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Extended range issues

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BassFelt, Jul 3, 2004.


  1. BassFelt

    BassFelt

    Mar 26, 2002
    I've been playing Precisions for 30 years, a Jazz Deluxe V for 10 years, and have a custom built six-string Jazz coming up next week. I wanted the six mostly to have more range in one position, still playing "conventional bass".

    I am kinda interested in a seven as well, and have been thinking about the concept of playing it more like a "bass+guitar" instrument, kinda like how Charlie Hunter plays a "guitar+bass" instrument. I've dabbled with a guitar with the two bottom strings replaced by bas strings.

    I wonder if any of you 7-stringers has used a BEADGBE tuning, instead of BEADGCF. I'm a bassist by profession, but play decent guitar as well, and I wonder if this tuning would be easier to adopt to for a seven string ( I wouldn't use it on a 6-string).

    I'm also interested in hearing any material by multistringers in and out of the membership that offers any new concepts.

    Has anyone tried a band with two extended range instruments alternating bass- and chord/melody roles? (Like a band with two Stick players I saw in LA years ago) Any one playing "pianistic"?

    I'm more interested in musical concepts (Anthony Jackson, Charlie Hunter) than in pyrotechnics per se (I just saw those videoclips on Dickins' page).

    I spent a few hours reading older discussions on this board and read interesting things from Jauqo III-X, JT, Ninestring and others. I've heard JT's stuff on his site, what about the others?

    Btw I hope we can avoid anti 5+ missile attacks and keep this an intelligent and friendly thread :)
     
  2. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    Check out Al Caldwell, bassist for Vanessa William’s and Black Hillbilly band as well as Supporting Chuck Rainey this summer on tour as well as recording with Chuck & Vanessa right now.

    Al’s one player pushing the envelope the furthest at the moment with 9 string and Midi (everything from harmonica, keyboard, guitar, etc.)

    Here is a link with a couple of raw tracks on some projects he’s working on.

    http://www.thelowend.net/gallery/viewtopic.php?t=855
     
  3. BassFelt

    BassFelt

    Mar 26, 2002
    Thanks for that link Brian. I had just visited Al's site since he appeared here on the left as Latest Supporting Member, but the clips on your site I hadn't heard yet.

    I'd love to see The Black Traveling Hillbillies live!
     
  4. Brian Barrett

    Brian Barrett

    Nov 25, 2001
    Murfreesboro, TN (Nashville)
    Dealer LowEndBassShop.com, Builder LowEndBasses.com
    He's been working hard on their new CD. I look forward to hearing it. One of the sounds is on the link above, the one where Al is Singing.
     
  5. Moderatoe John Turner tunes some of his 7's BEADGBE. Wait for him to respond.
     
  6. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Out side of Bill Dickens Multi string playing(7 strings or more) I am most inpressed with Bassist Garry Goodman, Avon Lucas(if you do a search here it
    will take you to a link and he's featured on the Beneventa site as well)
    and Al Caldwell who to me is taking the Multi string concept to a whole new level.I am most Impressed with Avon and Als ability to never abandon the main role of the Bass.and their Mature strength in holding it together within the context of the Rhythm section and They also play 4,5,and 6 string Bass as well.I noticed in a nice % of multi string Bassist that they have a serious problem with the Groove,(and come off as sad,lost and confused guitarist)which for me is the # one rule.I am not here to start a War(I play multi string Bass as well)I respect concept but I'm not into posers.
     
  7. temp5897

    temp5897 Guest

    Avon Little or Avon Lucas?
     
  8. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Lucas(my Bad)
     
  9. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    my main tuning on 7 has been beadgbe since i started on the instrument, in 93. i'm no guitarist, but i figured that all guitarists couldn't be wrong, it seemed logical to approach the high strings in that manner, and it has stuck. i have enough 7's to experiement with tunings now, but if i were to say i had a main tuning, i'd say it was beadgbe. great for comping chords + basslines or classical-style guitar parts, which when phrased in the form of an ostinatto give a great fluid foundation to a section without being uninteresting or uninventive.

    there's a few guys who play a lot of tapping. i actually used to do a lot more tapping in my 4 string days - it was all the rage in the late 80s and if you couldn't play stu hamm and billy sheehan you weren't nuthin heh. seriously, i used to have alot of students then who were really into it, so i got it pretty developed, but i don't think i've tapped once on my 7's and 8's now. just not what my situation calls for.

    heh, don't worry, i'll make sure that folks keep it civil - read the sticky post at the top of the forum :D, and i second the recommendation for al caldwell, he's doing some pretty cool stuff.
     
  10. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    again, i find this problem to be the number one issue with every bassist, not just multi-stringers. it's just more easily overlooked when the poor sap can't do as much damage due to the range limitation. :)
     
  11. JAUQO III-X

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    CHICAGO,IL.
    Endorsing artist:see profile.

    I agree 100% but we all know it stands out a little more with Multi stringers because a lot of non Multi stringers don't want to be Open minded.
     
  12. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    heh heh. of course :) it also stands out with extended range bassists because they are the ones who have the _audacity_ to actually demand more for themselves than what they are alotted by tradition. anyone who wishes to defy the laws of tradition gets persecuted at a much higher standard than those well behaved saps who continue to tow the party line, stay quiet and out of the way, and generally just behave. :)
     
  13. my bass is extended range :D
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    and i resent your quote "a lot of non Multi stringers don't want to be Open minded." well..ive tried 5 and 6...just dont like em...i really dont see a need in my case...cos what i see the point of 5,6,7,8,9 string basses is for people who want to stay roughly in the same position on the neck most of the time....well thats right in some/most cases, otehr times its for coolness factor (dont deny it :p )..but i like moving up and down the neck...i'd get kinda bored having my hand in the same position the whole song..but thats my opinon..plus i dont like the sound of a b string....i really love the low d on a kubicki....concert tension..not floppy like detuning or on a b string
     
  14. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    I'm foaming at the mouth right now, impatiently waiting for my Roscoe SKB3006 to arrive. I've been playing mainly 4-string for close to 28 years, but I'm finally going to make the leap. I'm torn between 'shedding at home with it until I'm comfortable or just throw caution to the wind and start playing it live immediately-trial by fire, if you will. Advice on either method would be greatly appreciated.

