I remember the first time I heard my recorded bass track soloed at my first "session" 25 or so years ago. I was aghast! It was so out of time! It sounded so thin! So much noise! Well, most of it was true; I was a snot nosed punk thinking I had all the answers. These days, I just play and like @lowfreqgeek said, the noise and grit adds to the character and makes a bass sound so much more interesting to me. However, if I'm as good as Steve (I'm not) and I'm trying to demo a product for people to hear, you bet I want the cleanest, truest sound I can get.