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Motown Jazz Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by heat@500Hz, Jul 11, 2005.


  1. heat@500Hz

    heat@500Hz Guest

    Jun 11, 2005
    Lago Blanco de la Roca
    anyone have success playing old motown with a Jazz? any notable players from that era who played that stuff with a Jazz?

    do i need a Precision for the sounds like on 'What's Goin' On" "Ain't no Mountain High Enough"?

    right now, i have a geddy lee jazz, which is naturally bright, so i'm not sure if the '62 reissue Jazz will offer more 'oomph' or 'thump' or whatever the word is to describe that sound...

    i love the precision for that kind of stuff, but i'm curious if a Jazz can cop it...the jazz is more my sound for other styles

    thanks!
     
  2. nysbob

    nysbob

    Sep 14, 2003
    Cincinnati OH
    Get a good P/J. A jazz won't give that fat low mid thing.
     
  3. heat@500Hz

    heat@500Hz Guest

    Jun 11, 2005
    Lago Blanco de la Roca

    that's what i was afraid of...it seems, to my ear, that the jazz can get very close, but just not quite 'it', if that makes sense

    thanks for the reply!
     
  4. A Precision is probably the best you can get, but with a jazz, you can get close to a Precision's tone by turning up the neck pup and boosting the bass and low mids. Or if you really like Jazzes, you could try one of those new ones with an S-1 switch. Never really messed with those, but some like them.
     
  5. vic_6

    vic_6

    Dec 19, 2004
    Manila, Philippines
    you could try wiring it in series.
     
  6. heat@500Hz

    heat@500Hz Guest

    Jun 11, 2005
    Lago Blanco de la Roca
    this has been something i've been wondering about--would this added punch and output deliver more of that P-sound?

    if this gets decently close, i think that's the way i'll go.

    ...is that what the s-1 switching on the newer fenders does?
     
  7. heat@500Hz

    heat@500Hz Guest

    Jun 11, 2005
    Lago Blanco de la Roca
    also, perhaps if i have 2 jazzes, i might put flatwound strings on one of them, wire it with an option for series, and that could be the more 'thumpy' one?
     
  8. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    In the made for tv movie, "The Temptations", there's a scene where they're in the studio recording "Cloud Nine". They cut to a closeup of a Jazz bass with an honest to God real bass player playing along with the track. I'm sure it was filmed for effect and not actually what you were hearing, but you could tell it was a real bass player. I'm not sure what I was hearing was even a jazz bass, but it inspired me so much that I installed a set of Basslines vintage stacks, a black pickguard and some TI flatwounds on my Fotoflame Jazz, keeping it passive. The bass definately has a Motown vibe to it.
     
  9. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    I'd try using flats and wedging some foam underneath the strings in front of the bridge as well.
     
  10. For the Motown sound, you have to get down on a Precision.

    Or a Precision with a Jazzer in the bridge area.
     
  11. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    As a die-hard Precision fan, I say get a P-bass, if not, a P/J bass. Even a Mark Hoppus sig would do better than a Jazz bass for motown. It's all in the pickup.
     
  12. Luckydog

    Luckydog Supporting Member

    Dec 25, 1999
    I'm with those who say you need a Precision for that sound. I've never been able to get a reasonable facsimile of a that strong thumpy mid with any combination of jazz's, strings, and amps. In my experience, the P works extremely well for most every style, and is the only thing that works effectively for many styles. Get yourself a double gig bag and load it with (1) a reasonably priced P with Labella flats, and (2) your other bass of choice.
     
  13. heat@500Hz

    heat@500Hz Guest

    Jun 11, 2005
    Lago Blanco de la Roca
    :cool: luckydog, tplyons, marcusalan, et al...thanks fellows, it's nice to hear from some more experienced players

    i might get the precision now, and hang onto my geddy lee until my tech completes a parts-jazz for me, then i'll have my basses covered with 2 very nice intstruments :)

    it's funny how i played primarily rock and roadhouse blues on six-string guitar, but with bass, i gravitate toward the old funk and r&b--i really dig that sound
     
  14. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    that's what I do usually for the gigs I need that thud and thump.
     
  15. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Or just sweat a lot and play though 15's. Works great for me, wet strings thump :)
     
  16. Slater

    Slater Bye Millen! Hello?

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    I've seen Bob Babbitt use a Jazz Bass with the Funk Bros. and he seems to sound pretty good ;) .
     
  17. Luckydog

    Luckydog Supporting Member

    Dec 25, 1999
    "I've seen Bob Babbitt use a Jazz Bass with the Funk Bros. and he seems to sound pretty good"

    Bob sounds wonderful. And while Bob has used lots of basses, his main bass is a mid 60's Precision.
     
  18. nysbob

    nysbob

    Sep 14, 2003
    Cincinnati OH
    That's pretty much been my recipe for success. :D

    If you want a good affordable P/J these go for $300 - $400 on Ebay. Then you won't have to wrestle a P neck.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. DblG

    DblG

    Apr 27, 2005
    Buffalo, NY
    I have a Jazz w/ S1 switch, and it works for me. Although I never a/b 'd with a true P bass, you can definately hear the tone get beefier with the switch depressed. If I need a little more meat, I just use my eq.

    gg
     
  20. j-raj

    j-raj Bassist: Educator/Soloist/Performer Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jan 14, 2003
    Atlanta, GA!
    yup wet strings definitely thump!