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Hagstrom 8-String Bass H-8 Solid Body Electric Bass Guitar , c. 1968
Hagstrom 8-String Bass H-8 Model Solid Body Electric Bass Guitar, c. 1968, made in Sweden, serial # 746140, sunburst lacquer finish, mahogany body and neck, rosewood fingerboard, black tolex hard shell case.
One of the more endearing oddball basses of the 1960's, the Hagstrom H-8 was the only production 8-string bass of the decade (Rickenbacker made a few on custom order) and remains one of the few of its type ever attempted. Essentially the bass version of a 12-string guitar, the H-8 is strung in octaves with a higher string above each bass string. The sound is similar to a bass and guitar playing in unison, and can create a very rich tonal effect. The instrument's features are typically Hagstrom-a sculpted solid body with very slim neck, excellent sounding hi-fi pickups and a bank of slide switches for controlling them. Despite the imposing appearance it's very easy to play, with a standard 30 1/2" short scale fingerboard, very low action and Hagsrtom adjustable bridge. Perhaps the oddest feature visually is the mix of large and small Van Ghent tuners on the headstock. The H-8 was popular briefly in the late 60's, notable in retrospect for appearing on several Jimi Hendrix cuts played by both Noel Redding and Hendrix himself. The admittedly specialist instrument saw some success slipped out of production by the '70's and is fairly rare today. The sound is unique and in some ways underappreciated-in the late 70's Cheap Trick took the idea to further extremes with Tom Petersson's 12-string basses. The Hagstrom H-8 remains one of those under-utilized sonic gems, still waiting to be fully exploited and appreciated!
Overall length is 43 in. (109.2 cm.), 14 1/8 in. (35.9 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 1/4 in. (3.2 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 30 1/2 in. (775 mm.). Width of nut is 1 3/4 in. (44 mm.). Plays and sounds excellent (what a sound!) but has some general wear and tear. There are some large dings and scratches to the finish in several different areas-overall not too bad but a bit odd as the finish patina is still bright and shiny with not a lot of use evident. There is a long repaired grain split on the back of the neck from the 3rd fret up to the headstock; this is common on older Hagstroms with this very thin neck and large proportion of metal in the "expander" truss rod ststem. This is very solid and cleanly sealed with no added finish, and only evident on close examination. The fingerboard binding has been replaced with grained ivoroid, also a clean job. All else appears original, this is a good player's example of this rare and interesting '60's bass creation. Very Good + Condition.
Item # 5304
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