The Elusive Bass String Problem

GHS Bass BoomersI went to Stevie B’s here in Saint Petersburg, Florida, today, to see if any Rotosound bass strings has shown up. Nada. Though they did give up the used guitar strings that they’ve been saving up for Victoria (props for that!). I’m beginning to wonder if I should stop wasting my time with Stevie B’s where my guitar strings are concerned. On multiple occasions they’ve promised to get in strings for me, but never have. They told me they’d start stocking those Rotosound Reds guitar strings that I used on my electrics, and I committed to buying at least a pack a week if they would do so, but no strings ever showed up. This week has been a special problem, because I waited until too late to order any Rotosound strings for my bass from JustStrings, assuming I would be able to get some through Stevie B’s (but I was unable to do so).
Trying to cover my ass, I wrote four or five music stores within a reasonable driving distance. None of them got back to me. The only one who got back to me was Stevie B himself, who said that they stock Rotosound bass strings, but that “the touring bands just inhale them”. He said he would call their supplier and have a box sent to the St. Pete store, but there were none there today.
So… I wound up buying some GHS Bass Boomers, which I’m not at all happy about. But any port in a storm, right? I have a gig tonight in New Port Richey with the Just In Time Band, and will be playing the Cars For Pinks auto show tomorrow afternoon with Systematic Chaos is Clearwater. I desperately needed new strings. So I’ve had to pick up the strings of lesser beings. Hopefully my Alembic will forgive me.
My question now is one which I can’t seem to find the answer to. Is the scarcity of my favorite strings, Rotosound, due to their diminishing popularity, or because of their exploding popularity? Are they hard to find because no one buys them and the music stores don’t stock them, or are they elusive because they’re so popular that the music stores can’t keep them on the shelves?
All I know is I can’t find them. I wish I had gone ahead and bit the bullet with JustStrings.com. I didn’t order strings for them because shipping was going to be $11. Holy sheep dip! That’d be fine if they were being hand-delivered. But it’s beginning to look like if I want to have my favorite strings on-hand, I’m going to have to order them. It looks like the days of walking into a music store and picking up a set of Rotosound strings is a thing of the past.
Man, I never thought I’d miss not loving in proximity to a music super-store like Sam Ash. Maybe if I did I wouldn’t be stuck with GHS Bass Boomers. In fairness, I used to use GHS Boomers on my guitars back in the 1980’s, and had no real complaints with them. I don’t think I’ve ever used Boomers on one of my basses. I suspect that after this weekend’s gigs, a full review might be in order in the music section.
Jesus H. Christ. I just realized that GHS Strings are made in Battle Creek, Michigan, where my U.S. Xpress driver trainer lived. That’s 10 points right off the top! 😉

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