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Low B strings on bass guitar and electric guitar

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Thomas Kievit, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    Sorry if the title is wrong, but I'm walking around with a question for a while now, when it comes to 7 string electric guitars.

    If there's a band where the bass player uses 5 or 6 string basses (thus with a Low B string on it), why doesn't the electric guitar player upgrade to a 7 string electric guitar, so that he / she would have a Low B string as well.

    I think (and that's my opion) that bands like In Flames or Metallica could do well with electric guitar players that use 7 string electric guitars.

    Is it a personal preference of the guitar player or something else?
  2. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast

    Jul 16, 2005
    Belfast, UK
    How could it be anything BUT personal preference?! Why doesn't everyone play 5 string bass/8-string guitar/ baritone saxophone/ Neil Peart massive drumset? Ridiculous question.
  3. Hi.

    Very good question if you ask me.

    According to the very few 7 string guitarists I know, it's a little bit both.

    It has necessarily nothing to do with the bassplayers tuning though.
    According to them, it does however have everything to do with the genre, and the way the guitar player wants to play.

    Just as most of the bassplayers I know, AFAIK the guitarists who use more than the "standad" strings, are more after freedom for the fretting hand position, than they are for the a few notes of the extended range the "additional" strings provide.

    Guitarists are IMLE not as bent to go as low as humanly possible as we sometimes are (says someone with a F#BEADG 6er ;)).

  4. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Bajo Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    Metallica already tried downtuning. Its called St. Anger.

    Also remember that Cliff Burton played 4 string bass guitars. Only when Newsted joined did the world begin to see Metallica with a 5 string bass guitarist. Trujillo also sometimes just grabs a P bass live. Just because he sometimes likes using a 5er doesnt mean that Metallica suddenly needs to grab a 7 string.

    If you REALLY want to see a 7 string guitar in Metallica look for their Some Kind of Monster rehearsal. I believe Hetfield plays a 7 string on that particular performance.
  5. I used to wonder about this a bit myself, especially since I really dig playing 7 string guitar. I've met a few guitarists who can't stand the way the low B sounds on guitar, whereas in their minds it fit in perfectly fine on bass. I've always said that if I get back into playing a lot of electric guitar, I'm picking up a 7 string.
  6. Son, you're messing with forces you can't possibly comprehend. Seven string guitars are an abomination, and the Rock & Roll Gods will unleash furious vengeance against those who play them.
  7. crazyfaux


    May 24, 2012
    I had a guitarist ask me why do you need a five string...I asked him why do you need 6 strings?
  8. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    Yeah, probably like having more then 4 strings on a bass..? :eyebrow::meh:
  9. Herrick


    Jul 21, 2010
    Munchkin Land
    It simply isn't necessary for a guitarist to have a Low B if the bassist does. Most guitarists would rather tune down if they want to play lower. Also keep in mind that many guitar players love classic guitars that don't come in 7-string versions. If the bass is drowned out (as it is in lots of heavy music) then it doesn't even matter how many strings the bassist has.
  10. rtav

    rtav Millionaire Stuntman, Half-Jackalope

    Dec 12, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Our guitarist sometimes uses a seven string for some songs, but when we play Dream Theater's "Dance of Eternity" (don't know it? Youtube it and hold on) he HAS to play a seven string in order to cover it correctly.
  11. Why does a guitarist need a low B? That's why we have bass players.
  12. HaMMerHeD


    May 20, 2005
    Norman, OK, USA
    I know a few guitarists who think the low Bs sound terrible. I think it is mostly due to the fact that the majority of 7-string guitars out come with light gauge strings on 25.5" scales. So I tell them to either try a longer scale or a heavier string, and most of them change their minds.

    If 7 strings are wrong, I don't want to be right. The rock and roll gods are obsolete relics, powerless in the face of the fury of the METAL gods.

    Plus they look good.

  13. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    Yeah right. You seem like the kind of bass player that doesn't use effects or picks, cause that's for electric guitar players...
  14. Actually, I'm a professional guitar player (who's learning bass), and I have no problem with picks or effects with basses. As for 7 string guitars - they're ridiculous.
  15. Thomas Kievit

    Thomas Kievit Guest

    May 19, 2012
    Well I don't agree there, sorry. Just like bass guitars that have more then 4 strings, it's just more possibility's you get with each extra string. Look at Animals As Leaders for example : They play 7 and 8 string electric guitar. Maybe it doesn't look pretty in your eyes, but it sure did give them the possibility's to make the music they are known for.

    And for 5 string basses in bands and 7 string electric guitars, I say : Freaking awesome!
  16. HaMMerHeD


    May 20, 2005
    Norman, OK, USA
    I know I'm going to regret asking, but....care to explain?
  17. Explain what? A 5 string bass is useful because it adds extra notes to the spectrum. A 7 string guitar adds nothing, as the bass covers those low notes anyway.

    Each to their own though.
  18. I'm not sure he still has it but my guitarist has a Dean 7 string strat-style guitar which he used only for a couple of gigs then put away. It's not the lows, he loves 'em (cranks the bass up on his amp then complains to me his 6 string guitar is bassier than my bass - go figure) but he just didn't care for the wider neck.
  19. HaMMerHeD


    May 20, 2005
    Norman, OK, USA
    OK...but useless and ridiculous are two different things.

    It's not all about how many notes you have, you know. There is a lot more to music than just that.

    Guitars don't sound just like basses, and basses don't sound just like guitars. Thus, a low B (especially in a high-gain rhythm guitar crunch) adds a good deal of tonal flavor that the bass just doesn't do.
  20. Violen

    Violen Instructor in the Vance/Rabbath Method Banned

    Apr 19, 2004
    Kansas City Metro Area
    Endorsing Artist: Conklin Guitars (Basses)
    An extra string is an extra tool.