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EUB -- A Good First Step Toward DB??

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by pools, Sep 22, 2004.


  1. pools

    pools

    Feb 28, 2004
    a friend of mine is selling an electroacoustic upright
    i use to play electric bass but i would like to start approacing the new intrument,do you think it could be the first step to the double bass?
    i know a the doublebass is a doublebass but i can have this electric for a few money so i thought i can take it to start to learn....what do you think? :help:
     
  2. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    I don't see why not. It's not going to sound like a double bass, but it will provide you with somewhat appropriate feel. It will also begin to teach you to listen and develop ear-hand coordination appropriate to the scale of a double bass.

    If you can get it for cheap, it probably can provide you a reasonable transitition toward the double bass.
     
  3. Brian K

    Brian K Supporting Member

    May 21, 2004
    Toronto, ON
    I played an EUB early in my double-bass life, and I feel like it actually stunted my development.

    I had an Azola solid body, and because the instrument barely resonated at all, I had to be too loud to properly hear my pitch as my ears and muscle memory were developing.

    With a real double bass, the wood moves so much that you can feel the pitch, rather than just hear it.

    There may be many EUBs that don't cause the problems mine did for me, and many bassists with ears that won't have these issues as well.

    This is just my two cents from how electric uprights have been for me.
     
  4. I have had the same experiance as Mr. Kobayakawa here. It really stuned or atleast didn't really help me. The problem I had was the whole body of the bass isn't there. The bass is a huge insturment and I had a Zeta upright and when you switch to thumb position or just playin the thing in general is doesn't feel right when you go to acoustic upright. You don't get to learn how to deal with the full body when you play the electic. But if it works for you then thats what you need to do. If you do decide to go with this electicupright with intentions of switching to acoustic, make sure the scale is right. A lot of the upright electics have shortend scale sizes than an acoustic. Just somethin to watch out for.
     
  5. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    Brian and Duck:

    Experience is obviously the voice of reason. I have never played an electric upright, so I tried to be relatively reserved in my comments. Interesting points of view.

    Tim
     
  6. I dig what you are sayin Tim and I think you are right in a lot of ways. As long as pools gets somethin with the right scale of bass then I wouldn't have to say it wouldn't be a bad idea I was just sayin some other things to take into acount.
     
  7. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    The things to look at are:
    the scale length - you want it to be 40" - 42" (at least)
    bridge - you want it to at least approximate the shape and construction of an actual upright bridge
    Fingerboard - like the bridge, it should at least approximate the curvature of an actual bass fingerboard.
    And that the whole angle of fingerboard to bridge to tailpiece mimics a real bass.

    You gotta understand that there are two different end users for these things.
    1. guys who play a real bass and want something that they can fly with that will at least approximate the experience, if not sound, of playing their actual bass
    2. guys who play electric and, for whatever reason, decide that they want to look like they are playing an upright bass.

    Which is why you have alla the EUBs that are 35" to 38" in scale, have flat or only slightly curved fingerboards and have bridges that are nothing like an actual bass bridge. And sound like a big fretless bass.

    The money that is being charged for the basses that I have seen in the former category, you could buy a pretty good plywood actual bass for. So if your buddy has one of these types of EUB and you're going to get it for a couple of hundred dollars, well OK. You go, girl.

    If he has one of the latter, it doesn't matter how much he is giving it away for, it will not be an analogous experience. Buy it if you like the way it looks or the way it sounds or whatever. But don't buy it because you think it will be a "first step" or anything.

    But I gotta say, even if it IS in the former category, if you want to play double bass, get a double bass. To me, doing something else is like saying "I want to paint my barn red. Maybe I should paint it blue, as a first step."

    You want to paint the barn red, just go ahead and paint it red.
     
  8. pools

    pools

    Feb 28, 2004
    i ve attacched a photo of the electric (the photo is orrible 'cause of the resize).(in the photo missing the pieces that simulate the shoulder of the upright)
    anyone can say anything about it?
    thank you for your help.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    NYC
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    It's a pretty picture.

    Again, what's going to be more helpful is

    1. the measurement form the nut to the bridge (string length, scale, mensure)
    2. a picture of the bridge taken from "bird's eye" view - that is the same view you would have if you were playing the bass and then looked down at the bridge
    3. a picture taken from the side that will show the angle of the strings down the fingerboard and over the bridge.

    Oh and how much money?
     
  10. I agree with Ed. The fingerboard in your pic looks huge (compared to the hand)
    As has already been said, the big body of a double bass against your body (I think i'm getting excited!) and your ability to feel the sound vibrations and that stability you get from the size of the instrument. Also, the fact that you need the shoulders of a real bass to use as a guide into the upper register!
     
  11. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    Ditto...I have a friend in who builds guitars. She calls the vibrations coming from the instrument the "flutter feel", and of course a good DB has a lot of that. I don't think about it much until I'm forced to do the rare gig on the EUB; then I realize how much I miss all the movin' and shakin'.
     
