Cool and classic basses: Burns 5-String Bass

Legendary basses profiled from Fender, Gibson, Warwick and more

Cool and classic basses Burns 5 string Bass
It's a beast of a bass from Burns of London

This has to be one of the most unexpected models to be produced by Burns London, not simply because it's a 5-string bass but more that it has advanced electronics incorporating an active transducer with a battery powered preamp.

Development began in 1998 when Shadows' bassist Alan Jones wanted active electronics in his P-bass, which Burns duly provided. However, he also fancied a 5-string, so the company went ahead with this prototype. Due to other commitments, it was shelved before it could be completed.

Fortunately, an acquaintance of Jones commissioned the bass to be finished. The active transducer system helped the bass to achieve a simulated acoustic sound as well as offering a much wider range of tones overall.

The scrolled headstock had seen a few changes since its initial introduction on the Shadows Bass in 1964, but here it is back in all its glory, looking even better thanks to the longer and narrower dimensions of the headstock required to make way for the extra tuner. Sadly it never went into production although we do know of a different Burns 5-string model. Watch this space!

Read our full Burns 5-string bass profile