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Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Bass Guitar Ideas......

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Paul Jenkin, Feb 6, 2019.

  1. Paul Jenkin

    Paul Jenkin Friend of Leo's

    Aug 17, 2017
    Essex, UK
    I'm thinking about backing off the 6-string lessons for a while and, without any disrespect to our bass-playing brethren, focusing on playing bass for a while.

    I've got a Fender MIJ bass - which I love. However, I'm looking for something a bit "different". I'd consider semi-hollow, short scale, single or double pickup, etc.

    My initial thought turned to a P-Bass as many bands I like have a P-Bass player. That wouldn't be a bad choice - but there's a load out there. What I'm not after is anything too esoteric - no 5/6 strings, fretless or heavy metal pointy-headstock basses.

    My bass amp is an Ashdown 300 watt combo and I'm not looking to replace that - but I might get a bass compressor pedal.

    I'd be looking to play anything from classic / heavy rock to blues.

    Suggestions welcome, please....
  2. drewcp

    drewcp TDPRI Member

    Dec 12, 2018
    Saint Paul, MN

    Also, just get a P-Bass.
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  3. Ydwen Jones

    Ydwen Jones Tele-Meister

    Jan 2, 2019
    You say you already have a MIJ Fender bass? But that's not a P-bass. So it's a J, then?
    nojazzhere likes this.
  4. thunderbyrd

    thunderbyrd Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Dec 21, 2004
    central ky
    if I ever get another bass, it'll be a danelectro longhorn.
    Jonzilla, Paul Jenkin and markjames like this.
  5. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

    Aug 11, 2010
    On Location

    Just do it, all the cool kids are.
    Paul Jenkin, Mike SS and RodeoTex like this.
  6. Togman

    Togman Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 28, 2004
    Cambridgeshire, UK
    I've got a nice Ibanez Bass that I got for £250 new about 3 years ago. Very pleased with it.
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  7. markjames

    markjames TDPRI Member

    Mar 27, 2017
    Danelectro's are really great value.... and a great look....the Longhorn as previously mentioned is a great bass
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  8. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

    Feb 3, 2017
    Foat Wuth, Texas
    You just described my new Hofner Ignition Club Bass.....I already had a Fender P-Bass, and was looking for the short-scale, "thumpy" bass sound. Put flatwounds on it, and you've got the British Invasion sound.
    Second suggestion would be an Epiphone EB-O the old Gibson except WAY cheaper.
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  9. mistermikev

    mistermikev Tele-Meister

    Feb 20, 2018
    I'm a guitar player that learned bass because our high school band instructor thought "there's no room for guitar players in jazz band". I learned to play bass on a med scale... yamaha motion b back in 1988ish. I tell you this because I - altho 6'2" and have giant hands - love the med scale basses. Love the sound, love the feel... highly recommend you consider it.
    one of the difficulties I see going from being a guitar player to bass player is that you have learned to play things - scales for instance - in a way that you won't be able to on a bass. altho I've gained some things as a guitar player from having made that transition, the smaller scale gave me a leg up in terms of already having known some things.
    also, feel compelled to point out that playing bass is no easier than playing guitar. if you are switching for that reason you are switching for the wrong reason. that said: knowing both of them has taught me a lot about each of them.
    Paul Jenkin, Mike SS and nojazzhere like this.
  10. VintageSG

    VintageSG Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Mar 31, 2016
    Cheap - Epiphone EB0
    Inexpensive - Danelectro Longhorn
    Do anything - Yamaha TRB of some description
    Oddball - Ibanez Mikro

    Or just stick with a P-Bass ( maybe a J ) as they cover so much ground.

    I've currently got a P with a J pickup at the bridge and an Epiphone EB0. The EB0 has its own thing going. The mudbucker type pickup does more than you'd think and it nails the Cream tone + early rock and electric blues. It doesn't do bright and punchy too well, but it does rumble guts. It is almost the anti-P.
    Try a Danelectro. They rock!
    nojazzhere likes this.
  11. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

