My Custom Overwater Bass
After a year of planning, building & working. It's finally here!
My new Overwater Custom P5 aka The Green Machine!
Having played a 5 string American Deluxe Jazz a 72 Jazz & a Musicman for numerous years I was yearning for something special. I've always admired Overwaters & seeing a lot of my friends, players & mentors with them sealed the deal.
Chris contacted me a few years ago about an artist programme custom bass but I wasn't in need at that time.
Cut to me, sitting in the car analysing a terrible audition I just had. The phone rings & my journey had just started. I saw fellow players using a certain pickup combination (P & MM) and I was gasping for some P bass tone.
I have a P bass but alas mine is a fretless & I cant use it for everyone or every situation 😩
Myself, Chris & Martin deliberated on every aspect of "The Green Machine" including the reverse P for a tight bottom end and the very comprehensive EQ controls, thank you both. Lets hear what The Green Machine can do............
First we have the reverse P pickup solo'd with the tone rolled off in passive mode.
Secondly we have both the reverse P pickup & MM in active mode with the bass & treble slightly boosted.
Thirdly we have the MM pickup solo'd in active mode with the bass & treble boosted.
Heres the specs of this mean green low bottom end producing bass machine & why it is what it is 👍
A standard Overwater 5 string P body & 35" scale length. I initially wanted a 36" but soon realised that 35" scale length is ample for a tight low B. Of course the P style body is classic & I love a classic (I wanted a P bass anyway)
5 strings because of necessity as a player & loving a low Eb for some Stevie Wonder grooves!
Surf Green colour & the matching headstock. A classic look & some cool retro vibes. It was either going to be green or Daphne Blue, but I'm so happy with the colour and the brightness of the bass and the lovely gloss finish which is off-set with a classic off white scratch plate.
Also they kindly added a lovely PC Custom signature to the back of the headstock
We've got a swamp ash body & one piece maple neck. This just stems from the similarity to my Am Deluxe Jazz & have always liked the response from that combination. Its hefty but not overly so.
Indian rosewood fretboard. I haven't played a rosewood in ages but wanted that old school look & feel. This is where the no front markers came from. I wanted a clean crisp look similar to some other basses I've lusted over. It takes some getting used to (I didn't realise how often I looked at the actual fingerboard!) I have 2mm mother of pearl dots on the side though Thank goodness!
We've got a reverse P & a MM style. The chunkiness of the P in passive is pure old school and filthy. Then we have the phattness off the MM style in the bridge. Another thing to add is the Neutrix locking jack socket which gives me great piece of mind.
While experimenting with the John East/Overwater 3 band boost & cut EQ with mid range sweep, passive tone & pickup blend I fell in love. I can solo the MM, boost the bass & treble a little bit & Bam! it sounds exactly like a MM bass. pan all the way to the reverse P and we have that funky chunky stank face inducing thick loavable tone.
Or pick both in active and have a warm crisp defined tone perfect for more modern grooves & soaring crisp top end (EQ is flat at this point) Comprehensive isn't the word for this circuit & pickup combo, it doesn't do it justice.
Hardware wise we have a huge chunky Overwater bridge with 18mm string spacing. Which gives me plenty of room between each string for the old slap pop and its solid, designed so well especially for set ups and string changes. Next we have the classic Hipshot Ultralite 1/2 post tuners which weigh nothing and move very smoothly.
I took it for a spin at a recent The Special Brew rehearsal and was met with compliments on looks, tone, & general grooviness (sadly not personally!) It cut through when needed for my solos & provided some great round bottom too.
Following this I've also had my first show with it too! A depends gig with Ska Band The Navarones. I kept in passive with the tone rolled off a little for 80% off the show then bumped it into active with a slight bass boost for more "Dubby" styled songs.
The bass is very comfortable and easy to play. Its very even between pickups & over all the strings too which makes life easier simply.
It balances well and although the neck is wide it fits my hand perfectly with a lovely rounded edge to the fingerboard which screams quality.
All in all I have, in my opinion the Swiss Army Knife of basses. I'd personally like to thank Chris, Martin & Kirsty for their patience, emails, calls & for building the best bass.
Thank you I'm genuinely so happy & proud to have my own Overwater & cant wait to travel the world touring, recording & teaching with The Green Machine.
A huge thanks to the amazing Forrest Illustration for taking these amazing pictures!
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