Roscoe 6 String Transition/Journey

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SteveC, Jul 26, 2013.

  1. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    There is nothing wrong with deciding the six is not for you, just hold on to those nice Roscoe fives you have!
  2. singlemalt

    singlemalt Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2007
    White Salmon, WA
    I've been a six string owner for a couple years and thought about letting it go since I wasn't really playing it enough to make it a success. Finally, I just put the other basses away and decided to focus on the sixer.

    It's been a major adjustment. The wider neck means I have to wear it higher. Keeping all the strings quiet and getting good even tone required a revamp.
    It's just plain taking a long time to get it figured out. But damn, is it fun!

    Weight is a huge issue for me, so having a sixer that weighs under 9 is very nice.

    I tend to get some practice time in during the evening TV time (unplugged). If I don't get carried away and start making a ton of noise my wife is okay with it. Great time for chords and figuring out where everything is.

    But yeah, it was total immersion or it was not happening. Couple weeks ago I buddy offered his four string at a jam, and it just felt too weird. It's a major brain re-wire.
  3. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    I know. I think I can take a fretted 6 off my list along with a fretted 4. I'm a 5 string guy when it comes to fretted electric.

    Well, I did let the fretless go (it was a great bass but also a little heavy and not quite what I need for my jazz/pit type gigs) to buy the 6. I have the Century Standard Plus I custom ordered and will make that "my voice" as far as fretted electric bass goes. It's a fantastic bass.

    I may give Rob Allen another try for my jazz/pit/acoustic gig bass - or put the money to a credit card payment ;-)
  4. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    I flipped a Roscoe 6 way faster than you did ;)

    Music and logic aren't often good partners. Unless you're talking about Apple Logic.
  5. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Most of the time I'm talking to myself. I don't always listen though...
  6. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Make the credit card payment. Balances can get out of control in a heartbeat! I know you are back in high end land, but there are lots of really good fretless you can buy in the $700-$1,500 category.
  7. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    But they don't have that uprighty sound like a Rob Allen. :)

    And that's why I have a problem... :-/
  8. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    Well it's your bass and your music so it's your opinion, but I'd have a serious problem with jazz/pit gigs without my 6ers. The extended range is just too important there. And I say that while currently playing mostly my G&L 5ers. I really feel many people just don't give 6ers a chance. They think it's just some kind of bass with few extra notes. Not so. It's a whole 'nother instrument. And worse, it's really the master class for learning a 5er. A 6er FORCES you to deal will all the ERB things. String damping, wide necks, cross-neck patterns and scales. Once you are comfy with all that THEN grabbing a 5er is just a 6er with with the upper range missing.

    It's certain that not everyone needs or even can make use of a 6er. And as I said currently even I'm not doing so. But when the music needs it, then I go for it. You know I once tried to learn guitar for a few months and it just wasn't me so I gave up and went back to 4 string bass. Is that all that needs to be said? No. Because I'm currently playing guitar and loving it and wondering why I never really gave it a proper chance back then.

    Still, your bass, your choice.
  9. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Unless you play a 5 strung E-C...
  10. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Well, if I can't move it, I might as well play it. Maybe I'll be "forced" to give it more of a chance. I wish it were even a pound lighter. I also need a different strap to get it up higher - might help the left hand issue.
  11. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Well, I traded the 6 to a Roscoe lover who play mostly 6er's and it turns out is a friend of Jon's from his days in San Antonio I believe.

    I was working on it while waiting for it to sell and was getting used to the neck and all, but my use of the C string seemed limited and the extra stretch for the majority of the time didn't seem worth the trade off.

    I picked up another fretless - a Roscoe SKB 3005 - and a little cash. I pay down a little debt and get back to a more practical bass for my gigs. In the long run, I think a fretted and fretless 5 are far more useful for me.

