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Total Watts

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About Ed_S

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    Broad Yorkshire bassist

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    South Yorkshire

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  1. Despite predominantly being a rocker/metalhead, I've always liked a bit of PSB and I enjoyed the gig, so thanks for the unintentional heads-up; without this thread I wouldn't have known to look for it on iPlayer!
  2. I was recently discussing a new song with one of our guitarists who had written and recorded a scratch demo of his creation with no bass - which is how they normally arrive. I actively wanted to know whether he had anything in mind for my part and his response was that I should just do my thing: "sometimes [...] you'll play it completely different to how I expected it, which sometimes at first may be 'wrong' for me, but when I actually listen... you're pretty much always right!". I was really happy with that as a vote of confidence. Don't get me wrong, I'd also have been happy if he'd told me he had an idea that he wanted me to try and factor in, but similarly I wouldn't expect such an idea to be more than a general notion of feel, and more normally a pointer to an existing song that exhibits that feel.
  3. I never used to take a backup because ‘what’s likely to go wrong with a passive p-bass’ etc. But then I watched a video of one of our guitarists breaking a string mid-song, sourcing a new one from his case and then replacing, stretching and tuning for the rest of the song, all whilst stood there on stage because there was no backstage and no way off. From my point of view at the time, I noticed it happen as I was stood closest to him, I hit my bit-of-grit pedal to cover the loss of rhythm guitar, I caught the eye of the other guitarist (who couldn’t hear what had happened) and made the ‘something has gone wrong - look over there’ face just in time for him to clock it and cover the solo that was otherwise about to be very obviously missing, and from then to the end of the song we just got on with it. But three things happened as a result... We saw the video and cringed. We covered it just fine but it still looked pretty naff. I realised that even if I had a spare string, I really wouldn’t want to have to do that! The guitarist who didn’t have the mishap and always brings a spare guitar (and whose band it mostly is) told the other that if he didn’t bring a backup from now on, he wasn’t playing! Although he didn’t tell me the same, I voluntarily pledged to join in. So now I have a basic-but-fettled Ibanez in a cheap-but-adequate TGI bag with a strap, a lead, some picks and disposable earplugs. If the worst came to it and that’s all I was left with, I could still play - though thinking about it now, a tuner would be a good addition - I’ll go and chuck one in the bag. Not needed it yet... fingers crossed I never do!
  4. I use both chambered body Maruszczyk and low density body Sandbergs (but as 4s not 5s) for my main gigging basses. The gloss finish on my Jake L4p+ is more to my taste as I like things to stay looking new and I’ve actually already managed to put a little ding in the paper-thin finish on the super-light, but I’m kinda strangely at peace with the fact that I literally cannot keep something like that looking pristine forever if I’m going to make full use of it; it’s going to age a little bit in spite of my best efforts. The Maruszczyk was cheaper by about £500 as you say (though it’s passive so the lack of a preamp accounts for some of that), but the Sandbergs have something about them that made me buy a second one! That said, given the sounds I’m getting from the 4s that I own, I can’t see any reason why a 5 from either company would be lacking ...but at the same time I wouldn’t expect it to sound like my actual 5s which are Spectors and therefore have a sound all of their own which could easily, for some, define the term ‘gutsy’.
  5. Get yourself over to Thomann - they’ve got you covered! Seriously, though, I just find anything heavy to be a quite literal pain. It’s not just standing and playing the thing (though it is that, too), it’s also that I’ll regularly get dropped off near to a venue with two basses in gigbags, my pedalboard in its case, and a laptop bag full of amp head, cables and spares ..and sometimes a rucksack with other bits as well. I need all that to be one trip as there isn’t an inexpensive bit I can risk leaving by the side of the road while I nip inside, and when I get to where I’m going having carried it I need to be uninjured and not on the verge of collapse! I have a heavy bass and a full size valve head that I’ll take to a rehearsal every now and then... just to remind myself how horrible they are to deal with and how little difference they make to my sound.
