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Gibson RD

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Rockbobmel, Apr 13, 2004.

  1. Rockbobmel

    Rockbobmel Supporting Member

    What do you think of the Gibson RD Bass. Davis Schools from Gov't Mule uses one and it sounds KILLER! Anyone else you know uses one.?
  2. hateater

    hateater snatch canadian cream

    May 4, 2001
    Eugene, OR
    You posted twice.
  3. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    They are neck heavy and heavy, period. The active models have rather bizarre electronics that may take a while to figure out.

    They used to be dirt cheap (like $250-400) and good bargains but now the prices have shot up to the $800-1000 range. I've never played one that I liked very much.

    Your mileage may vary.
  4. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Yep - I deleted the other.
  5. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    The RD Artist with the active Moog circuit has one of the best hard rock bass sounds I have ever heard.

    I don't have bass GAS anymore, but if I ever run across one in butterscotch/maple when I have money...

    Yes, they are very heavy. Heavier than most T-40s. And they do neck dive, but not as bad as a Thumb or a Thunderbird.
  6. As I recall, Ralph Armstrong played one during that time period when he was with Jean Luc Ponty. I'm not sure but it may have been a fretless to boot. The tone was simply incredible
  7. I have to echo Embellisher's sentiments.

    I almost bought one in 1979, if I recall correctly. I simply loved the tone and the feel. I didn't buy it because there were a few other basses I wanted first, and the RDs were a little on the pricey side for that time. I really regret never buying one.

  8. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    Nirvana's bassist Krist Noveselic played one.

    They're awesoem heavy as all hell sounding basses.

  9. Th9nker


    Mar 18, 2002
    I've actually seen that bass...

    I did lighting for Widespread Panic a few times in Athens, it's a cool bass. Although I think he is usually inseperable from his Modulus...

    I've always wanted an RD Artist or RD Standard....


    *heads over to eBay...*
  10. watspan


    Nov 25, 2002
    madison, wi
    For what it's worth, I thought big dave's tone on the deepest end dvd w/ the RD was the best of all the bassists on the show! (all playing through the same svt, btw)
  11. tappel


    May 31, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    Enter the voice of dissent.....

    A interesting story, though: I was at a flea market in the early 80's in New Hope, PA. Some guy had an RD Standard (along with a bunch of lawn tools etc) but he had no idea what it was worth. I wasn't familiar with the bass but it was clean and played ok. I offered him $100 and he jumped at it! ("You made my day," he said).

    That bass sucked! It weighed a ton and it sounded terrible - lousy pickups and pots (on or off, basically) but I did make a few bucks when I sold it. Definitely one of the least favorite basses I've ever owned.

  12. wideload


    Apr 15, 2004
    Salinas, CA
    I played an RD Artist for years. Great bar bass- you could take out 3 flying beer bottles at a time! I enjoyed the sound, but moved on to 5 strings. I played the RD some a few months ago while my 5 was in the shop, and it still sounded fine (I believe there's a big difference between artist and standard, but I won't bet on it). It was fine for a 90 minute worship service, but i did wonder how I held that thing up 4 hours a night, 5-6 nights a week. But I was younger then...
  13. JayAmel

    JayAmel Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2002
    Carcassonne, France
    For those among you who love them,

    Here's a pic I found on the net...

    Dream on !
  14. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    I came across one of these basses in see-thru maple in Jamaica, Queens NY in the 80s. It was like...$200 maybe? I sure I could have haggle it down. And sure enough, it weighed a ton. It had some battle scares but for the most part was in good shape. But I thought it was butt-ugly and I passed on it. In fact the only reason I even looked at it closely was because it had "Gibson" on the headstock and I say a price well under $300. Ugh!!!!! If I could only turn back the clock I would have stanched it in a heartbeat. Oh well, live and learn.

  15. toad


    Jun 26, 2002
    A long time ago, this guy in my bass class had an RD Artist amongst a class full of jazz and precision basses. He definitely stood out with a very authoritative and deep tone. I wanted one until I put it around my neck--heavy and didn't hang comfortably. Then I just rationalized the tone was in his fingers.
  16. dgce


    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    Oh, and I forgot to mention, the bass player from A Flock of Seagulls used to play a RD. Now what are you waiting for? Run out and buy one so you too can touch greatness!

  17. ThunderPig

    ThunderPig Guest

    Dec 15, 2002
    Oakland California
    I had an all maple RD standard for years. I didn't ever play it much, but not because there was anything wrong with it. It was just one of those basses way deep in my guitar closet. I do remember that it had a brutal attack type tone when it had a fresh set of Roto 66's and the bridge pickup was used. The only thing I didn't like about it was there was too much laquer (or whatever) on the fretboard, covering the frets, making it too much trouble to crown the frets the way I like. I didn't think the weight was much of a problem. On the plus side, I could take it out of it's case once a year and it would still be in tune. In ten years, I don't think the truss rod was tightened once. It was a very solid and stable bass.
  18. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    IMHO, the RD Standard isn't in the same league as the Artist. Different pickups, and missing the most important ingredient of all - that killer Moog preamp.
  19. I think that's the one Embelisher likes! shame about the 1,500 euro price tag though!
  20. Blazer


    Nov 27, 2003
    The Netherlands
    Rogue luthier employed at Knooren Handcrafted bass guitars
    "The Gibson RD Artist is the only bass in the world that I can throw against a brick wall and it'll still be in tune when I pick it up again." - Krist Novoselic.

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