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Tung (not Tune) Bass - What's The Story?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by bubingaboy, Jan 29, 2005.


  1. bubingaboy

    bubingaboy

    Oct 18, 2004
    Rhode Island
    So I've been a Dream Theater fan for a few years now. I picked up the John Myung video "Progressive Bass Concepts" when I was delving into the six string beast and he (John Myung) was playing a Tung Bass.

    I have tried to do a ton of research to find out any information on these basses. Quality, tone, availability, etc. Based on my research, it seems that Nicholas Tung (I think that's his name) only built something like 100 of them. Thus it is rare to get ANY information at all. I read somewhere that he is raising dogs on a ranch somewhere.

    Has anybody out there ever gotten the chance to play one? I would love to hear first hand from someone who has spent time with one and how they would rate the bass (comparisons in tone, balance, action, etc to other higher end basses and custom jobbies that they've played).

    Thanks for anyone that can respond to this.
     
  2. Figjam

    Figjam

    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Dont really know about Tung basses but if youre interested in playing what Myung plays, he has a signature Yamaha bass.
     
  3. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    I owned one for a few years, it was an incredible bass. Very solid and punchy sound, you can hear me play it here:
    http://altguitarbass.com/basssounds.asp#TUNG

    As far as I know NIck own a restaurant around Houston. A guy I know wanted to buy the name TUng from him and build the same basses. He finaly reached him and asked him about it, But NT said that he might get back in business so he didn'T want to sell the name.

    That's a good news :)
     
  4. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    this is the bass
     

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  5. wyliee

    wyliee

    Jul 6, 2003
    South Hill, WA
    I've always thought these were very cool looking basses. I am told Nick made the aluminum saddle on my F Bass. Never had a chance to verify that though.

    Is there any new info on Nick getting back into business? If not, I'd have some interest in having someone make me one to the original specs. Thoughts on ethical implications? I have no desire to disrespect NT's work and certainly wouldn't call it a Tung bass; just inspired by Tung.

    With that said, I'd love to see more pictures and get any info you may have folks.

    Gracias.
     
  6. tonekat12

    tonekat12

    Oct 10, 2005
    New Mexico
    Nick made me a 6 in 1993 S/N 038. An absolutly amazing instrument. Alder body w/ Burl Maple top & Macasser ebony fingerboard. His necks are probably the thinnest out there. I'll post some pics soon
     
  7. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    They're definitely beautiful instruments!! I could never understand why Myung dropped those for something from Yamaha... :eyebrow:

    (Yeah, I know.. money.... endorsement.. free gear... blah, blah, blah.. Still...)


    :rollno:
     
  8. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    Forget all of reasons you listed, it's a little bit hard to get tour/studio/etc support from a non-existance company. ;)

    I think most people would have much less issues with JM playing Yamahas if he'd stuck to using TRBs and John Pat. signatures, which he was using pre-signature model circa 1996 as well as his current fretlesses.
     
  9. Why do people have problems with him playing any sort of bass at all? Who cares if he wants to play a bass that doesn't have a fancy swirly top and piezo pickups with 45 volt 62 band electronics and 28 carat gold hardware. He's obviously chosen to play a lower end bass for a good reason so let him be.
     
  10. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    Personally, I don't/can't believe that.
     
  11. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    He has a bass tech with him on tour and in the studio I'm sure... Besides most customs don't have proprietary components and replacements can be readily purchased from a myriad of sources.

    And before this degrades into a "Why do you hate Yamaha" or "Why do you hate Myung" pissing contest let me say that I have nothing against either. All I'm saying is that I've played Yamahas including the Myung and Pattitucci signature models and have yet to find one that would cause me to set down all my other basses and embrace them. That being said, I find it hard to believe that a person who playes custom Tungs would abandon them for -any- big production instrument company based solely on the product alone. IMO there would -have- to be other "incentives".