Good morning everyone!
Time for the Guitar of the Week!!
This week we have a bass guitar. As many of you probably know, bass is my main instrument these days. I love thumping on those 4 strings!
The bass we have this week may not look like much, but I like to call this a workingman’s bass. A no frills, rock solid bass. She plays great and sounds even better, but like I have said before, all guitars have a story.
When I started playing bass in junior high, I had an older friend, David, who played the bass also, and I looked up to him very much. In fact, part of the reason I started playing bass was because of encouragement from him to pick up the instrument. I was a brass player at this point in time. When I started high school, I wanted to play in the jazz band. David was the bass player for that group. Sitting from my section, as I was playing bass trombone, I would watch David play. Then, I would attempt to duplicate what I saw on my bass when I got home. I can remember that when I left for Governors School at the end of tenth grade he wrote in my year book, “You better not stop playing bass, and if you stop for any reason I’ll ‘kill’ you and take your Mustang bass” Well, I am still here, and we will see that Mustang bass in a few weeks.
I remember David having a couple of jazz basses, one made in Mexico and the other made in America. David made some modifications to these instruments. He combined them into what is commonly known as a “Frankenbass”, meaning that he took parts from different instruments and put them together. He liked the way the neck of the Mexican-made bass felt, and he liked the pickups from the American -made bass, so he put the neck of the Mexican bass on the American body and vice versa. But he didn’t stop there! He then took the American neck and removed the frets, turning it into a fretless bass. This left him with a very versatile line of of basses to choose from. His main instrument became the fretted Mexican neck with the American body, with the backup bass being the fretless.
After a few years, he sold off the American neck fretless bass and forgot about it.
Then, one day when I was working at Frets & Necks, a customer came in and asked if we would like to buy an American Fender bass from him. It had a broken fretboard and was in need a lot of other work. We bought it from him, and I set to work on it a few days after to fix it up and get it ready for resale. Once I took the neck off I saw a name (David C——) written in blue sharpie at the bottom. I immediately called Boot over and said “Dude! I know this bass!” That made restoring this instrument that much more fun and special for me. It was tall order, as I literally had to rebuild the fretboard. Also, I decided to refret it because it would sell easier and because it was great practice for me as an apprentice luthier.
Alright, already! I will stop rambling and get to the pictures
Last thing, just so you know, it is for sale over at Frets and Necks in Hartsville SC. If you want to snag a great playing bass with some history mojo hit us up!
Keep thumping ya’ll!