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Frank Blank

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Everything posted by Frank Blank

  1. I am losing money in reselling too at the moment but I think that's par for the course when you are seeking exactly the right instrument, at least they go to people who are possibly on a similar search, if not at least they may get played by someone else and that's better than them sitting in a rack gathering dust.
  2. I agree with you entirely but I think people like me who write and play music but have very little technical knowledge about their instruments sometimes feel they are possibly missing out on some great instruments that would somehow make the job of writing and performing easier. Obviously common sense makes a nonsense of this but still I get a niggling feeling sometimes when I see someone like Gillian Welch (an artist I really like) using a 1956 Gibson J-50 or her musical partner David Rawlings playing a 1935 Epiphone that they know something I don't, yet when I listen to their recordings I think there is nothing in the tone of their recorded guitars that suggests that you couldn't get the same sound from modern cheaper instruments. This always leaves me on the horns of a dilemma, do they know something I don't? Or do they use such old instruments because they think they should? Or (more than two horns here, obv.) are they genuinely playing such instrument because they love the feel of them, a feel that cannot be found in a modern instrument?
  3. I actually think it helps the debate a lot in that there is no set perspective, one can have one's own taste and preferences about an instrument but I think if this thread has highlighted anything it is that there is no definitive set of criteria that make a vintage bass superior to a modern one or vice versa. There may be something about the materials used in construction, the manner of it's manufacture, but in the end personal preference seems to hugely outweigh any other factor, somehow that pleases me a lot. One thing I do know is that the reasoned arguments and totally friendly discussion on this thread has kind of warmed an old misanthrope's heart! If I were ever attracted to a bass that was considered vintage I'd be straight on here asking for advice, that's for sure.
  4. I’m all for the square cut sandwich but profess no preference with beer.
  5. I suppose we are settling for the instrument that we like in the end, if that is vintage so be it, if it is modern then likewise, so be it. In the end we are satisfying ourselves and if part of that is to own something older with some history or some nice wear then that's part of what you are paying for.
  6. I like that, owning part of the history, it's a kind of belonging isn't it. I feel it too, even having a modern Fender, its still a part of the lineage. All these musings are really helping.
  7. How odd, I was stung by a wasp that alighted unnoticed on my ice cream between licks when I was a child, can't abide ice cream...
  8. Crass, it's a must. This is such good info. Although I am about to purchase a modern Chowny bass (I'm on a short scale mission at the moment) I still feel the perfect Jazz bass eludes me and I don't want to rule out a vintage model in case I miss a bass I love, if that makes sense?
  9. I have no dress sense either, but I do appreciate some old clothes, especially hats.
  10. Actually my use of the word harsh was, if anything, a bit harsh! What I actually meant was accurate or correct. I agree wholly with your statement, to impress, to feel good, it's a not often discussed motivator.
  11. This is very interesting. I 'inherited' several items from my parents deaths but all were imbued with feelings of my childhood and family, whom I (hated is too strong a word as is despised...) shall we say didn't get along with, so (with relish in some cases) threw those things away, happily and cathartically. Whereas some people would be ontologically rooted by such artefacts I disliked any notion of my parents as a reference, maybe that has some bearing on my not understanding vintage and nostalgia.
  12. Ha ha. Superb, I'd have to drink several pints of cider, smoke 10 B&H and have a fight with a glued up skinhead to replicate the sounds of my youth. I haven't enough hair left to recreate the mohican...
  13. Not purely as tools, I very much appreciate them as tools but I am also almost fickle about the aesthetics, what I don't really comprehend is the heritage and nostalgia. I understand the comfort but I find that in new as well as old instruments, same with emotions, I respond emotionally to an instrument on several levels but not in the vintage, nostalgic, heritage sense and I'm wondering why I don't. Oddly enough I do with clothes and with books but not with basses or instruments per se. I agree totally btw about the Nile Rogers example, such a long familiarity with the guitar, his love of it must bring out the best in him.
  14. Yes it certainly wasn't only the punk era, I think all musicians, unless one comes from a reasonably privileged background, had to start with home made or scrounged gear. I never owned any quality equipment until I was in my 40s (apart from a Jaydee that I had when I was 25). I think I'm wondering more if using vintage equipment really reproduces the sounds of the times? You have way more experience in this than me.
  15. How did you split those quotes btw? Another good reason for going with modern instruments to shut out the collectors and investors? I think those who can say they can discern the difference couldn't quantify that difference (not that it matters, all art is subjective after all) but more importantly not feel superior because they can. When people use these old equipment theories for recording I can't ever hear the difference. Then again I'm an old punk so pristine or vintage gear was never an option.
  16. ...and this thread is that excellent, good natured conjecture. Again I think the whole subjective/objective schism is beautifully summed up here... How the median-quality pre cbs bass, when new, would compare with the median-quality custom shop current production, sadly is only the subject of conjecture. My guess is you wouldn't be able to tell the difference.
  17. Of course there is, just as there is such a resurgence of vinyl appreciation. I have a very modern AER amp that doesn't colour the sound of the bass or guitar at all, I'm just wondering what, if anything I'm missing by not having a vintage guitar and/or amp? I listen to music from all ages but 'my era' so to speak was punk music so I may have been heavily (if subconsciously) influenced by that scene with its 'make do with whatever gear was available' way of doing things. I never listen to an album by PIL and think I want to replicate the sound of Jah Wobble by getting similar equipment from the times. I'm not knocking people who do such things, I just think that maybe the punk era kind of frowned on such things, I don't frown on such things but perhaps I'm a product of my era?
  18. I am with you. I am very much of the mind that an instrument is a tool, albeit a tool used to produce that most subjective of things, art! As someone who employs such tools I would like to have the best tools for the job, all my current basses and guitars are modern apart from one battered old classical acoustic that I found under the stairs, this is one of the most played guitars used in my band. It cost £80 in 1978 and once it was set up it became the only classical we use despite me having had two or three modern electro-acoustic classical guitars since, nothing matches the tone, I just don't understand why that is the case?
  19. I have often heard this said about Gibson, some are rubbish, some are gems. Both of your conclusions are absolutely right, turns out it is about much more than simple tone...
  20. Another important facet to the subject, those of influence who may have a vested interest. I suppose the only counter to that is to become knowledgeable oneself (I am referring to myself here, no one else) in order to be able to counter vested interest with objective knowledge.
  21. This is absolutely the core of it, it seems, it's personal taste and no matter how informed that taste is the final arbiter in the purchaser's decision will be personal taste.
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