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Excellent players who play a cheap basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fire-Starter, Jan 14, 2005.

  1. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
    Has anyone come across a Excellent player who pulled out a bass that you thought would "bite the dust" but after hearing them play this (what you thought was a sorry bass), it changed your mind about that particular brand of bass.

    For example, I hear how people kind of bash squire, Rogue but there are some who have come across a player who played one and were blown away, comming to the conclusion that its not so much the bass as it is the player playing it :eek:
  2. Suckbird

    Suckbird Banned

    May 4, 2004
    Not very cheap or bad but duff mckagan (guns 'n roses)
    is playing a fender jazz bass special or something?

    That one is not very expensive but what a tone!
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    How crappy a bass are you talking about?

    I know two local guys, one played a Sadowsky until it was stolen during a tour, the other has owned a 59 P-bass for at least 30 years...both now gig with MIM P-basses.

    Abe Laboriel used a heavily modified MIJ/crap Greco bass for many years. He just liked the feel of the neck.

    I've seen plenty of guys over the years using real low-end Fender copies (Kay, Memphis, Hondo, etc.).
  4. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
    I am glad you mentioned Abe, because I remember he was playing some off brand bass when he played with Al Jeareau, he actually shows it in his bass lesson video........As to how crappy??? which I know is subjective, but I think you hit it on the head with where I was trying to go, by the above names you mentioned...May I should have titled the thread " Bass players who dont use boutique bass" which I have nothing against since I own and have owned some :)

    I have a feeling this may have been better in the Bassist section, but I dont know how to move it over there, Mods forgive me.
  5. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    Tuff question,

    A lot does have to do with the player and not the bass. With really cheap basses it comes down to consistence and quality of woods used in the instrument. Also the pickups, hardware, etc. All this can of course be upgraded.

    Many times with Endorsee’s you see playing these basses they are free to the player or in some cases the endorsee even gets paid to play. Its part of their income and also many times their instruments they play might have the logo, but aren’t off the rack basses or guitars you would buy.

    There is also times where a bass just feels and plays wonderful to a player and the name doesn't mean anything. Price reflects quality many times, so he/she might never play another by that brand that they like. With high-end basses there more attention to detail and high quality components, so there is a chance of the bass sounding and playing better as well as holding up longer..... BUT not always the case.
  6. how cheap is cheap.
    Mark White from the Spin Doctors plays a hand painted Ibanez ATK as his main bass. Boy howdy does he make that bass sit up and sing, funky like nobodys business. Its definately the player
  7. Fat Mike from NOFX plays a dano, I guess that is pretty cheap?
  8. Dave Siff

    Dave Siff Supporting Member

    That's about the best example I can think of. And he plays the hell out if it, too!
  9. 6sixx6


    Oct 2, 2004
    last night i saw a chistain rock band(i was workin security) and the main band skillit was using what i think was a rouge 5 string and not even a good oneit was the bottom of the line one with the poiinted headstock
  10. bovinehost

    bovinehost Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    Bob Nyswonger plays only MIJ Jazz Specials, fretted and fretless, and he absolutely rocks.

    Not the cheapest basses on earth or anything, but certainly not terribly expensive.

    More proof - it ain't the bass.
  11. Tony Kanal from No Doubt plays old '80's era Yamaha BB series basses...I got my BB2000 for $200, and it's one of my favorite basses ever.
  12. apollo11


    Aug 19, 2004
    New York
    To include somebody not current, I would have to add Paul McCartney to the list. He made his career on an inexpensive (in those days) Hofner, about 1/4 the cost of a Fender at the time. They were fragile, had low sustain, very bad intonation problems, etc, but he recorded a huge chunk of the Beatles' catalog and played every concert they ever played, including the final one on the rooftop, on two Hofners. His first was stolen during the Let It Be sessions, and his 2nd, from 63, is still being used at every concert he plays.

    Many people who have tried them, including Entwistle, say they felt like they'd crumble in their hands, so it is amazing that McCartney's survived through it all.
  13. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Paul McCartney is a great example.

    By cheap we also have to consider what they used to cost. For example the Yamaha BB2000 was relatively expensive back in the day, but now you can find em pretty cheap.

    The cheap basses that are out now are way better than the cheap basses that were available when I was a kid.
  14. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    I know a lot of professional guys who play rat/mongrel/cheap gear live simply because they've been around long enough to know that good stuff gets wrecked, stolen or otherwise devalued in gigs, much less on the road. Fine tone points get lost in the unpredictable acoustic environments of a typical series of gigs anyway, and there's much to be said for keeping the good stuff at home or in the studio where it matters and some control can be kept over what happens to your valuable property.

    I was really amazed to see a television program featuring a local band that plays almost every night somewhere in NorCal and has for decades. The guitars and basses were rat Squiers, the congas chewed up LP "Aspires," and other gear equally cheap, rat and expendable.

    I'm sure all of this stuff was meticulously set up and the sound was about like every other live band's in an uncontrolled environment. [shrug]

    Then of course there are all the fairly big-name kid acts who use cheap Ibanez gear (or look-alikes, anyway) because they're paid to.
  15. dBerriff


    Oct 2, 2004
    Oakham, UK
    Not everyone thinks Bill Wyman was a great player but he inspired me. I think he used a cheap Framus for their first album (de-fretted possibly?) and just listen to the drive he gets on Carol, Route 66, etc. Not bad for the early 60's. :cool:
  16. Blazer


    Nov 27, 2003
    The Netherlands
    Rogue luthier employed at Knooren Handcrafted bass guitars
    Rinus Gerritsen of the Golder earring still plays his Danelectro long horn short scale basses.

    And Jack Bruce used a Danelectro as a Back up for his Gibson EB3 in the Cream Days. Danelectro iin those days was regarded firewood but that didn't keep people from playing them. only because they were cheap.
  17. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    If my success in bass training continues to stay so disproportionate to my financial success, then then in a couple years I'll be one of'em!

    Peavy Foundation; US-made - bought used for $170US.

  18. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com

    John is a Childhood best friend of mine. He actually Play's GMP thats blue sparkle with flame design on it.
  19. Hey! That's a Tyler in his video! NOT cheap, and definitely not crappy. Kinda funny looking though.
  20. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Rozz Zamorano (well-known in the Houston area) plays a decrepit early 80's Ibanez Roadstar as his main bass. Sounds fabulous.