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So say it's 1962...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by robkphoto, Mar 16, 2009.


  1. robkphoto

    robkphoto

    Jan 28, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    ...and you walk into a music store and there is a brand new (1962) Fender Precision Bass on the shelf. How much would it have cost?

    I know my parents paid around $45/ month rent in Brooklyn back then. How many months worth of rent would it take you?

    Forgive me if this has been covered but I did a search and couldn't find anything. I'm just wondering.

    Cheers!
     
  2. lomo

    lomo passionate hack Supporting Member

    Apr 15, 2006
    Montreal
    I don't know what the bass costs, but if it's November 19th I'm being born around 7am, LOL.
     
  3. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC
    Best I can do is April 1966. I bought a new '66 Olympic White Precision with tort pickguard, as they say, right off of the showroom floor, with hard case. The price---$232.00. I still have both the bass and case. :cool:

    Side note....A new '66 Fender Bassman 50 head, actually a blackface with just Bassman Amp on it, and 2-12/2-15 cab were $400. Ouch!
     
  4. robkphoto

    robkphoto

    Jan 28, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    Thanks for the info! Hope you are still enjoying your '66! $232.00 was kind of a lot of cash back then but considering how long you've had it, I think you got a pretty good deal!

    And Lomo, it was still another 6 years before I was around!

    Cheers!
     
  5. voodoobassist

    voodoobassist Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2008
    Tulsa , OK
    Not sure of new retail then,...but in 1966 my mom bought me my first rig. A '62 jazz and a fender bassman for $300. Wish I still had them both,..or either one for that matter.
     
  6. gweimer

    gweimer

    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    John Paul Jones has talked about getting his '62 Jazz Bass in interviews. He said it was considered a LOT of money back then, especially since he had to get his in the UK. Fenders were considered the working man's tool, and were also a little bit higher priced than a lot of stuff.
    I've had a lot of basses over the years. A lot of what I got in the '70s was considered second-rate, disposal stuff. '66 Epiphone Newport. '70s Guild M-85 (semi-hollow body). I picked up stuff like that for $200.
    Just don't ask me about the green Epiphone Embassy that I could have had for $135 back in '71.
     
  7. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    BP mag did a retro figuring on value of buying a P Bass back in the 50's with a list price of about $300 bucks was the equivalent of almost 1400 in current rate.
    So really not too much different.
     
  8. racecar5

    racecar5 Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2009
    Myersville, Maryland
    In late 1963 my dad bought me my first Precision bass at Chuck's in Washington, D.C. Olympic white 229.95. The sunburst was 189.95. Had to have the white to match the guitar player in my bands Jazzmaster.
     
  9. wodock

    wodock Supporting Member

    Aug 29, 2007
    Sergeantsville, NJ
    In '64 I bought an Old Kraftsman (Kay) bass from the Spiegle (sp?) catalog for $69 and in '66 I bought a Framus solid body bass for I think $119. I thought at that time Fenders where like $249. The Framus neck was nice and thin so liked it better plus I was probably working in a grocery store after high school for $1.25 an hour. But I do remember playing High School dances and our four or five piece band would split $350 and college "mixers" would pay around $500. I have a friend from high school who still is playing bars and things like that for the same amount (or less) of money. He always says everything else has gone up in price except what they pay bands. I play for nothing...
     
  10. robkphoto

    robkphoto

    Jan 28, 2009
    Brooklyn, NY
    So it sounds like a Precision Bass new in 1962 was in the vicinity of $200 or so depending on finish. Sounds like a deal today but that was a pretty big chunk of change back then.

    Racecar, do you still have the 1963 Precision Bass your dad bought you?
     
  11. racecar5

    racecar5 Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2009
    Myersville, Maryland
    Robk, No i don't have the bass. In 1968 I was in a pawn shop in Jacksonville, Fla. I traded it even up for a 1952 Precision serial #0013. Got back to Maryland and sold that bass to a fellow in Washington, D.C. for $650 bucks (big money then) went out and bought my first car a used 1964 Corvair. Hindsight sure is 20/20. Still have pictures though.
     
  12. http://www.westegg.com/inflation/

    What cost $200 in 1962 would cost $1357.14 in 2007.
    Also, if you were to buy exactly the same products in 2007 and 1962,
    they would cost you $200 and $29.97 respectively.
     
  13. I paid 20 pounds UK for a used Hofner 'beatle' bass in '66 when I was a 14yo. It was crap back then too but looked pretty.
    Fenders weren't available to the common people back then in the UK.
    My first fender was a '68 jazz I bought in '70 and sold it as it was 'too new'. There's one on the bay for $9K right now . .
     
  14. svtb15

    svtb15 Banned

    Mar 22, 2004
    Austin,TX - McKinney,TX - NY,NY, - Nashville,TN
    I play it all. Whatever works for the gig. Q+
    I cant go back that far... But I remember a 1971-ish Jazz Bass at Sam Ash in Hempstead, LI, New York for about 250 new.. I bought my 71 P-bass at Sam Ash in Huntington, LI,NY for $190 Black/Maple neck/.

    I remember seeing in a weekly local NY paper called Buy-Lines during the early 1970s, for sale were mid 60s Jazz basses going for $175 to $200 and used 60s P basses ging for $150 to $175.. boy if i knew then what i know now...
     
  15. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    +1

    In late 1963, the P-bass I played (more like held) in a Kansas City music store was $~180, IIRC.

    That is $1,242.02 in 2009 US dollars.

    Here, knock yourself out with the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator: :D

    http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm
     
  16. svtb15

    svtb15 Banned

    Mar 22, 2004
    Austin,TX - McKinney,TX - NY,NY, - Nashville,TN
    I play it all. Whatever works for the gig. Q+
    i did a few shoddy calculations over a few 15 year periods..
    1930 - 1945
    1945 -1960
    1960-1975
    1975-1990
    1990-2005
    it seems the biggest jump fell between 1975 and 1990 almost 150% according to the one calculator. other 15 year time frames were less than 50%.. what happened then?
     
  17. Will people want the basses from this era in 40 years? There is the question.
     
  18. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    ...You would have had to raise a lot of scratch. Those $175 bargins were ~$900 in 2009, and we could not have predicted their appreciation. My '55 cost me $250 in 1973 (IIRC). :ninja:

    But wait, imagine you receive an email tonight from the future, say the year 2030. It reads:

    How many could you/would you actually buy at ~$1100 a pop? :D :D :D
     
  19. svtb15

    svtb15 Banned

    Mar 22, 2004
    Austin,TX - McKinney,TX - NY,NY, - Nashville,TN
    I play it all. Whatever works for the gig. Q+
    First i would get my head examined to find out why i don't remember the future..:):)

    Then i would take a loan out..



     
  20. IMO....................................YES
     

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