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electric bass or bass guitar

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jazzper, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. i think you guys know where i'm going with this one. I understand that the electric bass derived from the upright or contrabass hence how it earned its name "electric" bass. Now heres the question. Seeming that the electric bass was created or derived from the contra or upright bass which is very logical, i'm just wondering how bass players stuck the word guitar in there hence "bass guitar" because they're definitely two different beasts, two totally different instruments. my reason for bringing this up is because i jus purckased brian bromberg's new cd. And we all know he is a very creditable bassist. On the back of the cd case he clearly states there are no guitars featured on this album, all guitar sounding parts are piccolo basses. Meaning he considers the electric bass to be the electric bass and not the electric bass to be bass guitar and i honestly agree. Just some frustration i need to be cleared up because I find myself getting pissed when bass guitar is said instead of electric bass so please help me fellow TBers. Oh yeah Brian Bromberg mentioned this on the back of the choices album:help: :help:
  2. Leo Fender called the first bass he made a bass guitar. Thus the name stuck.

    (correct me if i'm wrong)
  3. GSRLessard14

    GSRLessard14 All-Things-Claypool Enthusiast

    Jun 23, 2005
    Newington, CT
    I like the phrase "electric bass" better, for the record.
  4. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Call it whatever you want. But it is a bass guitar- it is a member of the guitar family, and has far, far more in common with the electric guitar than it does with the upright bass. The term "electric bass" is far more suitable for electric upright basses (usually called EUBs), as they are the electric equivalent of an upright.
  5. Whacked


    Sep 21, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    thats how I always differentiated the two
  6. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    You say po-tAY-toe, i say po-tAH-toe
  7. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Well, instead maybe: you say potato, I say spud, because these are different words

    I like electric bass myself.
  8. middlebit


    Sep 10, 2005
    I play electric bass and have never seen a bass guitar...or banjo guitar for that matter.
  9. you say to-MAY-toe, i say go fark yourself:eyebrow:

    sorry, its a line i always use when someone brings up that analogy

    either way, i prefer just to say 'i play bass'
  10. jwsamuel


    Apr 26, 2004
    Electric Bass:


    Electric Bass Guitar:


    Acoustic Bass Guitar:


  11. 62bass


    Apr 3, 2005
    When I first started playing bass (1961)it was almost always called an electric bass. Sometimes a Fender bass, even if not a Fender. I never heard bass guitar until bass gear magazines came on the market and they started using that term.

    I still call it electric bass.
  12. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    LIke Marcus Miller say's "the bass"!:)
  13. I've always called it bass guitar. The first thing that comes to mind for me is a P Bass, which is pretty much the same construction as a Strat, only with larger dimensions. Occasionally when someone asks me what I play, I'll just say, "bass" and it's understood. So call it what you want. People will get it.
  14. keb


    Mar 30, 2004
    I've always called it "bass guitar." Using the same logic as "alto sax" or "bass viol", for example.
  15. Smallmouth_Bass


    Dec 29, 2005
    I used to get upset when people called it bass guitar or even just bass. I prefered electric bass. These days, I don't have any preference either way. Bass, electric bass, bass guitar, low note thing... whatever! As long as people just don't call it guitar! :D
  16. you know, oh, um it plays the really low thumpy notes... :bag:
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Look at the instrument from 50 feet away. It's a guitar of some sort. When you get close enough to see the strings, you can see that it's a bass guitar.

    Also, I congratulate you on being the 1,000th person to start this thread.
  18. Tedintheshed

    Tedintheshed Banned

    Oct 8, 2004
    Columbus, Ohio
    I just say 'tater.

    I mean, really. Isn't this splitting hairs with a laser beam?
  19. 'tater...tot
  20. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    Bass, bass guitar, electric bass..... Its all the same to somebody. I definetly agree that it is of the guitar family. I don't neccesarily say I play bass guitar, I usually just say I play "bass". Those of you that have played nothing but "bass guitar", go and try to play an "upright bass". Two totally different animals.