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Juzek Upright Bass

The Juzek upright basses were made in Prague, Czechoslavakia (Now known as the Czech Republic).  Jan Jusek imported factory instruments and primarily only worked with importing to America.  His basses can really range in level and quality.   It really depends on when they were being made (what the buyers needs were) and how much money customers were willing to spend.  Depending on the dates, there was plenty of competition with their German neighbors for the same types of upright basses also trying to work their way into the American market.  The Jusek upright was pretty successful in a few ways.  Lots of his basses were flat back, but he also made them with a carved back as well.  The varnishes ranged from shiny, heavily applied yellows, to wonderful dark chestnut brown.  The wood and workmanship also ranged in quality, but in general the quality is dependable.  In America, in the 1930, 40's and 50's, the Juzek upright bass was popular for its imported cheaper (more affordable) price.  Some might ask why there was such a range in quality and style in his instruments.  The answer could be found in that he also "farmed" out his instruments from other makers in the Schoenbach, but put his own labels inside.

We often get comparisons with the dependability of these old basses, to our newer, Wan-Bernadel upright basses.  The 3/4 Czech or German basses while carved basses, were never known for being projecting, focused basses. What was the attraction? They were really the first largely available imported bass that gave a nice alternative to the typical plywood basses that were so predominant.  Now, in the 21st century, it's incredible how much stays the same, but also changes.  China is really the new Czechoslovakia and Germany!  Will the Wan-Bernadel upright basses leave the same legacy as the Jusek bass?  It's hard to say.  Here are some similarities and differences: The Wans in some ways, are made much better.  They all have carved backs and will be way less prone to cracking over time. (This will be more obvious in 10 or so more years!)  The Wans are more consistent in that the varnishes have always been high quality. The materials, nicer flamed maple which was cheaper and more readily available for Wan, will be consistent.  Juzek though, made  and imported way, way more basses.  We think with the constant attention to quality, detail and dedication, the Wan-Bernadels will have a great place in history.  Because all of the 'WB' basses are specially hand made and carved, there is often a wait-list for them.  If you are interested in knowing more about this email us and we will be happy to let you know what the status is.