The Bass-ment

NBD: I just can’t stop playing my White Falcon…


I couldn't help noticing that "Timo Proterious" anagrams to ... wait for it ...

"Out Mi Posterior"

That must mean something, but danged if I know what!


Commentary on something, no doubt.


Wow Proteus, thanks for the detailed description. Very well done.

And yes, really the Falcon bass is an amazing instrument. Definitely has tons to offer that has nothing to do with looks.

Hope you like it as much as I like mine.


I know this is an old old thread but it still beats the other gretsch forum where their reply to a bass Q was "nobody thinks bass when you mention Gretsch" so nobody replied to the poor guy's Q. I recently did some horse trading and acquired one of these basses. To be right up front about this I must mention that I am a long long time Gretsch fan and owner and am not really hugely impressed with this instrument. I would never have bought it for anything close to the prices I see being asked online. It has some really good points, but also bad ones along with some WTF? So---as a long time Gretschy I am familiar with the function of the "mud" switch, but it seems to do NADA on this bass. When I got it I put on a set of Rotosound Swingbass 66s Stainless (very bright) and tuned the thing up. The mud switch does nothing to affect the tone on this bass. - nothing- I even ran it through the spectrum analyzer function on my DAW to be sure it does nothing. So I decided to open up the back to get to the switch and troubleshoot the problem and ??????????!!!!!!! no access panel? The Pad is just a FFFFAKE? I decided then to contact Getsch/Fender CS to ask about all this and have so far been ignored--not unexpected since FMIC has been less than helpful in the past, in my experience. But this post is getting too long. My Qs are 1. has any other OWNER of this bass noticed this problem? I use the same strings on my RIC 4003 and the tone controls definitely work. 2. Why a master volume AND a kill switch.....and many more but not now....


The pad isn't a fake. It's a real round piece of genuine artificial vinyl leatherette with gold piping, snapped to the back of the bass. But I understand that you're calling it fake because it doesn't hide a plastic access panel.

And it's true, there's no access hole in the back of the bass - nor is it needed. Plenty of Gretschs get their guts installed (and worked on) through the pickup holes. It was really only the Country Gentleman with the flip-up mutes which needed back access so Rube Goldberg could get to the mechanism. After that, the pad became one of those quirky Gretsch features (like fins on an old Caddy) that provided a bit of extra distinction for your money. I think they're silly, but they're there.

If your tone switch does nothing, something is wrong with the wiring on the bass. Mine works 100% as expected. And something is definitely wrong with your bass if the tone isn't damn magnificent. I have Roto-sound 99 PSD strings on mine, and it sounds like a cross between the low-end thunder of a Vox Beatlebass and the articulation of a Ric.

Why a master volume and a kill switch? Who knows? Why is there a kill switch on ANY guitar? It's because White Falcons are supposed to have knobs and switches all over them. If it doesn't look like a '58 Buick, it ain't a Falcon.


I like the tone fine and I don't really use the mud switch or tone pots on any true electric guitar, preferring to use the amp EQ or the mixing board. Things would certainly be different if I were playing out anymore. I like the hollow body sound and hate short scale so that's why I traded my friend for it. I'm not a fan of gaudy guitars; I need them to play well and sound good. I guess some folks like to think that they have a "vintage" recreation here, but there never was a bass WF until around 1995 ..............anyway the switch and some other things PO'ed my friend enough to trade for one of my EB-3s and I want everything to work when my kids fight over it after I'm dead. I have worked on Gretschs guitars both with and without the access panel and much prefer the easy way.

An interesting point: I watched two demo/reviews of this bass online and the people playing them were totally confused about the mud switch. I think this was because it did nothing on their instruments either. BUT one guy was definitely not familiar with basses or Gretschs and had the switches mixed up. After fiddling with the MS a bit he just moved on to other things. The other guy was either well and truly stoned or recorded his video on his own personal planet in a galaxy far far away. He called the pickup selector switch the "bass boost" and like the other guy tried to switch pups using the MS and gave up on that quickly. We copied the videos and played them on the main studio reference monitors here and they were definitely not working any better than mine. I guess I will have to get my Gretsch fishing tackle out and see WTF unless FMIC actually does answer my Q and offers to fix it..............

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