Press

Interviews and features on Carey Nordstrand & The Company:

Best Bass Gear Interview - excerpt... "When I sit down to test something, and I do this more than two or three times over the course of a week or two with a certain product, if I sit down and I start playing and I am like what will it sound like if I am like “what will this sound like with a delay pedal, what if I put distortion on it, what if I run it through this?”, and I sort of get lost in exploring the sound that comes out of the amp then I know I am onto something at that point because I stop analyzing it with my mind and I start experiencing it with my heart..."

Bass Player Magazine, Meet Your Maker - excerpt..."His parents’ turntable provided Carey with his first inspiration to create music. As age seven, he remembers sitting between their large stereo speakers and playing the Bee Gees at full volume, attending carefully to all the instruments. Thus inspired, in fourth grade he picked up the saxophone and began his musical training. After his seventh-grade year, his family relocated from Minnesota to Alaska—a transition that proved difficult for the young Nordstrand..."

Daily funk Club Interview - excerpt..."I guess there’s something about music, at least music that somehow mysteriously resonates with me, that pulls me in like a tractor beam. It’s really one of the prime gravitational forces in my life and I have no choice but to be a part of it. Learning how to access my authentic creative flow has been my main pursuit in my spare time over the last several years. I’d like to really be able to share who I am through my music and see if I can find people who it resonates with..."

Bass Player Magazine, The Innovaters - excerpt..." Necessity, as the saying goes, is the mother of invention. Soon after he opened a shop to build instruments, Carey Nordstrand was confronted with a problem. He was making a single-cut 6-string bass, and he needed a set of dual-coil pickups to finish the job. He checked with several suppliers but was unhappy with what they had to offer. So he decided to make them himself. “I bought a Schatten winding machine, got some vulcanized fiber, made some little forms, drilled holes, and cobbled the pickups together,” Carey says. “They worked. It was absolutely a matter of necessity—and that was the start of it...”


Product Reviews:

Blueberry Hill Bass, NJ4 vs. NJ4SE vs. NJ4SV - excerpt..." The original Nordstrand jazz pickup was the NJ4. This is a true single coil pickup and sounds closest to the pickups that were used 40 or 50 years ago. The NJ4 set has a very clean, clear, bell-like tone, is balanced from top to bottom, and delivers a true vintage jazz bass tone. Of course, because they are a true single coil pickup, they are also susceptible to noise and 60 cycle hum. While the NJ4 is a very quiet pickup, any true single coil design will always be potentially vulnerable to interference. This is the "reference" for jazz bass pickups and is the most traditional sounding of the bunch."

Bass Frontiers Magazine, MM4.2 - excerpt..." Let me start off first by stating, I usually do not swap pickups in my basses. I am more of a purist feeling that if it is not broken, do not try to fix it. However, several of my early Ernie Ball Stingray basses seemed to have a hum problem when playing out live. I have been a big fan of Ernie Ball basses for years and the 2 band EQ Stingray is one of my go to basses. I had several soundmen remark to me how much they loved the sound of the basses, but they were getting a bizarre hum from the direct feed to the board. I own several 2 band EQ Stingrays and did several head to head tests with other basses that I own. The results seemed to suggest a possible shielding issue.  I did not want to stray from the classic Stingray sound, but I did want to create a cleaner signal to the board. I had heard several other pickups in Stingrays that always seemed to stray away from the classic Bernard Edwards/ Louis Johnson sound."

BestCovery, Big Splits - excerpt..."A diverse range of bassists have brought Nordstrand’s Big Split bass humbucker pickup into their rig everyone from Andy Cichon (Billy Joel, Shania Twain) to Dean Bernardini (Chevelle) to Owen Biddle (the Roots, John Legend) have all used these pickups to attain their tone. When you have such a broad spectrum of music covered by a single piece of gear, you know that they’re doing something right. The Big Split has units that are applicable to 4, 5 and 6-string bass guitars, and have been called the ultimate pickup for those looking to sport a jazz bass tone that’s cranked to the limit. Available in both Bartolini and EMG designs, these pickups offer some seriously powerful punch to your bass tone."

Premier Guitar, NVT A3 - excerpt..."The bridge unit clucks and snaps vividly for compressed chicken-pickin’, purrs with subtle fingerpicked brushstrokes, and fights like a dirty punk when you add grit. It’s bright and articulate, but never harsh. Meanwhile, the neck pickup eschews clichéd “Texas phatness” in favor of gorgeous, bell-like clarity and an almost lipstick-tube-like graininess, a subtle texture that’s enchanting, inspiring—and all too rare."

Premier Guitar, Shush Puppies - excerpt..."With their super-quiet performance, crisp tone, and pristine highs, the Shush Puppies accomplish nearly every one of Nordstrand’s intended goals. It’s surprising how little the hum-cancelling design affects the single-coil tones—if it even does at all. A lot of hum-canceling single-coils compress and dampen the response in the pursuit of low noise, and the objective is usually met at the expense of springy lows and syrupy quack. This is most definitely not the case with the Shush Puppies." 

Bass Player Magazine, 2B Preamp - excerpt..."Once I got around to finishing my upgrade and plugged in the bass for the first time, I was genuinely excited, expecting a Lazarus-like moment—the miraculous rehabilitation of a previously anemic bass. And in what is likely an uncommon occurrence, my expectation of life after death completely bore out! The bass sounded incalculably better than before. While I know the inclusion of the Nordstrand pickups is a substantial part of the transformation (and also a reason why this test wasn’t entirely scientific), the preamp undoubtedly played a large role. I loved the mellow character of its EQ—it proved musical and genuinely useful for adding a touch of beef or cutting off a slice of sizzle. As ever, I was also stoked that Nordstrand offers a configuration with a passive tone control."

 

 

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