Six Advantages of a Fender Bass VI
What is a Bass VI?
Not quite a bass but not a baritone either, the Fender Bass VI is a bit difficult to explain to someone who isn't already familiar with them.
It's characterized by slightly thinner bass strings and a shorter scale length and it's tuning being a full octave down from a guitar (much like a regular bass) but it has the benefit of the two extra strings tuned B and E. So what's it for? Well it can be used for a lot!
1. It's an easy transition for guitar players:
The Bass VI makes for an easy transition for guitar players to pick up the bass and immediately be able to put their guitar knowledge to use. It doesn't lend itself to playing chords but players can add in bass lines in the way that they would normally play guitar leads and scales.
It can be heard played on the song "Maxwell's Silver Hammer" where George Harrison (typically a guitar player) lays down a catchy bass line with a Fender Bass VI.
2. The Tremolo Bar:
Two extra strings aren't the only thing a Bass VI has over a regular bass. The Fender Bass VI has a tremolo bar that allows you to employ vibrato on the lower end.
3. A Bass VI could be Restrung as a Baritone Guitar
The construction of the instrument itself is unique and lends itself to being restrung as a baritone, which you could do if you simply replace the Bass VI strings with Baritone strings.
4. A Bass VI can make that Unique 'tic-tac' Bass Sound:
It can be used to make the very country style 'tic tac' bass feel which can be heard on songs like Ernest Tubb's "Thanks a Lot"
5. It's Easier to Play:
With its thinner, shorter scale neck and more manageable string size, it's easier to play for beginners and people with smaller hands that might find a full-size bass too large.
6. The Electronics on the Bass VI are Incredibly Versatile:
With three pickups and four switching options, you have the ability to either mimic the sound of a traditional bass or to make it sound more like a lead instrument that can cut through a mix.