Which flatwounds did JPJ use in the early Led Zepp days?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by KoalaBass, Dec 30, 2012.


  1. KoalaBass

    KoalaBass

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    Rotosound 77? Fender's? Labella's? Anything else? What are your thoughts?
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Chicken Pot Pie. My three favorite things!! Supporting Member

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    45 years ago? I'll bet even JPJ has no idea!
  3. barebones

    barebones Supporting Member

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    While the fat sound he got leads many bassists to believe he was using flats and tube amps, JPJ stated in a Bass Player article I read about a dozen years ago that he used round wound strings and solid state amps on all of his recordings.
  4. stony

    stony

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    this has been discussed with him many times....he did not use flats they were rotosound rounds
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  6. Matt R.

    Matt R. Supporting Member

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  7. mccartneyman

    mccartneyman

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    Apparently many bassists forget that basses have a tone control. Swing Bass 66 need not sound like they did for Chris Squire and Greg Lake.
  8. jasper383

    jasper383 Supporting Member

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    He has said conflicting things over the years.

    Can you get Roto rounds to sound like this?

  9. stony

    stony

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    yes HE did.....with his fingers
  10. StrangerDanger

    StrangerDanger Neo Maxie Zoom Dweebie Supporting Member

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    Maybe yes, maybe no but if someone really wants to cop that sound, it would be a lot easier with flats.

    If he was playing rounds, it wasnt just a tone roll off, they must have been really dead.
  11. OhValhalla

    OhValhalla

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    He has said conflicting things in different interviews. One he states that he kept flats on his jazz and rounds on his Alembic, another he says he stopped using flats after his session days.

    I'm of the belief that he switched strings around a lot and definitely used both rounds and flats, based on isolated tracks. And if you want to cop his sound, you'd have to listen to the specific song and go for that sound in what ever way works for you. Most recording guys don't care what gear they are using, as long as they get the sound they want.
  12. barebones

    barebones Supporting Member

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    Has JPJ said that he used flats and tubes at some point? If so, that would certainly contradict what he said in the article I read. He was adamant about having not used those things.

    To me, the most interesting thing about that article at the time was the interviewer's apparent assumption that JPJ's sound could only have come from flats and tubes. I had pretty much assumed the same and was surprised to learn the opposite from the player himself.

    Kind of funny, too, regarding the clip you posted--that very song is the reason I bought my first Warmoth fretless neck for the old Frankenbass and started playing fretless almost exclusively. Once upon a time, someone told me JPJ was playing a fretless bass on that track, and that was supposedly how he got that big fat tone. Apparently that claim also was false, but I still love playing fretless!
  13. RCCollins

    RCCollins Supporting Member

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    See, that sounds like roundwounds to me.
  14. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    That sounded like Roto flats to me. BTW, first time I ever listened to it all the way through...man, he sure clammed up a couple good ones in there!
  15. 62Jazzbass

    62Jazzbass

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    Guitar Mag, 1977 - JPJ states, and I am paraphrasing: "Jazz bass, Rotosound Flats, RS77. Alembics, Roto RS66 (rounds). Single Coil Precision, Roto RS66." He elaborates on these string choices as well, these were not just tossed off statements, and explains why he prefers rounds on the others, vs. flats on the jazz. He mentions his fender fretless P in the interview as well, but does not mention strings.

    Re: Amps - "I prefer solid state to valves (tubes), used all sorts of amps in the early days and blew most of them up until the Acoustic 360/361 rig". Note the Acoustic is solid state pre, tube power. By the time of the interview he was in the process of changing over to Galien Kruger amps, the B400 I think.

    Re: recording - "I primarily go direct into the console".

    So there you have it. I'll take the mans word as stated during the actual time period when these things were in use, rather than what he stated 30+ years later.

    I think I have the word for word quotes elsewhere here, so do a search if you like. Others have posted the same (as yes, this comes up all the time).
  16. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

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    Sorry, but the 361 power amp is solid state, too.
  17. 62Jazzbass

    62Jazzbass

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    Then I might have the model wrong?

    One of the old acoustic cabs w/ the 18" folded horn design has a tube power amp in the bottom, as far as I know.

    Could be wrong though.
  18. bigbajo60

    bigbajo60 Supporting Member

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    If memory serves correctly, I'm pretty sure that through those old 18" folded horn enclosures, the brightest roundwound strings will sound as deep, dubby and dull as any flats!
  19. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member

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    yeah, never heard of any old Acoustic folded-horn tube amps.

    i do remember the interviews where he said it was all roundwounds, though, that flats just didn't respond the way he liked.
  20. 62Jazzbass

    62Jazzbass

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    Again, long interview, guitar mag 1977, he is very specific in his answers about strings. At that time, he indicates he had flats on the Jazz.
  21. 62Jazzbass

    62Jazzbass

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    I don't mean to quibble with everyone here, but I have bootleg concert recordings from 1977 that contradict that. In 77 he was using the acoustic folded 18 cabs with GK tops, and Alembic basses (with rounds). This setup sounds quite bright to me, and a big contrast to say, the sound from 1973s Song Remains the Same recording.

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