Bass Distortion Pedals: Smart Move for a Stronger Groove

The distortion feature has a very specific purpose when used on a bass guitar. While it’s not as common in genres such as jazz (where a cleaner tone should be maintained), it is very frequently used in genres where heavy tone is an important objective. Almost all of the legendary bands such as Black Sabbath, Motörhead and other hard rock and roll hall-of-famers, have used bass distortion for most of their performances. If you’ve been wondering whether or not you need a distortion pedal model, here you will find all the necessary information to see if they are right for you.

Distortion Pedal

Why Distort a Bass Guitar?

The idea behind bass distortion is not all that different than electric guitar distortion. It’s not going to magically turn you into a better player, but it can add certain effects to your sound, which make for a meaner, throatier sound. All of this can give your sound a whole different character. Distorting your bass guitar is not just for hard rock or metal. For instance, just as you can play some songs from genres that typically require a lot of distortion without distorting your bass and still sound great, the same goes for genres that typically don’t rely on distortion. In certain songs you can fit in a distorted reef or two and add a bit of your own flair to it.

Do I Need a Special Distortion Pedal for Bass or Can I Use a Regular Guitar One?

You can definitely use a guitar pedal to distort your bass, however there will be a noticeable difference and you won’t be able to reach the best possible sound. Gear that is designed for guitars is not going to sound as good when hooked up to a bass guitar since the pedals and amplifiers designed for guitars can’t handle the low frequencies of a bass guitar. If you use a pedal for guitar on your bass, you’re definitely going to lower the level of quality of your sound and reduce your instrument’s definition. If you want to make sure your bass reaches its best, you do need distortion pedal models as they are designed to fit your instrument like a glove.

What Should I Look for in a Bass Distortion Pedal?

When it comes down to making that specific decision, which pedal you get depends on your style and genre of music. But there are a few things you should keep in mind as to make sure you sound your best. Unlike guitarists, bassists need to ensure their overdriven signal contains enough low-end content to fulfill their role in the band. Some drives achieve one sound very well, while others have the capability to emulate a variety of different drive tones. So when making your decision, it’s a matter of finding the one that can improve your indivdual style.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.