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For former owners of Fodera basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JAUQO III-X, Mar 16, 2010.


    JAUQO III-X Inactive

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    What happen to the love? Nothing could touch it, it was the greatest thing ever,etc. Why did you decide to get rid of your Fodera? And will you ever get another one?

    And no I have no issues with Fodera.(I own one myself).

    I was just curious because a lot of former owners expressed that they felt they were the ultimate instrument.
  2. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    This should be good! :D It kind of reminds me when I used to harass my little sister about her love of the Spice Girls after they broke up.

    FWIW I think you could ask the same question about any persons love of any brand of bass / amp / effect. The reality is that people do tend to "love" their possessions, but you can fall out of love with them. I think its fairly harsh to rub that in their faces by using phrases like "were so gung ho over Fodera basses", "Nothing could touch it, it was the greatest thing ever, etc.". Given that they are not really going add anything to the basic question which seems to be: "Former Fodera owners, why did you stop liking Fodera basses and will you ever get another one?" it kind of reads like an attempt to get an adverse reaction out of former Fodera owners to me. YMMV.
  3. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    I had an unlined fretless Monarch a number of years ago. Fastest neck I ever played. Perfect balance. Pope pre., 9/10 condition. The side dots were 'between the frets', and it DROVE ME NUTS. I loved that bass. What a shame.
  4. RickC

    RickC Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2005
    Mine was a very early Monarch Elite. Sold it (a long with a bunch of other stuff I shouldn't have) during a financial crisis that I over-reacted to. I still miss that bass to this day

  5. jmeyers44


    Sep 20, 2008
    I bought a Fodera Monarch back in 2000. It was a good bass. A great peice of eye candy. I always felt the neck was very unstable although it was no big deal for me to tweak it here and there it did get annoying after a while. That contributed to selling it. There were a few, very slight cosmetic flaws that shouldn't of been there for the price of a Fodera.

    At the time Fodera had the worst customer service. I know now they are making changes. When I had the bass I had a problem with the pre-amp. I delt with Mike Pope directly. It came to the point where he gave me his home number and sent me a brand new pre-amp free of charge. A very cool customer service experience.

    The reason for selling overall is that I wanted something different. I ended up selling it for a Sadowsky. A huge upgrade in my opinion. To each his own though.
  6. Akshat


    Dec 7, 2007
    New Delhi,India
    Keeping the Groove staying out of Treble
    subscribed.this should be good.
  7. subscribed
  8. 3toes


    Aug 30, 2006
    Denver, Colorado
    Can we please start tagging stuff like "this should be good" as trolling/flaming?

    The only reason to post something like that is to try and instigate what you think may be a heated discussion when it has been completely civil thus far.
  9. chris.gotfunk


    Mar 21, 2007
    Ashburn, Va
    Back in 2001 I had a Monarch 4 that was just a great feeling bass. The tone was okay as I felt it was a bit sterile and un-organic. The weight was fine and the fit and finish was excellent. I paid $2250 for it used and would pay that price again. I don't feel that bass is worth the $5k+ they are charging for them (or any Fodera). I still miss it and would someday like to have it back.

    My other one was an Imperial 5 (delivered to me at the 2007 NAMM show) that was by far the most beautiful bass I have ever seen/played. Sadly that one had to go because of severe financial crisis. I sold it to my best friend for what I paid ($5k, now that bass costs at least $10k...not list price either) and after about a year, he offered to let me buy it back for the same amount. Sadly, I could not swing it at that time and he ended up selling it for roughly $8k... :bawl:

    While that Imperial was beautiful, it just sounded lame. I had Aero's put in it (dual coil) and the thing just had no life either. It played great, the neck was great, it was a little heavy but manageable. I would love to get it back someday, but I will never pay more than $6k for that bass. Tone wise, it just isn't worth it to me. Below is a pic of that bass.

