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In Need Of A Backup 5-String


davio

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I've come to rely more and more on my 5-string jazz (currently my only 5). The other day I realized that even if I have one of my 4-strings with me on a gig as a backup, if something goes wrong I'll still be able to play but there are some songs in which a 4 just won't work as well. The funk band just started working a song in which the bass and guitar in the recording are tuned down a 1/2 step and played in Eb. If I had to switch to the 4 it wouldn't sound good at all because I'd either have to retune between songs (not an option onstage with this band) or play it up an octave which would suck because most of it is rhythmic open Eb's. That's just one example.

 

So, I've started passively looking for a workable 5er on craigslist for dirt cheap. So far I've found a white Rogue LX205B for $50 and a black Squire jazz for $150. Both are about an hour away in opposite directions. I really want to keep price to a minimum but I also want something playable so I'm very hesitant about the Rogue. Whatever I do, it's doubtful this bass will get played much. It's really just an insurance policy.

 

What do you say: take a chance on the Rogue, try to talk the Squire guy down or hold out and hope I don't need a backup before I find something?

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A bass is a bass to me as long as it's set up well and works properly. I'm not too worried about keeping with the same style of bass. I don't know...I keep writing off the Rogue in my head but then I say "Weeeelllll...maybe it'll be worth it for $50...and I can always flip it if I need to." Only problem is that with either one I'll be driving for 2 hours round trip.
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Now see to me when I think backup bass it's to have an instrument that sounds and plays similar so as not to be a distraction if the primary instrument goes down. But if you really don't want to spend the cash then get the Rogue. It looks quite a bit like my Jay Turser in body style. It should make a competant backup. Yet I'd still go for the Squire.

Lydian mode? The only mode I know has the words "pie ala" in front of it.

http://www.myspace.com/theeldoradosband

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I've been kind of looking for a 2nd/backup bass as well. I go back and forth on a 5 or 4 string. I suppose a true backup would be a 5 string. That's my main bass, and a backup should have similar tone and capabilities. However, I have never needed a backup. (I know saying that will now curse me.) Many people - some right here - have said a backup isn't really necessary. I tend to agree.

 

I played a jazz gig tonight and for those gigs a 4 string would be just fine, maybe even preferable to my 5 string. I like to have the 5 for my church and cover band gigs. I think a 4 would be nice for jazz. I suppose either bass could "backup" the other, and I could make either one work for any gig, but I doubt I would ever bring both. I guess it means I'm just looking for a 2nd bass.

 

Sorry for the tangent. Back to the original question. Get the Squire as you are used to the Fender.

 

 

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I'd go with the Squier... at least you know what your getting into. I just sold a Rogue LX406 6 string that I got on a steal... it was an OK bass overall, but the electronics sucked and the pickups were really (REALLY) noisy and weak.

Get the Squier. What good is a backup if you can't rely on it?

 

And the Squier has the same or at least a very similar neck to what you're used to, and the Rogue will be thinner, more like an Ibanez. For some that isn't such a big deal, but it may be to you.

 

DX

Aerodyne Jazz Deluxe

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Any thoughts on the ESP? I've never played one that wasn't an LTD. In any of these cases, I'd be trying the bass out before buying.

 

 

Those ESP J basses are badass. I would love to have one of those myself. I definitely vote ESP.

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A few years ago when I spent some considerable time in Reno a friend of mine there bought three Rogue basses, all the same but different colors. He would play the one that went best with the shirt he was wearing on the gig that night. I played them and to be honest was quite surprised.

 

Wally

I have basses to play, places to be and good music to make!
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What are the reasons for needing a backup bass?

 

How many of us take 2 basses to a gig? I certanly don't.

 

That's just a hassle and more stuff to carry around.

 

 

 

 

 

www.myspace.com/davidbassportugal

 

"And then the magical unicorn will come prancing down the rainbow and we'll all join hands for a rousing chorus of Kumbaya." - by davio

 

 

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That's different Rizzo. I meant bring a bass just in case you brake a string, drop the bass on the floor (God forbid)

 

In times where everyone is going lighter why give yourself more to carry.

 

 

 

www.myspace.com/davidbassportugal

 

"And then the magical unicorn will come prancing down the rainbow and we'll all join hands for a rousing chorus of Kumbaya." - by davio

 

 

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A bass that you use (alternate tuning) is not really a backup. As I said before, I have been told that a backup isn't really needed by most players.

