Double Bass Alternative - Semi-Acoustic Fretless

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by eoinwalsh, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. eoinwalsh


    Jun 10, 2011

    I'm looking for a bass that would be a good alternative to double bass for straight ahead jazz.

    I think Alain Caron uses some kind of acoustic/electric fretless. Does anyone here know exactly what it is he uses?

    Also, do any of you have any other suggestions for an instrument like this?


    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    The Rob Allen Mouse(especially fretless) gets reasonably close to the sound you are looking for. Alain's bass is a custom made "MF". Its really a great sounding instrument. Probably the closest I have heard an electric bass get to an upright. I saw him play it in a trio setting at the Upstairs in Montreal. The real truth though is that you can never get a "true" Double Bass out of electric. It just doesn't swing the same(for lack of a better word). The attack and decay are different.
  3. If you have the cash, the Rob Allen basses are IMO as close as you can get. Of course, they aren't going to replace a DB playing a jazz ballad in a good listening room. However, in a relatively loud, busy mix in a live setting, you could never tell the difference out in the audience unless you looked IMO (i.e., by the time you crank up a DB with a pickup through an amp, much of the 'DBness' is lost anyway).

    Magnificently made instruments, and if you don't go crazy on fancy tops, etc. the Standard model (the 34" scale 4 string) is amazingly good, and a very good price/value.

    IMO and IME!
  4. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    I don't know what Alain Caron plays but the Carvin AC40F/AC50F is a great choice. People also like the Rob Allen mouse and the Godin A4.
  5. hentor


    Jan 2, 2008
    Toronto, Canada
    There's also the F Bass Alain Caron Classic, which has an incredible upright tone.

    George has done some major work combining flatwounds (Labella Tapewounds actually) with piezo pickups, a chambered body and a specialized preamp in creating an incredible sounding bass.

    He also can install magnetic pickups in it to give you standard fretless sounds as well...
  6. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    The ubass is a great option for jazz:
    @1:16 he starts playing
  7. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Go visit the EUB subforum on the DB side of the board.
  8. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs
    Rick Turner Ren 4 or Ren 5 fretless with the tone rolled off....