    I would love one day to own another Fodera, but I feel they have priced themselves out of the market I would consider buying from. I think Fodera builds one of the best basses in the world (along with several other builders) but not so great as to justify their cost. They have been great to me for quite a few years now and Joey and Mika really took care of me at NAMM, I am just saddened by their soaring prices. I actually feel angry inside for what they have done to players like myself (meaning, not massive $$$ to spend on a great bass). While I respect and understand their need to have their prices so high, (NYC rent, materials, experience, passion and exclusivity) I just wish they were what they were 6-7 years ago.

    I recently picked up a Sadowsky UV70 5'er with the Sadowsky singles in it and I have never been happier with my tone. Even if I could get a Fodera at twice the price of my Sadowsky that sounded this good, I would probably pull the trigger. But, I know that will never happen and I have to accept that. While my Sad sounds as good or better than 99% of Fodera's I have played and heard, it does not look as good as my Imperial or some Emperor's. And being a human and a male, I am a visual creature and aesthetics are important to me. While my UV looks killer, there is truly something elegant about the Fodera lines.

    In all, I miss my two Fodera's and know that I will not be able to replace them. But with the current pricing of the used and new market, I don't feel their costs justifies their product. I have the utmost respect for Vinny and Joey and think they are truly legendary. And part of the legend will be the cost they charge for their instruments.

    Fodera.jpg uv70-3.jpg
  10. It's all somewhat cyclic, IMO...Perhaps a proof that in the modern marketplace a company really has to be relentless with their (for lack of a better word) hype to remain in the public's eye.

    I recall Fodera (a brand that I have played but do not own) had some great media placement with name players for a time and all the concomitant word of mouth buzz, but of late that visibility seems somewhat reduced - perhaps that's just my perspective.
    It certainly isn't due to any sort of obsolescence or inferiority, instrumentally speaking.
  11. 3toes


    Aug 30, 2006
    Denver, Colorado
    It just seems like people trying to turn a thread into something controversial when it isn't necessarily headed in that direction.

    It's like going "Oooooo FIGHT!" on the playground.

    Adds nothing to the discussion.

    (And yes, I see the irony in that none of THIS adds to the discussion either... sorry:) )

    JAUQO III-X Inactive

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.

    Thank you and I agree.
  13. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    OTOH it appears that you have edited your OP to clarify what you meant. So perhaps you also agree with me that there was / still is some unecessarily inflammatory language in the OP to describe former Fodera owners who have fallen out of love? Or maybe not.

    Although not a FOdera owner myself, I can certainly attest to the falling out of love with instruments that I once thought were the greatest thing in the world. I used to love Warwick basses when I was younger, but after playing basses with slimmer neck profiles I just found that I coudln't go back to the Wariwck basses. Now, I don't know fi I would call myself "gung ho" over Warwicks, but I was certainly a fan boy. I guess like a good cheese our tastes mature with age and yet sometimes they just get moldy and stinky and we realise that the younger taste was really where our head was at. ;)
  14. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    I saw the original post and I'm seeing all these "this should be good" posts. If trolling escalates, I'll close the thread and infractions will be on the way.

    A straightforward way to start this thread would have been, "Fodera owners, why did you decide to sell your bass?"
  15. maybe their wives found out how much they were worth.
  16. Calexia13


    May 22, 2007
    Good Call Lando, there's enough misunderstandings here without using loaded language.
  17. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    I think you could apply this question to any bass. I've been through lots of boutiques, each time thinking that it would be my go-to bass forever. Well, GAS is an evil monster that makes you part ways with your possessions, your furniture, family pets, you name it.

    I'm currently hooked on ZONs (my 2nd time around). Ironically, one of the only high-end brands I haven't tried is Fodera. Hmmm.
  18. 3toes


    Aug 30, 2006
    Denver, Colorado
    I think you've pretty much hit it... Yes, instruments of all types can be/are aesthetically pleasing, and can even be considered works of art, or have sentimental value. But barring all of that, they're also tools of the trade. Sometimes you find a better tool, one that gets the job done better than others.

