1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Old dog, new tricks

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Bad_Boy, Apr 24, 2009.

  1. Bad_Boy


    Sep 16, 2002
    Luton in UK
    Hi, I'm a mainly self taught lefty (stop sniggering) got to a good standard on Classical guitar moved over to bass about 8 years ago. I play regularly in church and in a Jazz band, but recently have been offered Jazz gigs "If you can get an upright".

    So should I rent a DB and try to learn righty? Pros - kudos from the jazz crowd Cons will never get to play in church as we play LOUD. Plus I get to miss out on all the 'DB will really help your BG playing' advice I see here as the fretting hands will be different.

    Or just buy a lefty EUB such as a BSX Pros - Get to play it more in church - and who knows where else, Cons - Its not a DB, plus some jazz heads may get sniffy.

    Advice please.

  2. Hmm. It's going to be a heck of a lot of work to learn DB coming from there. You WILL need some lessons, or you're going to get injured.

    DB is so physical the muscle training to get your left hand in to shape might be an issue.

    Once you're done you might find you can play BG both ways...
  3. Dave Whitla

    Dave Whitla

    Apr 25, 2006
    There are companies that make left handed (reversed) models of double basses. Strunal, for one, but there are others. If there's a music shop near you that does basses, have them look into it.

    I wouldn't do a conversion of a right handed instrument, because it's too much of a compromise and will most likely cost a bundle and sound like crap.

    I have had one student who played bg left handed and db right handed and he did fine, but I'm not sure I'd recommend it. I have had two other students who started on eb left handed and it was better for them to get a reversed double bass so that the right hand was still the one on the fingerboard/fretboard.
  4. 400$Bass


    Jan 18, 2009
    Central Indiana
  5. I'm a lefty who plays the upright righthanded. I think it helps that my stronger hand is on the fingerboard BUT getting control of the bow with my non-dominant hand was (and still is, truth be told) a little more difficult.

    I play the guitar righthanded as well. The fact that you play lefty might make the transition more difficult. My suggestion would be to try to rent or borrow a lefty bass and try it for a month or two (with a teacher, of course!). Then, if it works out, start shopping!

    Good luck. Keep us posted.
  6. Bad_Boy


    Sep 16, 2002
    Luton in UK
    Thought I would post a reply so that any lefties reading this in future would get my 2c.

    Played a number of EUB's at the weekend both lefty and righty and came to the conclusion that it is going to be way too much of a tall order to relearn the right way round.

    This is mainly because I've been playing the wrong way around for nearly 25 years and I'm in my 40's. If I were younger and had less than 3 years playing lefty I would attempt the ambidextrous thing of playing UB righty, and would advise any young or inexperienced lefty thinking of getting into UB to give playing UB righty a good try. I can play easy jazz tunes on a normal piano so you make the change if you have the time.

    Of course this means eventually I will need to get a lefty UB but in the short term I will try to rent one & see if I can find a teacher who is willing to take me on - or perhaps the other way around given all the advise on lessons.

  7. wingnut


    Apr 18, 2007
    Las Vegas Nv.
    Why do you think it's so hard to swap a righty out to a lefty? Friend of mine did it. He had to get a lefty saddle and he changed out the nut. Then he re-slotted the tailpiece and moved the sound post to the other side. It only took him an afternoon of his time and he's been playing it ever since, it's been a little more than a year now. The only thing that may be a problem is if the neck isn't the rounded type, as his is.
  8. cajunInExile


    Nov 14, 2007
    Isn't the Bass Bar fixed underneath the table? Did he move the sound post next to the Bass Bar, and then left the bass strings with no support?

    I think that would the main difference, what side the Bass Bar was on.
  9. ctcruiser


    Jan 16, 2005
    West Haven, CT
    I am an old school lefty that took up the DB playing it lefty. I found several brands to choose from, like what has already been mentioned.

    I now have two lefties, a Christopher and an Engelhardt. The only negative is that it is very rare to find a lefty model in a bass shop.

    If you do a search, you will see that there are several threads regarding playing lefty.

    Be sure to find a teacher from the get go, that will save you a lot of grief down the road.

    Go for it and good luck!:hyper:
  10. T-MOST

    T-MOST Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2004
    NJ via NYC
    learning to play right handed is like starting from square one. It would take years to reach the level of your left orientation if ever). I would work on finding a lefty set up bass.

Share This Page