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ANYONE PLAYED A 12 STRING BASS?

IamMark
Posts: 1098
I think we're getting somewhere.
I have string envie.
Calling them something else is a pretty common suggestion. If you need to, the term Contra-bass guitar has been used in the past.

Marko1960
Posts: 3139
I've got one, “Ridiculously Unnecessary”
IamMark
Posts: 1098
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I've got one, “Ridiculously Unnecessary”
You're not helping progress.
LoudLon [moderator]
Posts: 1827
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That's just too much guitar, man. Some players don't even use all four strings on a regular bass. What the hell are you going to do with 24???

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Not every song has to use every string or hit every fret. I apologize if it seems like Im picking apart others opinions and for the coming rant but its just a pet peeve of mine when people hate on extended range for a reason that boils down to “I don't know what to do with those other strings”.

It's a valid argument, I think. There's not much you can't accomplish on a 4- or 5-string bass as far as what a given song requires, so to have that many strings… I do agree that it's quite a novelty and looks all kinds of bad-ass, but when would you need that many strings? And can you imagine having to play one of those in concert? You'd need some kind of back brace just to keep yourself upright. Maybe it would work as a time saver if your set list contains songs which vary in tuning from one to the next, but what band or performer changes tuning so much they'd need 24 strings to save themselves tuning time?

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Sometimes it seems like they think basses like this are taking over and they might actually be forced to play them someday which is bullshit. Far extended range basses like this are rare, custom made and very expensive and off the top of my head I can only think of two manufacturers that offer basses with more than six strings as production models so dont worry guys, the four string isnt going anywhere. Something creative, expressive and innovative could actually happen and people will kill it just because its creative, expressive and innovative. Once again I apologize if sound douchey but seriously, art has no boundaries. Rant over.

No douchery taken, bro. As you said yourself, these things are rare. And I don't ever see them becoming the norm, either – mostly because innovative or not, they're simply impractical. It's overkill – like swatting flies with a tank.
Marko1960
Posts: 3139
I'm thinking of building a 9 string bass, here's why, Skiffle bands used a Tea Chest Bass with ONE string. The bass player in ‘The Presidents of the United States’ only had TWO strings on his bass. Many a time a bass player has broken a string on stage and soldiered on with THREE strings. We all know about the FOUR, FIVE and SIX stringers. SEVEN string basses are becoming more available. We all know about the EIGHT with four octaved pairs. It's only a matter of time before someone gives the FIVE string octaved pairs, thus making the TEN which leaves the NINE. BOSH
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It's a valid argument, I think. There's not much you can't accomplish on a 4- or 5-string bass as far as what a given song requires, so to have that many strings… I do agree that it's quite a novelty and looks all kinds of bad-ass, but when would you need that many strings? And can you imagine having to play one of those in concert? You'd need some kind of back brace just to keep yourself upright. Maybe it would work as a time saver if your set list contains songs which vary in tuning from one to the next, but what band or performer changes tuning so much they'd need 24 strings to save themselves tuning time?

Most of the people who play ERB's (or contra-basses if you want to call them that) are soloists who compose music for a living and dont really play in bands, or at least not on a long term basis. I can think of a couple of exceptions, Scott Plumber of Viraemia (technical death metal) plays a ten string and there is a guy on YouTube named James Goodall who plays an eleven string in some underground metal bands. As you said, most bands may only use a few tunings to avoid retuning as often, but a person using a single course twelve string (C#-F#-B-E-A-D-G-C-F-Bb-Eb-Ab)could write songs in many different tunings and still not need to re tune that much. So yeah, you wouldn't need all of these strings for contemporary music but most of these people do not play contemporary music. When people say that ERB's are unnecessary, well unnecessary for whom? As for being impractical, thats just a matter of opinion.
And another thought, some double necked guitars have just as many if not more strings than some ERB's and yet they seem to be generally accepted when they are used or at least ive never heard anyone complain about them. You could think of an ERB in the same way but with one neck instead of two.
Leiria
Posts: 330
Mark Sandman only used tow and I think its safe to say his basslines were great and unique and fitted extremely well with the songs. Its not about what you have its how you use it

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