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Tenor Bass: Clever Idea or Oxymoron?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bassmanbucko, Jul 14, 2004.

  1. What does eveyone think about 5 string tenor basses (Tuned EADGC rather than BEADG)?
  2. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I think that high C instead of low B tuning is just fine. It's all in what the player wants to do with the instrument.
  3. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Still a bass. If you start higher than low E... say, ADGCF... then that might be a tenor bass.

    Piccolo bass, OTOH, might be an oxymoron... :p
  4. lol True. I was always under the impression that a tenor bass is a bass tuned (or restrung) up a 4th higher than normal.
  5. sargebaker

    sargebaker Commercial User

    May 2, 2004
    Montreal QC CA
    owner/builder, ISLAND Instrument Mfg.
    WHat exactly is a Piccolo bass?
  6. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    It's a regular bass tuned an octave higher. Stanley Clarke is the best know player to use them...

    Piccolos predate tenors by a couple of decades at least...
  7. A lot of people use 5 strings tuned EADGC, which I find fine. As Fuzzbass said, I think a higher starting bass like ADGCF might be tenor. All I know is Adding a few higher string doesn't really take away the fundamental of the bass, so I'd consider it a bass. When you remove the E string, it starts to lose its bass characteristics.
  8. Wolfehollow


    Jan 21, 2003
    Pensacola, FL
    My newest "bass" is tuned an octave above a 6 string bass.


    ...sort of baritone/tenorish.
  9. Jazzin'

    Jazzin' ...Bluesin' and Funkin'

    what about a soprano bass? would that be like DGCFA
  10. vene-nemesis

    vene-nemesis Banned

    Jul 17, 2003
    Bilbao España
    It's already done, talk to mark beem his 9 strings are all the way from bass voices to treeble voices
  11. bassmonkeee


    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Actually, Fender had a 5 string tuned EADGC in the mid 60s...

    Brian Bromberg has used the piccolo bass to good effect.

    Matt Garrison plays 5 strings tuned EADGC.
  12. werner vw

    werner vw

    Mar 26, 2004
    Victor Wooten has is five strings tuned EADGC
  13. That's one of his signature Fodera Yin Yang basses, of which he also has a fretless 4 and fretted 4, both of which are regular tunings. His other 5 string is a fretless bass made by a friend of his, tuned in regular tuning as well. The rest of his basses can be seen here, though he may have added new gear since this page was last updated.
  14. TotalJam


    Jul 8, 2004
    The name is an oxymoron. The idea is fine. :D
  15. whatever floats your boat. if you like a low b, fine. if you like a high c, fine. i myself prefer both, thats why i am saving for a six string.
  16. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    I've been thinking about making my fretless bass a "tenor" bass -- ADGC. Before experimenting with different tunings, though, I'd like to have more than two basses -- preferably another fretless. That way, I can have my four string changing tunings until I find an alternate one I like (tenor is on the top of my list, tuning in fifths is next) while my other basses do their normal thang.
  17. Ericman197


    Feb 23, 2004
    Personally, I've always thought of it as pointless. Of course, you could add high strings as you want, but you should keep the low ones as well. It could work for some of the classic rock players and the guys who play high up... some of them hardly use the E string. I myself am at the opposite end of the spectrum; I hardly ever use the G string. 99% of my playing is on the B, E, and A. I've used the D enough to justify it's being there, but the G really doesn't get much use at all.
  18. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    heh, that'd be a nice trick since he doesn't own any 9's yet :D :hyper: he's a crazy 88 :D
  19. Limo


    Sep 22, 2002
    Reykjavik Iceland
    If piccolo bass is tuned octave higher than a regular bass isn't it basically a guitar then???:confused:
  20. DW


    Jun 22, 2000
    Yep, just an extra long scale guitar with (usually) 4 strings. But apparently if it's played by Stanley Clarke, you can't call it a guitar, you have to pretend it's a bass.

    Hey, whatever anyone wants to play, that's fine with me. But "tenor bass" and "piccolo bass" are oxymorons.