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Dave Schools (Widespread Panic)

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Lefty Geek, Sep 13, 2008.

  1. Lefty Geek

    Lefty Geek

    Feb 13, 2006
    I am not a jamband/roots-rock fan, so I never heard of this guy. Last night, I went to a concert for the 50th anniversary of the Fender Jazzmaster, and all of the performers were players that normally play a JM (Tom Verlaine, Thurston Moore, Lee Ranaldo, Nels Cline, J Masics).

    Mascics was the last performer and the only one with a backing band. Despite J's awesome guitar work, I couldn't stop watching the bass player. Amazing tone (especially working against J's wall of amps) and great lines. J introduced the band before the last song, and I made sure to remember his name.

    Googled him this morning and I find out he is the bass player for Widespread Panic. Perhaps I should listen to their albums.
  2. scootron

    scootron Supporting Member

    Jul 17, 2007
    Moved to Texas
    He is a fine player. I first saw him when he was playing with Gov't Mule on their Deepest End DVD. I think he wound up working with them a while before Andy Hess became permanent.
  3. fenwickbacker


    Jun 12, 2004
    New Orleans
    Always liked the bass line for "Chilly Water" by WP.
  4. It seems to me that Dave's basslines are lead lines in a way because he uses rhythyms and note choice that keeps the ear interested.

    Dave Schools has a very refined live tone, at least when I saw Widespread at All Good (fest in WV) this year. Definitely a very unique style, and the whole band works with great dynamics and has a very unified sound.

    -off topic:
    Have you seen their latest guitarist, Jimmy Herring? That man is a master of his instrument! :bassist:
  5. h60


    Nov 30, 2007
    Dave Schools is awesome. for a while after Houser died I thought for sure Schools was gonna end up playing permanently with Mule. Aggressive melodic pick tone and such. It just seemed to fit at the time but...

    Herrings guitar wizardry made WP amazing again. I got to see them shortly after he joined the band and was blown away. He used to play with Aquarium Rescue Unit and Phil & Friends as well.

    Still hard not to sit and stare in awe at schools Melodic approach.
  6. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    Jimmy Herring has a solo album coming out in a few weeks, one of my favorite guitar players!
  7. Hoover

    Hoover Banned

    Nov 2, 2007
    New York City

    WOW! That sounds like such a cool concert.
  8. Lefty Geek

    Lefty Geek

    Feb 13, 2006
    When I saw him, not only did he switch between a pick and fingers, he would do it during the same song (holding the pick with his lips). Once again, I was amazed by his groove. What Widespread Panic should I listen to, considering I don't like jamband music?
  9. Woody died. Houser is still alive...I hope:eek:
  10. acubass


    Oct 10, 2007
    Albuquerque, NM
    I with ya. I am a big fan of Dave Schools. Last show i saw in raleigh he had what looked like two ampeg 8x10's being pushed by a SVT-VR. You just can't go wrong with that. IMO

    He has great groove. I swear when he solos it's like the notes flutter off his fingers then grow blue or purple butterfly wings and float up in the air. ????? ***? yeah I know but thats what it is like to me.:confused::hyper: An example of this is the bass solo/outro to Big Wooly Mammoth album version

    Here is a great quote from D.S.

    What’s the greatest lesson you ever learned about playing music?

    "On a H.O.R.D.E. tour in the early ’90s, Victor Wooten did an amazing bass solo with Béla Fleck & the Flecktones, and at the end of it, he did a freestanding backflip! Bob Sheehan from Blues Traveler and I were in awe. I asked Col. Bruce Hampton how the hell I was supposed to follow that, and he just said, “Be yourself.” That’s what it’s all about"
  11. He's got one of the punchiest tones out there. I believe he uses a demeter compressor and four big power amps, maybe Crowns, plus a lot of other very high end equipment.

    Can't wait to see em again, last time I saw them was the best concert experience I've had. I'd never listened to WP before, so when this band comes on that has the best bassist in the modern jamband scene, the best guitarist I'de seen all weekend, and a vocalist with a very unique style, to say the least I was floored. :bassist:
  12. kraigo


    Jun 21, 2007
    Minneapolis, MN
    Same here - I hope the new Houser rumors prove to be unfounded, but I read it on the internet so it must be true!

  13. Sorry, totally my ignorance showing here!:oops:
    The only guys names I knew in Widespread Panic were Schools and Nance. I don't actually own any of their albums. I guess my mind was in bass player mode. I thought he mispoke and said Houser (as in Brad Houser - bassist) in place of Woody. The Mule was also mentioned after that so my mind made the connection. Had I know the names of all the guys in WP I would have known differently!
    Brad Houser is connected to that scene as he also plays with Skerick who plays with Claypool who's played with the Mule.

    fnordlyone likes this.
  14. Bassman316


    May 27, 2008
    Longs, SC
    I'm a huge Panic fan, and I think Dave Schools is one rock solid bass player. I've always digged his tone as well. If you're going to listen to any Panic, and this is tough to pick, but I'd say anything starting with "Ain't Life Grand" forward. IMO this is when Dave's tone really took shape into what it is today- thick and edgy. Not to say that the first three albums aren't good- I think they're great, and his playing is great on them, too- but if you want a good representation of Schools' bass playing on record, I recommend that album, or "'Till the Medicene Takes". Fantastic poopiee.

    Of course, the live albums are when he kicks it into the next gear. Maybe not so much the bootleg recordings you'll find on the internet because the bass isn't always there on them, but actual live albums put out by the band. If you're going to go there, I suggest "Live in Classic City". Hope that helps.
    fnordlyone likes this.
  15. slackdaddy


    Mar 1, 2004
    Athens, GA
    Endorsing Artist: David Eden Amplifiers / Rob Wave Custom basses
    Dave is a great player AND a very nice guy. I have recently bought some of his old pedals.
  16. You beat me to it!!!! I was totally gonna advise "Til the Medicine Takes" and then "Classic City" for live stuff... great suggestions. I've been to my fair share of both Mule & Panic shows.. Allen Woody is my #1 player, I only got to see him play 2 times before his passing. Saw a Mule show with Schools & I've heard him many, many times. Great player & very versatile.

    Jimmy Herring -- I first became a fan of his when I picked up the Jazz is Dead albums. WOW. WOW. WOW. And it influenced my decision to buy a PRS Archtop geetard back in the day, before I realized how cool the bass really was. :bassist:
    My first opinion of Panic hiring Jimmy was that he was way too good for that scene... but, that really is a null & void topic. It's a great gig & they are a great band (with a greatER guitarist). A lot of time people look past the jam-band world for various reasons... but, there are a gazillion of great musicians in that infinite abyss of jam....
  17. Stranger Danger

    Stranger Danger Feel Like A Stranger Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010

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