Jump to content
Why become a member? Read more... ×
TheGreek

Why do Pros use a P Bass...

Recommended Posts

8 hours ago, ubit said:

Nothing fits in the mix quite like a P. Yes, lots of other basses have a larger range of sounds, for example, a J bass, but the P just sits in the mix better.

Why is it that this gets trotted out so often? A P bass fits in some standard mix that a producer uses as often as he can better, but it doesn't fit in every mix better, otherwise everybody would use the wretched things.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Twincam said:

You can hardly get a pbass tone wrong. It has one position of pu, and 2 controls. It's hard to mess up.

 

What??

Hold my beer...

(you clearly haven't heard me play 😛 )

  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, tauzero said:

Why is it that this gets trotted out so often? A P bass fits in some standard mix that a producer uses as often as he can better, but it doesn't fit in every mix better, otherwise everybody would use the wretched things.

This. I prefer p bass but my iazz sits better in my trash metal and techno recordings.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, but that’s just my opinion. I have fourteen basses and still love the P for the way it fits in 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I watched the video and interview. Interesting stuff - Sean Hurley seems a nice enough bloke (as does Scott). 

What did I take from it - well it appears for some producers and artists the Precision is currently flavour of the month so if you're a pro and encounter them you might be required to use one (possibly theirs, with appalling action, listening to Scott). 

This idea that only P basses were used in the 60s was put into stark contrast as I watched the TOTP 1964-75 show on BBC4 - I was taken by the array of Gibson EB3s on display no doubt influenced by Jack Bruce and others. Take one band - the Kinks. The bassist was seen in the mid 60s with a sonic blue Precision but for Lola seemed to have graduated to an EB3 - much more rocky sound. There were very few Precisions appearing - and probably a few more Jazzes (especially into the 70s) - now I know this show was sung to a track so the music was mimed but I'm pretty sure those EB3s and Rickenbackers were in use on the recordings. Just like I can tell All Right Now was played on an EB3 (in fact I saw it live played on an EB3 at least 3 times).

Im afraid my view of people who think a Precision fits everywhere both recorded and live, well it's probably good in some situations but the number of times I heard them disappear in mixes over the years and anyone who tells me they are perfect on All Right Now is, in my opinion, deluded - they may be described in some situations as adequate.

Now I've got that rant out of the way, I was very curious about Sean Hurley playing lines across the strings around fret 12 (clearly with flat-wounds) - an interesting approach and reminded me very much of the sound of my Classic Stingray (TI flats no mutes) played in the same area. Not sure why he was doing it like that - would it be dead spots on the higher strings further down or for the timbre of the bass on the E and A that far up the string? 

Edited by drTStingray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, drTStingray said:

Im afraid my view of people who think a Precision fits everywhere both recorded and live, well it's probably good in some situations but the number of times I heard them disappear in mixes over the years and anyone who tells me they are perfect on All Right Now is, in my opinion, deluded - they may be described in some situations as adequate.

We play all right now. I am not one for getting 'the exact sound' (which I couldn't, it is way thumpier than any bass I would own), but the one that does it closest is the thunderbird, aided by the fact it is the only one that you can the high bit without looking as you just smash your hand into the body and you are at the right fret!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
57 minutes ago, drTStingray said:

This idea that only P basses were used in the 60s was put into stark contrast as I watched the TOTP 1964-75 show on BBC4 - I was taken by the array of Gibson EB3s on display no doubt influenced by Jack Bruce and others.

Two points: certainly in the early days, some of the guys on TOTP would not even have been playing on their own records and there have always been differences between the gear that players use in the studio and on gigs. Having known someone in the hire business, when they're on national TV, quite a few bands will hire "something special" for the show.

I don't understand why the simple fact that P basses were and still are the instrument of preference in many studios has generated so much comment, most of which has nothing to do with the video in the OP. The P bass "thing", as mentioned in the OP may not be relevant down the Dog and Duck or in niche genres, but it's a fact. Get over it.

