Add a Little Color to Your Life

Mike Upton trying out a set of Dreads strings in the uBass.

Mike Upton trying out a set of Dreads strings on the uBass.

Spice up your playing and add a little color to your life by replacing those boring, old, black Pahoehoe strings on your uBass with a new set of brightly colored “Dreads” strings.

They’re the same Pahoehoe formula as the regular strings, but they come in black, green, yellow and red. And while you’re at it, might as well play some Reggae in honor of these colorful babies.

According to Mike Upton of Kala, the Dreads feel a bit smoother than the black Pahoehoe, even thought they are not significantly different in formulation. He also notes they are a bit brighter (in sound) than the black strings.

Check out Mike playing a set of Dreads in THIS VIDEO.


Bass Player Live 2014 uBass Clinic

Abraham Laboriel Sr. and Bukithi Kumalo on stage at Bass Player Live 2014.

Abraham Laboriel Sr. and Bakithi Kumalo on stage at Bass Player Live 2014.


If you were lucky enough to be at Bass Player magazine’s 2014 Bass Player Live show on November 8-9 in Los Angeles, then you probably saw the uBass clinic live. If you weren’t there, you can still enjoy the clinic thanks to Kala, which posted the highlights in a vide on its YouTube channel.

The clinic was hosted by Abraham Laboriel Sr. and Bakithi Kumalo. Those in attendance were treated to a duet by the two bass greats, with Laboriel on an acoustic uBass and Kumalo on his signature Solidbody.

Check out the video Here.

Highlights from the show include:

The presentation of Abraham Laboriel’s Bass Player Lifetime Achievement Award, followed by a performance by Open Hands, with Abraham, keyboardist Greg Mathieson, saxophonist Justo Almario and drummer Bill Maxwell.

A VSOP clinic performance by Abraham Laboriel, Bakitihi Kumalo (Paul Simon) and Hutch Hutchinson (Bonnie Raitt), presented by Kala.

If you play bass, then the Bass Player Live event is like heaven for you. All that bass talent in one place would make anybody want to immediately run out an buy a uBass – or two.

The Kala Booth at NAMM is the Place to Be – Part 2

Nik West playing a Spruce top uBass at the Kala booth.

Nik West playing a Spruce top uBass at the Kala booth.

Last week we told you about all the bass players that stopped by the Kala booth at the NAMM show.

Well, this time Kala has posted a video compilation of all the bass players they could get to sit in front of the camera long enough to be taped.

As Kala noted on its YouTube page:

One after another great bass players stopped by to check out our latest U-BASSES. TM Stevens, Billy Sheehan, Abraham Laboriel, Nik West, Hutch Hutchinson, Mike Merritt, Philip Bynoe, Leland Sklar, Nate Peck…. and these were just the bassists we got quick videos of!

You can check out the video Here.

Tried to Sneak This One By Me, Did Ya?

Kala's new Bakithi Kumalo Signature Fretless uBass

Kala’s new Bakithi Kumalo Signature Fretless uBass

This beauty is the Bakithi Kumalo Signature Fretless uBass. It showed up recently on the Sweetwater web site for sale at $1,099.00 The BK Signature features:

  • Lightweight swamp ash body
  • MI-SI ALIGN active preamp system
  • Preamp charges in 60 seconds for up to 8 hours of playing time
  • Volume control and 2-band EQ
  • Custom HIPSHOT tuners
  • GRAPH TECH Black TUSQ self-lubricating nut
  • Polyurethane strings
  • Meets all airline carry-on requirements
  • Made in the U.S.A
  • Deluxe gig bag with backpack straps included

I guess it makes sense to give BK his own Signature model – he is, after all, one of Kala’s highest profile endorsers.

Not sure how I missed this one.

Anyway, for those of you into specs, here are the particulars:

Specification Detail
Body Type U-Bass Solidbody
Left-/Right-handed Right-handed
Number of Strings 4
Color Expresso
Body Material Swamp Ash
Scale Length 21″
Number of Frets Fretless
Fingerboard Material Rosewood, 12 Radius
Fingerboard Inlay Fret Lines
Neck Material Maple
Neck Shape C
Bridge/Tailpiece Rosewood
Tuners Custom Hipshot
Number of Pickups 1
Neck Pickup No Neck Pickup
Middle Pickup No Middle Pickup
Bridge Pickup Passive Shadow Piezo
Controls Custom Mi Si Align Rechargeable Preamp
Case Included Gig Bag
Manufacturer Part Number KA-SB4FL-SBN-BKwBAG

Not only that, but it sports Bakithi’s signature on the headstock as well.

Nice job Kala.