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Alembic Club » Miscellaneous » Archive through December 28, 2011 » Modern country bass tone, how do they do that? « Previous Next »

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gtrguy
Advanced Member
Username: gtrguy

Post Number: 397
Registered: 9-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 12:00 pm:   Edit Post

I keep hearing popular country songs where the bass is all fat rich tone but NO character, like string noise or edge or anything. How do they do that? I know it sits well in the mix without interfering with anything else, but it seems odd to a bass player.
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2118
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 12:26 pm:   Edit Post

No string noise can be a product of good technique and string choice However there is also ;_____Signal processing___ post the players control in some case's ( Engineering and producers choice). EQ , Compression , noise gates , etc... ... I have heard of many Nashville studio tricks for everything from bringing out or reducing the sibalance in a Female vocal to Recording Bass as per your description.
stout71
Junior
Username: stout71

Post Number: 25
Registered: 7-2011
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 12:37 pm:   Edit Post

Compression is an essential tool in making sure the bass is consistent in recordings, and very preferable for live performances. Generally, the more you compress, the less "character" you'll hear. Playing style and equipment is a big part also. One thing to add is that there are a few standard bassists that work in Nashville that end up playing bass on many, many albums of various recording artists, so the consistency in tone may have something to do with that as well. (Same player - same tone).
811952
Senior Member
Username: 811952

Post Number: 2052
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 1:06 pm:   Edit Post

Processing. I'm convinced there is a Pro-Tools plug-in that specifically extracts the soul from the bass track.
dela217
Senior Member
Username: dela217

Post Number: 1094
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 2:49 pm:   Edit Post

Definately compression. They will compress the bass track several times in the process. I know for a fact that when laying down the bass track they compress it twice. That is before anything else happens to it. Then of course more compression later on.
lembic76450
Advanced Member
Username: lembic76450

Post Number: 306
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 3:29 pm:   Edit Post

Another issue here is that there is a lot of "tuning down", it seems that 5 string basses are frowned upon in Nashville. I tried it for awhile with my Epic and it really does change the character of the bass. It can be a tad funky to get your head around that your notes are in a different position then that the other players.
Also I agree with stout71 that there seems to be only a few players on all those tracks, maybe not so much the tone, but, the approach.
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2119
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - 7:59 pm:   Edit Post

Spelling correction to my post #2118 ; SIBILANCE instead of SIBALANCE.
811952
Senior Member
Username: 811952

Post Number: 2053
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 6:56 am:   Edit Post

Well, you've got Glenn Worf, Dave Hungate, Lee Sklar and a handful of others, and we've all heard their work elsewhere sound completely different than the Nashville stuff. Lots of 5-string now as well. It's interesting to me that you can't even tell if they're using rounds or flats, or often which octave they're really playing. Just have to keep in mind that Country Music as a genre doesn't have much room for bass out front, what with twangy guitars, fiddles and steel..

John

(Message edited by 811952 on November 03, 2011)
lbpesq
Senior Member
Username: lbpesq

Post Number: 4972
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 7:53 am:   Edit Post

SIBILANCE:

Of, characterized by, or producing a hissing sound like that of (s) or (sh): the sibilant consonants; a sibilant bird call.

SIBALANCE:

how a Series I Alembic instrument hangs on the player's body: my SI balances well, no neck dive



couldn't resist.

Bill, tgo
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2121
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 7:59 am:   Edit Post

That's A good one Bill ! I like the way that my SI 81-1940 hangs on me too !
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 2122
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 8:10 am:   Edit Post

Back starting in the early 1980s I was in a few Country Bands in the San Francisco Bay Area to about 1997. In one of those Bands( The Bounty Band) The Original Drummer and I started breaking some of the unwritten rules of traditional Country Music when we started to syncopated the rhythms , and make it a bit more funky. We were both reprimanded by our fearless leader and frontman lead singer rhythm guitar player and told to "CUT IT OUT , you guys !!!"____at a live gig, Well, __ Just as soon as he finished giving us a piece of his mind the Owner /proprietor of the venue comes up to the stage and said ." That's not like any Country I have ever heard , BUT , They are dancing and jumping around like JACK RABBITS on the dance floor and buying drinks and getting hungry and even buying snacks, DON'T CHANGE ANYTHING " That is what he told us. A few more nights the same as that and he asked us for an extended gig that lasted several years as a house band. The Guitar players followed me and the drummer by playing a bit more less tradition country style and more rock style and tone, We had a few great Pedal steel players, one of whom played a MEAN LAP STEEL WITH FEEDBACK ! That Band lasted about 14 years more or less in various states of personnel while I was involved. We once opened for " Johnny Paycheck". Country Music was changing , The " Bakersfield Sound" in Country and "Outlaw Country" was on the rise Breaking traditional sounds and styles in multiple parameters. And ________it was fun doing it ! Except for the Gig where we had to play behind the CHICKEN WIRE covered stage! YES __ those places really existed______.
briant
Senior Member
Username: briant

Post Number: 604
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 8:37 am:   Edit Post

We did country like this: TS

That was the mid/late-90's. I think that album was a Modulus Q4 with Rotosounds direct into a Summit Audio TPA-200B. I'm quite positive about the 200B, not 100% sure about the rest.
tncaveman
Junior
Username: tncaveman

Post Number: 39
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Thursday, November 03, 2011 - 5:03 pm:   Edit Post

Briant - cool tune!!!

I'm from Nashville and not too many folks I know like country music. The guys I know do it for money (at least the few I know that play for $$$). Growing up, we kind of made fun of it. And BTW - HeeHaw ain't real LOL

But I do like me some picking and grinnin :o)

Stephen

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