In Search of the Holy Growl!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rickreyn, Jul 10, 2001.

  1. rickreyn

    rickreyn Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2000
    Lutz, Florida
    I'm in an eternal quest for a 5-string with a buzzy growly fat sound with some presence on the high end and a solid rich low end. I want all this in the guitar's basic state (before EQ) and I want it to sound this way using a fingerstyle playing method. I've played a Carvin LB75 and a Warwick Corvette Standard and I still don't think I'm there yet. I know I may be asking a lot and I have my particular and peculiar reasons. I need some suggestions without cost considerations.
  2. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I think you may be asking for a little much. Everything in your rig contributes to the character of your sound. Why is it such a bad thing to tweak EQ to bring out the color you are looking for? While certain instruments are better suited for certain styles and sounds, you still have to tweak here and there to get what you are looking for.

    If you didn't get the growl you are looking for out of a Warwick, I don't know where to send you.
  3. Personally, I'm just crazy about the Danish handmade guitars and basses "Jotun"... They have an awesome b string!!! but also, a warwick pretty much kicks butt too!
  4. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    Hm, I can just recommend looking around in the high price range.
    A Corvette simply can't compare to a Streamer Stage II, for example.
    Since tastes are individual, you have to do your own research, I'm afraid.

    If you were located in Germany, I'd point you to some smaller companies. Marleaux basses are famous for their low b, for example.
    Continue your search with the smaller (high end) companies.
    Larger companies like Carvin, Ibanez or Fender probably won't have what you want, because of their wood quality control, among other factors.
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Another one to consider with the other good suggestions from others -

    Dukey name, massive tone in the right hands.
  6. i tried an F bass and i believe that it may fit your description. obviously a fretless is gonna get a deeper growl/buzz, but these puppies can push some air through a nice rig while maintaing the highs.
  7. xush


    Jul 4, 2001
    mobile AL
    maybe F bass, MTD 535, Modulus, Pedulla, Sadowsky?
    All were quite articulate (the models I tried) with rich fundamentals, but still offered a good bit of variety.
    What else have you played recently?

  8. FunkSlapRumblefish

    FunkSlapRumblefish Guest

    May 23, 2000
    Charlotte, NC
    I think a Warwick Streamer LX could give you what you're looking for. IMO this is one of the few basses that give you a growly, snappy sound while you're playing fingerstyle, and still is reasonably affordable :). It sounded amazing when I played one through a Bassman 200 amp at a pretty high volume, so it should sound good on almost any amp. IMO this bass is one of the all-around best Warwick's made, I say you should check it out
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Did someone say cherry sunburst Rapture J2?

    rickeyrn, the Rapture J2 has growl in droves, at least to my ear.

    I have a 5 string with a maple board, and to me it is like a super Jazz bass 5 string on steroids.

    In the words of Bass Player 'J like growl, from a B string.'

    No lie either. I love this bass. It is great for that vintage Jazz vibe, but with Bart pickups and 2 band preamp, I can get modern tones from it as well.

    I think that you definitely owe it to yourself to try one out.

    Here's a couple of obligatory(;)) pics.


  10. you may have tried warwick, but not all warwicks, the corvette might not be quite right, or maybe the woods of the one weren't. IMO you can't get better than an older dolphin with rosewood. streamer stage I's also might be what your looking for. and of course there are other great brands that have been mentioned, but of higher end basses i've had the most experience(and love) for warwicks, personnal prefference
  11. xush


    Jul 4, 2001
    mobile AL
    you definitely get different tones out of the different warwicks. so, unless you're dead-set on anything but warwick, check out a streamer or a thumb. Or whatever you can find.
    they are fine instruments. even the new 'cheaper' models are very nice.
  12. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson Commercial User

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    Boom Bass Cabinets, DR strings
    You just described my Elrick NJS fretted 5.
  13. RedGrange


    Jun 11, 2000
    Springfield, IL
    I say Elrick too... or maybe the Dingwall
  14. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    It's pretty simple! Warwick Thumb NT for growl...nothing beats it.

    I still can't shake it's tone though, but it's got more growl that anything!

    Dingwall's are interesting creatures...I played one a small shop around here...half ash/walnut body, maple top/back...floppy B string. Terrible feel. Just IMO of the one I've tried. Seemed to be set up pretty good, too!
  15. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Try the Fender Roscoe Beck V. It gives a nice Jazz bass growl without any EQing. The Rapture J2 is another good choice, particularly if you're looking for a smaller and lighter instrument.
  16. noweapon


    Feb 10, 2000
    Look no farther than a Tobias GROWLER! It's even named after the sound you want!!! I tell ya, this bass is pppuuunnnccchhhyyy! Their are a few that pop up on EBAY from time to time (It's where I got mine) What makes this bas have so much growl is the quad coil Bartolini pickup mated to 18 volt electronics. Check one of these out as soon as you can!!!!!!!
  17. ldiezman


    Jul 11, 2001
    have you tried a Stingray???? thats why they were made..
  18. I just read T-bird fan's post saying that his t-bird had a great growl, though it was heavy. You might try to catch him around and ask him about it.
  19. barroso


    Aug 16, 2000
    no match!!!

    i'm happy! i have found my holy growl, tomorrow i'll buy a gibson T-bird second hand but as new! try one, and you'll have THE GROWL. i know that it's too long, unbalanced, heavy and with fragile headstock, but it looks killer, has a tremendous tone and if played with angry hands it will impress you!! if you want a fast car you buy a ferrari or a lamborghini, even if there is no room inside and you hace to use your ford to go shopping. if you want the growl you buy a thunderbird even if it is unbalanced.
    nuff said

  20. eric atkinson

    eric atkinson "Is our children learning "Is our teachers teachin

    Feb 4, 2001
    Also there is a huge diff in the corvette and the crovette-pro-line! Mine is a pro-line from the early 90s andit has tons of growl to it! But alot of that i must say comes from me messing with my eq alot as well!