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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fire-Starter, Jun 25, 2004.

  1. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
    I am not sure if this has been done, but what is the latest feelings regarding basses used for Gospel music? please share ;) this of course is open to all who play Gospel music only or Gospel and other, I am curious as to whether people feel that "any bass will do", or is there a certain sound that certain basses have when it comes to Gospel.

    PEACE TO YOU ALL! :cool:
  2. mark beem

    mark beem I'm alive and well. Where am I? Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I don't see why any bass wouldn't do... I know Warriors are supposed to be "annointed" and all, but I'm sure a Hohner "Steinie" would put just as much low-end glory in as any other..

    Umm.. be careful.. Threads like these in the past have quickly degraded into religious debates and likewise were quickly closed!!
  3. I exclusively play for church, sometimes other functions. I think that bass guitar is vital to the music. Especially if you're doing music from Brooklin Tab or Christ Church, where you have the urban sound, and in that case, you need a very good sounding bass. A music minister said it this way. The bass guitar is the backbone of the rhythm section, and I don't feel lower on the bass totem pole by not playing other kinds of music. :)
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  4. Daniel L.

    Daniel L. Guest

    Aug 30, 2002
    Ken Smith seems to be THE bass for urban gospel.
    iwearpumas likes this.
  5. dedmyers


    Dec 23, 2003
    I am currently playing in a "Southern Gospel" and Contemporary Christian group. For both my main instument is my Lakland 55-01. The only thing that varies are the settings on my Walkabout (w/Aggies).
  6. Hawkeye

    Hawkeye Canuck Amateur

    I play in our church's worship team. When we're playing contemporary songs and choruses I tend to use either my Lakland 55-01 or Godin BG-5 5-string active EQ basses. They have good sustain (when I need some long piano-like notes). They just seem to have the power to support dynamic swings in the music and have a large degree of tonal variation.

    It seems as if a lot of gospel songs are written in Eb which makes the extended range of the fivers a perfect match.

    In terms of sound, you'd have to say that I prefer mainly a clean, but deep type of tone but I'm not adverse to using my Sans Amp Bass Driver to get a bit of grind and volume boost on the odd chorus or bridge.

    I also play in a smaller group where we do strictly old-time gospel, R&B, and jazz-inspired tunes. For those songs with prominent sax and piano I like to use my Fender Precision American Series with flat wounds. It just has more of that old school flavour and is perfect for walking bass llines in eighth notes that don't require a lot of sustain.
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  7. hondo8671


    Apr 22, 2004
    I play Gospel & contemporary Christian music also some Christian rock praise GOD! i have played for years and alot of
    diffirent basses. the best Bass i have found for all around
    Gospel music is the Peavey cirrus 5 they have the best tone
    range for any style of Gospel! :D
  8. Oh, what I play:

    Peavey Axcellerator [currently undergoing a makeover]

    Custom built fretless.

    Both are active pickups and 5 string setups.
  9. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    I've played gospel (Christian) music exclusively for the last 21 years. Now days Gospel music covers every style of music imaginable. I would say that the type of bass you favor would be determined by whether you're talking black gospel, southern gospel, contemporary gospel, etc.....
    I found over the years that in the church I'm called to play vertially every style of music that's out there. I play in the church orchestra (30-40 piece), praise band, and youth band and to cover that broad of a range of music styles you need a real versatile bass (and amp but that would be another thread). During the last 21 years I've owned several basses (G&L, Alembic, Pedulla, Tobias, Roscoe) but IMO the Roscoe does the best job of covering the wide range of styles and sounds for the music I'm required to play. By varying my right hand playing style (fingers, pick, thumb) and tweaking the on-board EQ my Roscoe can pretty much nail any sound that I need. However, I do think that all gospel bass players need a fretted and a fretless bass. In my opinion the fretless was invented for worship music. :)
    joebar likes this.
  10. jja412

    jja412 Fine gear enthusiast

    Feb 2, 2004
    St. Louis
    Whatever you want to play, so long as you can tailor your sound via EQ or technique to cover the various genres. I use a Geddy Lee or my Warmoth Jazz for most youth praise functions, my Cirrus for Sundays worship set, and try to use my Pbass as well when I can. Seen everything from Fodera to Smith to Roscoe used effectively, and well as a sweet 7 string Conklin. The bass gospel bass player I've known uses a Washburn XB900.

