I have a passion for music, have done since i was 3 years old – i love bass guitar and have played since i was 11! These blogs represent my ramblings on bass guitars, amps, music gizmo’s and whatever takes my fancy!
I love bass guitar, bass amps, music, music technology. I still remember my custom made 1965 Jazz Bass – great bass guitar – it had enough space on each side of the neck where it meets the body to fit a small Car! – I was very specific when I had it rebuilt regarding the neck structure. I however didn’t think about the expense. I figured they’d think about that. Actually, it never crossed my mind. The shop used a standard Fender Jazz Bass body and as i asked, did a full refit of the electronics, with bass boost and all and the neck was set up to my specification .It was painted a fantastic cherry red like the 1958 Fender stats – too cool for words! I still love it! I currently own a 1978 Fender Precision Bass with a maple neck. I have two DiMarzio pick-ups on it with a polarity switch. I can’t say enough about it! I love it and honestly can’t say I can see myself playing anything else. I did try a G&L bass the other day while trying out a David Eden combo amp and it felt and sounded really nice. I don’t know how much of that was the bass or the amp…. always a muso’s dilemma!
The Standard – The Fender Precision:
Ok, so Fender keep switching the standards around. Why not just keep them standard and leave the new mods for specials! Too many Sales gimmicks I think. The S1 switching was the same and it never really caught on either. When is a precision bass not a precision bass? (when its a S1 jazz bass of course).1987\8 onward was good for fenders there were not a lot of them made in the US in those years,but not so good in 84\85 I had a new elite anniversary strat back around that time I am not exactly sure of the date but the neck developed a huge twist from side to side. How it got out of the factory I don’t know. Fender were really good about it they sourced one and sent it to me right away.
2003- Bass Players Paradise – Well for Me!
My delta tone Fender is 2003 so I think they got even hotter. I had a spell when 6 strings bit me, so i had to get a 2003 Strat. They deliberately put an over the top bridge pickup in and gave you the option to dial it down via the tone control which works for both the middle and bridge pickup. That’s the bit I don’t like if you lower the tone in the middle position you also alter the bridge pickup so you have to remember where you are and what you have done when switching between them. The bridge and middle pickups are no load at 10 so the sound bypasses the pot until you dial it down and they are harsh to say the least. I was at a little session about 2 weeks ago and usually I will take my tele and an sa220 which I play thru a princeton reverb ll, but since the tele was out of action I took the strat. And no kidding I was playing with two acoustic guitars and they told (not asked) me to put the strat away they didn’t like it. I finished the session with the sa2200. Having said that I can use the tele thru that amp. Check her out:
I had 2 Reissue Vintage Strats in the early to mid 80s. They both sounded fantastic. It was what I used to get back on my feet musically. Big problems with the necks though. I had to adjust them every 10 minutes. Any Temp or Humidity change would make them bend like pretzels. Before I realized the problem I had fretjobs and in NYC at that time they were already over $200. I finally sold one and smashed the other in a drunken rage. I felt good after. It was like I had a boil removed. God, I loved the sound but hated the guitar. The bridge saddles also sucked. They all vibrated and the set screws were very loose so the action would change there also. Talk about high maintenance. The Rosewood Strat was a great guitar for someone who kept it at home and never took it our to play. I forgot about those guitars. Your right about the Quality Issues. I had the worst time with Fenders at that time. Never thought about it. (in the unlikely event you don’t know the history of the famous strat , check this link out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fender_Stratocaster )
Ask any musician why we love Fender Strat`s. My first reason why I wanted one was because, that was the guitar Hendrix played. Also as a young kid the style was real cool… I grew into loving the sound. As you know the Strat has
a sound all to it self. A has a very bright trebles and deep bass sounds. I also have a Gibson SG Standard that I love to death and play more than my Strat, but still I cant go very long without picking it up. Also, if would like to know how much time i play in a day, well i would guess 1hr to 5hrs – yes – a lot! My biggest problem is that I try to play 15 songs at once, if you know what I mean. I have a stack of music but hardly ever give much time to any one thing, like most guitarists!
Bass – Accompany Only?
Think bass is just to back up the guitars / keyboards / vocals – no way! Check out this classic bass solo from the amazing John Entwistle
Amplifiers – BIG Subject!!
Leo Fender, founder of Fender guitars (if you didnt know!!) was a Radio repair guy and built pick ups and AMPLIFIERS for starters! AMPLIFIERS were the start of Fender! Leo carved out the FIRST Telecaster in his Garage! I have no idea where the neck came from. Someone told me it was an Epiphone neck and another said it was a Gibson neck. They were separate companies at that time. A blank with frets. Leo carved it out to be a silhouette of a classic stringed instrument. All six strings in one line in perfect balance after several tries. Leo Fender made great Amps before he made GREAT Guitars! I think the Mustang Amp is the beginning of a new age in Fender Amps. Something to have and use and value. A reminder of what made Fender as great as it is. It started with the fucking AMPS! My dual Bassman! My Dual Showman! Can NOT beat that sound! Even with that goddam Fender hisssssssss. I can go on and on and on about the in’s and out’s of what makes a GREAT amplifier AND what makes a dud – stay tuned!