Precision vs. Jazz - "Sitting in the Mix"

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ChadPaulJones, Apr 5, 2013.

  1. BassByBaldSteve

    BassByBaldSteve Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2011
    Raleigh, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Fodera Basses, Aguilar Amplification
    Ha - he's the one that has me thinking about adding a B-15 to my studio haul. Oscar Cartaya turned me on to the REDDI. Completely nuts.
  2. InternetAlias


    Dec 16, 2010
    I'd like to use my P more, but modern metal simply rules it out because, in all honesty, a P by itself (not talking about PJs or reverse Ps) has a terrible voicing for modern metal :/
  3. Stranger Danger

    Stranger Danger Feel Like A Stranger Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    I wouldnt say that J basses are more popular in all genres. I think in rock that the P still dominates.
  4. boynamedsuse

    boynamedsuse Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    1,126 fps at sea level.

    This parallels my experience. As a player, I have noticed that my P is "set and forget." My other basses are often tweaked from song to song or even during the song. :)
  5. In my experience, a good engineer can mix any sound to sit in the mix. Engineers who require you to change out to a P or J do so out of simplicity to them, and it doesn't leave you sounding the way YOU want to.

    I had an engineer tell me that even guys who play things like Spectors on stage use P basses on their recordings. If this was the case, why would people like Flea, Sting, Entwhistle, or Mike Kroeger record with what they play on stage? I'm sorry, but "use a P" just doesn't cut it to me. They've paid big money to get their degrees and learn how to mix, they shouldn't be taking the easy way out.
  6. Does anybody have an opinion on whether the custom shop pickups in the 2012-13 AmStd J causes it to sit better in the mix? I have a 2012 Jade Jazz and think it is a little more midrangey than other, older Js. Thoughts?
  7. ChadPaulJones


    Aug 8, 2012
    Thanks. Yeah, that picture cracks me up. I can just her him saying to his wife "Ahhh....tour dates.......this is tomorrow!"

    I'm a fan of Jimmy M's avatar as well. Everytime I see it pop up on a thread I start laughing. Is it "Godfather of Soul" bobble-head or something?
  8. honest abe

    honest abe Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2009
    Weslaco TX
    Audio Engineer for Marcos Witt
    Very true. Good engineers can make any bass played well sound decent in a mix.....In the same way a good carpenter can eventually pry a nail out of a board with a screw driver. Its still much better to use the butt end of a hammer however. Its not about changing anyones sound. Its about using the right tool for job.
  9. AngelCrusher


    Sep 12, 2004
    Mesa Boogie, Tech 21, Taylor
    Not sure where you got the 90%, but I have been getting payed to do session work about half my life now. I currently have a very successful producer/engineer using my J because he uses it on any record where he doesnt like the usual provided by the player.

    Not only that but in all my session work I used a J. Various genres - R&B, Rap,modern rock, funk, singer/songwriter, Deep House, 90s style grunge..etc.

    I would argue that Fenders (j and P) both are known for sitting in the mix.

    The next thing is how to get a tone that cuts in a live setting with loud guitars. Ok, no problem - I suggest a few things. One - an amp with a distortion blend channel. If you dont have that, mess with pedals. But distort your tone. Peavey makes an amp with a distortion channel and it sounds absolutely incredible.

    Second..boost a little between 800-900hz. Don't go crazy. But do it. thats all the Eq you really should have to worry about. I have never scooped or done smiley face EQ.

    I dont play live as much, but when I do, without fail other bands and random people have come up to ask me about my tone. And the funny thing is that I do not even own an amp. So I am getting tone with borrowed gear that changes every gig.

    My point - pick a J or a P not on "sitting in the mix" but personal preference. I have always found the J much more versatile for how I like to play, but in a perfect world I would own both.
    Oldschool94 likes this.
  10. So, that just proves my point. It's laziness on the engineer's part. A Spector bass is just as much the right tool to use as a P bass is.

    The same thing happens with Shure mics being the standard. It's what everyone's used to. They're unwilling to put the effort in to come out of their comfort zone.
  11. AngelCrusher


    Sep 12, 2004
    Mesa Boogie, Tech 21, Taylor
    Yes Decent is the key word.

    Great and amazing is what the pro engineers must attain. In a case of an average or decent tone, they will get rid of the bass ( and the player as well, if they are not good enough) and bring in a trusted instrument and/or player.
  12. RedMoses


    Jul 4, 2012
    P sits right in the mix in a live setting but doesnt sound so good by itself, J sits great in the studio mix and sounds awesome on its own.
  13. AngelCrusher


    Sep 12, 2004
    Mesa Boogie, Tech 21, Taylor
    A lot of what you are saying is correct. I actually have been that guy and been on major labels in bands through these situations. It has been my career, and I still get calls for gigs like the one you are talking about.

