Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Cstring, Aug 1, 2002.

  1. Cstring


    Jul 31, 2002
    Hey everybody, I was hoping you real bass players could give me some advice.

    I've been really wanting to get into bass playing for a while now and think I might actually be close to taking the plunge and buying my first equipment. What I want to ask you guys for are suggestions as to good equipment to start with.

    I don't want to start too cheaply because I want to stick with the same equipment for quite a while without having to upgrade, but, at the same time, I don't want to spend a godawful amount of money on my first bass. I'm thinking about spending maybe $500-$750 on the bass (but could possibly be persuaded to spend more if you think I should).

    I've been looking at and listening to fretless basses and think I might like to get one; especially because I come from playing Viola and am used to not having frets at all. I want a good all around bass that I will be able to play most styles with (Jazz, blues, stuff like that - almost everything except heavy metal or super hard rock.)

    4 and 5 string suggestions are both welcome, and, who knows, maybe even 6, if you think it's feasible for a beginner.

    Thanks a lot for any help you can give me.
  2. StrudelBass


    Jul 6, 2002
    Welcome to TalkBass! Harharhar.

    You're gonna get this eventually, so I might as well say it. Basically, go into your local guitarshop and test out everything within your budget.

    If you insist on us telling you some good basses, tell us what kind of tone you would like.
  3. Tsal


    Jan 28, 2000
    Finland, EU
    But anyways, you are going to hear alot of this: MTD Kingston. The best bass out there for under $1000, among Lakland Skylines.

  4. Yeah, definitely the Kingston or Lakland Skyline.
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Welcome to bassdom and Talkbass, C. How about filling out your profile??? If we knew where you lived, we might know of a good shop in your area.

    As Strudel says, the best course is trying out as many as you can. Whatever you do;

    - Don't make a decision based just on looks (just like romance!)
    - Don't let an aggressive salesperson push what they want you to buy on you rather than getting what you want

    For the price range and music you describe, a used, American made, fretless Fender Jazz is a safe bet because;

    > the tones are classic/familiar
    > it holds its value well and selling them or trading them in isn't a problem (because they resell well)
    > it has 2 pickups, so it has tonal versatility
    - they're well built

    Then again, you may try some Jazzes out and find they don't seem comfortable/very playable or the tones may just not be your taste. So, try as many different brands and models within your budget as you can.

    What about your amp???
  6. wow, i think rickbass literally took every single word out of my mouth. i couldnt agree more on every point...especially the fretless MIA fender jazz. it should just be a great, reliable bass.

    good luck and have fun!
  7. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Didn't mean to steal your thunder, Joel. But, I think your post is valuable because it reinforces what we both know to be true - C might find a better fretless down the line, but C will never, in all probablility, think a fretless US made Jazz was a bad buy.
  8. Cstring


    Jul 31, 2002
    Thanks for your suggestions so far.

    I have heard a lot about both kingston's and skyline's lately, so I'll be sure to give them a check. The fender seems like a good, reliable choice also.

    About my location, I am in the LA area, so it shouldn't be too hard to find a good shop around (I already know of a couple.)

    About the tone I want... I don't really know what to say in bass terms, but I want something that has a nice clear sound, but that can also sound thick and full (not muddy, though) -- if that helps with any suggestions.

    Keep those suggestions coming though (if you guys have any more) cause I'm gonna need all the help I can get! ;)
  9. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    Hmm.. clear yet thick... A fender jazz perhaps?
    I would still look at the MTD kingston and Heir basses..
  10. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    Fender Jazz, for the reasons that rickbass gave.