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molan

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molan last won the day on September 19

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About molan

  • Birthday October 1

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  1. molan

    The best bass builder.

    Interesting thread - not least because I came across it when searching to see if there were any ‘interesting’ basses for sale. I rarely scroll through the listings but always search for a couple of specific brands. I am lucky enough to have owned or played just about every one of the ‘exotic’ brands here plus some lovely vintage instruments as well. I think the only one mentioned I haven’t tried is a Carl Thompson. I still have far too many basses but there’s a wall next to my desk in my little studio which tends to be home to the ones I enjoy playing most. It currently has on it: Ritter Cora x2 Fodera Monarch Sei J Atelier Z J Lakland US J Sadowsky NYC J Fender CS P Fender Vintage J These days the only things I ever take out on gigs are one of the Ritters or the Sei (sometimes the Sadowsky). These also happen to be the only two I ever search for and the ones that lead me to this thread! With so much to choose from in terms of tonality, looks, weight etc. I find that my main choices come down to a simple matter of playability. The Ritters are just the easiest to work with and allow me to play more fluently. They sound quite different to each other but I’m sure no-one I ever play to could hear the difference. The Sei comes very, very close to the Ritters and has some useful LEDs for dark stages. If I have a gig where something like the Ritters or Sei might look a bit too ‘flash’ I will take the Sadowsky. It’s just a great gigging bass and always sounds good plus it matches the others for weight. For the odd bit of late night noodling I’ll drag the Fodera out and the Fenders get some time just because I like stroking them, lol. There’s no ‘best’ for me here but Jens, Martin and Roger are three of the nicest people I’ve met in the business and all show amazing passion - albeit in very different ways. If I ever had to keep just one bass it would be my white Ritter Cora. If I was going to commission a new build then I’d go to Martin.
  2. molan

    Is volume killing smaller gigs?

    Our lead guitarist uses his amp set to 5w into a mic’d up 1x12” and it sounds amazing. Doesnt even crank the master volume when he’s at 5w, it’s easily loud enough. Sometimes at rehearsals we give him a treat and let him go to 15w, unmic’d 😂 We rehearse in a large hall with thick carpets so it’s not banging around the room and deafening us.
  3. molan

    Is volume killing smaller gigs?

    I guess the two working landlords who told me their tales of woe were wrong then. . .
  4. Ted Nugent seems to be generally quoted with the famous quote of "if it's too loud, you're too old". However, following a recent conversation with a pub landlord and customer it seems then the modern day version in smaller gig locations should be "if it's too loud, you really are too loud". . . Some background - we played a gig at a new venue for us that's had regular live music for a long time. After sound check the landlady came over and told us we sounded really good and were the best band they'd had in for a long time. Obviously we're all smiling and happy but a bit confused as all we'd played was a few sections of three songs to set the sound up for each instrument. I asked her what it was she liked - she replied without hesitation that we weren't stupidly loud and she could hear herself think when we were playing and also her customers when they ordered. We got a decent crowd and seemed to go down well and spoke to her about possible future gigs. She said she really liked us but that she was almost certainly going to stop having live bands completely. Her reasons were really interesting: Too many of them are too loud - deafening the staff and punters and increasingly annoying neighbours Poor quality sound - guitars drowning out the vocals, bass making things shake around the room and everything sounding a bit disconnected One of her regulars joined the conversation and backed her up. He obviously knew a bit about live sound and he reiterated that bands were getting louder and louder (he mentioned they seemed to be able to do this even with small combos - which is true of course with so much modern gear). The thing that annoyed him the most was the imbalance of sound, only vocals in the PA, PA sounding 'thin' and lacking clarity and the dreaded guitarist and bassist continually turning up to drown each other out whilst the drummer thrashed away regardless. Neither of them thought the musicianship was poor - although they said they often couldn't tell because of poor vocal quality. They both also said that vocals were the single most important thing for most everyday pub gig goers and they couldn't understand why bands seemed to pay so little attention. Soon after we played another gig where the landlord said something along the same lines. He felt he was losing customers because his local bands were simply too loud week after week. He was always telling them to turn down but they always said they had to be that loud because they couldn't hear what they were playing. He said he was not booking any more bands this year This morning I saw a thread (not here) where someone was saying he was in a new band playing weddings and corporate functions but probably wouldn't be in the front of house mix. Another player then said he needed a really powerful amp that went really loud. I see this 'it's great, goes really loud' quote all the time from people playing small gigs and also so many players saying that the PA is just for vocals. I can understand that 'volume' is all part of the dynamics of playing live but surely it should be 'controlled' rather than the mayhem unleashed by so many pub bands? It amazes me that people still think, in an age where quality PA is easily available for not too much money, that being insanely loud is something to aspire to and that they don't seem to really care about setting a band up for the audience rather than themselves. Putting everything into the FoH mix allows you to balance the sound across all instruments so that the audience can hear everything clearly - especially those all important lead vocals. It also allows everyone on stage to pull back on volume so they aren't deafening each other and can hear what everyone else is playing (adding stage monitors or in-ears is a bonus but I realise that's often too much additional expense or is taking up too much floor space). The lead guitarist in my band sets his Mesa Boogie combo to 5w and never needs any more volume. So, apologies for the long post but it genuinely worries me that more & more gigs will disappear if bands don't get their sound in order. . .
  5. molan

