Gibson "nikki sixx" blackbird Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Kris_Sixx, Apr 18, 2003.

  1. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Hey. I'm sorry, I know this must have been done a lot.. But I am about to buy a bass, *i've never owned one before*. I've played a bit, but I am not really too great. I want to buy a bass, and I absolutely love Nikki Sixx, and I know that he made a bass with Gibson. I kind of think that one sounds good and that I will buy it. But I don't know much about basses and wanted to make sure that I am not wasting $1600(canadian) on it. I know that if I am just starting off with bass that I should get something cheaper, but I'm not interested in anyone tellin me a good bass to start with, I just wanted to know if the blackbird is good or not, because if i bought it, I would plan on keeping it and only using that one, at least for like 5 years until i have more money or something.. (im only 16..) anyways.. thanks.
  2. Johnny Alien

    Johnny Alien Supporting Member

    Jan 24, 2003
    Harrisburg, PA, USA
    Thunderbird basses are pretty nice I like them alot. I have found that the Nikki Six model was often times of poorer quality then the Thunderbirds that it is based on. If you get a good Nikki Six then you will be fine but if you can't check it out first I would go foe the actual Thunderbird and not the signature version.
  3. I second everything BL said but I'll add that buying a signature bass because of the name is not a good idea, especially when there are so many other things that affect the player's sound then the bass and the modifications that might be made to it. The reason it is suggested that you get a cheap bass to start out on is that you dont know what to look for and you dont want to blow a lot of money on a bass that you end up not liking.
    Plucky The Bassist likes this.
  4. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Yes, IME, you will be wasting $1600 (CN). When I was your age, decades ago, I fell into the same trap - If I get the "same' bass as my idol, I will sound like my idol.

    It just ain't gonna happen.

    For one thing, by the time Sixx came around, the technology was so advanced that all of his gear, including pickups and amplification, was tricked-out. That Nikki Sixx Sig bass you see hanging on the wall at the store isn't identical to what he played. His sound techs, provided by his recording company, saw to that. I was on the tour road before Motely Crue came around and our recording company had techs doing things to my gear I still don't understand to make me sound good, except for my pre-CBS Fender basses.

    Let's look at it logically - if any jerk with $1600 could buy a bass at a store that made them sound exactly like Nikki Sixx, Nikki Sixx would be asking you if you wanted "biggie fries to go with that drink?" at the drive-thru. The stuff in the rack systems of guys at his recording-sales level are simply mind-blowing.

    My advice is;

    Spend more money on your amp than your bass. A cheaper bass through a good amp sounds better than an expensive bass through a cheap amp. That's not just me spouting off. See what one of the best pickup makers in the business has to say about it at this link

    Or, in other words - why do so many bass players you see use $900-$1000 Fender basses through $3000 Ampeg SVT's amps???

    Just look at the posts on Talkbass. Most of them are bitching about how their amps sound, not their basses.
    Teacher likes this.
  5. I'll second that bit about the importance of the amp. A good bass won't have anything to it through a small, crappy amp. A nice setup can make any instrument sound sweet and good and loud. Besides, ****ty tone can be copensated for with volume (assuming there's a solid player playing through it)
  6. I think you might want to consider a Spector Rex Brown Signature. They aren't American made, but they have brighter pickups, tone controls, are slightly cheaper, and a quilt top. Nikki Sixx plays or has played Spectors and is listed on their artist page. If I remember correctly, the Rex was based on a custom bass that Spector created for Nikki that was based on a Thunderbird. From what I've heard, the tone of the Nikki Sixx Blackbird is pretty awful. I think the Rex would be a far better choice for the money, and it is has some similarities. PS...where in Canada are you?
  7. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Well I wouldn't be buying it just because of Nikki Sixx. I know it won't make me sound like him, and I know I don't need to use whatever he uses. Yeah, and thats something im scared of, because I've never owned a bass before, that I will end up blowing money on something I end up not liking at all. But also, if I don't buy the bass now.., then I will Never have the opportunity to get a New one ever again. and i dont wanna regret that.

    Amps are more important than the bass? Man.. guess you guys should give me some advice on what to get for that too..

    thanks again..
  8. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    oh and kraig. i live in manitoba.
  9. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    We have had a discussion about this so long ago I can't find the thread right now. Some people say "get a better amp", others say "Get a better bass". My feeling is if you're a beginner, you should invest more heavily in your bass. Since you're not going to gig right away, you won't have to play that loud all the time. Also, a lot of places where you'll probably be playing (church, school, etc) will have amps.

