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Precision Bass Dilemma - Help Needed

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Misterwogan, Oct 4, 2013.

  1. I have three basses:
    1 - 2011 Am Std Precision
    2 - 2011 Am Std Jazz
    3 - 2006 MM Stingray 4

    I bought the P-Bass almost a year ago when I started playing, the Jazz in July and the Ray two weeks ago.

    Since I got the Jazz and most recently the Ray, I finding that I'm just not playing the P anymore.

    I'll pick it up and very quickly decide that the Jazz will do a better job on a given piece - even for the Blues, I'm preferring the Jazz tone and very definitely the neck.

    Then along came the Stingray and it has become my default bass for pretty much everything due its comfort and versatility (yes, it works great even for the Blues).

    So the P is staying in its case unfortunately.

    I really don't want to sell it as it's a wonderful example and looks awesome, Black with Black Pickguard and Maple Fretboard. Also, next year I hope to do some gigs and am sure that I'll probably need a P - maybe just to look the part.

    So my question is:
    What sort of music can I play that really MUST be played with a Precision?

    Stuff that I play now...
    Blues (Stormy Monday, Sweet Home Chicago etc)
    Funk Rock (Chic, George Benson)
    Elvis (All the boogie based songs)
    Disco (Disco Inferno, Boogie Wonderland etc)

    I tend not to play anything that involves solely banging away on the root.
  2. TwoRivers


    Aug 26, 2012
    Las Cruces, NM
    Based on what you've said - If you play to make great music, play the Jazz. If you play to look cool and impress others visually, play the P.

    Not really much else to add after reading your post...
  3. fishtx

    fishtx Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Genzler Amplification/Spector Basses/Mojo Hand FX
  4. StevieMac


    Mar 17, 2005
    Vancouver, BC
    Never discount the tone of a p bass if you haven't played one with a band yet. What sounds good at home playing on your own and what sounds good with a band are two different things. Many people including myself regret selling their first bass. Just a couple things to think about...
  5. bh2


    Jun 16, 2008
    Oxford, UK
    Heh... when I had my Ray I also had a Jazz and a P... same dilemma...

    I found I was using the Ray almost exclusively, the others didn't get a look in...

    Then I was in the excrement financially after some bad luck on the job front and I had to sell the Ray... I got a good price as it was a 78 example, still brought a tear to the old eye though.

    I defretted the Jazz and dropped in a J-Retro, now my go to gig bass... If I need or am required to play fretted I use the P.

    Just acquired a fretless P though... best bass I've had since the ray.

    The moral is... hang on to what you've got, you never know what's gonna come knocking!
  6. EmptyCup


    Feb 25, 2013
    Nashville Area
  7. Session1969


    Dec 2, 2010
    Let me get this straight. You've been playing bass for a year and already own the big 3 ? Lucky you ! I'd use the P for blues and old school thumpy stuff (maybe put some flats on it). I'd then decide which songs are better to play between the MM and the Jazz. I don't want to get into a debate but I'm hard pressed to believe that there's anything better than a P for blues and old school stuff.
  8. bh2


    Jun 16, 2008
    Oxford, UK
    Yes... you won't want or need another bass that's fo sho... unless you want to try fretless of course!
  9. Mike M.

    Mike M.

    Feb 14, 2010
    I agree totally with what bh2 said: "hang on to what you've got, you never know what's gonna come knocking."

    You've got a nice, versatile collection in your possesion. I also have a P bass that seldom gets touched these days, but it's not going anywhere because....you never know!
  10. Very good point. After I got the Jazz, I replaced the standard single coil pups with split coil Super 55s which are a lot warmer and higher output. The result is that the neck pup on the Jazz does everything the P does but with a lot more character.
  11. Oh, I forgot to mention the Gibson SG bass that I bought in the early days because I reckoned I couldn't handle a full scale. Well I could of course and so the SG never sees daylight.
  12. What you've said appears to be the consensus, so I'll not does anything hasty with the P.
  13. Play what you like but I agree I'd hang on to the P-bass. Never know what tone you'll want six months or a year from now. My tastes change all the time so I like having options to choose from.
  14. mrb327


    Mar 6, 2013
    Nobody Knows
    I acquired the P later, but was in the same mindset as you of selling lesser used bass, the J. Thought better of it unless I get in a pinch
  15. Or - maybe swap the P for a another Jazz. Black Jazz with Maple board and humbuckers...
  16. Session1969


    Dec 2, 2010
    If you get rid of the P , you'll lose the big booty option.
  17. Bass_Thumper


    Oct 20, 2009
    Madison, MS
    I say you should keep them all unless you just have to move one of them for financial reasons. Any of the three can play just about anything you'll ever need to play in a band. I can say that if you ever liked your P bass and you sell it, you will end up buying another one. Just be prepared for that :)
  18. StevieMac


    Mar 17, 2005
    Vancouver, BC
    Over and over and over in my case.
  19. Staccato

    Staccato Low End Advocate

    Aug 14, 2009
    What a lineup! My P bass arrived first, and sat most of the time.
    If you're not in a financial crunch, don't sell it, yet! ;)
  20. GroovinOnFunk


    Apr 30, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Endorses Cleartone and SIT Strings
    Hey man,

    My $0.02 is pretty much what has already been said. I'm about as fickle as it comes when it comes to my bass tone. One day I want one tone, the next I want something else. Sometimes I wonder if it's all really an attempt to compensate for the fact that I don't have much time to practice these days. Anyway, I digress...

    Now that I work at a music store, I get the opportunity to play a lot of Fenders. All my life I was 100% a Jazz Bass kind of guy. But now with Music Man, Fender, G&L, Warwick, etc at my disposal, I've started trying out a lot of different basses.

    Ok, let me get to the point: When I first started working at MSL I was buying and selling/trading basses all the time. After very seriously regretting 2 of the trades/sales I did, I've decided to simply acquire gear moving forward and not get rid of any. So if I have money for a new bass, great, I'll buy it. But I will not get rid of any of my basses in exchange for something else.

    I just acquired a P-bass recently and am having a really hard time getting into the sound of it. I was in a similar boat as you're in now both in that I wanted to pick up this sweet MM SR5 we got into the shop and that my Sadowsky RV5 jazz bass was seeing all of the action at gigs. But it's totally one of those "hey, you never know when you'll want that P-bass tone"

    Also, why not do something like Stainless Steel strings on the Jazz bass, Nickels on the Sting Ray and flatwounds on the P-bass. Then it's almost like you give each bass its own, very distinct and distinguished role in your arsenal.

    Also you might find that some Lindy Fralin pups or some Seymour Duncan pups in the P-bass could really take it to the next level.

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