Genuinely in turmoil about the thought of selling this bass as it’s everything I’ve ever wanted to own since I was a teenager and I’m now 48 !!
However, it was purchased not to sit in a ‘glass case’ but to play live and play in the context of a RHCP tribute band (which it has for the last year or so) regrettably as I have Hands like shovels the slim neck causes me to ‘scuff up’ rather too much as it’s just too cramped for my ‘Incredible Hulk Hands’ !! The proportions of a MM Stingray suit me much better and I just have to accept it !
I had the bass professionally appraised prior to purchase so the comments below are not just my suppositions or guesses they are based on my knowledge of the instrument from the seller and the insights of one of the UK’s foremost Fender experts.
I know everyone will want to know the weight.... it’s a lovely light weight Jazz.... I’m sure you may want to know the exact weight which I’ll get for seriously interested parties.
What this bass is....
It’s a 1962 Slab board Jazz, absolutely THE most resonant instrument I’ve ever held in my hand. It’s got more tones in this than any passive bass I’ve heard. From deep dubby thump to growl and grind.... Jaco / Miller / Geddy it’s all in there.... woody earthy organic but also bright punchy and very present in the band mix.
The neck is straight and true and unlike many Pre CBS Jazz basses sets up like a dream, the truss rod works perfectly and the action goes as low as you like and it plays clean as a whistle...
The Slap sound from this thing is incredible, the finger style barks with a lovely mid bite underpinned with such a big fundamental with both pickups on full !
There’s absolutely no dead spots... it’s a very ‘even’ sounding bass right across the strings and up and down the neck....
What it isn’t....
It’s not all original or it would be 3 x the price !! Try finding a Pre CBS Jazz these days... they barely exist even through the major dealers they are a rarity and the 62 vintage holds major cudos....
At £4750 it’s a bargain!! Bass Direct had a 61 In recently at £16k (albeit pretty much all original) The likes of Andy Baxter haven’t offered for sale a Pre CBS Jazz for ages (or if they’ve had one it’s gone straight to clients and not been offered to the public)
The body was refinned many many years ago and as far as I know the wear is genuine play road wear.... the bass was retired from professional live duty a decade ago needing a refret. The bass was owned by a pro player with some celebrity credits (I’ll tell the buyer about it... it’s interesting but not the sort of history that adds any value)
The Finish on the neck is to die for and feels like an ‘old pair of slippers’ The refret was done not by a ‘repair man’ but a ‘master luthier’ and it’s utterly superb visually and in terms of how it plays... I seriously had to beg and plead for him to do the work as he’s so busy building.... I gave him a brief of ‘cost no object’ make it the best it can possibly be (this is a slab board pre CBS Jazz after all) I wasn’t disappointed!!!
Other things of note...
The bass has been a working instrument all its life and had been played / gigged / recorded extensively. It has that playability / tone and vibe that really only comes with tens of thousands of hours of ‘singing’ as an instrument! As FLEA said about his own Jazz Bass ‘this bass stopped being a tree a long time ago’
The Machine heads are the original reverse tuners as you’d expect and work freely and hold tune perfectly !
The bridge is all original apart from the 2 G string height adjustment screws look to be a little different and slightly less aged !
Pickups are the original units and have been recently hand rebuilt to original specs by a master of this craft. They have been rewound exactly as original using period correct equipment, wire and wax. Pole pieces have been re magnetised and the difference this made to the instrument was incredible ! There is no question they would pass as totally original but again I’m just being 100% honest here....
The pots were RS replacements when I got the bass, I’ve had them replaced with correct CTS / Vintage wiring..the output Jack and Cap are original. The Bell Plate is original but has had the 3 holes countersunk to accept countersunk screws.
There’s some debate as to whether the scratch plate is original or not (really how would you know for sure) it’s old for definite but maybe later 60’s... I’m just being as honest here as I possibly can. Assume it’s old (and valuable in itself) but not original and if it is well I’ve underpriced the bass and you’ve got a bonus !!
Thumb rest / covers / pick guard screws again all very old.... can I guarantee originality ? ofcourse I can’t.... they might well be nobody really can say for sure....We think the thumb rest is certainly 60’s We think the covers are Fender but later versions or maybe repro ? The strap buttons on the body and the back of the headstock appear to be original.
I’m sure there may be stuff I’ve missed or questions to answer before a deal is done however please may I respectfully request the following :
1. The price is firm because it’s very fair... I’m not interested in entertaining the ‘what’s your best price’ brigade.... I don’t need to sell it financially so I’ll probably not respond if that’s your opening gambit !
2. I’m not looking for swaps or trades, I’m probably going to buy an Alembic at some point and the cash is going towards that. Maybe if you have a MK Sig or Series Bass we could talk but it would need to be ‘classic taper’ beyond that no trades thanks.
3. I’ve been really honest with the description please no pm’s pointing out it’s not all original....
4. Given currency I’d expect some interest from abroad.... I’d much rather the buyer had this bass in their hands and played it before purchase but I’ll work with any serious buyer who wants to use this bass as it was intended..... But buyer pays shipping and it’s going nowhere without being fully insured !
5. If the bass has to be shipped I have a Hiscox lite flite case that it can go in.
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