Stanley Clarke

Discussion in 'Bassists [DB]' started by Swing Doom, Jan 2, 2013.


  1. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    So, what do you guys think of Stanley Clarke?

    Personally, I like his music, I hate his sound. He doesn't get an acoustic sound out of the amp and he sounds like he's playing a big fretless electric bass to me.
  2. ksandvik

    ksandvik

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2007
    Location:
    SF Bay Area North CA
    I think the best way to enjoy Stanley Clarke is to see him play live. If possible within 5 feet distance.
  3. Cornel

    Cornel

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Cordoba, Argentina
    Stanley who?
    SC is a "Grandmaster of Bass" and the reason why i started playing. Way back...Lopsy Lu.
    I love his music and his sound. Great artist. Thanks Stanley!
  4. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I like his EB sound! I just hate that he lets his amp change his upright bass sound. He doesn't sound that way at all on recordings.
  5. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    Location:
    The Great Midwest
    I love him been a fan since the 70's he can play anything and make it sound incredible. I think it's difficult for a number of artists to exactly duplicate their studio sound on the road if you sit back and watch what the man can do on an instrument what his amp or tone sounds like becomes irrelevant.
  6. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Non Serviam Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2012
    Location:
    Scotia NY
    I'm not a DB player. That said, one of my all time favorite albums is Rite Of Strings, which has Stanley on DB, Jean-Luc Ponty on acoustic violin, and Al DiMeola, who uses what sounds like a MIDI-equipped acoustic guitar. I dig Stanley on electric, but this album is the one I always come back to.
  7. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I disagree, I know plenty of professionals who sound the same whether they use an amp or not. The only difference is their volume.

    I've spent enough time with my bass and amp so that people can't tell whether my amp is turned off or I'm just playing really quietly. This is why I'm confused as to why so many professionals with far more financial resources than I have can't get a good sound from their amps.
  8. Kmonk

    Kmonk

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2012
    Location:
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Fender and Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    I never really cared for him much but then again I'm not into jazz or funk. I like Marcus Miller and Scott Ambush but I mostly prefer rock players such as Paul McCartney, Boz Burell Jack Bruce, John Entwistle, etc.
  9. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    Location:
    The Great Midwest
    I've heard 311,Smashing Pumpkins and back in the day the Brothers Johnson and Bootsy in concert and the bass sounded nothing like the studio with so much remastering, double and triple tracking of the bass on recordings I would say not all artists can take their studio sound with them. I also think it depends on the venue and what's available to the artist at that particular time? I find it very difficult that a legend like Stanley Clarke would make a conscious decision not to sound the very best he could?.
  10. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    Electric bass an upright bass are two totally different beasts, though.
  11. bassist1962

    bassist1962

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    I have to agree that I dont lke Stanleys acoustic sound. Sounds like a big bass guitar. Then again, so did Ron Carters at one point. I want to hear the wood, string & percussiveness of the acoustic.
  12. Anonymatt

    Anonymatt

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2009
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    I love his DB sound from the 70s at least. Very personal, even though you could say that lots of people were getting sounds in that direction back then.

    I don't know what people see in his EB playing. Like School Days? Not cool.
  13. Roy Vogt

    Roy Vogt Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2000
    Location:
    Nashville,TN
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Accuracy, Carvin, Hotwire, Conklin Basses, DNA, Eden
    Saw him with a quartet (Ruslan Sirota, Ronald Bruner, Jr. and a violinist who I can't recall at the moment) in April 2010 at the Schermerhorn Symphony Hall in Nashville (about 3 weeks before it was flooded). The Schermerhorn is not friendly to electric music, so Stanley played the entire night on upright with the exception of electric bass on School Days. He really played well and it was great to hear him live in that context. I've also seen the RTF Reunion 2008 and the RTF IV in 2011 and he's been amazing each time. His DB tone owes much to players like Eddie Gomez, so it's not the neo-Traditionalist sound a lot of players choose today, but it works for what he's playing. He's a major, major influence to me on both Electric and Double Bass.
    I'll get a chance to hear Christian McBride again at the Schermerhorn at the end of January (I saw him with the Five Peace Band a while back) so I can A/B the tone again.
  14. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I've seen Christian McBride live. His amplified sound sounded just like his acoustic sound.
  15. Michael Case

    Michael Case

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
    According to your profile, you don't play DB. IMHO it's hard to say what is happening when you put a DB through an amp. As a person who plays the DB I know that I can get a sound that is reasonably close to my acoustic tone, but it is still colored by the pick up, the amp, and the room. I'm not a huge fan of Stanley Clarke's tone, but I enjoy his playing. I like Christian McBride's tone and playing. I've heard him live and know that the tone is colored by an amp though.
  16. Swing Doom

    Swing Doom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2012
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    I don't know where in my profile it says I don't play upright bass. I've played upright bass for longer than I've played electric bass.

    The amp does add a certain color to your sound, there's no avoiding that. However, Stanley's amp is doing more than just coloring his tone. It completely alters his sound.
  17. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2001
    Location:
    Portland, ME
    Disclosures:
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Long, longtime Fan of Stan. He was one of my initial inspirations to play the bass circa 1974, and he's a musical inspiration today.

    Audio recording is a continuously-evolving art and science. Double-bass transduction and amplification is a continuously-evolving art and science. Both have changed dramatically since the early 70s. Sounds that used to 'work' -- on DB, drums, guitar, piano, even sax -- sound hopelessly dated today. It's true about Ron Carter, Eddie Gomez, Ray Brown, Stan, NHOP, Stafford James, Clint Houston -- you name the player, if he's still alive he sounds a lot different than forty years ago.

    Not so much anymore.

    You need a better stereo. I stood ten feet away from him this summer. He sounded like him, but not like his records.

    OUT
  18. Michael Case

    Michael Case

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2002
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
    Didn't see any double basses in your profile.
  19. pedro

    pedro

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2000
    Location:
    Madison, WI.
    Great musician. Prefer him on upright to electric bass. I recall when 'Return to Forever' came out I marveled at his playing but didn't really gravitate to it like I did when I heard Jaco's album. In hindsight I think the reason was two-fold, Jaco had more funk and a much warmer sound.

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