    We shall see.
  12. dedpool1052


    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    fretless basses are always fun. my view of fretted and fretless is this

    fretted is like walking down the stairs
    fretless is like sliding down the banister
  13. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    I like using a fretless - even a "modern" sounding Roscoe - for my occasional jazz gigs. It's not an upright, but it gives me some freedom to use some techniques that get me in the neighborhood - at least enough for the guys I play with.

    It's also nice at church - which is my only steady gig. There are things that really work with a fretless in that setting.

    They are also just fun to play.
  14. dedpool1052


    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    i dont own a fretless (yet) but from the times i''ve played them i always feel that they give you a lot more freedom than that of a fretted, but at the same time require a good level of discipline, IMO.
  15. Joe BassPlayer

    Joe BassPlayer Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Wow! You've been busy Steve! I haven't been on TB much these days and missed you buying (and now apparently selling) Jon's 3006.

    It is a bummer that you gave up that nice SC+ 5 fretless but hey, now you know (or at least now you know for now!:)

    I just switched a couple months ago back to 4 and 5 strings after 3 years of playing the 6 (fretted and fretless).
    I just ended up falling back in love with the 4 string (Fender jazz) and that made the 5 feel much better than the 6. I hadn't played a 4 string in over 20 years and swore that I'd never play one again but .... I guess that you should never say never! :D

    To facilitate my Bass Orchestra tunes I got a nice Zon Sonus 519 that I can switch back and forth from E-C to B-G without adjusting the truss rod. I totally love it and my left hand feels much better when playing in the lower registers at church. I really only used the high C on my recordings anyway.

    Of course I've still got my Roscoe LG-3005.

    As a side note, CM is totally collecting some killer Roscoe 6'ers these days. He's also go my former 3006 signature. Great guy to deal with.

    I hope that things work out for you Bro!
  16. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    Lompoc, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    Fretless 5 B-G
    Fretted 5 E-C

    Best of both worlds...
  17. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Yeah, that kind of sucked, but that bass was a little heavy. The new fretless is a pound or more lighter so that'll be nice - and it'll still sound's a Roscoe after all, right.

    I'm debating that but the other way around. I like my fretted for church and I like the low B and use it more than I would a C in that situation.

    For jazz gigs, I would use the fretless and that's where I wouldn't mind some extra range for soloing. We'll see. I also like to use the fretless at church B-G so...

    ...I may just need to get a 3rd bass and string it E-C for gigs with solo potential and/or recording.
  18. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    I may try to rectify this...
  19. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    I'm gonna bring this thread back to the top. I have my old 6 string back. Yes, this is the 3rd time I'm gonna give a 6 string a try. It seems to feel better this time. I have been playing it for a couple weeks.

    I'm actually using it for the musical (Footloose) at the high school where I teach. I have incorporated the C string into a couple of licks/tunes and it works well. I still play the wrong string a couple times a show (seems like it's often F and/or Bb 3rd fret) but I fought off the urge to use my 5 for the show. I know I have to work through the mistakes.

    Muting is a little bit of an issue. I notice it more when I'm playing by myself than say in the show.

    I have DR Hi Beams on it, but I'm not sure I like them. I use Hi Beams on my 5 string (Bart Soaps, ash body and maple board) and like them on that bass. I've used them for a long time and loved them but they don't seem to be doing it for me on my 6 string. My 6 has an ash body as well, but has a Wenge board and Bart jazz pups.

    Maybe I should try the stock Roscoe strings.
  20. CrashClint

    CrashClint I Play Bass therefore I Am

    Nov 15, 2005
    Wake Forest, NC
    DR Strings Dealer (local only)
    I can see where the stainless strings will sound sterile and thin on the 6 string Ash/JJ. I tried a set of the GHS Boomers on the Ash body JJ Century bass I had and they sounded pretty good, just a little squeaky under the fingers. I had thought about trying Flats right before I sold the bass but never got the chance. I normally use DR Sunbeams, but I do like the Sadowsky Blue Nickels as well.
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