Delivering Corey Brown's custom 34" Orchid bass was a great opportunity to meet up with Corey again as well as to visit world headquarters for his excellent bass-centric website: www.notreble.com
Okay, now that you're back, yep, it was really cool to visit in person. After parking in a remote location and texting our arrival, we were escorted through labyrinthian passages to the secure skylit space replete with high-bandwidth interactivity and pre-release bass technology awaiting review.
We set up three stations for evaluation, including an Ampeg 15" combo, Hartke 4x10 powered by TC Electronic RH750 head, and Mackie + SansAmp Bass Driver DI into Sony MDR-7509s.
Evolving roster of bassists traded the instruments, in turns. Monster noticed reactions were always first to the patented Trapezoid Neck Profile™ including how unusual it looked and felt. He then noted each bassist went through an adjustment period of several minutes, watching the left hand and getting comfortable with the unfamiliar shape.
After a period of time, eyes gravitated to the right hand as the musician explored the sweet spots and tonal nuances created by plucking location. Left hand forgotten, content to fret notes. This behavior pattern was consistent for every new player.
We had a great time, meeting, re-connecting, and listening to skilled players. Marathon day of road tripping, talking bass. The next morning, Corey was kind enough to email:
"Just wanted to let you know I haven't put down the bass since Rick handed it to me yesterday (well, except for eating & sleeping a little).
"This bass is the most enjoyable instrument I've ever played, and I've played a lot over the last 32 years.
"It is hard to pick one thing that stands out... it looks incredible, it feels custom tailored for my body, it sounds amazing and it makes playing easier thanks to the incredible response.
"It took no time to get used to it. That surprised me, given the innovations in it which make it different than any bass I've owned.
"This entire process got me inspired to start seriously playing again, and Orchid is definitely going to make that continue.
"I can't thank you enough for this incredible gift.
"p.s. Anyone want to buy a few Fender basses?"
PHOTOS: Corey digs in on headphones, lost in a world of tapping and harmonics. Don't want to meet these guys in a dark alley — or between booths at NAMM.