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Jeff Mallia Basses - (Aus)

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Slot, Oct 21, 2003.

  1. Slot


    Oct 17, 2003
    Sydney - The Shire
    Mallia Basses

    This question is probably only for the aussies out there.....

    But has anyone had any experience with these basses? If so what were your impressions?

    I had a quick play of Cameron Undy's 5string a few years ago, but the strings were deader than dead, and to be honest, i cant really remember how it played.

    Im interested in a "super jazz" of some kind, but i cant afford the 3million dollars that it would cost to get a sadowsky out here...

    .......is there any other sydney luthier's i should check out?:meh:

    *i did a search*:p
  2. Slot


    Oct 17, 2003
    Sydney - The Shire
  3. Don't know about sydney but there are 2 in melbourne i'd recommend checking out.

    Belman Guitars (basses and guitars)
    Kennedy Basses

    Sorry i don't have links but ask at the bass player in sydney they should be able to hook you up.

    Edit: Those jazz basses look awfully nice.
  4. I was having a lesson with Steve Hunter, who plays mallia basses. After we finished I played his 4 string for a short time, never played anything like it, the memory of the action is burned into my memory like a flashback or something......super fast and low,

    So i tried to contact him to talk about a jazz 5 (Steve also has one) but was not able to contact him.....hope you have better luck....

    No doubt you have seen his website, Vic Rounds and Steve are both players, two better recomendations I dont think you could get in Aus.

    I would love to know how you go with this...as I am still keen for a J5 if you feel like it PM me eh.....
  5. Slot


    Oct 17, 2003
    Sydney - The Shire
    Thanks for the names of the other builders fella's...i'm just about to check them out..


    Gday luke ......

    Well i sent jeff an email yesterday and got his reply this morning. He said that he wasnt building basses for the rest of this year(i think he was uprgading his workshop), but he would be back in business early next year.

    I was enquiring about the J-basses, and he said that he was going to offer a model that was basically exactly the same as Steve's 4-string (the one thats on the site...and maybe the one that you played?) for $4500, he said things like bridge/pups/tuning mechs/preamps/etc were all customizable. I didnt ask about 5's, but im sure he would offer a 5 in similar kind of deal(i still cant decide on whether to get a 4 or 5)

    For a custom body shape though, i got the impression that it was a totally different kettle of fish pricing wise...

    Im stoked that you said steves bass was fast and low, because thats exactly the feel im looking for. Im not really financial until early next year though, but i think that the mallia's are more than likely the direction i'll take.

    Any idea what pups steve was using in it? and could you tell me anything more about how the neck felt? or how it sounded?:D
  6. Oliver


    Jun 21, 2003
    Perth, Australia

    are they costly though? are they worth it? hows the growl?
  7. Quite simply like no other bass I have ever played...and I love shopping around, playing everything i can lay my hands on....

    Probably the closest thing I have played was Brother Hals' Lackland 5..... but when I say close I mean in the way that Jeannie Little is close to being Heidi Klum.....

    That bass has been talking to me for months...murmuring away in my sub conscious, I am fairly sure I will not get satisfaction from any other bass, and I only played the dammn thing for a couple of minutes....

    Just play one....not much else you can do....

    Consider giving Steve a call for a lesson, I could not rate anyone higher as a player or a teacher.....totally approachable, and generous with his gifts....it turns out to be an inspirational boost more than anything else, I mean after you hear him play,particularly when he plays with you, you just want to play, and play, and play....

    Consider too that I went to Steve for help learning the finger board, I was an absolute beginner, didnt know an "A" from a "B", on a bass anyway! I was a little apprehensive, I mean the guy has played with Chick Korea for F%*&S sake...he dont muck around!

    He gave me about three years worth of exercises in a one hour lesson, unbelievable....

    You get to be up close to the bass too....

    Steve told me that he had a 4, 5, and 6er made by Jeff but he sold the 6er cos he wasnt playing it that much, I think he said something about trying to distill the essence of the music down on his 4....anyway I saw a trading post ad for the 6er a couple months ago, its of no use to me else I would have bought it in an instant...

    Well hope this helps, I dont think you are going to get any better no matter how much you spend, Let me know how you go....

    Oh, Steve advertises each week in the Drum media, "Bass lessons with Steve Hunter"

    Good Luck......Luke
  8. Slot


    Oct 17, 2003
    Sydney - The Shire
    Thanks mate .....you've sold me:D

    Ive been thinking about giving steve a call for a while actually .....i just never seem to get around to doing it:meh:

    Ive had a few teachers who think he's a bit of a one trick pony. But its just a case of tall poppy syndrome i reckon.

    I'll give him a call .....i really wanna try one of these bad boys out before i get serious about buying one. And i'd love to get a close up of that beastly right hand of his ......its like a machine gun

    btw ...if you were interested, that 6stringer of his is for sale at the bassplayer for 2,600! I'd check it out, but 6 stringers just aint my bag..

    anyway ....thanks for the info man......much appreciated[​IMG]
  9. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    In case you ahvent made your mind up, I have a bass made by Neil Kennedy in Melbounre that is just sensational.

