin ahead on wit my bad self!

    Jan 25, 2006
    Frederick MD USA
    I keep my Spector tuned a whole step low for my originals band. I just love having that low D available. However, we have a few songs that are much easier to play on a bass tuned to E, so I've been bringing my P along to the gigs. I try to keep the bass-switching to a minimum.
    I like the sound of my Jazz 5er for my country band, so no need to detune. Once in a while I might bring the Spector, just for the mental challenge of it.
  16. ghostbass


    May 21, 2007
    I thought i was unique by doing that. evidently there is a lot. I just disliked playing in drop D cos of the pattern changes. I never heard of anybody else do it though, until today.
  17. envika


    Nov 27, 2007
    Bronx, NY
    I do drop-D sometimes when i feel like bustin' out some raucous music, but there's one problem:

    Once a band starts downtuning below D or so, the range that the bass would normally fill becomes filled by the guitar, which often means that the bass gets buried in the mix. Anyone listened to System of a Down's early stuff? There's almost no audible bass, for that reason.
  18. Hawaii Islander

    Hawaii Islander Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2007
    Rio Rico, AZ
    How about playing higher on the neck? For me, playing higher up on the fretboard is easier and nicer sounding when tuned DGCF than in standard tuning.
  19. RevGroove

    RevGroove Commercial User

    Jul 21, 2002
    Burlington ON Canada
    Manager, Account Services: Long & McQuade Ltd. (Burlington); MTD Kingston Basses International Emerging Artist; Bartolini Electronics Emerging Artist
    I actually just yesterday decided to go back to standard tuning...played a gig yesterday before I had a chance to change the strings and set up a step down on the new axe...there wasn't a lot of situations where I would have used that low A, plus, I've been putting of working from some material (i.e. Norm Stockton's Groovin DVDs) because of having to transpose on the fly...so for the next little bit, I'm going back to standard tuning!

    If it turns out I do need that low A, perhaps I'll look into getting an extender...
  20. Qvist


    Jul 20, 2007
    Woah! Dude it's the exact opposite! Mezmerize and hypnotize you can only vaguely sense the bass, in the old songs it was totally different! Listen to songs like suite-pee, Soil, highway song, chic'n'stu or mind. The bass is very audible there.

    And hey, when I feel like I'm not really audible in the mix, I usually just EQ some more low-end from my amp, or you could add more growl by mixing it with some high-end :)

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