 

My thinking is get a 4 string just to change it up a little. Force me to play a little differently, maybe a little different tone, feel, etc.

 

Still not sure what I want to do. I feel the call of a 4 string jazz again.

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At the last gig I subbed with them, they told me a seemingly pointed story of a previous sub (might have been guitar or bass...I don't remember) who broke a string, didn't have a backup instrument and had some issue when trying to change the string which caused an awkwardly long break in an otherwise streamlined show. Knock knock jokes aren't very professional coming from a band at Hard Rock Cafe. Like I said, I don't know if I'll ever need a backup bass, but I'd rather have one.

 

do you really need a backup 5 string?

What are the odds of breaking a B string?

Why would it matter what string I broke? It's the difference between changing a string between songs or picking up another instrument and waiting to change the string after the set. I just don't want to get stuck on a 4 string for songs I need to play below low E.

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It would matter what string you broke. If you need to go below E, you need a B string. If you broke an E string on a 5 string (another unlikely event), you could play any note you needed on one of the other strings. And so forth. It wouldn't be fun, but you'd finish the set.

 

Bands I play with do not stop between songs, so even having a backup bass wouldn't do much good.

 

Playing bass is interesting. If I stop playing for two or three notes, everyone is screaming at me. Meanwhile, the guitarist and keyboardist can leave out entire sections without anyone saying anything. If the drummer drops a stick or breaks his bass drum pedal, I am the only one who notices, and I don't worry about it. Sometimes I keep playing with one hand and pick up the stick and hand it to him with the other.

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Playing bass is interesting. If I stop playing for two or three notes, everyone is screaming at me. Meanwhile, the guitarist and keyboardist can leave out entire sections without anyone saying anything.

 

So true.

 

I have never broken a string. The only way I can see needing a backup is if the electronics failed somehow.

 

I still want a 2nd bass of some kind....

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I still want a 2nd bass of some kind....

 

There it is... 'backup' or not... the man just wants a second bass.

If a backup is how one has to justify a second bass to the accounting department, then a backup is what it is.

Unfortunately I don't think I could pass off the Les Paul Black Beauty I've been jonesing for as a backup for my bass... my accountant is too sharp for that. :blah:

 

 

DX

 

Aerodyne Jazz Deluxe

Pod X3 Live

Roland Bolt-60 (modified)

Genz Benz GBE250-C 2x10

Acoustic 2x12 cab

 

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I did have the electronics fail on me once, and I borrowed a keyboard from the keyboard player and finished the gig by playing all my basslines on it.

How much easier would it have been if you had a backup bass? I'm not a very good keyboard player anyway.

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I still want a 2nd bass of some kind....

 

There it is... 'backup' or not... the man just wants a second bass.

If a backup is how one has to justify a second bass to the accounting department, then a backup is what it is.

Unfortunately I don't think I could pass off the Les Paul Black Beauty I've been jonesing for as a backup for my bass... my accountant is too sharp for that. :blah:

 

 

DX

 

My accountant is sharp as well, but I only have one bass and two is acceptable.

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My accountant is sharp as well, but I only have one bass and two is acceptable.

Yeah... normally it would be for me as well, but I am under strict orders that the next purchase is a keyboard for her... so there ya go... oh well, then maybe she can be my backup...

 

DX

Aerodyne Jazz Deluxe

Pod X3 Live

Roland Bolt-60 (modified)

Genz Benz GBE250-C 2x10

Acoustic 2x12 cab

 

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Any thoughts on the ESP? I've never played one that wasn't an LTD. In any of these cases, I'd be trying the bass out before buying.

 

 

Those ESP J basses are badass. I would love to have one of those myself. I definitely vote ESP.

+1. I think you can't go wrong with an ESP.

 

I often carry 2 or 3 basses to a gig, not as backup, but in case I get a wild hair (I'm prone to them} and want to play a bass other than the one I'm playing. I'm not recommending it; I just can't seem to help myself...

 

 

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I wasn't about to bring a backup bass to a biker bar on wet t-shirt night.

1. This disco/funk band doesn't play too many biker bars on wet t-shirt nights. I'd still have the option of bringing only one bass to other, less structured gigs.

2. I wouldn't be able to use the keyboard anyway since the key parts are essential to many of the songs. Or did you mean he brought a backup keyboard and let you use that? That seems a bit overboard.

 

I'm going to try to meet with the ESP guy this evening to check it out and talk. Apparently he's selling it because he's playing mostly URB these days. Maybe I can network a little bit regardless of the bass.

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