John Kelley's Bass Box


Playing Instructions
Links to Vintage Music
Books & Videos
Used Instrument List


  • Sounds like a stand up bass- will cause folks to look around for the stand up bass they hear
  • Inexpensive- a fraction of the $1000 or more people pay for an average upright bass (only 345.00 plus shipping)
  • Easy to play- if you can clap your hands in time to the music and learn to hear the I, IV, V chords you can play a BASS BOX
  • Stays in tune- requires tuning like once a year
  • Attractive quality construction- should provide a life time of musical enjoyment
  • Easy to carry and store- measures only 22"x16"x8"
  • Consider these other advantages- You sit on the BASS BOX, so you never need a chair. You play with one hand, so you can drink beer with the other. And, if you drink too much beer and fall over you don't have very far to fall.

  • What is a BASS BOX?

    A BASS BOX is essentially a baby grand thumb piano that reproduces the sound of an acoustic stand up bass.

  • Why a BASS BOX instead of a stand up bass?

    After playing, storing, wrestling, and carrying an upright bass for 13 years I was convinced there must be a better way. The search for this "better way" has lead to what may be the perfect hillbilly instrument.

  • How do you play a BASS BOX?

    The most comfortable position for playing the BASS BOX is to place the instrument on the floor and sit on the upper left hand corner with the right hand hanging over the keyboard. Drawing the fingers over the keys will "pluck" the keys very much like plucking the strings of an upright bass.

  • How is a BASS BOX tuned? In what musical keys will a BASS BOX perform best?

    BASS BOXES come tuned in a circle of fifths- F C G D A E B making it easy to play in the keys of C, G, D, A, and E.