  6. Think I was quite lucky - I started out on a Yamaha BB N4ii and a Trace Commando 15 mk2 I don’t have either of them any more, but they were a good place to start. The tone control on the bass did absolutely nothing, and the combo was heavy and awkward to shift, but I still felt like a bit of a boss.
  7. Completely agree - the weight is fine, it's just the carrying position that I found unhelpful. It surprised me to find that Fender decided the same size lump with no amp in the back of it was due a pair of recessed bar handles... ...but the combo just needed a strap handle on the top so you could waddle awkwardly with it, bashing your legs as you go. Totally personal preference, though, and I get that many people probably don't want to buy a brand new combo and then start driving size 10 screws into the sides of it 🙂 I mean.. I didn't really want to either!
  8. I’d maybe try to get away from the sansamp for a bit and just go with the bass on its own. I have a BDDI on the end of my board but it’s generally turned off all the time and only used as a clean DI. Every time I turn it on and play with the tone, I seem to end up with something that’s more pleasing in isolation but less useful in a mix - a ‘bedroom tone’ if you will. If you’re used to MM and J sounds, you might be inadvertently using the sansamp to try and make a P bass sound more like a MM/J, which it’s not and will in my experience gut the P bass of its particular brand of mid presence that makes it cut through. Just a thought 🙂
  9. No worries mate - fairly sure I bought them direct from Penn Elcom, but when I get home I’ll see if I can find the product code and what I worked out to be the right size screws for the holes in the handles and the thickness of the panels. Edit: They’re Penn-Elcom H4054 handles and 10x3/4” pan-head screws.
  10. Mine copes well with my loud heavy metal exploits so hopefully you’ll be fine! I went for surface-mount handles so no routing was involved. They don’t stand out obtrusively at all and they each have 7 substantial screws in them so I can’t imagine they’re going anywhere. I’m all about the easy life so I also put wheels on mine 🙂
  11. It’s a great combo for the money - mine has done some decent size rooms and not needed another cab. My main advice would be to buy the cover that’s meant to fit the matching extension cab and then fit some side handles where the holes are. It’s an even better amp when it becomes easier to move!
  12. If I rest on my right leg then the bass feels too high compared to my normal playing position when stood, my right arm ends up at an unnatural angle and my shoulder starts to ache, and to top it off I usually end up with the body finding a badly placed nerve so get a dead leg for my troubles as well! Right-Left for me, then, which may be the only thing I do in a manner advocated by anyone at all! 🙂
  13. That would be very nice - I always wear earplugs on stage and when I’m going out to see gigs, but there have been times I’ve gone out with no expectation of encountering live music and no plugs, only to get forced out of a bar by a band tipping up and giving it the full beans. Some of them I would actually have liked to have stayed and watched, too, but just couldn’t. If the bucket method was employed, would it then be reasonable for bands to ask publicans what kind of crowd they can guarantee to make sure it was worth their while? I have no idea how the system operates in the states - is it just that they’re culturally used to the tipping thing, and a ‘small’ crowd over there isn’t just the quite literal one-man-and-his-dog that we might experience, and hence enough to make a wage provided you aren’t terrible?
  14. Fiver if I’m taking a punt on a complete unknown. Tenner-ish if they have a good reputation or it’s a tribute to a band I like so at least I’ll know the songs.
  15. I broadly agree with you, but I’m a real ale drinking, beer-festival going type who will walk to a pub several miles away and call it my ‘local’ because they have a better selection of beers than the other pubs I pass on the way there, so for me the beer is absolutely not incidental to the pub experience - it’s central to it. Clean and welcoming premises with a good selection of well kept ale is what gets my sort to frequent a pub, not food or even live music. As ever, other opinions are available and mileage varies 🙂 Maybe that’s part of the perceived lack of value of music, though - when even putting bands on can’t save a pub that’s failing because it’s just an unpleasant place to be, and thus the old panacea fails to work, our value decreases in the estimation of the industry..?
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