Bluetus | ブルータス

When the SCANDAL Squier guitars were released in the summer of 2014, I initially just wanted the MAMI Stratomaster, but it was the first one to be sold out everywhere. One the same day when stores were taking pre-orders, I managed to secure the Skullsilver through a friend in Tōkyō. Nevertheless, whilst drowning in my sorrows for not getting the Stratomaster, I still looked for other possible leads on this guitar of MAMI’s on the net. I then chanced upon a shop in Tōkyō called Ikebe gakki and Bluetus was available. They also ship their guitars overseas which was an absolute bonus.

I would like to say that the name Bluetus is somewhat interesting. On one hand, the Blue in the name was in keeping with its Sky Blue finish; and on the other, the Japanese pronunciation would make it Brutus (burūtasu)!

TOMOMI and Bluetus.

TOMOMI had this to say about Bluetus:

「いつもアクティブのモデルなので、パッシブタイプにしました。最初に買うベースって、多くの人が見た目で入ると思うから、ファーストベースになれば良いなという想いを込めて、取っ付きやすい原色で明るいポップな青にしました。パッシブだから木材本来の音が素直に出るし、最初の1 本にピッタリだと思います。自分が欲しかった仕様です(笑)。」

Since my other bass guitars have always had active pickups, I made this with passive ones. I think many people tend to choose their first bass by their appearance, so I felt a bright pop-like blue finish is somewhat appropriate. The passive pickups faithfully brings out the tone from the basswood body, and I think it’s perfect for someone’s first bass. It’s a design that I would want for myself LOL.

I feel that Bluetus sounds a bit trebly and that’s her with just the neck pickup. Despite its name, basswood ain’t that bassy, but has more of a mid-range tone to it.

Duncan Designed JB-101s and a standard 4-saddle Jazz bass bridge.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that both pickups were Duncan Designed™ and I thought I’d just keep it the way it came. These pups may be OEM but they sound good. Bluetus was lighter than my poplar MIM Fender Standard Jazz and actually she plays really well.

Basswood body in Sky Blue with yellow racing stripes.

I thought I wouldn’t like the Sky Blue finish but as time went by, it grew on me. Bluetus was a pretty decent bass built-wise, especially when I have a few issues with the QC of the MAMI Stratomaster that also came from the run-of-the-mill Squier factory. The paintwork does appear a tad shoddy only if you squint really hard at the edges. Another comment I had was the uneven fret edges at about frets 8 to 14. So, she was later sent to Steve Robinson in Manchester for a pro set up.

Headstock with a matched finish.
Standard open-gear tuners and TOMOMI’s dozy duck signature.

The following are Bluetus’ specs, as provided by Fender Japan:

・Colors: Sky Blue w/ Yellow competition line
・Body: Basswood
・Neck: Maple C-Shape (Gloss Polyurethane, Vintage Tint)
・Fingerboard: Rosewood 9.5″ Radius (241 mm),
・No. of Frets:20 Medium Jumbo
・Pickups: Duncan Designed™ JB101 Single Coil(Bridge) & JB101 Single Coil(Neck)
・Controls: Volume 1 (Neck PU), Volume 2 (Bridge PU), Master Tone
・Bridge: Standard 4 Saddle
・Machine Heads: Standard Open-Gear Tuners
・Hardware: Chrome
・Pickguard: White Pearl Pickguard
・Scale Length: 34″(863.6mm)
・Width at Nut: 1.50″(38 mm)
・Unique Features: Matching headstock / Autographed signature is printed on back of the headstock
・Strings: Gauges .045, .065, .085, .105

Here’s my cover of LIFE IS A JOURNEY with Bluetus:

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