    I dont have hair - But I look young, am in shape. I just look good with my head buzzed, so thats not an issue. even if it is, I dont care, because I turn down that type of work now I dont want to tour anymore (maybe ever again..i have dedicated most of my life to playing and enjoy being kind of "normal" again).

    Ok with that out of the way my look fit the vibe of the bands and I was hired after my auditions, but it was not just based on looks.

    I never thought about every little thing though. I dress how I dress, and it happens to work.

    The one thing is that while most people do listen with their eyes with bass (this is true), you have to have stage presence and energy. Basically feel comfortable up there...truly comfy like its your home (because it will be for months at a time).

    the other thing is that the band has input on who is getting the gig (believe it or So you don't have to use a Fender bass to get the gig ( i toured with modulus). I disagree with that. People always knew "i got it" because I can play. I can make it feel good. That is what matters. Make it feel good and you can use any bass you want. Does it make sense to whip out a 6er for stomping band that sounds like Paramore? use your common sense. But use what you want..make it feel good..stay in shape..take care of the song (dont be a wanker)..and you will get work. the drummer needs to be your best friend as soon as you meet the band. Make that guy sound like he knows where "1" is. Make him a better drummer. He will fight for you to get the gig.

    finally - in a mjaor label setting - nobody cares about bass players. you are the last guy to matter. Deal with it. A&R guys dont know **** about bass (ok, a few do, but most listen to vocals than drummers than guitar. If your band is showcasing, and they make it past your singer, you have a shot in hell at getting talked to after the show. I have scouted with major label A&Rs for over 15 years now) you will still get treated great and will bang hot girls (if you want to). But nobody gives a **** about you unless you become a pain in the ass. dont become a pain in the ass.

    Ok, sidetrack over. I just found the quoted post rather interesting and informative for younger guys.

    EDIT - huge bonus if you can sing backup. that is a skill that every bass player should have. I dont have that skill and if I started again I would change that. Being a session guy now, it doesnt matter for me, but if you want to get more gigs - practice your vocals.

    I hope I didnt sidetrack too much.
    Oldschool94 likes this.
  14. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    I'm comfortable using My RIC or My P-Bass Or my Jaguar. A little EQ goes a long long way to find you place in the mix. The Jaguar is just incredible in the mix. My singer likes the RIC best because he can feel it in his chest and hear me perfectly. I can't decide between the 3 of them for my next Gig but they all have what it takes to have a great show.
  15. honest abe

    honest abe Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2009
    Weslaco TX
    Audio Engineer for Marcos Witt
    I'm pretty sure you missed it.
    The right tool is determined by the task at hand not by the one you like or showed up with. Sometimes that's a jazz, sometimes a P, or sometimes something else.
  16. BassByBaldSteve

    BassByBaldSteve Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2011
    Raleigh, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Fodera Basses, Aguilar Amplification
    This is true as well - these things are always recorded on video and your playing will also be tracked straight off the board. my enthusiasm to share things-I-wish-someone-told-me-when-I-hit-LA 12 years ago, I kinda forgot to mention that you should, like, nail the performance above all.

    I don't know about the gear stuff, though. IME, especially recently, there seems to be an intense pro-Fender bias in the rock scene right now, though it does seem to be ebbing. Guys I talked to were practically having heart attacks when Gotye's bassist used a Fodera on SNL. Like, "He can't do that!". But the guy has a great gig, so hey - whatever works. I've got a Fodera build underway right now myself :bassist:

    EDIT: And yeah - DEFINITELY learn to sing. Your value goes waaaaaaay up out there in the live scene.
  17. AngelCrusher


    Sep 12, 2004
    Mesa Boogie, Tech 21, Taylor
    Yeah it's a fine line. It depends on your rep, your playing, the way you carry yourself. All those little things factor into if you are a rock star or not. the best guys can get away with using the bass of choice (as long as its not just ridiculously over the top).

    I hate that close minded rock culture. Don't miss it at all. It made me lose my passion for rock bass for years.I was going through the motions up there for a while. glad thats over.

    All that being said, IMO anyone who wants to play pro should own an american fender bass. J or P..whatever. Have one in the quill. You will know when to use it if you have enough experience.
  18. BassByBaldSteve

    BassByBaldSteve Supporting Member

    Nov 17, 2011
    Raleigh, NC
    Endorsing Artist: Fodera Basses, Aguilar Amplification
    You still in LA?
  19. But whose job is it to determine what the right tool is? It's your band, your playing, your preference, your style. Why should the engineer get to dictate what that is?

    Drop the AMERICAN requirement and I'd tend to agree. It's nice to have the tones when desired, but they're not a necessity. Also, some of the best touring players in the world take Mexican Fenders instead of the Americans because they prefer them AND they don't cost a stupid amount for a mass-produced object.
  20. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    It's usually the ones who paid for it who are the most narrow minded till they get out in the field for a few years and get their balls busted a few times. The degrees can teach you how to run the gear but the ears work at varying degrees of competency.
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