Use your bass and do your "thing". Don't take any advice from anyone, what do they know anyway. If your band is successful then guys like you will want to know what gear was used so they can buy it sound the same. The cruel part is that they will spend a lot of money and they won't sound anything like you! The players at the top of the industry, as in the OP, will have a flexible and positive attitude because they understand the business they are in. 16 pages of this thread only illustrates that many here don't understand that business at all.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, chris_b said:

Two points: certainly in the early days, some of the guys on TOTP would not even have been playing on their own records and there have always been differences between the gear that players use in the studio and on gigs. Having known someone in the hire business, when they're on national TV, quite a few bands will hire "something special" for the show.

I don't understand why the simple fact that P basses were and still are the instrument of preference in many studios has generated so much comment, most of which has nothing to do with the video in the OP. The P bass "thing", as mentioned in the OP may not be relevant down the Dog and Duck or in niche genres, but it's a fact. Get over it.

Use your bass and do your "thing". Don't take any advice from anyone, what do they know anyway. If your band is successful then guys like you will want to know what gear was used so they can buy it sound the same. The cruel part is that they will spend a lot of money and they won't sound anything like you! The players at the top of the industry, as in the OP, will have a flexible and positive attitude because they understand the business they are in. 16 pages of this thread only illustrates that many here don't understand that business at all.

I understand all these points you've made but I still think it's a generalisation to say a P Bass fits anywhere - well maybe it does but the range will be between fitting brilliantly to being rather meh. 

And whilst the P Bass may have been popular at various times (including now) as some people have said in this thread there have been times when it's been heavily out of favour. 

I just recoil at the gross generalisations - whilst respecting the fact that in some quarters, they're the epitome of a bass guitar, and in some studios in the 60s and 70s (and beyond and now) they were/are favoured, there was a lot more going on elsewhere which seems to escape some people's notice.

There was a similar thread on Talkbass a year or so back making exactly the same claims for the Jazz Bass. 

I found the video quite interesting and helpful - although it did restate what I've already heard from some people before. 

Now down the Dog and Duck and other places and functions I tend to play, the Precision is present but certainly not ubiquitous - in fact it's quite rare sometimes - I think many of the guys involved have probably had one in the past but have changed to other things! 

 

 

Edited by drTStingray

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, chris_b said:

Use your bass and do your "thing". Don't take any advice from anyone, what do they know anyway

You're all individuals

Chorus: Yes, we're all individuals 

#LifeOfBrian :D

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Norris said:

You're all individuals

Chorus: Yes, we're all individuals 

#LifeOfBrian :D

I'm not.

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Norris said:

You're all individuals

Chorus: Yes, we're all individuals 

#LifeOfBrian :D

 

It reminds me of The Kinks' "I'm not like everybody else". The live version always made me smile, with the audience singing along :D

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎02‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 20:01, Ricky 4000 said:

As I posted this link earlier on another thread - I think the good ole' P bass comes out very well in comparison:

One of each for me, please. 😁

Wish I could get that Precision sound out of mine, that is such a gorgeous tone when he plays finger style at the start.

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎30‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 14:21, mcnach said:

 

Unfortunately, you win a Rick...

😛

That'll do me. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 29/12/2018 at 12:44, TheGreek said:

I cannot listen to that guy for more than 3 minutes at any one time. Youtube is a Privilege, not a right. I've had "Producers" say something similar to me in studios, usually because they refer back to clickbait articles and vlogs such as the above. In each case I refer them back to the client. I'm hired by the artist not the Producer/Engineer. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Mog said:

I've had "Producers" say something similar to me in studios, usually because they refer back to clickbait articles and vlogs such as the above. In each case I refer them back to the client. I'm hired by the artist not the Producer/Engineer. 

I think Lee Sklar has the answer...

 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Linus27 said:

Wish I could get that Precision sound out of mine, that is such a gorgeous tone when he plays finger style at the start.

My Westy P sounds a bit like it, on full tone, with preamp pushed up high, and through headphones.

I wonder is your action low enough? The basses in the clip all seem pretty darned low. 👍

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/01/2019 at 15:37, tauzero said:

I'm not.

And so is my wife

Edited by ubit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×