Good bass shops in DC or Carolinas/Georgia/Virginia?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Molan, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. Molan


    Dec 13, 2003
    Oxfordshire, UK
    I'll be riding a bike up from Miami to DC & taking in Savannah, Charleston some of the Carolinas & a large chunk of the Smoky & Blue Ridge mountains & then ending up in DC.

    As I'm based in the UK I'm always thinking of bringing a nice bass back home with me whenever I travel and I wondered if there were any really good places to go bass shopping in DC?

    I could buy something en route & get it shipped to my hotel in DC as an alternative option so any thoughts on bass places to visit on my route would be much appreciated :)
  2. Rosebud


    Jan 3, 2007 is in Alexandria,Va about 7 miles from D.C. not so accesable by metro(subway), only open Fri and Sat for few hours, check the store hours on the website.
  3. Rosebud


    Jan 3, 2007
    Oh, I just thought of another one, Atlanta Bass Gallery in Georgia!
  4. Thunderitter

    Thunderitter Bass, the final frontier... Supporting Member

    Jun 6, 2007
    USA here in Northern VA - about a 15min cab ride from D.C.

    Only limited opening hours or by appointment, so check out their gear and then call ahead or e-mail.

    Hate to say it, but Guitar Center is somewhere my UK mates always enjoy a rummage through. However, I'm just back from the UK, where some of the prices on Fender's and Gibson are no different than ours over here as the result of favorable exchange rates and the recent price rises. I was talking to one store (who will remain nameless) who spent the first part of the year shipping gear to the US!

    So if it's 'standard', available in the UK gear your looking at buying do a price check before you buy over here!

    I'm about 20mins from D.C. myself - feel free to pm me if you want any more info on what to do or see!
  5. After avoiding all Guitar Center locations for about 5 years, I finally went to the one in Greenville, SC in my search for my first non-crappy bass. To my surprise, all of the employees I dealt with were helpful, attentive, knowledgeable and friendly, yet they let me take my time and didn't show a trace of condescension (even though I'm obviously no expert bassist). Their selection was impressive, too, even for GC.

    By all means, go for the locally owned Mom & Pop music stores. But if you happen to pass through Greenville, SC, don't hesitate to visit the "monster."
  6. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    Jivesound and Rocketmusic
  7. There's a place called Chuck... somethings (I forgot the guy's last name) that's good. I've ordered expensive stuff from them and they were quick and helpful. They have some good stuff on the floor to play with too.
  8. Jim C

    Jim C I believe in the trilogy; Fender, Stingray, + G&L Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    I live in Rockville MD just outside of DC and restore / ride old Kawa triples.
    Washington Music Center (Chuck Levin's) is a very large store that might be worth a look but limited boutique items. Also have a GC very near by.
    Send a PM if you want a riding / bass shopping partner.
  9. Atmoic Music in Greenbelt MD. Best used gear ANYWHERE. I'm going there tomorrow myself! :D
  10. If you're coming through southwestern Virginia, plan a stop in Blacksburg to see Greg at Rocket Music, you will not be disappointed!
  11. Yeah that's it! Chuck Levin's!
  12. Lizooki


    Feb 24, 2008
    When you leave Charleston, SC, head toward Greensboro, NC.

    Roscoe Basses is there ...... and Don's Music City. Well, in truth there are several good stores in the area ... and yes a GC.

    Then you're only about and hour and a half south of the Blue Ridge Parkway.

  13. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Yorktown, VA
    Atomic is my favorite used gear place on the whole world. So much stuff to sift through.
  14. Stay Away From Chuck Levins!! That place introduced me to Ken Smith basses and my life has sucked ever since. Gas is not good!

    Actually, its a pretty cool store. And I'll own a Smith one day.
  15. Last time I was there they had a big wall of great amps to try out and mix together. It was nice.
  16. Bass7755


    Oct 27, 2000
    Roanoke, Va.
    +1 Rocket Music.
    The Blue Ridge Parkway is beautiful and it's close to Rocket Music in Blacksburg,Va.
  17. Molan


    Dec 13, 2003
    Oxfordshire, UK
    Thanks so much for all these guys, the only one I'd heard of was the Atlanta Bass Gallery & I think that's going to be too far out of my way.

    I hadn't realised that Roscoe was in NC! I had a beautiful SKB that I sold when I was switching over to 5 stringers & I really miss it. A new SKB 3005 is pretty high up my list of possibles.

    I've also just picked up my first Smith so I'm pretty tempted by those as well :)

    Pricing comparisons are difficult between UK & USA because we get hit with a 20% surcharge on anything we import. Based on current exchange rates this does mean that many new basses are the same price over here.

    The real advantage in pricing is usually on used high end US made basses. These hold their value really well in the UK generally so buying from the US is often a better deal (I imported my Smith recently and have an Alembic on the way soon as well).

    GC are often pretty good on comparable pricing for stuff like effects and higher end Fenders are sometimes cheaper - stuff like Custom Shop models etc.

    I've also realised that I could detour inland on my trip up the coast to Bass Central who seem to have an amazing stock list :)

    I'm so excited about this trip. It's about 6 years since I did a long solo bike trip in the USA :hyper:
  18. rodneyat


    Apr 12, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    Check with Bass Central to make sure they have the "stock" item you are looking for. Half of what is on their website is not actually in stock. A lot of people on this list love them but I find them to be the master of the " bait and switch"
  19. Holy War

    Holy War

    Sep 18, 2008
    VA Beach
    theres Alpha Music in Virginia Beach but I dont know that it will be on your way, it seems like youre going to be more out west