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Should funk strings be heavier?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Pbassred, Apr 2, 2006.

  1. Been playing RnB and Reggae, but now playing with a 70s/80s covers band. A fair amount of pop and slap. Using a 5 sting Yamaha active.

    What are the advantages of heavier/lighter sets?
  2. Heavier sets are harder to slap and pop but stay in tune more easily, have higher output, and just feel more...manly. :smug:

    I switched to 50-135 Foderas on my bass since I rarely slap anymore, and it sounds amazing. When I do bust out the ol' thumb, I can't get much speed--the string doesn't have much bounce to it--but boy howdy does it sound good.
  3. flatwoundfender


    Feb 24, 2005
    Heavier sets have balls, I really can't stand the sound of light gauge strings, to much like a guitar and not like a bass. Unless you're doing a bunch of slapping, I'd go with a heavier set. It depends on the style funk also, early 70's stuff was probably heavy flats, later 70's and 80's was more likely to be light gauge rounds.
  4. Moo

    Moo Banned

    Dec 14, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    The old Rotosound Funk Masters were 30 - 90, super light. Mark King played them, I think Geddy did too for a while. I like the soft bouncy feel they have, some hate it.
  5. I slap a lot and i have tryed heavy string 50-110 on my 4 string! It was not as i expected! Heavy string are very good when you do finger style or thumb.... but for slaping 45-105 is the fatest you can go. If there was a posibility of custom sets i gues a set of mediums 45-105 with added 110 E string would work awesome for ALL ROUND FUNK APLICATIONS!!!
  6. i play d'addario nickel strings which have .50, .70, .85, .105 gauges. The d and g strings are heaver than the normal set which i like because it gives me more of a punch. I don't slap i just play finger funk. I don't see myself every going down in string gauges. I could see myself going up to the heavy gauge, but not in the near future.

    good luck
  7. My personal preference now is a 40-95 set.
    I did start out on 45-105, as its easier to get a funky tone out of a thicker gauge. But for slapping/popping it's real tiresome, especially if you want to put some speed into it.
    So I moved to a lighter gauge and after getting used to it I sound just as funky, but are more comfortable (my shoulder thanks me) and can be speedy at the same time. A lot of funk comes from the fingers, don't forget.
    Listen to Stuart Zender (ex-Jamiroquai), he played light gauge strings as well and man... his tone is hella phat and he sure is funky!

    Of course, to each his own, and the best solution: having more than one bass! :p

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