Electric Bass

The Best Bass Guitars for Beginners

How to choose the right electric bass to keep the beginning bassist in the groove without busting your budget



Behind the Brand: Our Interview with Reverend Founder Joe Naylor

The new guy in town talks about how his upstart brand is winning over converts everywhere



NS Design CR5 Radius 5-String Bass Guitar

By John McVarish | May 29, 2014

A bass that can do it all...or at least come close enough for jazz.

I'm making a list

So what does a demanding bassist require and how much are we (my significant other and I) willing to spend? First off, I'm old school and have never played in a pop band with a 5-string, but I'm ready to take the plunge. I've tried many 5-strings in stores and I want one that articulates well in the lows with a bottom B string that is more than a finger rest. For that, a 35” scale is near the top of my wish list.



Lefty Guitarists: Not Left Out!

We lefties, as a people, have suffered perilously under the yoke of the right-handed scissor, the can opener, and of course the dreaded spiral notebook. It's too often that we find the odds stacked against us. Luckily, we can take a little solace in the knowledge that we are in good company. Lefties are to be found among notable scientists, world leaders and other luminaries, but especially in terms of left-handed guitarists. Some big names that are famous for shredding licks southpaw style are Jimi Hendrix, Paul McCartney, Kurt Cobain, Billy Elliot Easton, and Tony Iommi. Heck even Justin Bieber plays guitar lefty—oh wait, I said "good company."



Iconic Body, Powerful Sound: Gibson's Thunderbird IV Bass



Video: Gibson EB 2014 Electric Bass Guitar - NAMM 2014

Craig Anderton, CMO of Gibson candidly speaks to us at Namm 2014 and gives us the skinny on a couple cool features he personally found exciting on the Gibson EB 2014 Electric Bass.



Video: Fender – Custom Shop Jason Smith

Mike Eldred of the Fender Custom Shop offers an in-hand tour of a very special one-off Jazz Bass crafted by Master Builder Jason Smith, and snagged by Musician's Friend for sale through its Private Reserve Guitars collection. Filmed at Winter NAMM 2014.



Product Spotlight: The Traveler Guitar TB-4P Travel Bass

A No-Compromise Bass Guitar Built for the Road



Tech Tip: Audio Compression Settings for Recording Bass Guitar

Since the electric bass has a wider dynamic range than many instruments, compression is often applied in order to maintain a more even volume level and to match the dynamics of the kick drum. When peaks are reduced, the entire bass part can be boosted in the mix without adding distortion.



The Bass That Buoyed The British Invasion

Hofner salutes the landmark Ed Sullivan Show appearance with a commemorative violin bass



How to Choose the Right Strings for Your Bass Guitar

The strings on your electric bass have a powerful influence on the its tone and playability. If you’ve explored Musician’s Friend’s huge selection of bass guitar strings and come away a little confused, this guide’s for you. We’ll walk you through the ins and outs of choosing the bass strings that make sense for both your music and instrument.



Hands-On Review: Ibanez SR1200E and SR1405E Premium Basses

Detail and craftsmanship at an affordable price



Hands-On Review: G&L Tribute Guitars and Basses

The G&L feel, sound, and innovative features, moderately priced.



Hands-On Review: Fender Standard Jazz and Precision Basses

Fifty years after and still the best bass buy



Hands-On Review: Yamaha RBX374 and RBX375 Bass Guitars

Arguably the best starter basses available.



Hands-On Review: Fender American Special Bass Guitars

Two affordable American-made basses with faster, improved necks



Hands-On Review: G&L ASAT Electric Bass Guitar

Leo Fender and George Fullerton launched G&L in 1980, the culmination of a long career of creating world famous guitars and basses. The G&L instruments represent the full flowering of their knowledge and expertise. To put it simply, if you want a bass that represents the very best of Leo Fender, look to G&L. If you want an instrument that is made without compromise, made fully by hand of the finest woods, and which incorporates the most significant advancements in hardware and electronics, again look to G&L.



Hands-On Review: Epiphone Thunderbird IV & EB-3 Basses

Combining classic design, impeccable build, and accessible prices



Buying Guide: Guitar and Bass Effects

How to Shop for the Right Effects Pedals and Multi-Effects Processors

Effects pedals and processors open up a whole new world of sonic possibilities for guitarists and bassists. Ranging from the subtle to the outrageous, guitar and bass stompboxes and effects multiprocessors let you replicate the sounds you’ve heard on your favorite records as well as those spinning around in your head. In this guide we’ll walk you through the many types of effects available, honing in on some one-of-kind stompboxes.



Back to Bassists: How I Got into Bass Guitar

We talked to a handful of talented, experienced bass players to find out how they got into playing bass, who influenced them, and which basses are their favorites.



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