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question for the 30yr old+ guys here

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by willgroove2, Jun 23, 2005.

  1. willgroove2


    Aug 16, 2003
    chicago IL
    Endorsing Artist;Essential sound products,Dunlop, Ergo Instruments
    a student of mine asked me a interesting question today:at what point does a trendsetting bassist become the standard?in my case i started playing bass in 1980 in church.the music i remember hearing at that time that caught my ear was stuff like the brothers johnson with louis johnson on bass,slave,early luther vandross(w marcus miller) as well as stanley clark and jaco.by the time i came along stanley and jaco were well established as trendsetters and influences on countless bass player's, including the guys who showed me how to play ,who all came of age in the '60's and '70's.by the time i was in high school, marcus miller's name was getting to be known to me because his sound and feel was different than what i usually heard so i tried to incorperate some of his style into the one i was developing like alot of guy's i know who came up when i did(i know guy's who had the same bass,amp,strings,strap as marcus and still don't sound like him LOL)when i heard victor wooten with the flecktones i loved what he was doing because it was different but was coming out of that stanley clark/louis johnson thing so i "got it" right away,same with gary willis with jaco.so my question is to the older guy's here;when did trendsetting bassist go past being the new thing to part of the standard for you?
  2. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Pretty much immediately after I heard them for the first time, it didn't take long to realize how much impact they would have. And their careers pretty much skyrocketed once they did something that got them known. Like Jaco was a big hit when he did the Joni Mitchell stuff, and Stanley was almost as big with Chick Corea as he is as a bandleader. People were imitating them as soon as they heard what they could do.

    But it varies...I don't think bassists really appreciated Marcus until he started playing with David Sanborn. however, in the vast majority of cases, I think the bassists who are part of the standard became standards almost immediately. They were so above what everyone else was doing that it was hard not to notice.
  3. Hmmm, well when I started playing bass, I was starting to get really into Rush, so I listened and played along to heaps of their stuff.

    I think by the time Flea and Les Claypool came along, it sort of passed me by - not that I don't dig them, but their music wasn't so much an influence on me.

    Its a good question, I think perhaps I just infused my music with all the ideas and sounds I liked from my influences to become the player that I am.
  4. oldfclefer

    oldfclefer low ended

    May 5, 2005
    Southern Ohio
    Paul MacCartney showed me that a bassist can be more than a silent partner.
    I think the first bassist that I really listened to bass-wise was Bill Wyman.
    Are they trend setters? Why certainly. Why? Because they led the way for countless others.
    When was it determined that they were trend-setters? Immediately.
    Same with the others you've mentioned.
    You'll know them when you hear them.
  5. Funkengrooven

    Funkengrooven Turn it down? You gotta be nuts!!

    The answer to that is probably; when there are more players imitating her/him than are standing around in awe.

    Once a player gets past the "Did you hear that?" and gets to the "I'll bet I can do that and maybe better" then the trendsetter becomes a standard.

    How long this takes is dependent on a bunch of things, some of which are not in the control of the one setting the trend.

    Lady Luck is a fickle one.
  6. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    I'm going to throw a different angle on this one. I think it's when they start influencing equipment choices. If you don't believe that look at the trend back to bolt on jazz style basses ala Marcus. I remember in the late 70's everyone wanted a neck thru. I think the only reason Stanley didn't effect gear choices as much was that those Alembics were so expensive, most cars were cheaper in 1975!
  7. Interesting question. When I heard Geddy Lee it was a revelation. This was bass in the forefront. Then I heard Jeff Berlin and said wow. I heard Harris then Ralphe Armstrong and went wow again. Miller redifined the art of cool slap. Mark King has is acolytes but he is special technique guy with those light gauge strings and tone. I don't want to play like that.
    Rocco burned himself into my head and yes fingerstyle funk is what I gravitated to. He is is a master, very diffirent to Jaco in his more mecahnical approach to the groove. A master that needs more recognition. Rocco is perhaps my biggest influence when it comes to groove playing. A true legend of the bass.
  8. Incredibly valid point. Alembics had some sort of mystical quality back then. I tried to play one that my bass teacher had back then and it was pretty awful to play. Chunky neck.
    Give me a Fender Jazz any day.
  9. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    not sure, I seem to go forward and back on influences... so the who inspired who has blurred for me. I just hear good bass and take it in.

    one thing I remember though is being in the Bass Cove @ Sam Ash in Paramus, NJ circa 1986 and getting the thumbs up and nod by a guy saying "Don Henley" while hacking out Jaco's Continuum :meh:

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