Which bass should I use? (Recording a single)

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by GodPlayedBass, Sep 10, 2020.

  1. Recording a new single with my band. Its a hard rock song but should i use a jazz bass or a musicman style bass? I own seven basses but these are the two i believe would cut through the mix the easiest. Which would you use?

    I purposely left the brand of the basses out of this post because this isnt about brand warfare its about the style of bass.
  2. Stevorebob

    Stevorebob Well... I Am Here, Aren't I? Supporting Member

    Sep 29, 2011
    Los Angeles
    The one that creates the tone needed for the song.

    I know that’s not the answer you’re looking for — very sorry — but it is the correct answer.
    Winton, garak7, Kenova and 25 others like this.
  3. It was a good answer. Thanks for your advice
    DJ Bebop likes this.
  4. J. Crawford

    J. Crawford Supporting Member

    Feb 15, 2008
    Only one answer to this question - a P bass. ;)
  5. Funny enough i actually prefer p basses but i also hear the jazz bass is aggressive and is good for studio use to cut through a mix.
  6. lowdownthump


    Jul 17, 2004
    I favor Jazz basses but to honest Stingrays never seem to have a problem cutting through . I’m not sure if your is an actual MusicMan Stingray but if it’s a copy or inspired by model hopefully it will perform at the same level.
  7. DirtDog


    Jun 7, 2002
    The Deep North
    Bring em all, let the producer decide.

    Just don't let him tell you need to buy a hollowbody bass.
    Biggbass, Outbush, One Way and 19 others like this.
  8. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    IME: i've used whatever ax i felt was the most 'playable', by me, at the time: the ax i could best get around on. in other words = it doesn't make any difference. a competent bass instrument played competently will always produce a competent part for a recording. it's just the way it works.

    good luck with your "single!" :thumbsup:
  9. knumbskull


    Jul 28, 2007
    This is kind of one of those “what should i have for lunch” type threads... it’s hard for us to give meaningful input without knowing a whole lot of other variables, like how you play, what your signal chain is, what the song sounds like, what kind of feel you’re going for.... and so on :)

    and ultimately it comes down to what you want. Which only you can decide!

    On the other hand, **** it: Stingray type sound works well for hard rock. Most engineers i’ve met love that sound.

    Oh, and bacon sandwich with hot sauce.
    Outbush, DJ Bebop, mikewalker and 2 others like this.
  10. Mushroo


    Apr 2, 2007
    Ask the engineer and/or producer for their opinion.
  11. kalle74


    Aug 27, 2004
    The one that suits the rest of the instrumentation and arrangement best. Seriously. You can't decide beforehand. Take along every bass that you can perform the song on. Bring, borrow and steal. One of them WILL work better than the rest. Hauling gear is easy, fixing it in the mix is not.
    Joybass likes this.
  12. I assume you've played this song with the band once or a million times already... so, which bass sounds best for that song?

    That one.
  13. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    Impossible to choose without hearing the source material. Why don’t you go with your gut feeling?
    Meaculpa likes this.
  14. Resonance129


    Feb 15, 2011
    If it were me, I'd probably go with the MM style bass.
    You really can't go wrong with either, but in my limited experience, the Jazz isn't as prominent in the mids as the MMs, and can get swallowed in comparison. Really, either could be EQ'd to work, but I think the grittiness and overall MM pickup character would be appreciated a bit better by most ears involved.

    Edit: I know this isn't really "the right answer", but that'd be my take if I were to give the OP a barebones answer.
    GodPlayedBass likes this.
  15. wboyd68


    Oct 29, 2018
    Gilbert, Arizona
    When i was a kid I thought that what my bass sounded like to me was really important for recording. I was appalled that they wanted me to plug in direct and that I would have to hear myself using headphones! What experience has taught me is that the most important thing in the studio is a clean signal. Use the bass that you play your best on, and make sure that it is all set up correctly. And pay attention to the engineer. They usually have way more experience than we do.
    Bajo Clarkko likes this.
  16. Tomatoe vs tomato, for sure, but perhaps you need to select a bass that sits in the mix properly, rather than trying to cut through it. Remember that it is better to subtract information from a track that you don't need, than it is to try to add information that isn't there to begin with.
    Mvilmany, GodPlayedBass and DirtDog like this.
  17. Element Zero

    Element Zero Supporting Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    7 basses? Take em all and listen to which one fits best.
  18. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    What style of music? If it's fast use a red bass. Red basses are faster. The sunburst ones are better for blues.
  19. dopejohnpaul

    dopejohnpaul Supporting Member

    Oct 6, 2009
    Bonaire, GA
    Just ask to try half a take with each. Go with whichever sound better for the real takes.
    Resonance129 and GodPlayedBass like this.
  20. Kael


    Dec 26, 2004
    Oklahoma City
    Spend time with each bass. Really try and hear what each is bringing to the table. Then list all the different tracks that will be recorded and really listen to where each of those instruments live in the frequency range. It helps to write all this down on a chart with equally spaced lines where the frequencies double at each line so you know where everything lives. Decide which bass best fits the empty space that's there available for the bass. Take that instrument with you. Then just pick up a P bass and use that because that's what will work best 99% of the time in a studio and what virtually every recording engineer and producer wants anyways.
    JeezyMcNuggles likes this.
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