    Here is a bad picture of it (i dont have a digital camera):

    It is immaculately made and has curly camphorloral front and back with a blackwood core and jarah accents. The neck is flamed maple with an ebony board and wenge, bubinga and ebony stringers. The picks are Alembic with individual q filters and q switches.
  10. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    And the back:
  11. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    I speak to Jeff Mallia on the phone every now and then. The company I work for uses him to do ALL their warranty repairs and any customisations. He's the BEST. He really is. And a nice guy too. And his dedication to his craft is amazing. He's the luthier that all the other luthiers use as a benchmark.

    One of the guys who played at the ACME launch had a Jeff Mallia 5 string. Looked and sounded beautiful.

    I haven't seen those Belman basses but I did a gig recently with a guitarist who used one of their guitars. Awsome. His Gibson Les Paul is now a $5,000 spare guitar. He actually found Belman after he asked Jeff malia to make him a guitar and Jeff said no. He was too busy at the time.
  12. kirbywrx

    kirbywrx formerly James Hetfield

    Jul 27, 2000
    Melbourne, Australia.
    I have played both kenedy basses and belman. Belman are beautiful basses. I only had a quick go on the kennedy, but i also played a bass of some other name thatw as for sale a while ago at billy hydes music in blackburn.

    Anyway just thought id share my 2 cents.
  13. Here's a link to Belmans website, along with an example of their work for any who may be interested in looking.
    I've had my eye on their basses for a while now..... Getting a GAS attack again. AAArrrgggg!



  14. dnburgess


    Jul 20, 2003
    Sydney, Australia
    Proprietor: Bass People, Green Square Music
    Jeff does indeed make beautiful instruments and is a fine craftsman.

    He is the only luthier that I would let near my Alembic - so when we became the Alembic agents there was really no question who the official Alembic technician in Australia would be.

    Jeff already knew quite a lot about Alembics, having been a former Alembician himself as well as servicing a few in Sydney. He recently visited the Alembic factory in California in preparation for the Australian launch.

    Jeff can be contacted at: [email protected]
  15. I really don´tknow if you know these basses... but i the name of God check them out!! See it for yourself and then tell me if they´re not the most beautiful basses in world; they speak for themselves... If I had the money, besides buying a Fodera I´d buy one of those!

    Here it is: www.ritter-basses.com :D :D :bassist:
  16. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    Sorry to re-hash an old thread.

    I just joined a new band. The guy I replaced just gave me his Malia 5 string on a kind of permanent loan. His reasoning is simple, now that he's retired his wife wants to know why he can't sell all his gear. So he's appointed me as guardian of his pride and joy. They can't sell it if they don't have possession of it :)

    I've had it for a week and I did a gig with it last night. It's absolutely beautiful. I though my SR5 had a low, fast action but this thing was faster and lower again with no fret buzz whatsoever. In fact, it was even a little too low for an aggressive player like me. I found myself having to tame myself and hit a little softer at the encouragement of the bass.

    I'm not sure exactly what timbers were used but I can tell you the bass looks strikingly beautiful. It had a quilted maple fretboard on a maple neck which was considerably more tapered than the SR5. By that I mean the string spacing seemed a little wider as we got further up the fretboard. It too about 5 seconds to get used to it.

    On the electronics front, it had Bartolini pickups (humbucker near the bridge, single coil near the neck). It has a bass and treble knobs on board but I found they weren't needed. I played the gig with everything set flat. For some songs I cut the treble a little. Amazingly this thing could get more sizzle in the highs than the SR5, maybe too much, but not out of control at all.

    Of course there's no such thing as the perfect bass and while this one is close, if does have some quirks. I mentioned earlier that the bass encouraged a softer touch than I'm used to. Doing so did not sacrifice the tone at all which was nice, but it left me wondering if the electronics used were somehow taming the signal. The word compression comes to mind, but that's can't be right at instrument level. The SR5 is definitely more responsive to the heavier touch and it's nice to know I can dig in a bit when the song requires it, giving my playing some "light & shade" and dynamics. That said, I've experienced the same sensation on other high end basses. Perhaps I'm just accustomed to the aggression of the SR5.

    Also I felt as though the SR5 is more responsive to subtle variations of the position of the plucking hand. If I pluck an inch closer to the bridge or neck, the SR 5 responds with a noticeably different tone. The Malia needed more like 2 inches before anything sounded different. I suspect this is related to the first problem whereby the electronics are taming things at instrument level.

    In fairness, these are not big criticisms. In fact, they more criticisms of Mr Bartolini than Mr Malia. The bass itself is phenomenal in quality, better than the SR5 in all but that one little difference.

    So which one will I play at tonight’s gig? The Malia! And the SR5!
  17. dnburgess


    Jul 20, 2003
    Sydney, Australia
    Proprietor: Bass People, Green Square Music
    FYI - Jeff's new instruments have pickups of his own design and manufacture.
  18. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    That's very interesting. I guess I wasn't the only one who thought the basses were better than the electronics. Not that Bartolini's are bad. Perhaps it was the best marriage possible at the time, but not as perfect as Jeff would have liked it. I'd love to try the new ones.
  19. C20Dog


    Oct 5, 2011
    The bass referred to as played by Cameron Undy was made by Ricardo Miruzzi.
  20. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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