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Left-handed basses/bassists

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Elle, Jun 30, 2001.


  1. Elle

    Elle

    Feb 25, 2001
    England
    I want to know all of you opinions. I am left-handed and bought my first bass guitar about a year ago. Originally, I was going to buy a left-handed bass coz I thought that was what I had to do, but I found out that they were so expensive. And I couldn't really afford one, so I had to plump for a right handed one. Why is it that there is discrimnation against left-handed bassists and guitarists because we have to pay at least £50 extra for a bass that is just upside down (lol) than the more common guitars. okay, I accept that there are more right-handed people in the world (I think) and so it makes sense that right handed guitars are made, but surely there really shouldn't be a huge difference in price? I apologise if I seem as though I'm having a moan; but I just wondered what you all thought. Ty!

    Btw, I s'pose I have an advantage over right-handed people coz I play the fret end with my stonger left hand, and so I can sometime (and I'm only saying sometimes!) play some really cool stuff. lol
     
  2. I agree with you, being a fellow lefthander. It is quite annoying to try and find a good left handed bass and then having to pay more.

    I'm not too sure how it works, my understanding is that the company making the instrument has to change their machines or something which means more hassle for them. I don't know, if someone could explain!

    One thing I don't understand is that you usually only see L/H guitars in black. What is the deal with this!! Perhaps they think all left handed people are gothics or maybe they use lefthanded paint or something :D

    Don't worry, you're not alone. :)
     
  3. Zirc

    Zirc

    May 13, 2001
    Los Angeles
    They cost more because left handed crafters are greedy :p

    And a lot of lefties come in black, that is weird, but I did get my first bass in sunburst.
     
  4. agyeman

    agyeman Member

    Mar 6, 2001
    Some companys like fender, gibson and ibanez have hardly any lefty bass any more, while musicman, rickenbacker and have all their basses avalible lefty.

    If you want a fender jazz bass, you can only get a MIM or an MIA Deluxe. Either the cheapest or most expensive, none of the models in between :) And none of the signiture models come left handed.
     
  5. Yeah, unfortunately Fender has limited what's available to southpaws. I was lucky enough to get a MIJ 75 reissue jazz about 12 years ago.

    Some options are:

    Carvin. Decent basses and they don't charge for left handed.

    Music Man. I had to order mine and wait for a few months, but again no extra charge for lefty.

    Used. There are plenty of good southpaw Fenders, Rickenbackers etc. out there just waiting for a new home. :)
     
  6. NAF1138

    NAF1138

    Jun 19, 2001
    Los Angeles, Ca
    ok, this is a bit off the main topic, but it being a thread about left handed bassists I have a question for all you lefty's. Why the need for a left handed bass. I don't want this to sound confrontational or anything, it is a legitamate question. I have never understood why anyone would need or even want a lefty bass or guitar, it limits what you can just pick up and jam on, they are more expencive, and the selection sucks. Why do this to yourselves, it is a two handed instument, with complicated things going on in both hands. I just never really understood this.
     
  7. Zirc

    Zirc

    May 13, 2001
    Los Angeles
    If you are right handed, try picking up a lefty and try to play it. Can't do it can you? For me, once I picked up the lefty, it came naturally, and I can tell you if I learned how to play right handed (which I don't think I could ever learn how to do), it would take A LOT longer to learn how to play then playing left handed. Also, at the time, my band (friends asked me to learn how to play bass and play bass for them, so I did) wanted things to move quickly, sooooooo, time was not of the essence.

    Another thing, I think it's quite cool and different that people play left handed. Also, if you have a lefty and a righty, it looks cool when they're playin next together.

    I think why most right handed people ask this question is because they don't understand what it's like to be left handed (I mean real left handed, I know some lefties that play righty style, but I don't think they're all the way lefty, like I know with myself, I do EVERYTHING left handed, I'm a true lefty). Right handers ask this question because they don't know how it feels to play an instrument which isn't designed for them. Since they play right handed and have the feel for it, they just nonshalantly say "oh why don't you learn to play right handed?" Well my friend, it's not that easy, and unfortunately, chances are you will never understand that.

    And for my final statement, Hendrix played left handed :)
     
  8. NAF1138

    NAF1138

    Jun 19, 2001
    Los Angeles, Ca
    OK I get that if you learned to play left handed it would be a whole lot easier, but why learn that way in the first place is my question. When I started playing (gonna have to talk guitar cause I just started on bass), I found that the hand that I had most of the trouble with my fretting hand, my left hand. I feel that when starting the fretting hand is the more important of the two, so wouldn't the lefty have the advantage in learningthe basics on a right hander? As for Hendrix, well I think he restrung his bass because he knew it was right handed and he was left handed. Final statment for me is gonna have to be, why no lefty pianos?
     
  9. A few years ago when I bought my first instrument, an electric guitar (bass came a few months later) one guy in a shop suggested that I could buy a right handed guitar since I hadn't learnt it yet. I tried one it just felt unnatural (some of this being due to the fact that I hadn't played a guitar before) but when I picked up a left handed model it felt good.

    I'm like Lefty Punk Bass, I'm a true left hander, and I think it was far more benificial to learn on a lefthanded instrument.

    As for there being less selection when buying a guitar, well that's something we have to (but shouldn't have to) put up with. It's not our fault that most companies don't release all their models as L/H. I'll be buggered if I'm going to play a right handed guitar upside-down! :)
     
  10. Zirc

    Zirc

    May 13, 2001
    Los Angeles
    Thanks for the back-up Cambass, now I don't have to repeat everything I did in my first post to NAF1138.