    Lastly, I think the longer you learn on your first bass, the better. Hopping from one neck feel to another is almost like a step backward. It's nice to grow into your instrument, especially when it's good.

    Just my opinion.
    PHILTHYinNC likes this.
  10. Ben Mishler

    Ben Mishler

    Jan 22, 2003
    San Jose
    If you are unsure about bass, and you are worried about blowing money if you decide you don't want to play anymore, I would suggest that you might want to buy used, that way if you found out bass is not for you, you can sell the gear at close to the price that you bought it for. In this respect buying used gear is better.
  11. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    How about Epiphone Thunderbird, it's basicly the same model but beginner-priced. If you want something bit more generic but still with good rock sound, Mexico-made Fender Precision comes to mind.

    The thing with musical instruments is, never buy just because of the looks. Try it out if it feels or sounds good to you, and if some other bass at the store feels or sounds better.
  12. bassackwards

    bassackwards Member

    Dec 16, 2002
    Let me start by saying I've never actually played one. But, I've played a few T-birds and I'm familliar with the features of the Sixx Signature. My advice would be to NOT buy that bass. It's just simply not a good deal for the money unless you're hell-bent on having his signature bass or you just really love the look of it so much that you just won't look nearly as cool with anything else;) . Keep this in mind: Musiciansfriend cleared these basses out of their inventory a year ago for 700.ooUSDw/case. That's real cheap for a brand-new T-bird, especially a signature one that was heavily hyped and advertised when it first came out. I've heard that the quality control was really random on those. Also, it doesn't have a tone control, so that doesn't give you any versitility at all and you won't learn jack-shizzy about bass controls and how they work in relation to whatever else you have in your rig. Think about it: you'll be lost when you pick up any other bass, especially some of these new ones with multiple tone controls and seemingly endless tone options. You'll be at the mercy of your amp or be forced to use an EQ whether you want to or not. Another thing to consider, that bass is made for one style only, both in the way it looks and the way it sounds. Personal taste and styles can change alot and many times over and being that you're 16, it's a pretty safe bet that this will happen. 2 or 3 years from now you could be looking at that thing going "Man, I'm gonna look funny with that thing when I go to try out for that funk band, I don't even like Motley Cru anymore." (just an example and something to think about) There's plenty-o-stuff that I thought was the greatest when I was 16 that I really can't remember why I even liked, but I never spent anywhere near that much on.
  13. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    There's a used one on the wall of one of my local music supermarkets. It's been hanging there for about a year-and-a-half.
  14. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Ok, the thing you said about it not having tone and such.. and if i played a different bass, that i wouldn't know what to do.. Well, there is a bass on ebay I could get, for $850(US) and he added volume and tone switches.
    its here:

    And there is also another one, that hasn't been modified for $750(US). Maybe I'd be better off getting one of those 2, instead of the brand new one I found..but I don't know.. I want it to be new for some reason..:p.

    And I know I'm young, but I know that I won't stop liking motley crue...well, im pretty damn sure anyways..

    How much for that one?
  15. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Oh,and I wish I could try it out first too. But there are none around to try. Any of them that I can find are all down in the US, and I cant go fly out to try it first...
  16. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    I think dude wants $1200 for it. At that price, I think it's gonna hang there for a while.
  17. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Damn Canadians? .. .
  18. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    Damn Canadians? Damn kids? Why?
  19. By-Tor


    Apr 13, 2000
    Sacramento, CA
    Since you are a beginner, play as many basses as possible before buying. You could find a really decent used bass for the money.
    Take your time and look around. There are alot of good deals out there.

    Good luck on your quest.
  20. Kris_Sixx


    Apr 18, 2003
    I don't remember saying I was from winnipeg.. but yeah I am.

    Anyways.. Yeah, I've heard all the CDs, i have em. Yeah, things after shout at the devil arent as good.. but meh.. And, Yes, I've read the dirt, I own that too. I don't think it really changed my view on Nikki..I just learnt a bit more about him, wont deny that he was a little bit crazy..

    Why do you ask these questions? and what do you think about em?