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Unread 11-17-2014, 10:53 AM   #1
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Electric Bass suggestions for worship leader

I have degrees in piano and voice, so that is my strength and in the past I've led worship from the keyboard, but I've been leading worship from guitar for the last year or so. Due to getting some more musicians and the group getting stronger, we could use an electric bass. I'm thinking of getting one and learning. Probably a $500 budget. Top someone who knows nothing about bass, give me your suggestions on a good one for worship and why. Thanks for your help. I'm not opposed to buying used if it means more for the money.

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Unread 11-17-2014, 11:40 AM   #2
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Go for a Jazz Bass model. It seems to be what 90% of worship bass players use...
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Unread 11-17-2014, 11:33 PM   #3
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It really depends on current setup and what you hope to achieve. I get a pretty nice tone out of my Yamaha active bass (meaning it requires a 9V battery), and it has 5 strings. The lower string gets some really nice low notes which can be handy in certain songs. I think it is around the $500 mark new and they're built fairly solid.

Have you also taken amps into account for your budgeting?
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Unread 11-18-2014, 01:05 AM   #4
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Bass is something where I find that a cheap one gets the job done, but a cheap bass amp doesn't.

My bass is one I picked up second hand for cheap. It's a fender p-bass style, which is a good standard shape. The neck says fender, but the body says vestor, so I'm unsure whether someone just put a fender sticker on a cheap bass or actually put a better neck on it. Certainly not the greatest, but it is plenty sufficient to get the job done.

One thing to note, if you're coming from a keyboard/piano background - keyboard and piano can both cover the same frequency range as bass. If you're switching to bass yourself, this shouldn't be an issue unless there's another keyboardist. If you have keyboard and bass going at the same time, try to get the keyboard player not to go too low with their left hand.

An upside of that, careful use of your left hand can cover the bass role until your worship team has a bass. In my worship team, the bassist actually alternates between bass and keyboard, often mid song. It works well for us.
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Unread 11-18-2014, 08:11 AM   #5
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It really depends on current setup and what you hope to achieve. I get a pretty nice tone out of my Yamaha active bass (meaning it requires a 9V battery), and it has 5 strings. The lower string gets some really nice low notes which can be handy in certain songs. I think it is around the $500 mark new and they're built fairly solid.

Have you also taken amps into account for your budgeting?
That is the first question can your PA or keyboard amp handle the additional load of the bass. I am the heretic on the quality of the instrument issue since most of the major cut rate $200 new axes from Yamaha, Squier etc are perfectly service ready in my opinion.

So about $200 for the bass and $300 for the amp/DI box
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Unread 11-18-2014, 08:24 AM   #6
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I'm pretty sure our PA can handle it. It did years ago when we had a bass player. We have two giant subs hooked up to it, if that means anything. I'm pretty sure we have a specific bass amp sitting around somewhere that was used in the past.
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Unread 11-18-2014, 02:53 PM   #7
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5 string. That low B, C and D are amazing to finish off a song. The dynamics it adds are s w e e t.
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Unread 11-18-2014, 10:17 PM   #8
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Go for a Jazz Bass model. It seems to be what 90% of worship bass players use...
I don't know about percentages but I would suppose 90% use their own bass, some will have a church supplied back-line. So to have the need for a bass on hand supposes that there is not a bass player there but you hope that someone will see the need and the opportunity and step up. Perhaps a classical guitar player who knows what the lower four strings are. In that case I will say something as simple as possible. One knob which you max out and play, leaving out active and double pick up basses which leaves you with a P bass clone for someone with unknown experience on electric instruments who might step forward if the church had a bass.
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Unread 11-29-2014, 12:00 PM   #9
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I picked up a used Dean Edge 4 string for $100 and just leave it at church for anyone who wants to play it. I've been using it for a couple years now and it sounds great and plays well. I refuse to drag out my 1981 G&L bass during our sub-zero weather here in ND.

Any decent bass should work, try a few and see what feels good for you. I like passive basses just because someone forgets to unplug it and the battery is dead the next time you want to use it.
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Unread 02-18-2015, 10:34 AM   #10
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I did a little looking locally. At a mom and pop music store (which will price match) I found an Ibanez Sound Gear and a Toby deluxe iv. Both were $250. Also, locally used I found a 1997 Ibanez TR600 in great shape for $299. That one interested me the most. So that's where I'm at right now, but I'm looking a lot because I know so little. Thoughts?
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Unread 02-18-2015, 10:44 AM   #11
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The price on the TR600 is fair. Of the three, I feel like that's where I would lean.
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Unread 02-18-2015, 11:11 AM   #12
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The price on the TR600 is fair. Of the three, I feel like that's where I would lean.

That's what I'm thinking so far. Spend a little more, get a better bass, even used. The quality just feels better, of course it was quite a bit more used than the others.
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Unread 02-19-2015, 03:13 PM   #13
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That's what I'm thinking so far. Spend a little more, get a better bass, even used. The quality just feels better, of course it was quite a bit more used than the others.
I quite like getting used guitar gear. It doesn't feel like you need to be as precious about it, because it already has a few dings. If you buy brand new gear and leave it at a church, it'll get scuffed up very quickly anyway, so there is very little benefit of getting a "better condition" new instrument.
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Unread 02-19-2015, 03:16 PM   #14
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I quite like getting used guitar gear. It doesn't feel like you need to be as precious about it, because it already has a few dings. If you buy brand new gear and leave it at a church, it'll get scuffed up very quickly anyway, so there is very little benefit of getting a "better condition" new instrument.
This. I mean, I quite like the feeling of new stuff but used stuff is a lot cheaper, still sounds the same (usually) and if the previous owner has taken care of it, then it will be practically new anyway, and you'd be less paranoid about any sort of scuffs.
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Bass - Yamaha TRBX 505, Yamaha RBX 375
Acoustic Guitars - Ovation Celebrity Deluxe CC48, J. Watson & Co. WD150TB, J&D Luthier
Electric Guitars - Fender Classic '72 Telecaster Thinline (2007), Maton Mastersound, Epiphone Les Paul Studio Chameleon, SX VTG Series Tele copy, Ibanez SA
Guitar Amp - Fender Mustang IV V2
Bass Amp - Behringer Ultrabass BXL1800A
Gear - POD HD500X, Zoom G9.2tt, Zoom B9.1ut, Boss DD-20

Warning: This journal may contain diary

But He was pierced for our transgressions
He was crushed for our iniquities;
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Unread 02-19-2015, 08:55 PM   #15
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I ended up getting the Ibanez and ordered a Zoom B3 from amazon, so I should be have a good start. Thanks for the help.
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