    The Hendrix comment... I'm familliar with what he did, basically turned a righty into a lefty, but what's your point?

    Why no lefty pianos? You don't need them. The piano is a flat instrument where both hands are level. The bass is an instrument where one hand is up and the other is down. I can play piano (and percussion, like timpani, bells, and crap), and it doesn't feel awkward. Yet playing a right handed bass does, because of the way the instrument is around your body.

    So to answer your question, there isn't a lefty piano because there isn't a need for one.

    Also to answer your other questions:

    "I found that the hand that I had most of the trouble with my fretting hand, my left hand."

    - I'm sorry to hear that, I've never had that problem with my lefty, both hands do their job equally well

    "I feel that when starting the fretting hand is the more important of the two, so wouldn't the lefty have the advantage in learningthe basics on a right hander?"

    - Incorrect, there is not a more important hand. The strumming or picking or slapping or popping hand is just as important as the fretting hand.

    I feel for you to fully understand this lefty concept, you must try to play a lefty bass :)
    C'mon, try it :p
     
  11. NAF1138

    NAF1138

    Jun 19, 2001
    Los Angeles, Ca
    ok, I suppose that maybe it does work better with a lefty, and I agree that companies should give a better selection if they are going to release any. Should be an all or nothing type of situation. Strange thing is, I was born ambidextrous, but was forced to be right handed by my grade school teachers, so by the time I had gotten to the sixth grade I had overcompensated enough that I literally couldn't do anything with my left hand. I found myself wanting a lefty guitar at those times because my left was so incompetent. Maybe the lefty is the natural playing style. Its just something I have always wondered about, but I don't know any lefty bassists of guitarist, so I never had anyone to ask.
     
  12. Zirc

    Zirc

    May 13, 2001
    Los Angeles
    Ya no prob, I'm here :)

    I think most lefties that chose to play righty aren't completely lefty, otherwise, they'd be playing lefty because righty would feel un-natural.

    It is true that we have limited selection, but I don't think that really gets us down. If you notice, they have most all the top of the line basses in lefty form (ex. stingray). Also, I think it's somewhat of an advantage because companies usually take their best all around basses to be lefties which does give us limited selection, but selection of a lotta good basses instead of confusing us with a large selection and making us try out lotsa basses.

    Also, sorry if I was a bit hostile in my posts. I'm a lefty and proud of it heh, and it kinda seemed like you were coming off as a hitler type person in a way. Hitler wanted one master race and I kinda felt you wanted one master bass (a righty) allowing no differenciality, heh.
     
  13. ...and with his Hitler comment, Lefty Punk Bass invokes Godwin's Law, and the wrath of netizens everywhere.

    As to the topic at hand: three extremely skillful guitarists are lefties who play right-handed. They are Mark Knopfler, Steve Morse, and Robert Fripp. All three are known for fierce left hand technique, but they are also known for badass right-hand skill. This is probably because they practiced. Fripp's practice regimen is particularly strict.
     
  14. Elle

    Elle

    Feb 25, 2001
    England
     
  15. leftybassdog

    leftybassdog Senior Supporting Member

    Im lefty, if I have to pay more for a bass I dont buy it, Fender made lefty basses for years then Leo left and some X used car salesman got a job at Fender and said it cost too much to do in the U.S. . for more money you can go to the custom shop to get one,What A deal !! MusicMan sells the lefthanded bass {same as the righthanded} under the ball name made in the U.S., I have 2, Fender lost the sale ! I have a Warwick, Fender lost the sale.had a Carvin and lots of other basses over the years and do you know who lost the sale ? FENDER. as far as playing righthanded it would be nice to do.But I dont, Is it a handicap ? no I dont think so just less sales for music companys that wont offer lefthanded basses, I still play bass BUT NOT A FENDER ! for the hard core Fender fan just use the name of any we wont make a lefty bass company in the place of the name fender. I use the name to make a point and not to say Fender is less then a fine Instrument.
     
  16. agyeman

    agyeman Member

    Mar 6, 2001
    Fender, Ibanez and Gibson need a kick up the ass when it comes to left-handed basses.

    I am also sick of people like NAF1138 saying that I should just learn righty. The amount of people who say stuff like that is unbelivable.
     
  17. NAF1138

    NAF1138

    Jun 19, 2001
    Los Angeles, Ca
    WAIT!!!! If I came off sounding like hitler I am sorry. Also I never said anyone should relearn their intrument, I just wanted a left handed persons opinion on the subject. BTW those lefy piano sites...cool. What will they think of next. If I had any idea that people would have reacted this way, I would have never submitted my post. I now respectfully withdraw my question, cause I don't like being compared to hitler (although I don't think it was meant as cruel at the time of that particular post) and I don't want people to misinterpret my query further, and start reading things like " If you don't do it my way you are going", and "I want to be master of the world HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!" into it. I was just wondering, and the initial responses created further problems. Sorry
     
  18. Don't worry NAF, it's a valid question, and you don't sound like Hitler...!

    I agree it's a strange thing. My old HS band director once said that since I'm a lefty, I should play a righty bass because the dominant hand would be the one doing the intricate fretwork. I responded that therefore all rightys should play 'left handed' instruments!

    Like the other guys said, it feels natural. Just like lefty golfers, baseball players, hockey players, etc. We all hold our axes the other way. No one ever showed it to me. Since I was 9 years old air guitaring on my Wilson tennis racquet I held it lefty. :)
     
  19. basstime

    basstime

    Jun 24, 2001
    check out MF
    MIA Hot Rod P Bass, $549!!!! only a few left, I think.
    Mine to be delivered today!!!!