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Swapping between different types of basses...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Evil Undead, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. blastoff99

    blastoff99 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    SW WA, USA
    I try to go back and forth between 4 and 5, and have a lot of trouble with going to the 5 after playing the 4. (Going to the 4 after playing the 5 is easy.) Maybe this is because I'm not a very good player in general.

    The choir I play for has delivered me a bunch of music that really clamors for the 5er this quarter, so I'm going with it exclusively and have come to the conclusion that I'm a really lousy 5-string player even when I'm not trying to mix in the 4. Sigh.
  2. Joedog


    Jan 28, 2010
    Pensacola FL
    Yep it's all is summed up in the P word (practice), at least for me. While I normally play 5'ers these days, I still pick up my 4 banger at least once a week, so my brain stays used to both, without thinking. My 5's have quite diff. neck widths, but no problems (I play them both on a regular basis as well). It did take my brain a while to get used to my first 5'er. Keep at it.....after a while it get's easier, and eventually it feels natural.

    P.S. Spend the most time on that which you feel least comfortable.
  3. Bob Gross

    Bob Gross

    Nov 24, 2011
    Coachella Ca.
    Lipe Guitars
    I've been a 4 string player for over fifty years. Last year I got a six string. At first I was worried about switching back and forth, but I've found it no problem. I still use the fours often for blues, old style R&B etc. And I use the six every week for other stuff. I kind of think of the six of something like a Cadillac and the fours as a Vette. They both have their plusses and minuses.
  4. deeptubes


    Feb 21, 2011
    Virginia Beach
    My P Elite II has a 1.75" nut. It was my #1 until I picked up my Dimension, which has a 1.5" nut. My Elite is the only one I have with a P neck. The rest are J. Going from the P to the Dimension was no problem. Last week, I pulled the P off the wall for the first time since Spring setup and completely missed hitting and fingering some strings. After a couple of minutes, no issues. I think as long as you continue to play both, it shouldn't be a problem.
  5. sstbo


    Dec 12, 2012
    I seem to agree with most. Practice on both instruments and you'll do fine live. For one of the groups I'm playing in I used to switch between guitar and bass regularly during live shows. It wasn't any problem at all. Mainly because I was so used to the specific guitar and the specific bass.
  6. thunderbird66


    Sep 30, 2012
    west Texas
    I tried to step up to a fiver. It was a disaster for me. Fingering hand was no problem, picking hand was the problem. I kinda describe it as " home row" from typing class. It thru me off BAD. But i am also usually a lead singer to so my playing is on "auto pilot". Having said that though i have been eye balling them again and thinkin about giving it another shot. But drop D usually works out great.
  7. RickRocks


    Apr 17, 2011
    Western KY, USA
    I always played 4 strings, but had to get a 5 for a few tunes with the band I'm in.
    I think if you're going from a 4 to a 5 you should get a 5 with a slender neck which means smaller string spacing. I started with a Warwick corvette 5 (going from Jazzes and MusicMan Sterling). It took a little getting used to, but its not bad. I didn't like the sound o the MEC pickups and ended up getting rid of the Vette for cheaper Squire deluxe V Jazz. That big Fender 5 string neck sucks! It's so damn wide and makes my hand hurt.
    I went from a great playing bass that didn't sound good to a hard playing bass that does sound good. Now I'm thinking of either a sterling by musicman ray35 or a Spector legend 5. Both are great sounding, great feeling, and affordable basses. I don't play 5 much so I don't like to have a lot invested
    It's all a feel thing. Everyone is different. Just stick with it and you'll get used to it. I've found it easiest to rest my thumb on or under the B when not playing on it, and have to cramp my left hand to wrap my thumb around to mute the B when slapping or using a pick. But I try not to slap or pick on my five for those reasons.
    Oh and I switch between the 2 live all the time. I prefer my 4 string and I've gotten to the point where I only pick up the five as needed. I used to tough it out with the 5, but I only have like 2 or 3 songs I need it on now so i just set I down...
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