Jump to content
DiMarco

Are six string basses addictive?

Recommended Posts

I haven't played any of the five or four string basses since I got my six string last week.
Just wondering... Is this an addiction?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
53 minutes ago, DiMarco said:

I haven't played any of the five or four string basses since I got my six string last week.
Just wondering... Is this an addiction?

 

I think that it’s more of an issue of having a honeymoon really. Maybe you are spending all your available time with your new bass because it is new not necessarily because it has six strings - although that might be the key reason 🙂

Six string basses are great by the way, I do enjoy having a run on mine occasionally 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Could be the exploring such an extremely wide fretboard that's keeping me inclined to grab for it.
It kinda forces my left hand positioning to be ultra correct because I can no longer get away hanging my thumb over the edge of the neck.

After playing the six for some time my five string basses feel like pencil neck japanese jazz basses haha.
No doubt at all this is improving my technique.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, DiMarco said:

I haven't played any of the five or four string basses since I got my six string last week.
Just wondering... Is this an addiction?

No, its just a new bass - that is the way with new basses!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

No, it's not only a new bass, it's discovering the upper and lower registers and the vertical playing. A sixer is a new horizons opener. Then you get back to your 4 strings bass with 20 positions and discover how limiting it is, except if you only play roots and fifths, of course.

It just depends on the kind of player you are.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was already using my five strings to play more vertical so I do relate to that remark. To me it seems only logical. Also chords and little fills in thr higher register sound more clear and open when you're not plsying exclusively on frets 12-24 plus there's interesting harmonies to be found closer to where you're playing your bassline or riff. I feel those are more easily discovered while playing thr six. I can then later figure out how and where to play those on a four or five string, but the energy of it will be different on those.

I think it is absolutely great to have a six in your arsenal even if only for writing material. It does open doors.

That said, my finger muscles are hurting this morning since I woke up. I should proceed with care and do warmups before practicing.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The number of strings has nothing to do with limits - that’s down to the player.

It’s the go large mentality - it’s initially attractive because you have more of everything - positions, strings, maybe even frets. It’s easier to build long lines that ascend of descend and if you’re interested in messing around with chords and/or soloing it gives you higher range (or much higher if you string E to F instead of B to C). However the trade-off is that you have to reach over an extra string and a chunk of fingerboard to play every single note in a regular bass line. If I were playing a set that didn’t specifically need a 6 (and that’s probably 99.9% of all recorded music) I’d take a 4 or 5. I have a 6, but probably play it 10% of the time, just for fun. Years of playing a 6 also gave me wrist problems and a touch of arthritis in my little finger so be careful :)

OP - you may grow to prefer your new 6 over all other basses, a la Anthony Jackson. If so, more power to you. It may however just be new bass syndrome.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jaco wasn't addicted to 6 strings 😁

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Hellzero said:

Was waiting for it @Al Krow😉

Sorry I beat you to it this time around 😁 (PS did you get around to re-checking the OC-5 tracking?)

To the OP: if this is your first 6er then good for you. Taking up a new challenge after your 30 years of playing bass is a great way of keeping things "fresh", particularly with the current lack of gigs.

Edited by Al Krow
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

Jaco wasn't addicted to 6 strings 😁

Just think how good he'd have been if he had been

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, lownote12 said:

Just think how good he'd have been if he had been

Exactly the same good? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 minutes ago, Ricky Rioli said:

Exactly the same good? 

No, better, as he was a demoniac melodic player.

That said limiting the opportunities, I mean 1 string or 2 or 3 or 4 strings instead of 6 or 7 or 8 or 9 or 10 or 11 or ... 12 strings (the fivers are an in between choice), is also challenging, which is good too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, Ricky Rioli said:

Exactly the same good? 

Exactly the same good, but upper and more down. I was going to say we will never know, but maybe a studio genius could raise and lower some of his playing so it sounds like he's playing a six. Twould seem nothing's impossible today.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which (will hopefully be again shortly) touring bassists currently pretty much only play 6ers these days? Not being snarky - genuine curiosity question.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Al Krow said:

Did you get around to re-checking the OC-5 tracking?

Only on my Le Fay Remington Steele 6 (fretless) that seems to be my everyday bass now and it's tracking down to the low B, but this Le Fay is so damn precise (it's a real low B zero you get) that the opposite would have seemed strange.

Maybe some more this afternoon if don't get glued to the metal fingerboard. 🤣

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

Which (will hopefully be again shortly) touring bassists currently pretty much only play 6ers these days? Not being snarky - genuine curiosity question.

Alain Caron, Anthony Jackson, Steve Bailey, John Patitucci, ... to name a few.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Hellzero said:

No, better, as he was a demoniac melodic player.

That said limiting the opportunities, I mean 1 string or 2 or 3 or 4 strings instead of 6 or 7 or 8 or 9 or 10 or 11 or ... 12 strings (the fivers are an in between choice), is also challenging, which is good too.

The other day, I wrote something on paper, and then worked out how to play it on my 4 string, and enjoyed deciding the exact points where I would go up and down the fretboard, taking into account where the natural breaks in the phrases were, and also thinking about the different sounds the same notes make on the various strings. Once I was done, I noticed that on a 5 string, I could have played the whole thing in one single position. So the limitations of the 4 string obliged me to engage thoughtfully with my task, whilst a 5 string would have indulged my tendency towards laziness.

The OP has written about how having an additional high string is opening up his creativity, so quite the opposite. Everyone's different

I note that if Jaco had wanted six strings, he could easily have pulled the frets out of a Fender Jazz VI....but then, what kind of serious musician would play a short-scale, eh? 🤪

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Ricky Rioli said:

The other day, I wrote something on paper, and then worked out how to play it on my 4 string, and enjoyed deciding the exact points where I would go up and down the fretboard, taking into account where the natural breaks in the phrases were, and also thinking about the different sounds the same notes make on the various strings. Once I was done, I noticed that on a 5 string, I could have played the whole thing in one single position. So the limitations of the 4 string obliged me to engage thoughtfully with my task, whilst a 5 string would have indulged my tendency towards laziness.

The OP has written about how having an additional high string is opening up his creativity, so quite the opposite. Everyone's different

I note that if Jaco had wanted six strings, he could easily have pulled the frets out of a Fender Jazz VI....but then, what kind of serious musician would play a short-scale, eh? 🤪

Fair observation RR. But one person's "laziness" = another's easy work flow to actually get something done?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Al Krow said:

Fair observation RR. But one person's "laziness" = another's easy work flow to actually get something done?

That’s very true. Once you get over the single position laziness then just apply all the fingerboard knowledge you’d apply on a 4 to the extra range. Although TBH when I used to have to sightread in one or two takes for money it really helps not having to shift too much. But that’s such a niche skill that is probably redundant nowadays it doesn’t really count ;)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Ricky Rioli said:

I note that if Jaco had wanted six strings, he could easily have pulled the frets out of a Fender Jazz VI....but then, what kind of serious musician would play a short-scale, eh? 🤪

Jack Bruce ? :ph34r:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Ricky Rioli said:

This is why I wrote "everyone's different" 

And yet so many people, at the same time, say that we are "all the same"... gotta be a song in there somewhere? 😄 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...