Motown Bassist James Jamerson's German Upright Bass.

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [DB]' started by Treena Foster, Mar 31, 2004.

  1. Don't_Fret

    Don't_Fret Justin Schornstein

    Dec 10, 2003
    East Coast, US
    That's terrible....yet extremely tempting. Why is it selling for so little?
  2. Davehenning


    Aug 9, 2001
    Los Angeles
    Somethings are just not right and that is one of them.

    Maybe someone could get in contact with someone like Stevie Wonder or Smokey Robinson to buy the instrument and then donate it to Hitsville are the Rock Hall of Fame? Or at the very least, have it in safekeeping.
  3. Thor

    Thor Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    That is very disconcerting.

    Yet I am not going to castigate his son, as I have no idea
    what his personal circumstances are. There are times in life
    that those things have to go, medical issues, money issues, etc. Who is to say what's right?

    But I agree with DaveH, if I had the bucks I would buy it
    and preserve it.
  4. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    this is horrible.

    i have a Fender that Willie Weeks played on and autographed for me - i don't care if i was living in my car, living on the corner or even worse - had to move in with my mother in law :eek: - i would never sell it!!! (although Thor tried to get me drunk and steal it last week) :D ;)

    how sad, but then again, who am i to judge :meh:

  5. Ken, you are spot on, on all accounts.

    Maybe if I am nice a mod will move this to the URB forum for us. I really do not wish to cross post on the board.

  6. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    I am totally and completely horrified.
  7. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    I hope Dr. Licks bids and gets it.
  8. The bidding has already begun........

    Auction: 2004 April Music Memorabilia
    Bidders: 3
    Current Bid: $675.00 ($793.13 with BP)
    Reserve Status: Reserve (If Any) Not Posted Yet
    Internet Bidding Ends: April 16, 2004 10:00 PM CDT
    Current time: 4:15 PM
    Time left: 16d 5h 44m

  9. Actually, it's pretty cool right here where it is, at least in the Electric Bass section.

    I think more electric bassists are familiar enough with Jamerson than frequent the DB forums.

    If this were there I wouldn't have seen it.
  10. jazzbo


    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    I would pay up to $2000 for it, but I don't have the cash beyond that.
  11. With the monumental status of Jamerson and the amount of hits it's been played on, I don't think that thing is going for less than $50. Grand that is.
  12. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
  13. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    I'll leave this thread here, and send a copy to DB Misc. as well.

  14. Davehenning


    Aug 9, 2001
    Los Angeles
    We should find a way to get in touch with Berry Gordy. I think he would buy that instrument. That bass and Jamerson certainly helped to make him a wealthy man.
  15. You really think it'll top out that low?

    People have a reverence for Jamerson that few, if any besides Jaco, can match. The fact that he did most of his work with 3 basses, 4 if you include the 5 string, and this is one of them.

    Whether that bass is worth any more than 2K, the fact remains that it's Jamerson's bass, it's being sold by his son and has provenance, and it's been played on more hit records than any of us can shake a stick at, it's going to go for much more.

    Popular music is dominated by its stars, and people go kooky about getting a piece of their star. Why else is a parts guitar listed as having a minimum bid of $100,000?

    Because it's Eric Clapton's, it's been played on loads of hits, TV shows, concerts, etc. Again, it's just a parts guitar, who's name happens to be Blackie. That thing is going to go for a Million, just watch. I'm not kidding.

    I don't see why Jamerson's drawing power shouldn't be proportional to Clapton's. Granted, fewer people know Jamerson's name, but more people know the songs he played on than Clapton. Not only are Jamerson's songs recognized by rock guys, but jazz guys, R&B guys, soul guys...

    It's not just about the instrument. It's about the audience.

    There's a whole other world of people who have a lot more money than anyone else, whether it makes sense to anyone else, the person with the most money wins, period. If I had the money and wanted Jamerson's bass, I would outbid ANYONE to get it. If someone had almost as much money as me, they'd TRY to outbid me- but they would fail.

    Unfortunately, I don't have the money, so I've already been outbid. :D
  16. Thor

    Thor Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    I happen to think you're right. We know generally
    the market value of a bass of this ilk.

    I am curious to see how high the hype component
    of its value will take it. Whether the hypecash will be
    merely ridiculous, senselessly absurd, or truly sublime.

    Methinks a 'collector' will end up with it as an
    'investment', and it will sit in a corner unplayed
    for some years until it is time to divest.

    It will eventually have its own story, like
    'The Red Violin'.
  17. You're completely right! :D

    At the point it becomes "pay for the pleasure" of owning it. Just the same as someone would probably pay more to have either the first bass you made, or your personal bass! Clapton's 'Blackie' is a parts guitar, somewhere in the neighborhood of 3-4 grand, but it's not really what the instrument is, it's who wants to own it.
  18. jb63


    Jan 3, 2002
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Good for them! I hope they can get $100,000+ for it.

    The important part has been left for all in the grooves on all those great records.
  19. I thought about this a bit more (yes, I have no real life to speak of), and I actually disagree...

    Hype would be a "German made plywood bass JUST LIKE the kind used by James Jamerson..."

    An Epiphone Casino or a Hofner 500/1 Beatle Bass are victims of Hype. To have one because your hero has one- even though they may not be the best- you're paying the best price. Casinos are decent guitars, but are they worth more than an ES-330? No, but Lennon, McCartney and Harrison played Casinos, not ES-330s, consequently, they're worth more money. But to have THE ONE your hero played- that's collectability. Lennon's Rickenbacker 325 in the Lennon museum is probably one of the most expensive instruments in the world- should it ever go up for sale- as an ENTIRE GENERATION associates that guitar with the Beatles. Just as when you see the Bangles and Susanna Hoffs is strumming away at that Jetglo Rick, it's the 'cute chick with the Beatles guitar.' Whether or not that guitar plays good (John and his buddies just plopped the Bigsby on with no measuring), or is comfortable (have you ever played one of those 3/4 scale Rics?), sounds good (Rics are Rics...), that guitar is worth more than most any other instrument in the world- because of who owned it and what it was used on.

    Rick recognizes this and has had a Lennon signature as well as a vintage reissue series- they cost more because of hype- and people pay it.

    Hofner is pretty well still in business because of the 500/1 bass.