    Granted, sometimes you don't, and that's the one you hang on to for a long time.
  19. lamarjones

    lamarjones Supporting Member

    Aug 27, 2002
    Raleigh, NC
    Most people up here are complete addicts of GAS. There are VERY few regular posters that I think have much control over the drooling of gear and are in the game strictly to play. Myself included, i wouldn't want to stick up for any reason on why i sold somethig rather than I just wanted something different, or the time to sell was right. Not saying there aren't serious players, not what I meant at all, but there are certainly people who are way more vocal about the pros and cons of their particular instrument at a certain time than I think really warrant a long lasting heed to that response.

    That said, i think it's fantastic that they are turning around some of the negative things about how they operate, and past that think they make a hell of a bass. The demand/price for them is a near irrelevant topic for me. I know not for everyone, but to me it kind of is.
  20. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Caveat- I've never played nor owned a Fodera. But it depends on why people bought them. For a long time I really really wanted a Pedula Penta bass or Pentabuzz. Until I actually played one. It was a great bass, but just didn't speak to me. Now I'm the kind who doesn't buy instruments sight unseen (at least not the ones I've wound up keeping). The IDEA of the Pedula was perfect to me, but when I actually played it I realized it was a great great bass that wasn't made for me.

    I suspect that's a part of it with a lot of folks. They see Wooten et. al. with a Fodera, or McKagan with a Fender Jazz Bass Special, or Louis Johnson with a StingRay (or insert anyone with anything here) and think "That's cool! It sounds great! It looks awesome! It's going to be the best thing ever!!" and they buy one. Now they've invested in it and buyer's remorse sinks in. They have this iconic bass but they still sound like themselves, they still can't slap like Louis, groove like Willie Weeks, explore the physical limits of the bass like Vic, etc. So they move on to the next big thing and repeat the cycle.

    Then there're others who buy it because (like my attraction to the Pedula) they simply have no experience with that instrument because they live too far from any store that'd have one AND the specs/design philosophy/whatever indicates that it could very well be what they're looking for. And at first, while it's new, it IS wonderful and loved. But then as they get to know it better they learn that it's not exactly what they expected.

    That's why my rules are:

    A. I gotta play it first. The one I'm buying, not another one "just like it", but THIS particular chunk of wood and metal that I'm buying.
    B. It's gotta sound great unplugged. Don't start the tired argument that an umplugged P bass will sound like a Jazz if you change the PUPs. I know that. But the PUPs can only translate what the neck, bridge, and body are doing with the strings. I know what Jazz bass PUPs sound like, and what P bass PUPs sound like. So if it's got a rich warm sound unplugged, if it's balanced, if it resonates, then I know I'm going to find pickups that'll translate that. But if it sounds nasal, brittle, edgy, or mushy, dull, lifeless, no amount of electronics or bridge work is going to substantially change that. So it's gotta sound good unplugged.
    C. The neck has to feel comfortable- but not perfect. I can adapt to different feeling necks- everything from the thick club of my Sting (reproduction of a 1954 Precision) to the wide (side-to-side) but shallow (front-to-back) of my VS '62 P, to the Lakland 4-94, to the big honkin' neck on my Skyline 55-01.
    D. Then the ultimate test- does she say "Hi, honey- I'm home!!"

    Since I started using these tests, I've not bought an instrument I didn't want to keep. Of course it limits my options, and that's why I've been searching for MY Jazz bass since 1997.

    Well, sorta off on a tangent there, but I think a lot of lost love is due to people not having a very very clear idea of what they expect and want out of an instrument before they buy it. They buy stuff for all the wrong reasons- because it looks cool (or reject a great bass because they'd never play a sunburst), because Joe Cool endorsed it, because it's got a graphite neck, or an unobtainium bridge, or dilitium crystals in the pickups, or because they fell in love with the neck, or because a friend had one that they liked, or because someone they hate doesn't use it...

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