Punk Bass tone

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Hellotommorow, Oct 2, 2019.

  1. Hellotommorow


    Oct 2, 2019
    Hey, y'all. I was wondering how I would get a Punk tone similar to Dee Dee Ramone. I know that people will say I'm overthinking it, but I just want to sound similar to him.
  2. forrestlaw

    forrestlaw Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2018
    P bass... pick... root notes... fast.
  3. murphy

    murphy Supporting Member

    May 5, 2004
    Ampeg SVT 300 tube watts overdriven and 810 cab
    Rezdog likes this.
  4. dougjwray


    Jul 20, 2005
    Rotosound Swing Bass strings.
    Bruiser Stone likes this.
  5. Volker Kirstein

    Volker Kirstein Blippy the Wonder Slug

    All of the above. Hard. Really reef on the strings.
    murphy likes this.
  6. SunByrne

    SunByrne trained monkey Supporting Member

    Aug 29, 2019
    Pearland, TX
    It's punk rock, man, don't sweat the details of the tone... just play LOUD and FAST and you're good to go!
    Nebula24 and murphy like this.
  7. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    or you could be a real punk and do what the hell you want.

    I dunno, sound's like CJ's using Chromes

    4stringabuser likes this.
  8. For a much lower price than an Ampeg stack, you can get a good tone with a Sansamp VT Bass pedal. The DI model can go straight to the PA if that's useful.

    For a Dee Dee tone, that along with a Precision with fresh roundwound strings, played with a pick, will get you 95% of the way there
    murphy likes this.
  9. Lowbrow

    Lowbrow Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2008
    Allentown, PA!
    Yeah - not difficult. P Bass, pick, VT Bass pedal - low-level on the OD, mild compression, bass tone knob full up, but not too much treble on the amp.
    murphy likes this.
  10. Selta


    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Yup. Punk. Do what everyone else does ;)
    GrapeBass likes this.
  11. Dincrest


    Sep 27, 2004
    New Jersey
    I used to play in a hardcore punk band... and I played fingerstyle on an LTD. That actually helped my band stand out because I was one of the only fingerstyle players in the scene and people were all impressed that I could play fast punk songs using a 3-finger gallop.

    Any bass played fast (be it pick, fingerstyle, or finger-picks) will suit your needs. Like others have said, punk is not about nuances or gear snobbery. Just strap on what you have, crank everything to 11 and just have fun. Don't try to sound like someone else. Just try to sound like you. "Be yourself" is a tenet of the punk ethos, is it not?

    Punk shows get rowdy, so you don't necessarily want super expensive gear... unless it's durable stuff that you know can withstand moshpits, thrown beer bottles, various bodily fluids (e.g. blood, vomit)... basically, stuff that you don't mind taking to a Bob's Country Bunker gig but without the protective chicken wire.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
    Nebula24 and Bruiser Stone like this.
  12. UntitledUser


    Sep 18, 2019
    With your avatar, I immediately understand why your tone is not "Punk".
    You are into Grunge.

    Eh eh eh. :smug:
  13. TheSeagoats


    May 21, 2015
    Most people have covered it but I want to reiterate it anyway. A P bass with nickel strings and a pick will get you nearly 100% of the way there. For my own punk sound, I like to use steel strings, and I have a Seymour Duncan Quarter Pound pickup on my bass which helps push the amp gain a little more. I run the gain on my amp at max, and I run the compression knob maxed (3:1) to keep the master volume controllable and it does me quite well.
    Zoobiedood likes this.
  14. levis76

    levis76 Defender of the Low Ender

    Apr 14, 2007
    Metro Detroit
    Forget their name, as if it mattered, but the most ‘punk’ bassist I ever saw was at a show in downtown Detroit at St. Andrews Hall. Dude had a battered unidentifiable P, one of those coiled cables plugged direct into a beat up brick crap house of a Peavey TKO 115 amp. Dude looked like he was hammered and high (he had a joint hangin from his lip so no doubt about it, he was high) but when the cymbal crashed a 4 count he came alive. Hit every note like it mugged his momma, and flailed around at the end of the cable, which now that I think about it was probably more a leash than a cable. It was awesome.
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
    Gearhead17 and Helix like this.
  15. Chrisk-K


    Jan 20, 2010
    Scottsdale, AZ
    A little bit of sloppiness is very important as well.
  16. BogeyBass

    BogeyBass Inactive

    Sep 14, 2010
    Anything and everything can be punk.

    Its more a lifestyle really.

    We played whatever bass/guitar we could get, and whatever amp we could afford.

    Come to think of it. Id say definitely a good old Fender P bass.
    and anyone that eventually became loud enough on the cheap had a Peavey Amp and
    Some sorta big old peavey cab.

    Nothing really defines it. usually most influences tend to use bright tone, whatever amp you can get. and the faster bands all more likely used a pick.

    tone is in the hands and attitude. finding different tone and technique with how you fret the bass and were you pluck or pick. towards the neck or back to the bridge. and finding all the sweet spots and tone variations.

    i never used a pick, but got plucking and picking tones with my fingers, using my fingers and using my finger nail for pick tones.
    we didnt need distortion lol our amps were cranked and got there anyways. but i liked the boost from pedals too.
    id say guitar or bass, a Rat distortion and a peavey amp. is just punk rock. not by choice. it just happened that way. at any time there was just a used peavey cheap somewhere and pedal cases were full of boss DS1 , Dod250, and Rats. nobody wanted them lol and were cheap as heck.
    murphy likes this.
  17. This and... waa-too-tree-faow !!!
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2019
  18. Trendywizard


    Jan 2, 2021
    Acoustic bass with tape wounds and a flanger pedal
    Basehead likes this.
  19. Primary

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