    Just be versatile and spirit filled.
    And willing to compromise with the worship leader.
    And willing to take a back seat to everything else.
    And willing to turn down, even when you don't think you're loud (DOH!)
  11. Daniel L.

    Daniel L. Guest

    Aug 30, 2002
    What type of "gospel" music do you mean anyway Firestarter?

    When I hear gospel I think of Fred Hammond, Kirk Franklin, Hezekiah Walker, etc. Thumping bass lines and big choirs.

    Now contemporary is more like pop or rock. I think of the Vineyard or Hosanna music.

    These are both totally different styles.
  12. JPJ


    Apr 21, 2001
    Chicago, IL
    While I don't play gospel or Christian music myself, I do get a lot of calls from guys who do, and they all seem to be interested in Roscoes. Smiths, MTDs, and Roscoes all seem to be well-suited to gospel music and have subsequently captured the attention of many gospel players.
  13. Basso Gruvitas

    Basso Gruvitas Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth TX
    You said it, Daniel. There's a big difference in what instrument I would use on Urban Gospel vs Southern Gospel. For Urban, looks like a lot of guys are using Ken Smith, a modern/Marcus Miller kind of Jazz bass. I've also seen some Roscoes.

    For Southern gospel, you gotta get that "good ol' boy" sound so I would use a Fender P or maybe a Lakland -- either with a rosewood fingerboard. Maybe some flatwoud strings too.

    Contemporary Christian kind of goes all over the map stylistically so a versatile instrument that sounds good in all styles would be best.

    Make a joyful noise...!
    Jhengsman likes this.
  14. metron

    metron Supporting Member

    Sep 12, 2003
    I use a Fender Jazz bass for everything. :p
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  15. andyroo


    Jun 23, 2003
    Yeah I've seen lots of guys go for MTDs, I mean, Andrew Gouche and Norm Stockton both use them. I use a Yamaha, and some of the other guys who play at my church use Ibanez. But like Mark said, any bass will do, it's just a matter of what you do on it.
  16. Yeah, I think Jay hit it right on the head. Those seem to be the most widely used. One thing that you see alot of in gospel bass is a deep, low B.
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  17. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    I use my Fender MIA Jazz Deluxe Active. It covers just about anything. I can pretty much set it and use the pikup blend and my technique to fit almost any style we play. We play upbeat, almost rock contemporary, to contemporary praise and worship, to hymns. My jazz covers them all. Playing thru my GK amp and Eden cab rig with a sansamp, I can get almost ANY tone I could even need. Every so often, I also bring in my P-bass, too. It has EMG's, which have a clear and crisp sound. Really jumps out in front!
  18. I play in a Contemorary Christian Worship band. When playing in the band setting I play a Warwick Streamer Jazzman Lx 5 string. It has mean phat low end and cuts through really well.

    At church I play my Jazz Deluxe 5'er. Doesn't cut through so well as I would like.

    The band I play with tour internationally for 4 months of every year. We spend a large part of that time in the States and are coming back to the US in 1 week. Please feel free to come and hang with us if you want!

    here is our site. www.parachutemusic.com then go to the link for the Parachute Band site.

    Peace and Love
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  19. srxplayer


    May 19, 2004
    Highland, CA
    It's all good when you are doing it for God's glory. But if I had to pick I would say probably a Fender Jazz or a G&L L2500.
    Gospel Bass Player likes this.
  20. Jeff Rader

    Jeff Rader Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2000
    Lone Star State
    Unlike many other "venues", you're actually playing for an audience that (in most cases...) is sober and actually listening to the music! ;)

    Plus, much contemporary Christian is complex, and harmonically challenging and diverse.

    Why not sound the best you can?