  12. If it is just a "money thing", I wouldn't recommend making a decision that way. Not unless you think you can unload it for more money later, in which case it is an "investment". What you are really looking for is a decent student DB. EUB's are different beasts;- I admit they have their place, generally a highly amped up environment where you might also use earplugs!

    Are you handy with tools at all? I ask because this "Joemamma" (see his thread "washtub bass" under basses) fellow has made an instrument on the cheap that is probably a better student DB using an oblong washtub for a body. Granted, it's not a real DB, but it will vibrate and give you pretty much the same learning experience as the more costly plywood/carved options, and there are charts you can access on line for the correct fingerboard dimensions, etc., or you can just fork out for the fingerboard (a reasonable non-ebony is less than $100) and build the rest. One highly recommended Atlanta area instructor (who also sells top quality DBs) recommended just such an instrument as a viable beginner instrument.

    My first impression from the photo is that the fingerboard is overly large or that you are pretty young and/or have small hands. Most everyone here has said it in this thread but it is worth repeating: measure that instrument and make sure it is standard before you spend your money and time on it.
     
  13. BMGecko

    BMGecko

    Sep 5, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Firstly I should say that an EUB can be a good way to gain facility on an instrument before "moving up" to an acoustic upright. However, if you have your heart set on playing upright, perhaps you should look into going right to it, rather than getting an instrument you should have to transition to.

    The instruments have remarkably similar (in some ways) functions, but I would contend that they are really two instruments, similar, but different in nature and character, being well suited towards different things.

    As an addition to statement smade by Ed Fuqua, I submit the following.

    I must add to this that there is a possibility of at least a third type of end-user for this instrument.

    A third possibilty of someone who wants the ability to approach producing bass from a somewhat physical standpoint of an acoustic upright, while diminishing some of the aspects of the acoustic.

    This is the reason I took up the EUB, as I had played upright in high school (but I took up electric before that) and through the years desired to approach "bass" from this physical dimension. Why didn't I want a "real" upright?

    Because the sound(s) I wanted couldn't be produced by a standard upright, I wanted more than four strings, I wanted to be able to plug into an amplifier, I didnt want something that would have to go through costly repairs when something bad happened to it...

     
  14. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member

    I must add to this that there is a possibility of at least a third type of end-user for this instrument.

    A third possibilty of someone who wants the ability to approach producing bass from a somewhat physical standpoint of an acoustic upright, while diminishing some of the aspects of the acoustic.

    This is the reason I took up the EUB, as I had played upright in high school (but I took up electric before that) and through the years desired to approach "bass" from this physical dimension. Why didn't I want a "real" upright?

    Because the sound(s) I wanted couldn't be produced by a standard upright, I wanted more than four strings, I wanted to be able to plug into an amplifier, I didnt want something that would have to go through costly repairs when something bad happened to it...


    Wow, there's more than one of us? [​IMG]
     
  15. BMGecko

    BMGecko

    Sep 5, 2002
    Albuquerque, NM
    Yeah...

    I got into music for different reasons (back when I was something like 14 years old) and over the years I've gotten to be more of a "musician who plays the bass" rather than as a "bass player". I guess you're one of those weirdos who likes to play music too, huh? *lol*

    I'm actually thinking about selling my electric upright. I've had fun with it, but I went back to my original love of bass guitar. I've found that playing a monstrous 5 string EUB did wonders for my ability on the bass guitar, and my bass guitar playing is now coming into it's own (so I'd like to think!).

     
  16. captainoverboar

    captainoverboar

    Oct 16, 2012
    My daughter is moving aboard our boat and is passionate about the DB. I'd like to let her practice more, so I'm thinking about an EB.

    Is it really not at all the same?
     
  17. (3) Because one wants the unique sound of an EUB.

    I agree that it's likely not a great "stepping stone" into the world of EUB. EUB, really any fully acoustic instrument, is a whole different game than electric bass.

    But they can have a cool sound of their own, if that's what someone wants. I wouldn't write of a bassist that gets one, as just wanting to _look_ like he has an upright bass.

    EUBs have many of the qualities of a fretless electric bass and just a few of the qualities of an upright. I'd guess that one could get a _little_ used to left hand position on a full-scale EUB. Bow and pizz are not going to react at all the same. Different amplification is needed for a EUB compared to an electric, and different amplification is needed for an acoustic upright bass compared to an EUB.

    My recommendation is that if one gets an EUB, master it as its own thing. Taking on another instrument usually expands one's musical mind a bit regardless of whether it's a stepping stone to something else.
     
  18. abaguer

    abaguer

    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    If you want to get the EUB because it's a good deal and something you want to buy, then go for it. But if your ultimate goal is to play upright, then just get an upright and start getting used to it.