Paul McCartney and his Basses

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by JD Supernatural, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. ShoeManiac

    ShoeManiac Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    New Jersey
    This was posted in the Basses section:


    It's Sir Paul, circa 1990 or so, with a 5 string Rickenbacker.

    At this point, I think it would be pretty cool to do a visual accounting for Sir Paul with all of his basses from throughout the years. The ones I can think of?

    -1961 Hofner 500/1
    -1963 Hofner 500/1
    -1966 Rickenbacker 4001 (fireglo, later painted psychedelic colors, finally stripped to natural finish)
    -1966/67 Fender Jazz Bass (3 tone sunburst)
    -Unidentified Fender Precision
    -Bill Black's upright bass
    -Unidentified Yamaha bass
    -Kay semi-hollowbody
    -Zemaitis acoustic bass guitar
    -Rickenbacker 5 string
    -Wal 5 string
    Dr Gero and Korladis like this.
  2. ...and by 1967 (when I turned 17) the going rate on Beatle basses in the US was equivalent to a Fender P or J. My dad bought my 500-1 for my 17th birthday in 1967 for $277, top shelf case included. I'd say by 1967 Hofner was making a bit more on their products than earlier. No thanks to Paul I'm sure...:rollno: ;)
  3. iamthebassman


    Feb 24, 2004
    Endorsing Artist: Phantom Guitars, Eastwood Guitars
    *The "Unidentified Yamaha Bass" is a BB1200
    *Not to forget the righty Fender Jazz Bass used on BOTR
    *Not to forget his fretless Rickenbacker
    bluesdogblues likes this.
  4. bassfiddlesteve

    bassfiddlesteve Your first second choice™

    Dec 3, 2003
    Paul had a Precision Bass?

    - Steve
  5. ShoeManiac

    ShoeManiac Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    New Jersey

    IIRC, you can see it in his studio during some of the interview segments of The Beatles Anthology in a rack of instruments.
  6. Meddle


    Jul 27, 2009
    What is the Strat (copy?) with the colour-matched headstock?
  7. Chrisk-K


    Jan 20, 2010
    AZ, USA
    Paul did NOT mainly use a J on White Album. According to Fender, Paul recorded only a few songs with a J, including "Sun King" on Abbey Road, in Beatles recording sessions. Had Paul mainly used a J on one of the Beatles albums, Fender would have advertised it till the end of time.

    The right-handed J on BOTR is not Paul's bass. It's Denny Laine's bass. Paul didn't bring a bass to the African recording sessions, whereas Denny did.
    s_wood, terr0rgasm and Korladis like this.
  8. ggvicviper

    ggvicviper Yamaha & Grosbeak. I’m Marc!

    Jul 16, 2011
    East Meadow, NY, USA
    I would also like to see a pic of him with his P. Does anyone know which songs he may have used it on, if any?
  9. Ejectr


    Dec 22, 2012
    Brimfield, MA
    When I saw them in '66 at Suffolk Downs in Boston, he played the Hofner on Paperback Writer.
  10. Ejectr


    Dec 22, 2012
    Brimfield, MA
  11. Where? Can the pic be reposted, please?
  12. atomicdog


    Jun 18, 2011
    JD Supernatural: Nice post, but one thing about the timeline: the Beatles recorded Magical Mystery Tour before the White Album, so Paul couldn't have moved from a Fender Jazz Bass to the Ric in the manner stated (his use of the Ric on the MMT is well documented, however).
  13. Stick_Player

    Stick_Player Inactive

    Nov 13, 2009
    Somewhere on the Alaska Panhandle (Juneau)
    Endorser: Plants vs. Zombies Pea Shooters
    Bogus. How do they know? There is little record as to what exact instrument was used on any Beatles' recording. Speculation or best guess, perhaps. Hofner on Something? Highly doubtful.

    "Supposedly", the very last pictures in studio, as they recorded Come Together. Later/earlier that day they did the cover photos.








    Sartori and bluesdogblues like this.
  14. Thanks for all the posted pics, Stick_Player. Much appreciated!
  15. Rahil


    Dec 20, 2012
    Trinidad, Caribbean
    Paul with Jazz Bass, from White Album sessions

    Billyzoom and bluesdogblues like this.
  16. FrednBass


    Feb 24, 2012
    I've always wondered if this is from While My Guitar Gently Weeps sessions...
  17. iamthebassman


    Feb 24, 2004
    Endorsing Artist: Phantom Guitars, Eastwood Guitars
    There are several tunes on TWA with the Jazz(Glass Onion, While My Guitar...), and about a third of AR. Not to mention the use of the righty Fender Jazz on a few tunes on AR.
  18. Fenderfellow

    Fenderfellow Inactive

    Dec 27, 2012
    paul and james wrote the book on how to play bass from 1965 to now. there are millions of guys who can now do what they did but they did it first.
    Dr Gero likes this.
  19. ShoeManiac

    ShoeManiac Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2006
    New Jersey
    Here's some video of Macca in the studio during the sessions for The White Album, running through "Blackbird". When you compare the still image of McCartney with Harrison in the studio with this video, it's pretty easy to establish that both are from the same general period. In this case, around the spring of 1968.
    Garret Graves likes this.
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