Sometimes it’s nice to treat yerself (even if it means living on ramen noodles for a few weeks), so to celebrate two years of my super-awesome job I’m treating myself to a Squier Vintage Modified Bass VI. I’ve had a crush on these things ever since they were announced, but my lust for the Bass VI goes back to when I first saw Spinal Tap and became curious about the surf-green guitar that Nigel Tufnel wouldn’t let Marty Di Bergi touch (or even look at). The Bass VI is a relatively obscure and definitely interesting instrument which looks almost like a Fender Jaguar but is tuned a full octave below a guitar. It can be played like a bass, like a guitar, or like its own instrument, which is really what it is. You can hear the Bass VI in music by The Cure (seriously, it’s all over so much Cure stuff that it’s hard to imagine their sound without it) and plenty of stuff by Placebo too.
I haven’t quite figured out how I’m going to use this bad boy in my music yet. My hope is that it inspires some ideas that I wouldn’t have otherwise come up with, and I like the idea of writing some bass-led compositions while the guitar carries on with some atmospheric stuff over the top. I guess I’ll find out when my Bass VI arrives in late April.
Below is more info from the Squier website:
Squier brings you the welcome return of a long-vanished Fender classic in the deeply satisfying form of the Vintage Modified Bass VI six-string bass. The original model of 1961-1975 has provided distinctively voiced low end for everyone from the Beatles to the Black Keys, Cream to the Cure, and many others.
The Vintage Modified Bass VI delivers authentically vintage-style look and tone, with a few modern touches such as a comfortable “modern C” neck profile and 9.5” fingerboard radius (the originals were 7.25”), and three custom Jaguar single-coil pickups with notched “claw” shielding rings (reverse-wound/reverse-polarity middle pickup).
Other features include the model’s classic 30” scale (standard tuning one octave lower than a guitar), maple neck, bound rosewood fingerboard with 21 medium jumbo frets and pearloid block inlays, four two-position slider switches (on/off switch for each pickup and one bass-cut “strangle” tone circuit switch), tortoiseshell pickguard (three-ply white-black-white on Black model), two black plastic control knobs (master volume, master tone), and vintage-style six-saddle bridge with non-locking floating vibrato. Available in Black, Olympic White and Three-color Sunburst.