Bass of the Week: Benavente Guitars SCB Hybrid 7-String
This week we’re checking out an amazing seven-string bass built by Chris Benavente for the great Al Caldwell. The beastly instrument features an alder hollow body design that is four inches thick and topped with a gorgeous piece of 5A quilted maple.
Caldwell, who is renowned for his use of extended-range basses, tells us he had the bass built as a middle ground between solid bass and rhythm guitar. While he has nine and even eleven-string basses, this hybrid design offers a different tonality.
“I play a lot of different instruments so I need something that allows me to do double duty. I felt that this Benavente HYBRID 7 would be the answer. I love my 9 string that goes down to LOW F# and has a piano-like quality to it but I wanted a semi-acoustic property to the sound as well,” he explains. “I love Anthony Jackson, Jack Cassidy and Thundercat, and Paul McCartney. These players have a great sound that’s based on a semi-acoustic bass. I’ve been practicing more with a pick and am trying to extend my playing style. I’m 60 years old but I’m hearing music and sounds in my head that I’m still chasing. When I was younger, I chased licks and speed, but now I’m older and wiser so now I chase tone.”
The bass has a 33-inch scale with a three-piece maple neck and an Indian rosewood fingerboard. It’s fitted with a pair of Benavente/Ulyate dual-coil pickups under rosewood covers as well as a Benavente three-band EQ. Hardware includes a Hipshot A-type bridge and Ultralite “Y” key tuners.
As you can imagine, the bass is very personal for Caldwell. He even has two things you can call it. “I’m naming my bass ‘V’, after one of the hardest working women that I have ever known,” he says. “I have much to learn. I am and will forever more be a student of the EXTENDED Range instrument (also known as) MY MF BASS!!!”
Benavente Guitars SCB Hybrid 7-String Bass Specs:
|4″ Alder Hollowbody
|5A Quilt Maple
|Benavente/Ulyate Dual Coil w/Rosewood Covers
|Benavente Active/Passive 3-Band EQ
|Hipshot A Type
|Black Metal Dome Type