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Radiohead's Colin Greenwood

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by radioradio, Mar 16, 2004.

  1. radioradio

    radioradio Banned

    Mar 16, 2004
    hey everyone,

    i was just wondering if anyone knew what Colin Greenwood used amp-wise for their OK Computer cd?

    sorry i wasnt sure weather to post this in the bassist section or amp section :smug:

    thanks a lot for the help!
  2. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    I can probably answer this, but something more specific might help. Is there a particular song or something?
    Basically he uses a GK head, Ampeg 810 cabs and an Ashdown Combo. He's also used a number of other pre's (alembic being one of them) and the occasional effect (fuzz on exit music). Climbing up the walls isn't a bass at all, but a Novation BassStation synth.

    so maybe some of that was useful?
  3. radioradio

    radioradio Banned

    Mar 16, 2004
    thanks for the reply,

    i like his tone on Paranoid Android... it doesnt seem like theres any effects (i may be wrong) so im guessing hes just using his GK.
  4. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    Probably, or more likely yet just going direct. His recording methods are very simplistic, and his tone is just pure old fashioned goodness. He doesn't do anything fancy, but it all works so well.
  5. dirtgroove


    Jan 10, 2003
    Taipei, Taiwan
    Man I wish to god I could regularly come up with "unfancy" stuff like his fills when the time signature in Paranoid Android goes into seven. ;)
    This man is the modern epitomy of taste and restraint as far as I'm concerned. The way He and his drummer lock in airbag is inspirational stuff- IMO.
    Respect is due for his simple set up. He knows his conventional role and sticks to it very well.
  6. sunburstbasser


    Oct 18, 2003
    Looking through the credits on any of Radiohead's albums, I can say that he almost definately went direct on pretty much every album except Hail To The Thief, where he used the Ashdown. Theres never any mention of any bass amp, the closest being a thanks to Mesa and Fender, but the guitarists are using those amps.

    Get an Ashdown. I own a GK, and it doesn't really come near Colin's sound even with a Precision. Eden or Ampeg may work, too.
  7. interesting you brought this up, I've always tried to emulate Colin's sound but have failed. I use a GK combo and a Precision as well, but I think its found in his playing style - very passive, and....separated. i think he writes incredible stuff. I've recently switched to a Jazz and have accomplished the same effect, though.

    not the greatest bassist in the world but definitely one of my favorite. rolling basslines are fun, especially with his mastery of the pauses especially in "airbag."
  8. actually i take back the talent comment. he's a really good writer and if you wanna hear some slap listen to "my iron lung", haha
  9. StrudelBass


    Jul 6, 2002
    Heres a very detailed site on radiohead's equipment.

    Radiohead Gear
  10. Just came across this really old thread and thought I'd clarify that no one got it quite right. Colin almost always records with a mic'd ampeg B-15. He only used the GK stuff live.
  11. he uses a Lovetone Big Cheese Fuzz Pedal. im a big Colin Fan, he's a great player (IMO) and I really dig his simpler is better philosophy.
  12. Colin has ditched the GK alltogether. now he has an ampeg SVT head and 8x10 cab and an ashdown abm 500 and 2 4x10 cabs.
  13. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    I didn't want to say anything because I wasn't sure about all their albums, but I knew the last two were recorded with a B-15.

    He actually only uses the Big Cheese for National Anthem, which is a track where Thom Yorke played the bassline in the studio. I believe all his other fuzz tones are from the Shin-ei fuzz.
  14. jbiscuti


    Dec 22, 2007
    NYC / LA
    Endorsing Artist: Grolsch Strap Locks
    No slap, just the really ballsy tone of his Musicman.
  15. Jared Lash

    Jared Lash Born under punches

    Aug 21, 2006
    Denver, CO
    There isn't a single member of Radiohead that I would look at individually and say, "what an incredible musician", but they are truly a band that is more than the sum of its parts.

    To be clear, I think Johnny Greenwood is a very good guitar player (and his skills at sound manipulation and string arrangements are fantastic), Ed O'Brien is very solid, Thom Yorke is underrated in terms of his guitar playing, and Colin Greenwood and Phil Selway have more than enough skill to propel the whole thing.

    But none of them are going to blow you away with their chops. However, as a group, they fit together so seamlessly and so unselfishly that I can't help but be amazed at the final product.
    JBoogy likes this.
  16. +1

    great point. i also feel the same way. i really love Radiohead, I'm glad they're still putting out albums.
  17. OrionManMatt


    Feb 17, 2004
    Saw them on Saturday. He used two '70s Precisions, one sunburst with a rosewood fretboard and the other, more oft used, olympic white and tortoise shell with maple fretboard. Rack was Korg Tuner, dbx compressor, and '70s Ampeg SVT through Ampeg 810. I didn't see pedals but I know he's used a few different fuzzes in the past and occasionally puts his ongoing piano lessons to work using the Novation Bass Station.

    He's easily one of my favorite bassists. Easily. His sense of melody, rhythm, and restraint are noted and worth studying.
  18. Che


    Jan 13, 2007
    I've always loved his playing with radiohead, and wish i could write fills like he does. I can't wait to see them live in August :)
  19. thestevo


    Aug 12, 2004
    New info on Colin's amplification from Radiohead's tech, Plank.

    "Q's... the new bass amp is an Ampeg SVT VR which is an uprated version of the original and sounds great and punchy with plenty of mid range... this and the CL would seem to be an ideal combination ( erk..sounds like I'm reading it off a sales brochure, maybe I should stop there!......"

  20. OrionManMatt


    Feb 17, 2004
    Well then that makes sense why it looked like a '70s blue-line....

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