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Dave Holland playing Bass Guitar?!

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Bruce Lindfield, May 29, 2001.


  1. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I caught a programme on the UK Digital TV channel "Artsworld" the other day, which had some footage of Herbie Hancock playing "New Standards" - they were doing a Sade song.

    But I noticed Dave Holland in the "all-star" band, playing an acoustic bass guitar, which was amplified and sounded very nice and very much like a high-end solid body. I thought that he only played double bass these days and wondered if anybody knew any more about this bass and what albums he used it on?
     
  2. Steve Lawson

    Steve Lawson Solo Bass Exploration! Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2000
    Birmingham, UK
    I'll be interested to hear about this too - I know that he played some electric with Miles 30 years ago, but didn't know he'd done any since...

    Steve
    www.steve-lawson.co.uk
     
  3. DaveBeny

    DaveBeny

    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    This reminded me of an interview with Dave Holland that I read at www.innerviews.org - I've quoted the questions regarding electric/acoustic bass here.

    "You occasionally step into the world of electric bass. Describe your relationship with the instrument.

    I like playing electric bass. It’s not that I don’t enjoy it. I have a lot of fun playing it, but there are so many great players on the electric bass that have spent a life developing the instrument uniquely like Marcus Miller and Jaco. I prefer to let them have that and I’ll stick with what I do. It’s also to do with the nature of the acoustic bass and character of it. It’s very much a part of the music I’m hearing. The electric bass is still part of my vocabulary, but I don't feel as much of a distinctive voice on the bass guitar compared to my much more personal connection to the acoustic bass. I feel that’s my strongest position to take musically, so why not take that?

    Is electric or acoustic bass guitar something you pursue mostly by request then?

    Actually, I brought an acoustic bass guitar to Herbie’s New Standard session. He didn’t know I was bringing it. I said to him "I understand the concept of the album and maybe there’s a place for this to be used." I only recently had acquired the instrument, so I was quite interested to use it. There were a couple of songs I tried it on and it seemed to work. Herbie said "Go ahead." He’s very inclusive in his approach to people. He’s all-embracing of what goes on and is ready to go along with the thing of the time. So, he was quite happy. He liked the sound of it and it worked well on the pieces. I used it on three or four tracks of the New Standard record. I also took it with me when we toured with that group. Parallel Realities was slightly different. Had I said "No, I don’t want to play electric bass," I don’t think there would have been a problem. But I’m always looking for the right thing for the music and given the music we were playing, it was clear that certain of those songs would sound better on electric bass. I also played acoustic bass on both the Parallel Realities and New Standard tours."

    David
     
    trothwell likes this.
  4. I saw a picture of him playing an electric bass about a year ago. Can't remember where, but I'm sure it was on the net somewhere.
     
  5. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999
    ...in July, a never-been released Electric Miles Davis album is due out. This is Miles' LIVE/touring band at the time of Bitches Brew:
    Davis(trumpet)
    Shorter(sax)
    DeJohnette(drums)
    Corea(Rhodes)
    Holland(Fender Bass)

    It's called, I think, Live At The Fillmore East(June 7th, 1970)...It's About That Time


    www.miles-davis.com has the info!
     
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Thanks very much for this David - this is what I saw - the "New Standards" band on the road. So as he used this acoustic bass guitar on the album, he brought it out for the live stuff - I did video tape this somewher einthe middle of a 4 hour tape, so I will go back and look at it again. Sounded like a great band - interesting that they're taking "pop songs" and turning them into improvisation vehicles.
     
  7. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999

    Exactly; I used to be in a band that played "Mercy Street"(Peter Gabriels' tune)pretty much in the same vibe(Bossa)as what's on Herbie's New Standards album.
     
  8. porteous

    porteous Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2006
    Berkeley, CA
    Yes, as a matter of fact, I just watched a DVD called "Electric Miles: A Different Kind of Blue". It's a set from the Isle of Wight festival in 1970. I was wondering who that white guy on the P-bass was. Then the credits rolled and saw it was Dave Holland! Sure looks a lot different today. The DVD is worth checking out- great footage of a young Jack Dejohnette, as well as Keith Jarrett on some cheap electric organ.
    Also in the band..
    Chick Corea: Electric Piano
    Airto: Percussion
    Gart Bartz:Saxes
     
  9. RHFusillo

    RHFusillo Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    Now here's an old thread!

    The ABG used on "New Standards" was built by Tobias. Don't know if that question was answered.

    I saw Jack DeJohnette's Parallel Realities at the 1990 North Sea Jazz Festival - Holland, DeJohnette, Herbie Hancock and Pat Metheney - great show. Holland played an electric bass on a few songs. It looked like a Guild Pilot, but I could be wrong. His tone sounded like Berry Oakley of the Allman Brothers.
     
  10. Winemule

    Winemule Guest

    Feb 27, 2005
    Great performance, and some great interviews. That set by Miles had the biggest live audience of any jazz performance, ever.
     
  11. I've seen photos of The Man playing a Taylor AB- series, and I believe it was in the liner notes of a CD. I don't recall if he was the leader on the session. It may have been one of his collaborations with Kevin Eubanks. After I finish my tax return, I may try and dig it up.
     
  12. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999

    The DVD of that group has Holland playing EB on some tunes...thought it looked like a P-bass/P-bass clone?
     
  13. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    On the video of the Hancock/Holland/DeJohnette/Metheny band Dave is playing a red Tokai J-bass...he even does some slapping!

    The Miles 1970 Isle of Wight show Dave is playing a black P-bass and a Dual Showman amp, Keith Jarrett on RMI electric piano, Chick Corea on a Hohner electric spinet piano with an Oberheim ring modulator.
     
  14. I have read in a few articles over the years that he actually started out on electric and took up DB as a teenager in the 60s.
     
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Wow you bumped a 6-year old thread of mine!! I was a different person then! ;)

    So in 2001 I was aware of this - but I bought it a few years ago and have watched it many times - but never though to go back to this thread and update all the things that have happened since then! ;)
     
  16. bassist15

    bassist15

    Mar 6, 2006
    Indiana
    On Wikipedia it says that when Dave Holland played electric bass with Miles that DAve used a wah pedal on his bass? I've never really heard it .
     
  17. Throckmorten

    Throckmorten

    Aug 3, 2006
    Central NY
    [a 6-yr-old thread. cool!]
    You can hear his electric style very cleary on Miles' Big Fun. But I don't remember any wah on that one.
     
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I think it might have got mixed up - Miles definitely used wah-wah pedal on his trumpet!
     
  19. GM60466

    GM60466

    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    I remember hearing Dave play with Miles. He had a solid body Hagstrom bass.

    GM
     
  20. RHFusillo

    RHFusillo Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2000
    Phoenix, AZ
    It was 1969. Everybody wah-wahed everything.