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going to chicago... looking for a good bass shop...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Cymbalrush, Apr 5, 2009.


  1. Cymbalrush

    Cymbalrush

    Sep 15, 2008
    hi there, Ronan's the name, long time reader, first time poster!

    i'm going to chicago in about 2 weeks for 4 days and i'm thinking of picking up a new guitar. i live in Dublin, Ireland and basses in the states are alot cheaper than here.

    i've been playing about a year and have started gigging. id like a nice mid-high end bass, nothing too expensive but i am willing to splash out if the deal is good.

    i already research the chicago bass club and it looks amazing, ill defo pop in during my time there, but is there any other good music shops around with a good bass selection... centrally located? ;)...

    Thank you!
     
  2. Bassmingo

    Bassmingo

    Nov 6, 2008
    Ireland
    from a fellow irishman, i was in chicago last month, and went to the chicago music exchange just for a look around. i didnt want to leave! having a credit card in that shop would be very dangerous!

    its not centrally but a few stops on the brown line "L" train will get you there.

    best of luck!
     
  3. iskbee

    iskbee

    Aug 1, 2005
    Toronto, Ontario
  4. Cymbalrush

    Cymbalrush

    Sep 15, 2008
    thanks!

    in your experience is there much price difference between the likes of that shop and a shop here in dublin, say X-music?

    I've always found there is but then trying to weigh up the hassle of bringing it home by the cost...
     
  5. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Chicago
    My recommendations:
    1. Bass Club Chicago's my favorite. Fine selection of basses (and amps and cabs), and Mark is a great guy to deal with.

    2. If you have time, call or email Lakland and set up a time to stop by. Everyone's very cool there. They'll give you a tour and let you try out the basses. You'll need to get there by a car or cab, probably, as there are no nearby EL stops.

    3. Chicago Music Exchange is a fun place to look at vintage basses and try them out. I don't think I would buy from them, though. Their prices tend to be high, even relative to that market, and...well, I've heard a negative thing or two.
     
  6. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs
    +1000 on all of the above....especially the Lakland tour....have you ever had the pleasure of trying a Lakie? you should try them - no better place than the factory!

    and if you like something, either Mark at Bass Club Chicago or Leo from Leo's gear (used basses) can set you up epending on what they have in stock....
    both top notch guys!!!

    let GregC and I know when you are in town and (maybe) we can meet...

    I was in Dublin a couple of years ago....loved it!!!

    Doug
     
  7. pringlw

    pringlw

    Nov 22, 2008
    Seattle Area
    All great places - but also all quite high end. This would be where you would go if you are looking for a fairly expensive bass (probably good value relative to Ireland, but expensive due to the quality level). If you are looking for something less expensive you may want to drop into a Guitar Center as well. Won't find any Laklands or Rickenbackers but they will have a solid collection of $500 to $1500 basses.
     
  8. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs

    You CAN find some VERY nice Lakalnds (and other "high end" basses as you phrase it) in that price range...especially used....also - he will not pay tarrifs if he was "traveling" with the bass the whole time...saving more money....

    GC is OK but.........don't get me started!!!
     
  9. pringlw

    pringlw

    Nov 22, 2008
    Seattle Area
    I'm not crazy about them either and trust me, when I go to Chicago the places listed are where I go. I'm just acknowledging that I'm not clear on the price range he's looking for. The guy may be looking for a $400 bass.

    You're right though, you can get some Lakland Skylines for less than a thousand bucks.
     
  10. pedro

    pedro

    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    The Chicago Music Exchange is s must visit place if you are into vintage instruments at all. That said, I'd leave the credit cards somewhere safe when you do go.
     
  11. Cymbalrush

    Cymbalrush

    Sep 15, 2008
    i was thinking something like 1000$ max...

    thanks all for your great advice, the lakland factory is of definate interest.

    as said, my plan is to claim im travelling with it, hopefully therefore avoid the extra costs.

    guitar centre sounds good... is it central?
     
  12. Cymbalrush

    Cymbalrush

    Sep 15, 2008
    haha

    good advice thank you.

    ive heard nothing but good things... its must stop it seems
     
  13. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs

    I agree with you 100%!!! I was not trying a "start something" just commenting...thanks for understanding and being civil!!!
     
  14. Bassmingo

    Bassmingo

    Nov 6, 2008
    Ireland
    the difference between irish shops and american shops is your honesty at customs coming home.

    I bought my stingray on my first trip stateside in '98. it cost $1100 (approx IRĀ£600 back then)

    ...and i confidently strolled through the green channel with it coming home. i'll leave it at that.
     
  15. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Chicago
    Glad to be of help. GC has several locations, the closest to downtown is sort of on the way to Chicago Music Exchange.
    http://gc.guitarcenter.com/locations/store.cfm?store=334

    Where are you staying when you're in town?
     
  16. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs

    There are Guitar Centers all over the country.....most of the other locations are within a cab ride (or two) of downtown....where are you staying? Chicago is a BIG place.....

    I would say go to Lakland and Talk to Leo while you are there...he can set you up with a GREAT used bass (Lakland or not)...some wear will make it easier to claim it was "traveling with you"...

    if you need his contact info.....let me know...

    as for Guitar Center you need to know what you want before you go in there because the basses are rarely set up right and may sound awful even though they are good basses...

    also - as for finding someone who REALLY knows basses at a GC - that is hit and miss.......

    what they DO have going for them is a wide selection of low to mid level basses...

    Sam Ash ( a chain with less stores) also has a decent - though smaller selection - and people who know more...

    Bass Cub Chicago and the others mentioned have experts in basses and a nice selction of mid to upper range basses...
     
  17. Cymbalrush

    Cymbalrush

    Sep 15, 2008
    good advice, thank again.

    im travelling with my friends who have booked the whole thing, i have no idea where im staying other than it being central... im kind of hopeless i must confess...

    for me alot of this depends on a good deal... as it has to make up for the effort in getting the thing home etc...

    ill scout out the bass club and music exchange... they seem my best bets.... laklands may a little pricey...
     
  18. pringlw

    pringlw

    Nov 22, 2008
    Seattle Area
    Just remember. This thread doesn't end until you post what you ended up buying (with pictures!). Good luck and enjoy Chicago. Great great town.
     
  19. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Chicago
    Heh, well, let us know when you have the location firmed up. Always willing to help with directions. And I live and work in the city (my office is downtown), so if you're up for having a beer, let me know.

    US Laklands will be out of your price range, but Skylines run right around the $1k mark, particularly the Bob Glaub, Duck Dunn and Joe Osborn models, and the 44-01 and 55-01 are in the $700-800 range. And that's for new ones, used are of course less. I'll second Doug's recommendation of Leo, who works for Lakland but also sells used gear of various brands.
    http://www.leosgear.com/basses.htm

    Also, +1 to what pringlw said!
     
  20. basspraiser

    basspraiser Jammin for the Lamb! Supporting Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    Chicago - NW Burbs

    I second that!!!!
     

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