    Also, first and foremost, I'm paid to groove. When I start playing my 6 live, I'll continue to groove. I'm also asked to solo, and IMO having the extended range of a 6-string will only make my solos more interesting...and more grooving too! :D
     
  15. BenderR

    BenderR

    Jun 1, 2004
    Tucson, AZ
    I can see a lot of possiblities in the extended range instruments, there is no question about that but that 4-string feels so good in my hands. I have a linear technique and like the post by Heath the Great I like to move up and down the neck. It adds a little bit of character to both the sound and the feel.

    I sure don't wish to put down anyone that plays the 5, 6 and 7 string basses, they are great and inventive instruments. I just feel that the 4 string still has a lot to offer.
     
  16. theres also another factor i forgot to include.......the ergonomics..there is a higher chance of surrering from rsi in your left (right) wrist due to the thickness of the neck or a 6+ string bass,...every 6 stringer ive talked to cant play for as long as i can because of the pain they get in their left wrist....and when ive played a 6 a few times (mainly an ibanez btb or a washburn bantam i think) ive walked away with slight pain in my left wrist...but i can play all day on a four..possibly a 5, had my 5 for 6 months then sold it...but 4's are where its at for me...tapping and slapping..a 4 does it best :D imo......

    But thats another 'negative' of the 7+ instruments...more expensive amps and strings to get the maximum out of your instrument.....but if thats the price you're willing to pay....glad its you and not me :D
     
  17. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    In regards to the endurance/wrist problems issue, I respectfully disagree. I'm of the opinion that with time and practice, most anything can be accomplished. Example: Back in 1984 when I switched from my Rick 4001's comfy neck to a P-Bass' wider, thinner neck, it was a rude awakening. But over time, I became comfortable with the P-Bass' neck and I could (and still can) play it with ease. Same goes with my MM SR-5, and my 35" scale Modulus Q-4's neck. Both took time getting used to but now they're second nature. I've studied efficient fretting and plucking techniques from a few knowledgeable instructors that minimize hand fatigue. Also, if it starts to hurt, stop. If it hurts to play, oftentimes something is wrong with your mechanics. You (or I) could be plucking, or fretting too hard, or have an improper wrist postition, etc, etc. This takes self-examination to correct, but it can be done. Getting used to the fact my low string is actually a 'B' and not an 'E' has been the biggest challenge for me in regards to the SR-5, not the neck's profile. The jury is out as far as the cost of strings go, but I don't think paying an extra $10.00 or so is going to make me become a plasma donor when it comes time to buy a new set of strings :D . I'm also quite confident that any of my exsisting amps will do a fine job amplifing my new Roscoe, when it gets here! And it's not like my amp gear is anything 'state-of-the-art', either. The biggest expense for me (or better, my wife-the bass is a gift) is the bass itself. But there are many more affordable quality 6-strings, such as the Peavey Cirrus, available. And more that are even more affordable than the Cirrus. The thing I enjoy the most today is the diversity in basses. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12 strings, it's great. When I started playing, 4 was pretty much it as far as the electric bass went.

    I about went nuts trying to figure out what John Paul Jones' 5th string was on my Led Zep poster in junior high school!!! Then came Cheap Trick's Tom Petersson's 12-string Hamer-Wow!! :hyper: I'd still like to have one, too.

    Respectfully, Art.
     
  18. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    Great post art -- any pain is usually due to poor technique. My teacher drilled good left hand technique into me when I started lessons with him, and I played his six for an entire lesson the week before the semester finished -- no pain at all. That could also be attributed to the fact I was playing a Yamaha TRB-6, and the neck is like BUTTER on that thing, but as long as you practice good technique you should be fine.
     
  19. Though I don't own it any more, I once had a six string, and never really had a problem switcing from it to any of my four strings. So I suggest the trial by fire method. Woodshedding is good - I think all of us need it from time to time - but there's no better way to learn how to get around a new bass than actually playing it, at practice or a gig. Good luck!
     
  20. i think you misunderstood me about the neck issue......but i was talking about necks in the width of a 7,8,9 string compared to a 4 string....not switching from something like a jazz neck to a p-neck

    [​IMG]
    compared to my favourite neck, one of the reasons i own a kubicki, besides a Stingray Neck
    [​IMG]
    unless you had very large hands i think the 8 string would be a bit of a misson to play...f course it would contribute to technique.......but ill put it this way....if 2 people were sitting at identical computer desks, chairs and pc's except one person had a 15" monitor and the other had a 21" monitor....i dont think they could both sit at the computer for the same amount of time..the person with the 21" monitor would have a decreased amount of time in front of the pc before having to take a break.....

    but i spose it comes down to many factors..i kinda felt comfortable on a 5 but im at home on a 4......6 is just uncomfortable.....never had the chance to play a 7+ string...basically because we dont have them down here.....basically cos the boutique bass market down here is kinda poor.....especially when the mark up on basicall all gear is hugely increased...standard jazz's are about $900aus and stingrays are about $3500aus