    Feb 3, 2017
    Foat Wuth, Texas
    YES!!! As a matter of fact, I believe playing bass, well, is harder than guitar. For lack of a better term, you need to "dumb down", in the sense of playing MUCH simpler and in rhythm. There's LOTS of decent guitarists available.....not very many bass players.(that are "good")
    Paul Jenkin and screefer like this.
  12. screefer

    screefer Tele-Meister

    Feb 28, 2016
    I highly recommend a Squier short scale Jaguar P/J. I've got LaBella low-tension flats on mine and it is great. It plays way above it's price. The 30" scale makes it easier to adjust from guitar.
    I'd also take nojazzhere's advice.
    Good luck
    nojazzhere likes this.
  13. mistermikev

    mistermikev Tele-Meister

    Feb 20, 2018
    given my allegiance to "guitar players united" (hehe) I'm uncomfortable saying it's harder to play bass! IMO they are both equally difficult for differing reasons. to play like vic wooten or jaco you really have to know just as much theory as you would to play like al de meola on guitar... just the focus is going to be more on root/5 for bass vs extensions for guitar. on bass you might have to learn fingerstyle + slap + pick + tapping... on guitar you might have to learn variants of the same styles. on bass you really have to have solid rhythm chops... but on guitar (to be good) you also have to have a great sense of rhythm (eric johnson and his strange sense of begining/ending in his solo lines??).
    One thing for sure: to be as mediocre as me at both of them doesn't take all that much!

    forgot to acknowledge your very good point... as a bass player you would be far more in demand than guitar players - esp as a good bass player!
  14. Ydwen Jones

    Ydwen Jones Tele-Meister

    Jan 2, 2019
    A Höfner is a pretty cool idea and seems to check all or most of the boxes.
  15. mal883

    mal883 TDPRI Member

    Feb 5, 2019
    West Yorkshire, UK
    Hi, I stumbled onto this forum having just bought a Tele. Bass is my first instrument, so I thought I might be able to help.

    I would suggest a PJ pickup bass as it will give you greater flexibility than a straight P configuration. However I would also consider anything with active humbuckers and a preamp. I would be considering brands such as Squier, Ibanez or Sire.

    To get that thumping sound you’re after flatwounds are the key, less so the neck scale in my experience.

    I know you said no pointy head stocks but I wouldn’t discount Jackson, either a Concert Series JS32 or X series, the compound radius necks really reduce playing fatigue, and their active preamps are rather good.
  16. fidopunk

    fidopunk Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Nov 23, 2008
    Charleston, WV

    Hollowbody, short scale, no pointy headstock, American-made. What other boxes was I supposed to tick?
    Paul Jenkin, Macrogats and Theorage like this.
  17. maxvintage

    maxvintage Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Mar 16, 2003
    Arlington, VA
    So a P bass is great, there are lots of great solid body basses. They are all basically the same in terms of attack/decay.

    I've been a gigging bass player for over thirty years. I don't think I really understood bass until I started playing upright, or at least I didn't understand a "swing" feel until I started playing upright.

    My goal when playing bass, in most situations, is to get as far from guitar as possible both sonically and in terms of feel. So rather than just get a new bass, you could try flat wounds.

    a hollow body bass would be great--a semi hollow, MHO, is just a solid body with pretensions. But I'd look for a bass with a different attack/decay profile than a guitar. Experience that it's a different instrument altogether, rather than a bigger guitar with less strings

    Short scale basses--it took me a while to get used to them, but now I play them on electric gigs a lot. They have a softer feel and sound the lends itself to thinking differently
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  18. Mike SS

    Mike SS Poster Extraordinaire

    Aug 9, 2012
    Fifty plus years on guitar, and started playing around with bass about twenty years ago to put some low end on my song demos. I learned quickly that it was not easy to play the bass, and I had a lot to learn/unlearn.
    I also thought short-scale would suit my smaller size better, so gave the EBO and the Danelectro Longhorn a try. My experience with them showed more problems with string tension and intonation. They also did not have the percussive "thump" of the long scale. Leo had it right again. The long scale on the P-bass was there for a reason.
    As far as the best choice for you? Only you will know when you find it.
    Paul Jenkin likes this.
  19. Hexabuzz

    Hexabuzz Friend of Leo's

    Dec 13, 2014
    Northeast PA
    G&L L2000

    They can do it all from Rock to funk to blues to anything in between.

    If you're on a budget, get one of the Tribute series.

    They're a beast of a bass, a real tone machine, active AND passive
    Mike SS and Paul Jenkin like this.
  20. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

    Nov 15, 2009
    Austin, Tx
    I love my MIK PRS SE Kestrel.
    It’s essentially a neck through Jazz bass with Hipshot hardware.
    It has a 2+2 headstock and neck binding.
    They are about $800 new, and I have seen them used for $500.
    I prefer Jazz basses to Precisions, personally.
    Precisions are very bassy/boomy, IMO.
    I have Thomastik/Infeld heavy flats on mine.
    Good luck!
    Paul Jenkin and nojazzhere like this.
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