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What's the point in 5-6 strings?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Suitcase, Dec 21, 2004.

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  1. You only need four. I just don't get why you would want any more on a bass.
  2. PunkerTrav


    Jul 18, 2001
    Canada & USA
    Now you've done it...
  3. If for no other reason than to be able to play vertically across the fretboard instead of constantly changing positions.

    And who says that you only need four anyway? I've heard many argue that you only need two. And in some cases, they are right. In some cases, you are correct. And in a whole lot of other cases 5,6,7, even ten or more are correct.

    Bass -- It's not just for breakfast anymore.
  4. lyle

    lyle Guest

    Jan 10, 2004
    Vernon, B.C. Canada
  5. StingRay5guy

    StingRay5guy Guest

    Oct 14, 2004
    Why not more strings? More strings, wider variety of notes which means you can play more stuff. Sure, alot of really good bass players (Mike Dirnt not being one of them) only play 4 but alot of really good bass players play 6+. Personally, I don't care for 4 string basses because they just don't let me play everything I want to play. I'll stick to my 5+ strings and you can stick to your limitations.
  6. Head Creep

    Head Creep

    Nov 6, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Punk rockers only need 4-5 guitar chords to make a whole album, why should anyone learn any more? The argument's just as valid and absurd as the usage of 5+ strings, depending on who you are. Just a matter of what you're playing and how you like to play.
  7. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I'm sorry that mommy doesn't give you the attention that you deserve, but that's no reason to purposefully solicit negative attention in a civil forum such as this. :bassist:
  8. _Unregistered_


    Nov 3, 2004
    Well put...or in other words; TROLL ALERT!

    How about this for a reason? Because some of us don't think that E is a very low note, and would like to be able to hit lower notes without having to detune their instrument.

    ...and, of course, that little detail about being able to think and play entirely "in position" that PilbaraBass mentioned.
  9. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    In all fairness, I don't think the guy is a troll. If you look at his profile, he is 13 years old. Also, look at his bands / influences, again, not exactly likely that this kid has been exposed to a lot of ERB bass playing.

    Chances are this is a legitimate question from someone who doesnt have experience with basses with more than 4+ strings. Are we all so precious about this subject that we jump on any innocent question?
  10. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002

    I am sure your question may be sincere, but I think you may get ripped on this, considering the number of people here who do play and believe in multi-string basses, including myself ;)

    good luck :meh:
  11. Mikemike

    Mikemike Miscreant

    Jun 18, 2002
    Minneapolis, Minnesota
    I play five string mainly because I don't like detuning. Also, when I'm jamming sometimes i just think to myself "man, you know what would be cool right now? If I played a low D, C, or otherwise." And I can, without any adjustments in the middle of a song.
  12. Dynna


    Oct 23, 2004
    I played four/fretted for years. I bought a five/fretless because I wanted something totally different with extended range, that wouldn't make my 4 obselete. I bought a 6 fall 2003 b/c I was playing with a gtr player in a jazz duo and I wanted to be able to play chords and lines while he soloed. My 4 is now obselete. Heck, I don't play my 5 much lately either. Most of my playing anywhere is in small combos, so I like the six for adding natural and fretted harmonics to thicken up what the combo is doing. AND, I can reach down to keep the bass doing it's function at the same time.

    I may consider getting out the 4 if I was in a classic rock situation again though.
  13. Brat


    Jun 4, 2004
    NW Indiana.
    Why do people drive a car when they can ride a bike?

    Come on. That low B, that high C. Dont limit yourself with your opinions. Don't be a bass-racist! And dont post stuff like this with "Mike Dirnt Rox" in your sig. It makes Mikey look bad. :rollno:
  14. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    We play basses with more than four strings to make you ask stupid questions. Other than that they're completely useless.
  15. elros


    Apr 24, 2004
    Proprietor, Helland Musikk Teknologi
    Wait. The correct answer is:

    I play a 7-string bass to compensate for lack of talent.

    (That's a joke. You my laugh.)

    edit: Oops - my bad. You asked about 5 and 6 string basses. Ignore my joke, please.
  16. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    Don't you only own two four strings?
  17. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    It's not a question - it's a thinly disguised statement - it's quite clear that the main part of the post is "You only need four."

    Of course if he had said - a 13 year old who is only interested in punk only needs 4 - that might seem reasonable - but to state that everybody here only needs 4 is clearly just flame bait!! :rollno:
  18. Dan Molina

    Dan Molina TalkBass Secular Progressive

    Jul 17, 2002
    Murr Town, California
    Two of the most beautiful steinbergers ever.

    On Topic:
    Chords are by far more at your disposal with 5+ strings.
  19. Dude, that kid actually WANTS an Ibanez GAXB150? I had one, i didnt buy it though, i had it given to me brand new, even then i was reluctant... Seriously Suitcase, go look at some Warwick, Rascoe, Music Man and fender sites. Besides, the GAXB is only a 7/10ths scale... You'll learn soon enough.

    Aaaaaaaanyway... I own a 5 string, best investment I have even made, it allows me to play a scale in say, G withought moving along the fretboard. Also, it allows me to play the E string faster with much more ease, especially on songs like Stockholm syndrome by muse.

    It is also very true that some bassists dont need more than 4 strings, Cliff Burton for one... But he's dead and i have faith that had he been alive today (when 5 strings are much more normal, and where no longer considered extended range) H would have.

    But good luck playing many GOOD modern on a 4 string. There are a few out there that are fantastic, some nickelback for instance (not good bass lines but good songs), Mudvayne (hell, would wouldn't wanna play ryan martinie songs) Slayer, metallica.
  20. Thank you. That needed to be said.

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