Great New Fenders!!!!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Dr. Cheese, Jan 27, 2006.

  1. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I just went to a local Fender dealer and I was really blown away by two new basses. The first to catch my eye was the Victor Bailey five string. It is beautiful bass with attractive gold hardware that really matched nicely with the top wood (korina?) of this bass. The bass was wonderfully finished and had a beautiful Fender Jazz tone. I played it through an Ampeg stack with four tens and a fifteen if I remember correctly. This bass sounded to me exactly like an active Jazz should. It had the great scooped soon with pronounced high and low that one expects from a Jazz. The B string is excellent, I say that as a bassist who owns a Skyline 55-02 and who has owned several 35" scale basses and nice SR5, in other words, I know a nice B when I play one and hear one. I have never played any of the boutique Jazzes, but they would have to be damn good to be better than a Victor Bailey V. Although I do not have experience with boutique Jazzes (except the Pedulla) I have owned and played several "hippie sandwich" style boutiques, plus Modulus and USA Lakland basses. The Victor Bailey V is in every a comparable instrument IMO. The dealer said it was $1,500 cash out the door, and I had to say that sounded darn good to me. If I take care of a few other issues, I could seriously see me getting one of these basses. It would be a wonderful compliment to my Skyline, it might just put my 55-02 on the shelf!

    As much as I liked the Victor Bailey, the manager told me to check out a another bass that he had not even priced yet. It was the new CIJ, Jaguar Bass. As great as the Victor Bailey V was, I was not blown away. It is a top of the line MIA Fender, and I expected it to be good. The Jaguar was an unknown quantity, and damn, it is a hell of a bass! Imagine a Geddy Lee Jazz with active electronics and really nifty tone shifting options. That is basically what the Jaguar is. The knobs are volume and tone, the various switches appear to cut on and off pickups and do a bunch of other stuff. If this bass were a person, I would probably get arrested because the thing just begs to be slapped! IMO this bass is perfect folks like me who liked the Marcus Miller Jazz but weren't to thrilled with a bass that is so completely designed to sound like another player's sound. The Jaguar is a great new take on the Jazz sound and it sounds incredibly good! The best part is that this bad boy is around $700! I may have to put this thing away tomorrow! I really want another five, but damn, this bass sounds good! IF that new Tony Franklin is anywhere near as good as these basses I played today, Fender is going take a bunch of Bass players money!
  2. IotaNet

    IotaNet Supporting Member

    Doc -

    Those are excellent reviews. I always thought Fender needed to to a 5 string version of the Victor Bailey. Besides sounding awesome, the VB is one of the prettiest basses they make.

    Regarding the Jaguar, that is VERY useful information! There's been a lot of interest in the Jag but I really didn't know what kind of sound/vibe it brought to the table. Sounds like you're telling us it's an old-fashioned FUNK machine, eh?

    You talkin' my language, sir! :cool:

    Edit: What's a "Hippie Sandwich?"
  3. quallabone


    Aug 2, 2003
    I believe the VB top is Koa.
  4. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Quallabone, thanks for the correction. Iota, the Jaguar is slap heaven! I love both of those basses. For me, the Victor Bailey makes the most since because it is a great five and I mainly play in church. That Jaguar, however, is a ball to play and it is very reasonably priced.
  5. I believe a hippie sandwich is when they sandwich a whole bunch of different woods together for an aestethic effect

    not sure tho
  6. teacherguy


    Feb 21, 2004
    Cincinnati, OH
    Yeah, a hippie sandwich refers to the multi-laminate necks that are visible from the front of the bass. The body wings are glue onto the sides of the neck-thru plank.
    Alembic made this feature famous which helped make their instruments much sought after in the seventies (still are) as one of the few boutique basses back in the day.
    Like so:

  7. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    I own a 4 string VB jazz and it is my secret weapon! It is by far the funkiest jazz I own, and mine has the "noiseless" pups in it. I would buy the VB 5 string in a heartbeat if I didn't have the 4. The newer basses have the "samarium cobalt noiseless" pups in them, these pups are definately warmer than the "noiseless" pups.
  8. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I really like that Victor Bailey V. The great irony is that unless Victor Bailey has changed his mind, he doesn't like fives! I don't knock him though. I would take the royalty too, and his model is killer.:bassist:
  9. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    I remember he said that back in the day and next thing I knew I saw him on tv with a five playing behind Madonna;)
  10. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    The boss lady might have threatened to sing to him in his sleep if he didn't hit low B!:eek:
  11. Mike


    Sep 7, 2000
    if only the VB 4 had a more traditional J neck, i would definitely pick one up. they are great playing basses. c'mon Fender, help me out. ;)
  12. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I played both of those Fenders again today. The Victor Bailey V is great and it has a nice bright sound. I A/B'ed it with my 55-02 and the Lakland is definitely deeper sounding with the controls set flat on both basses. That said, looks wise, the VBV blew my poor Skyline out of the water! I doubt if I will get it though. My Skyline is already my number 1 bass. If I get another five, it will be a relatively inexpensive backup, not a beautiful $1,500 bass that desrves to be a number one axe.

    I played that Jaguar again, and I am crazy about that bass. At $699, it is as good a deal as one can find. If I get another four, it will be a Jaguar.
  13. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
    I went to Fenders website looking for these basses, no go, anyone have pics???
  14. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    There are pictures of the new Victor Bailey V on Musicians Friend and there are plenty of pictures of the new Jaguar right here at TB.