Higher End Basses(double or electric?)

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by bleachstained, Sep 30, 2001.

  1. bleachstained

    bleachstained Guest

    Apr 22, 2001
    So here's the situation. I'm sitting in the living room this morning. The family's watching a music video. My dad sees an Ernie Ball being played by a guy that also plays a double bass on the group's other video. He says "You stick with bass, and maybe I'll buy you a double bass someday." So I said, "why, when you wouldn't consider the Ernie Ball before would you now maybe buy that?" He says, "Well, maybe I'll help you get either one you would want." So here's my dilemma-

    If I do stick with bass and decide to make a career out of it (which means college-keep that in mind), and dad decides to get me one, what would be better.

    The Ernie Ball/Warwick/High end Fender/Modulus
    for a nice electric bass

    Or a double bass (I know nothing about them) which I would think I need for college.(Don't most colleges just teach in the double bass format?)

    If going to college for bass studiesand playing in a band-what would be the better choice?
  2. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com In Memoriam

    Mar 22, 2000
    Cape of New Jersey
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music (retired)
    The better choice will be your choice. None of us can make that decision for you. It has to do with your future intentions and whether your current electric bass is sufficient for the time being.
  3. bootsaco

    bootsaco Guest

    Sep 8, 2001
    Portland, ME
    it's been my experience that in most academic situations, getting a double bass would be the best. i say this because, in my own situation, when i got to college to major in music, i realized that as a bassist(electric), i was going to have to learn double bass in order to graduate. i'm a jazz performance major, but i'm required to study classical 50% of the time, as well as spend 4 semesters in a classical ensemble, and have half of my senior recital be classical literature. there isn't any classical literature for the electric bass. i still play electric and have no plans on giving it up, but i bought a double bass, and if i could have before i got to school, i would have. i figure when school's over, i'll work more if i play both, so that's my two cents. the decision is yours, it all depends on what you'd like to accomplish.
  4. bootsaco

    bootsaco Guest

    Sep 8, 2001
    Portland, ME
    oh yeah, sometimes you can use your student loans for instruments, if you work with your instructor to get his/her permission....the financial aid usually does that if you show it as a neccessary expense....
  5. dhosek


    May 25, 2000
    Oak Park, IL
    I've got to agree with Bob, the best choice is your choice.

    As for needing a DB for college, there were instruments available for free (or at least cheap rental) at every school that I attended, from grade school through college. I'd also note that for an equivalent level of quality there's roughly a 5x multiplier in price for a DB (e.g., a $1000 DB is about the same quality level as a $200 BG. For something that's the same quality level as say a Musicman bass guitar, you can expect to pay $5000-$7500, at least.

    Note also that people on this side of the board will probably be biased towards DB (for good reason ;-)

  6. bootsaco

    bootsaco Guest

    Sep 8, 2001
    Portland, ME
    good point about the school having basses. i forgot about that one. my school has some. they're not super quality, and availability is always an issue, at least here, but i'm sure alot of places have a system of rental or at least signing them out.
    my statement about the 'acceptance' of electric basses was based soley on my experience with the state university that i attend, i didn't even think about other schools like the players school or MI or anything....my bad...i think i'm pretty right on about having to learn double bass at the university level, due to the common requirement of classical studies, though, so that's a consideration. just go with what you really want to do with music, and don't think you've got to decide everything all at once....i used to play christian rock, now my love is jazz....it took some time to figure that out, and i've still got tons more things to get together.
  7. bootsaco

    bootsaco Guest

    Sep 8, 2001
    Portland, ME
    "try not to let the totality of your experience become the totality of this wide and wonderful universe, eh?"...likewise...i don't think i ever did that, and my point of view isn't the only one...i guess i should just quit trying to contribute...i do play electric too, so i'm not putting it down, someone asked a question, i had a thought about it, end of story.....thanks for keeping it positive, by the way....
  8. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    Obviously Bootsaco's first experience with being "Ed"-ited.

    Boots, don't take it personally. We understand that Ed's bite is every bit as bad as his bark. Put a band-aid on it and carry on.
  9. bleachstained

    bleachstained Guest

    Apr 22, 2001
    Well to answer a few questions-

    Right now I'm not sure what I'm really going to do with bass, I'm just positive it's what I want to do. I would be willing to play bass in any style. I am learning Jazz in lessons and am always studying various Rock music(RHCP and Dave Matthews Band).

    The main reason I wanted to know is for college.

    What careers are there in the bass field besides playing in a band or orchestra and how would I go about getting into those positions?
  10. gruffpuppy

    gruffpuppy Guest

    Aug 15, 2000
    In your basement.
    It sure is nice to see Ed. :D
  11. Don Higdon

    Don Higdon In Memoriam

    Dec 11, 1999
    Princeton Junction, NJ
  12. mflaherty


    Oct 9, 2001
    This is from the North Texas Jazz Studies web site at:


    Ability to play both acoustic and electric basses is not required for entrance into the bachelors in jazz performance program but is part of the requisites for completing the degree. The greater the students' experience on both instruments upon entering the program, the easier the process will be.

    It would be interesting to see a list of the schools that offer a degree for electric bass.
  13. bootsaco

    bootsaco Guest

    Sep 8, 2001
    Portland, ME
    thanks, that's what i thought.
  14. Smith373

    Smith373 Guest

    Sep 18, 2000
    Richmond, Virginia
    The more diverse you are in music the more valuable you can be in a group or in a studio. Get the upright and learn about its tone, sound, intonation, how it speaks with the high notes and low. Its not an electric (gee, really??) but it is sooo much fun to play. You can still slap, pop and pull but comes out differently. I think its in the thump of each note and the resonance of the body. Listen to DB players from the early jazz years and today. I'm no great musician but I have a lot of different Basses, including an upright, an acoustic fretless nylon strings (big phatt strings, not li'l skinny LaBellas) and electrics strung with tapewounds, rounds and flats. All sound different and fit in better in the right songs. Hey - I love bass. But I really love the acoustic sound of the wood. Get the upright; diversify!!!