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Best Jamerson tracks/Albums

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by BigWig Will, Jun 6, 2002.

  1. Heya!

    I was wondering if anyone could recommend some James Jamerson tracks that best showcase his style. I'm interested in learning from his style....etc. you know the jig.
  2. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
  3. - My personal fave for about the most exquisite Jamerson sound I've ever heard is "Nowhere to Run" by Martha Reeves & the Vandellas. They also did "Dancing in the Streets" and "Heat Wave" with Jamerson producing some really powerful lines.

    - "I Was Made to Love Her" by Stevie Wonder is some of Jam's most amazing work, IMO. What makes his complex bass lines even more amazing is that there were no R&B or Motown bass "heroes" for him to get ideas/influences from.

    - Much of the Supremes stuff is too heavily orchestrated and gets in the way, but he comes through in the mix of "Stop in the Name of Love" well

    - "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" - Gladys Knight & the Pips

    - "Going to Au Go Go" and "Ooh Baby Baby" - Smokey Robinson & the Miracles

    - "What's Going On" - a MUST! by Marvin Gaye

    - "My Girl" and "Gettin Ready" - Temptations

    (Hopefully, none of that Carol Kaye crap will come up here :rolleyes: ).
  4. DaveBeny


    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    You MUST get Marvin Gaye's 'What's Going On'. Great bass-playing from beginning to end, and it's an amazing album anyway (Jamerson is the icing on the cake).
  5. Murf


    Mar 28, 2001
    Fever in the funk house (Earl van Dyke)
    Aint no mountain high enough (The Supremes)

    Heres a great link


    This is the business cos Bob Babbit posts here regularly along with Denis Coffey and the engineers who worked on the classic Motown tracks....so if you wanna know how to get THE SOUND trawl through the archives.
  6. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    I didn't think(know) "Stop In The name Of Love" was JJ.
    BTW, as far as Supremes' stuff, I reall like "Love Is Here & Now You're Gone"...I think that's the name. Anyway, it's a tune in 6/8(I think)...good practice for chromatics.

    Standing In The Shadows Of Motown(the book/cds) is a must-have.
    Classic Jamerson lines are in there, too-
    "Home Cookin'"
    "What's Goin' On"
    "For Once In My Life"
    "Darling Dear"
    "Ain't Nothing LIke The Real Thing"
  7. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I just bought the "Standing in the Shadows of Motown" book and double CD set. I provides great insight and analysis of Jamerson's playing by the best bassplayers of the present day, not to mention interviews with people who performed with him who are still alive today. The nice thing about the recording is that the bass is panned by itself in the left channel and the instruments are in the right channel. So, you can really isolate the bass track and study the fine nuances of his bass lines. About $25 at Amazon, regularly $35.

    One of my favorites is his take on "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Diana Ross. Incredibly innovative bass playing!
  8. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    Every single bass should simply be sold with Standing in the Shadows of Motown. It would be a package deal.

    "You're interested in this Fender Jazz over here? No problem, I'll go grab the case from the back, and get a copy of your complimentary Standing in the Shadows of Motown for you! Will that be cash or charge?"

  9. Here's one source I was going by - http://www.bassland.net/jamersonhits.htm

    If you think it was Kaye, that site also something to say about that;

    "TCB" (TV special, "Taking Care of Business"), "featured a lot of medley's of famous Motown hits performed by the Temps and Supremes including "Stop In The Name of Love,"... Maurice King, Motown's music supervisor for live shows, was involved with that soundtrack and told me Carol was definitely on that soundtrack. So Carol did play those tracks’ BUT THEY WERE REMAKES OF THE ORIGINAL HITS FOR A SYNDICATED TV SHOW. THEY WERE NOT THE ORIGINAL SINGLES AND THEY WERE ALL PLAYED DIFFERENTLY AND ARRANGED DIFFERENTLY FROM THE ORIGINAL SINGLES." (not my caps, the author's).
  10. Turock


    Apr 30, 2000
    I couldn't agree more.

    BTW, anyone know who played on "Let's Get it On" ? I didn't see it listed as Jamerson at Bassland's site. I had always thought it was Jamerson.
  11. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    ...thanks. "Stop In The Name Of Love", as I remember it, doesn't have the "Jamerson variety" of improvin' the bassline(IMO).
    Bassland Bob, though, is the man...so-
    I bow to your superior knowledge.
    (Sorry, saw Ben Stein actually lose his money this afternoon). ;)
  12. "My" superior knowledge??? Hardly - you've forgotten more music than I'll ever know! Anytime you question the veracity of a song reference, I typically assume you have the showdown on the lowdown.

    This was just an aberration.....(Now then, "Gloomy Sunday" - does it cause suicides?).

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