    Palladino discusses THAT bass line

    I once went to the old Bass Centre in Wapping because they'd just had a new delivery in of Trace Elliot and there was a new combo I wanted to try out. They had so much stock that they'd had to make corridors of TE gear for people to walk down. So there I am, sitting on top of the TE combo I wanted to try and was idly fooling around with the intro of Wherever I Lay My Hat and trying to remember how it continued into the verse. Next thing I know there's someone soloing on fretless over my verse patterns. I thought it sounded quite cool so just kept playing a basic pattern whilst listening to the mysterious fretless player. Eventually I stopped and stood up to peer over the stack of cabs to discover my soloing partner was none other than Pino himself on an old fretless P bass! I was instantly embarrassed and ducked down behind the cab wall again, grabbed the combo and headed off to buy it. As I went past Pino said "those new Trace combos are really good, excellent choice'. I mumbled my thanks for his opinion and staggered off to pay for it (no such thing as neo speakers those days so it weighed a ton!).
  6. molan

    Sei Bass Jazz V Fretless

    This looks like a 5 string, and fretless, twin of my 4!
  7. molan

    The Official MARUSZCZYK CLUB!

    If the truss rod has broken wouldn’t the higher tension of the lower strings make it twist like this?
  8. molan

    The Official MARUSZCZYK CLUB!

    I agree completely. It sounds like the truss rod is no longer working, either broken or pulled out of its anchor. If it’s doing nothing at all then the neck is going to both bow and twist towards that E string Continually moving it back and forth may have done this but over-tightening is generally what causes this to happen. I always treat truss rods with extreme respect. It’s not that I’m worried about working with them but I know it’s tricky (and expensive) to repair them and it’s not covered by warranty because it’s classed as something caused by the user. If ever I have any neck issues I’ll get the bass to a local luthier immediately for a check over. A lot of them will do an initial check for free and can often isolate the problem very quickly. Sometimes might take a few days if something needs to be adjusted and settled in but I’d rather be without something for a while than risk causing serious damage
  9. molan

    The Official MARUSZCZYK CLUB!

    I've been following this thread with interest but it seems to have 'stalled' for a while. I have been trying to think through reasons why a neck might become unplayable and warp / twist. Bowing is relatively common (and understandable given the pressure exerted by the strings pulling on the neck) but usually fixed by careful truss rod adjustment. I've also seen the odd small 'hump' appear on a fingerboard (which can often be sorted with careful shaving of the board). The other thing that sometimes appears to be a 'warp' is an issue in the neck pocket where one side of the neck is sitting lower than the other. This is one of those 'painful' jobs where experimentation with little shims of varying sizes can make all the difference. All of these things are a, relatively, easy fix for a good luthier. However, a full 'twist at the headstock is a lot rarer. My first thought was that this could be caused if a neck was initially bowing and the truss rod was then tightened to such a degree that it either snapped or, more likely, was pulled out of its anchor. This would then remove the support from the neck and it would start to bow quite quickly. A potential additional side effect, without that vital truss rod support, could be that the heavier strings will exert more pull on the headstock than the lighter ones and the neck will start to twist with the upper side rising more than the lower. This is something I've heard of but never actually seen on an instrument. I wonder if this could be the cause of the problem? It would certainly render the neck unplayable in a relatively short period and it's much more of a hassle to fix than the other things I came up with. I should mention that I'm no luthier - just experienced quite a few instruments that needed some pro attention It would definitely be interesting to see what Adrian thinks and why he considers it not to be a warranty repair.
  10. molan

    So, just how many basses do you own ????

    I literally have no idea - just tried to count them up in my head and hit about 25. It then realised I’d forgotten my ‘63 & ‘66 J’s! I really, really, need to do a proper inventory. . .
  11. molan

    Mike Lull P Bass - Withdrawn

    This was my main gigging bass for a while! Pictured here pre wedding gig where I guested on a couple of numbers with the wonderful Sway Allstars Eventually I picked up the Fender version which suits me a little more, although I don't seem to play it as much.
  12. molan

    Marta Altesa

    Exactly - she did not ever play with the band. One soundcheck and that was it. How do I know this - I asked someone who was on the tour in a professional capacity. He had no reason to lie or distort the facts. It’s patently obvious that this was the case anyway because there is not a single picture of her playing with the band other than ones at a soundcheck (and I don’t think any of these show JK). In the modern era, and given her YT profile, there would be loads of images and YT footage if Jamiroquai actually invited a fan on stage to play a song at a huge stadium. It doesn’t make the blindest difference whether she is male, female or something in between. Her FB profile ‘implies’ she played with them but the wording doesn’t actually say this directly. Anyone trying to pass off that they’ve played live on stage with a major band when they simply didn’t is, at best, unprofessional. It’s classic social media and forum stuff to perpetuate these stories without any attempt to check facts. Saying ‘Google it’ or referring to someone’s Facebook page and assuming it must be true is the typical approach but it’s not hard to work out the truth by using a bit of common sense. . .
  13. molan

    Marta Altesa

    The majority of those pictures show someone who was a travelling guest of the band. That’s very different from ‘touring’ and actually playing with them. The only pic of her with a bass is one where she’s trying out Paul Turner’s rig. If she actually played with them you’d think she might have managed at least one pic with her on stage with the band and in front of an audience?
  14. molan

    Marta Altesa

    Of course, this could just be an urban myth. . .
  15. molan

    Marta Altesa

    She really didn’t - I’ve seen that story before and it’s not true. I’ve never seen her do anything other than to play over the top of stuff on YT.
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