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Played a fretted bass last night...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by fear_n_greed, Mar 14, 2008.


  1. After playing only a '78 fretless P-bass before and since my return from a 22 year break, I finally got around to putting together a '72 fretted P-bass I had laying around. What fun and how easy it was! There is no thinking required really, no need to be precise, just get the fingers in the spaces!
    I couldn't stop grinning.....
     

  2. Hence the source of the name... 'Precision Bass':D Although, to get the best sound out of a fretted instrument, relatively precise hand position with your fingers just behind each fret does make a difference in the even-ness of the tone IMO and IME.
     
  3. Kennethfaria

    Kennethfaria Banned

    Mar 12, 2008
    ahh i never play my fretted now. Feels SUPER Weird!
     
  4. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Funny I find after 30 years on and off playing fretless that I'm faster more accurate and just sound better without frets.
     
  5. mjolnir

    mjolnir Thor's Hammer 2.1.3beta

    Jun 15, 2006
    Houston, TX
    I just did the opposite and went to fretless a couple months ago (not exclusively, but I have 2 fretlesses now I play regularly) and I definitely agree with you, fretted takes a lot less thinking power to intonate.

    That's not to say I don't like fretless, quite the opposite actually. I'm really REALLY digging the vast range of tones and little nuances one can achieve with a fretless, almost to the point where I want to play it exclusively for a little while...
     
  6. Yup, same. Play my squier VM all the time now and it's a fun challenge with no frets and it makes playing a fretted bass easy as! :D

    (that is to say, relatively of course :))
     
  7. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY
    I love both fretted and fretless! Why choose between either one? I love the bright, punchy fingerstyle on fretted, as well as the slap tone. I love the beautiful soulful tones you can get on a fretless. Both have their place, and both are a lot of fun in their own ways.
     
  8. dave64o

    dave64o Talkbass Top 10 all time lowest talent/gear ratio! Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2000
    Southern NJ

    Well, you know, sometimes it's the equipment, Marc. Maybe you recently bought a killer bass that took you to a new level? :D




    I've only started messing around with fretless in the last year but am noticing a big improvement in my ear as a result. I'm listening a lot closer and am hearing intonation much problems better as time goes on, as well as getting more accurate. I probably won't use a fretless all that often, but right now I am having a lot of fun working with it. Who knows, maybe once I'm more comfortable it will become my first choice?
     
  9. Kennethfaria

    Kennethfaria Banned

    Mar 12, 2008
    heh weird story coming up.

    2 weeks ago i was at my friends house playing his tobias. It felt weird and i sounded like crap, so i just stopped.
    I find it easier to play fretless.
    No need to look down at your fretboard while playing because you're just gonna find nothing there! Fretless is simple, no metal in between, its just you and the fretboard. Lol.
    And its so smooth. I seriously doubt I'm going to buy a fretted bass ever again.

    EDIT reading the post above, my gear isn't what others consider killer, but man, my Brice produces results.
     
  10. mjolnir

    mjolnir Thor's Hammer 2.1.3beta

    Jun 15, 2006
    Houston, TX
    I actually really dig the slap tone on a fretless too. It's certainly... unconventional.

    I take two basses to every practice now, one fretted, one fretless, and both pretty much get equal play.
     
  11. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    NY
    Yeah, some people love it. I can't say I'm a fan of that sound, but I do like what Les Claypool did with it.
     
  12. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I always practiced on a fretless, and gigged mostly with a fretted. It made gigging so much easier.
     
  13. dave64o

    dave64o Talkbass Top 10 all time lowest talent/gear ratio! Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2000
    Southern NJ
    Actually, the smiley should have shown I wasn't really serious. I only said that because I just sold him (Marcury) a fretless that he was seriously drooling over. I sold that one to pay for the MIA Jazz Deluxe fretless I was drooling over at the same time.

    :)
     
  14. I recently put Fender tapewounds on my MIM fretless (already had the BAII, vintage noiseless pups) and am in love; I play in a Motown tribute band, and have always used the requisite P-bass, but this thing sounds great on "Heatwave" and "Ball of Confusion." Just another old guy with a new toy!
     
  15. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Hey Dave, I've actually been meaning to PM you. I'm loving the Ibanez! :D
    it took me a few days to get used to it, but haven't touched my Rob Allen in a couple of weeks. :scowl: Ouch!

    So are ya loving the Fender?
     
  16. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    I understand this. It is less fatiguing, takes less concentration. The sharper attack that frets provide also have a musical impact. It all depends on what you want and need.

    I played fretless only for years. Finally getting a fretted (1969) neck for my '71 P-bass was precipitated by a desire for a particular sound and the need for less fatigue on long club dates.

    Still love fretless--nothing touches it for ease of action and expressive nuances. :bassist:
     
  17. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man

    Feb 11, 2003
    :cool:
    I play both fretted and fretless bass.

    For me. fretted bass is harder to play.
    must deal with left hand fret noise
    I never look and my fingerboard when playing a fretless.
    I almost always look, when playing a fretted bass.

    I play an unlined fretless fingerboard.
    But, when playing a fretted bass, I prefer dots on the fingerboard?

    Maybe It's me?
     
  18. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Gotta be Clay Dots!!!

    I agree for me frets are like speed bumps. :atoz:
     

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