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Grateful Dead Music Forum

A place to talk about the music of the Grateful Dead 

 #99265  by Phil Lesh101
 Sat Jun 11, 2011 8:41 pm
tigerstrat wrote:BEADGB. just think of it as "there's a 4-string bass hidden in the middle"
No. Its B>E>A>D>G>C
 #99269  by Octal
 Sat Jun 11, 2011 9:05 pm
Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
 #99290  by Rusty the Scoob
 Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:50 am
Octal wrote:Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
I'm sure somebody has. Doesn't seem particularly useful to me... chords on bass are fairly muddy and slide on bass is even muddier. The combo makes me a little queasy just thinking about it. :lol:
 #99298  by Phil Lesh101
 Sun Jun 12, 2011 9:11 am
Rusty the Scoob wrote:
Octal wrote:Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
I'm sure somebody has. Doesn't seem particularly useful to me... chords on bass are fairly muddy and slide on bass is even muddier. The combo makes me a little queasy just thinking about it. :lol:
HA! SO true :lol:
 #99390  by zambiland
 Mon Jun 13, 2011 9:43 pm
Rusty the Scoob wrote:
Octal wrote:Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
I'm sure somebody has. Doesn't seem particularly useful to me... chords on bass are fairly muddy and slide on bass is even muddier. The combo makes me a little queasy just thinking about it. :lol:

Ever heard Morphine? The band leader, Mark Sandman, played 3 string slide bass and killed it. I worked with their sound engineer back in the day and after a gig I did for him, as he was picking up the PA, he said to me, "hey, you want to see a bass that just played in front of 20,000 people in Japan?" and pulled out Mark's crazy weird old bass. I don't know what kind it was, but it sounded great and looked like it came from a pawn shop for $75.

I've done the odd random beer bottle slide bass solo, but it helps to empty a lot of bottles first.
 #99395  by Rusty the Scoob
 Tue Jun 14, 2011 4:12 am
Yeah, of course Morphine comes to mind as soon as you mention slide bass. In his case I think it works only because he's in a weirdly-configured trio.

I've done the same beer bottle slide bass solos, and for the same reason. I find pint glasses to have better tone. :lol:
 #99396  by RiverRat
 Tue Jun 14, 2011 6:08 am
Phil Lesh101 wrote:
tigerstrat wrote:BEADGB. just think of it as "there's a 4-string bass hidden in the middle"
No. Its B>E>A>D>G>C
Who tunes up??? Just grip it and rip it!
 #100009  by Phil Lesh101
 Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:10 pm
Rusty the Scoob wrote:Yeah, of course Morphine comes to mind as soon as you mention slide bass. In his case I think it works only because he's in a weirdly-configured trio.

I've done the same beer bottle slide bass solos, and for the same reason. I find pint glasses to have better tone. :lol:
HAHA! who would have thought different bottles give you different sounds on a bass! :lol:
 #100170  by Charlie
 Tue Jun 28, 2011 7:59 pm
I've got my dad's old Fender VI bass, which is tunes EADGBE like a guitar but an octave lower. Although they called it a bass, I think this instrument would better be described as a baritone guitar. It's a good instrument for gutarists who want to cross over to bass (which is why my Dad had it) but traditional four string bass players like myself have dfficulty with it because the neck is not much wider than a guitar. If I felt I needed any extra strings, I'd want one on the bottom end not two more on the top.
 #100292  by Phil Lesh101
 Fri Jul 01, 2011 3:02 pm
Charlie wrote:I've got my dad's old Fender VI bass, which is tunes EADGBE like a guitar but an octave lower. Although they called it a bass, I think this instrument would better be described as a baritone guitar. It's a good instrument for gutarists who want to cross over to bass (which is why my Dad had it) but traditional four string bass players like myself have dfficulty with it because the neck is not much wider than a guitar. If I felt I needed any extra strings, I'd want one on the bottom end not two more on the top.
So your telling me you tune your bass EADGBE?
Not BEADGC? < That is correct
 #100308  by Rusty the Scoob
 Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:27 am
The bass that he's talking about is a fairly rare Fender model that didn't really catch on. It was tuned EADGBE at the factory, an octave down from a guitar. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fender_Bass_VI
 #100325  by Phil Lesh101
 Sat Jul 02, 2011 11:39 am
Rusty the Scoob wrote:
Octal wrote:Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
I'm sure somebody has. Doesn't seem particularly useful to me... chords on bass are fairly muddy and slide on bass is even muddier. The combo makes me a little queasy just thinking about it. :lol:
I dont think chords are That muddy, But more Powerful
 #100334  by JamminJommy
 Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:09 pm
Phil Lesh101 wrote:
Rusty the Scoob wrote:
Octal wrote:Anyone ever use any open tunings for a bass? I guess it could opening up some slide possibilities...
I'm sure somebody has. Doesn't seem particularly useful to me... chords on bass are fairly muddy and slide on bass is even muddier. The combo makes me a little queasy just thinking about it. :lol:
I dont think chords are That muddy, But more Powerful

Having a third in a bass chord makes it muddy unless you drop the fifth. In general, open fifths sound big and thirds sound like you are doing something specific. I will say that having been on both ends of the bassist/guitarist spectra, it annoys the hell out of me when I'm playing rhythm when the bassist decides to do my job and strum out chords for me. As a bass player, I tend to have fun doing it, but I took that as a sign that I should learn guitar... so I did. Years later, and happy about it!

Just my 2 cents.

Peace,

Jommy
 #100341  by Rusty the Scoob
 Sun Jul 03, 2011 3:51 am
I use them fairly often in my Phil impression but they do sound muddy compared to guitar chords. It's just a fact of science - lower notes have more harmonic overtones within the range of human hearing than higher ones, and all of those overtones clash with each other when you play multiple notes, not just the fundamentals.

Up high on a piano you can play tight clusters of notes, chords with notes that are a half-step or a full-step apart, and have it sound musical. On a bass even in the high register you have to have a very clear, bright tone and open band mix to get away with even a major triad in root position. I rarely find room to fit much more than Root-5th or Root-3rd into a band situation.
 #100345  by Pete B.
 Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:27 am
One place I think I hear Phil play chords is the intro to Greatest Story Ever Told. You can briefly see this in the View From The Vault version.
Here's another shot where you can see Phil is the only one playing at the very intro using a guitar-ish type chord strum:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D91WG6SSLnA