I need a ¾ size bass to get me going
but I've only got just under a grand to spend - what have you
Well how about this at only £995-00.
Did I hear you right - did you say £995-00?
Yes that's absolutely right only nine hundred and
ninty-five quid (slang for UK pound).
It looks great but what exactly do I get for this
sort of money?
Well - the back and the ribs of The Prim 50 Rockabilly "Blond" Bass
are made from a highly figured (outer surface only) maple laminate
and the front is made from laminated Spruce. Obviously these are
the same materials that have been used by violin makers for centuries
and quite honestly it is pretty difficult to say - without looking
really, really, really closely - that these instruments aren't
quite the real thing.
What else can I expect for my bucks?
The Prim 50 specifications are as follows. You get;
An ebony fingerboard, top nut and bottom saddle.
great looking set of separate Chrome-plated machine heads - each
drilled with five holes in order to help keep weight down to
A maple bridge fitted with brass or aluminium
A set of factory made strings.
A metal tailpiece.
A chrome-plated endpin unit.
Primavera wooden bow with Rosewood frog that costs £50-00
when sold separately.
A block of rosin (powder type).
A 12mm padded cover
with shoulder straps, bow pocket, accessory pocket and large
music pocket that costs £70-00 when sold
Phew that's pretty impressive. What about the sound?
We'd have to say - that for the money - it too is
Would you like to listen to a short sound clip of the Prima 50 Rockabilly "Blonde" Bass?
If so please
Weren't there some Blond basses made around the
Yes that's absolutely right this Blond Rockabilly
bass it a take-off of the hugely successful and well sounding viol-shaped
Blond plywood instruments that were produced in Germany between
the 1950's and 1970s.
Will I be interested in this bass?
The throwback connotations to previous musical genres
will undoubtedly appeal to all you modern day Slap, Rockabilly,
Soul, Dance, Americana, Bluegrass, Hip-Hop, Country & Western, Rock & Roll, Motown,
Rhythm & Blues, Jive, Joplin and Jazz players. Having said
that the instrument is equally suitable for all ages, grades and
other styles of music.
Can I upgrade on the factory fittings if I want?
Yes of course. Obviously everything works OK as
it is - but rather like buying a computer you may wish to upgrade
or customise on the "base" (no pun intended) model in
order to gain better performance. The choice is entirely yours.
What options could I consider?
Strings. A good make of strings is rather like
upgrading the Processor or CPU on your computer. They process
the critical information from your fingers and bow enabling your
instrument to perform. Simply put the better quality the string
- the better quality the sound. Please click here to see our
Bridge & Soundpost. A good bridge and
soundpost is rather like an operating system on yourcomputer.
They are both critical in performing essential tasks well - such
as recognising the "input" from
the strings and in transmitting the "output" to the
back and front of your instrument. The Contrabass Shoppe uses
top quality French bridges by Chevalets Despiau and smooth running
aluminium adjusters imported from Germany. It takes between 3-4
hours work to cut and fit both bridge and soundpost.
Neck Finish. Rather like upgrading the amount
of memory or RAM of your computer a well-finished neck will help
deliver faster performance and greater workloads. On the Blond
Rockabilly bass this can be achieved by stripping the layers
of varnish from the neck followed by finishing work and dressing.
For those of you who desire the even greater advantages of a
nice slim-feel neck then the neck can be reprofiled in depth
prior to finishing work.
Endpin Unit. Rather like upgrading the graphics
card on your computer - a good quality endpin unit that has been
well fitted will enhance your playing presentations into something
much more satisfying and reliable. We use a beautifully made
ebony and brass endpin unit that is cork-lined to prevent the
possibility of an endpin buzz.
Tailpiece. Rather like upgrading the optical device
of your computer - upgrading from the factory supplied metal
tailpiece to one of ebony or fruitwood will enhance backup and
improve its tonal qualities. Metallic resonances will be replaced
by warm, rich rounder sounds. As a bonus the aesthetic aspect
of your instrument will be improved too.
Bow. Rather like upgrading your computer monitor
to a 22in wide-flatscreen - a good bow will certainly improve
your playing experience and enjoyment. Click
here to read about our Carbon Fibre bow. You'll be well pleased if you buy one of
Cover. Is rather like keeping your Antivirus software
up-to-date on your computer. By investing in a good quality cover
your instrument will be protected from any external attacks such
as knocks and scrapes. In addition lots of well-positioned handles
will help ease the strain of carrying ones pride and joy about. Click
here to read about our New Image Cover. You'll be well
pleased if you decide to invest in this nice bit of kit.
How much does it cost to supply and fit the various
Strings: Depending on make UK £100 - £200
fitted with aluminium adjusters & soundpost: UK £400
Neck finish: UK £65
Neck reprofile (depth) and finish: UK £195
Endpin unit: UK £150
Tailpiece: UK £85
Carbon-fibre bow: UK £350
New-Image cover: UK £275
That's all very interesting. How about
a Final Summary?
We like the look of the "Blond" Rockabilly
bass - it's much more eye catching and different from the normal
horrible brown shade that you see on a lot of lower budget instruments
and for those of you wanting to recreate the sounds, images and
nostalgia of bygone eras this is the real business. Best of all
has to be the cheap-as-chips price and the fact that - should you
wish - you can always upgrade fittings as and when finances permit.
LOB (length of back) - 108.3cm (42.70in)
Width across upper bouts - 50.7cm (20.00in)
Width across middle bouts - 37.7cm (14.80in)
Width across lower bouts - 64.7cm (25.50in)
Depth of lower ribs inc both plates- 21.1cm (8.30in)
Body Stop - 60.8cm (23.85in)
String length - 106.0cm (41.75in)