"THE BUDDHA" Bill Dickens

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by demolition, May 30, 2004.

  1. demolition

    demolition Guest

    Jul 5, 2003
    What an awesome bassist,I am no means a fan of slap bass but this guy does it well,very tasteful and played effortlessly.
    He's such a humble guy for someone who knows how good he really is,he is'nt snooty or "look at me" type bassist,good stuff.
    check him out :bassist:
  2. Adam Barkley

    Adam Barkley Mayday!

    Aug 26, 2003
    Jackson, MS

    Effortlessly, yes; Tasteful, no. I have heard a few clips of his playing and what I heard was a few minutes of clicking noises; with absolutely no melody. Way too over the top soloing for me, can't comment on his regular playing though.

    Different strokes for different folks I guess.
  3. yeah, i agree with abark000, but i have only heard that 13 minute solo that someone posted up here. the first few minutes were insanely awesome,with some cool chords and stuff, but then he just goes nuts and plays that really fast slap that he does...impressive from a technical aspect imo, but musically really isn't much to me at least...

    I'm interested in his other stuff, but i don't really know what cd to look for....

  4. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Yeah, good question. What's a good CD of his to get?
  5. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Hearing him dissing Jaco during one of his clinics bothered me. However, I got to jam with him at Mars after I'd only been playing for about 8 months, and he made the comment: "8 months? I had you figured for 2 years or so." So, I've witnessed good and bad.
  6. modflea


    Apr 26, 2004
    Lafayette, LA
    A few years back he came to town for a clinic with Neil Zaza and Bobby Rock for Peavey. They were awesome. He played through 2 Peavey 8X10s and they blew the building's circuit breaker 3 times! An incredible slapper and a really nice guy. I got to speak to him after since most of the attendees were guitar players or drummers. I even won his video! I am also of the opinion that a lot of what he does is just too fast to fit in most songs musically, but he does have technique out the wazoo.

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    I don't think his slap technique is very tasteful, however, his fingerstyle soloing is almost second to none. He is an awesome Jazz electric bassist. One of my favorite players by far. He just gets a little crazy with his double thumbing sometimes!
  8. Las Olas

    Las Olas

    Apr 20, 2003
    Scarborough, UK
    Woodchuck: what did he say about Jaco?
  9. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    You are right on about that. There is just not enough people who have heard him play fingerstyle. I did a clinic with Bill after the "official" bassquake ended back in Sept. He was playing my four string MTD, all finger style, it was some really beautiful, melodic stuff. It was an honor to be able to play with him. He is a soft spoken humble gentleman who can flat out play the instrument.

  10. Racsen


    Dec 6, 2003
    How does he slapping? double thump or classic?

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    Hey Woodchuck
    what did Bill say that bothered you so about Jaco?I've been knowing Bill a very long time and everytime he says anything about Jaco it's all great and you could tell that he misses him very much.

    For those who didn't know Bill and Jaco did a clinic together where Bill played Bass and Jaco played Drums.
  12. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    He was just basically saying that what Jaco was doing wasn't THAT impressive, and that he can do it as well, or something to that effect. It was minor, but it bothered me a little. I like I said, that was the ONLY thing that I'd consider "bad". When I showed him a technique that I came up with at the NAMM show, he was very complementary. After I told him that he was the one that drove/inspired me to come up with it, he would not accept any of the credit. He told me that I came up with it on my own, and because I'm a good bassist and I need to recognize that. As for his fingerstyle, I don't think he was any peers. His fingerstyle playing is nothing short of amazing. I heard him do a version of "I Wish" that would make Stevie Wonder sign over the rights! He smoked that song! "Nights in Tunisia" too.
  13. The two things that bother me about Dicken's playing are that for such a big guy he has the lightest action known to man - I know that playing such massive, multi-stringed basses this might be necessary, but it does jack for his tone - to me he sounds like a not particularly good George Benson rip-off. Secondly I have never heard him play a really great bassline, again his tone plays some part in this. This is surely the one thing us bassists get the most repect for in a traditional setting if we do it well - and the one thing we get the most flack for if we don't...IMO

    His slapping is pretty incredible saying that - and there's one thing that he does that I love is his dual-channel Whammy pedal groove-loop that is really cool BUT there are plenty of stunning fingerstyle players out there - see Matt Garrison or Dominque Di Piazza for two extremely musical yet technically advanced players - I also find Dicken's compositions bear a very close resemblace to fuzak - i.e. one chord vamps that serve only to show off his technique IMO obv.
  14. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    Having worked with Mr. Dickens, I would say that we must be talking about a different guy. He played a beautiful duet with Mike Manring on God Bless the Child and an amazing version of Spain with Roy Vogt. The guys has a wonderful tone (you should have heard him on my 4 string MTD), great musical sense. He can be a bit shy and I hope that people don't assume that he is being "standoffish".


    left to right: Dave Pomery,Michael Manring, Bill Dickens, Trip Wamsly and Me. We're playing Chameleon (which, BTW, has 2 Chords ;) )
  15. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Bill rocks. Woodychuck made the comment in the Ray Riendaeaueuaueuaueuaeuuaueueuau (sp?) thread that people tend to post the over the top flashy stuff first, and I think Bill does this a bit too, but you can find some fingerstyle soloing on his site that is tasteful and incredible.
  16. Sorry Mike - I don't mean to belittle any of his other qualities - he does strike me as being one lovely human being - the fact that he put the bass down for a couple of years and then came back with all this stuff is very impressive.

    I am a music journalist by trade and I listen to all kinds of music - as a bass player I can be a bit flashy myself - so all the comments that I make are duely noted - by myself! what I would like to say is that I'd love to hear Bill in a really quality setting witha great piano player - ie Chick Corea - and a jazz/funk drummer and really make a great sound in a small band context - not rocking out all the time over one chord. I'd love to hear his playing in the context of a really good album - a la Willis or Wotten - or Patitucci - a soulful, melodic setting insetad of more grandstanding.

    And just so you know I have played Cameleon a lot and I know how many chords it has - just for the record.

    JAUQO III-X Banned

    Jan 4, 2002
    Endorsing artist:see profile.
    I'm not here to defend Bill at all.I believe that everyone is entitled to their opinion.It is very logical for all of us to have Great,Good,Bad and terrible Days with our tone,sound,playing,etc.I'm sure we all can recall listening to some killer Bassist live and it sucked,well it happens to us all.
    aside from Bill being very Humble he's also very sensitive about his playing as well.

    Bill has been busy working on his Debut CD that includes a hip hop version of the Chicken played on a 7 string Fretless.
  18. Davehenning


    Aug 9, 2001
    Los Angeles
    For such a big guy?:confused: What does size have to do with set-up and string guage?

    I have played Matt's basses quite a few times. He has very light strings and possibly the lowest action I have ever played. Somehow he get's tone.

    Bill to me is at his best when he is in producer mode. ie. playing to the song.... he can really lay it down. And I would rather personally hear that than Warp9 hyper licks.....but those are cool too! :)
  20. Mike Dimin

    Mike Dimin

    Dec 11, 1999
    Clinician: EA, Zon, Boomerang, TI. Author "The Art of Solo Bass"
    Just a joke on your one chord vamp line - hope you were not offended.

    I have also seen/heard him grooving over some R&B on, beleive it or not, the Oprah show.

    Getting to know him, play with him and teach with him gave me a whole new view of him and respect for his playing outside of his machine gun slap technique. Perhaps I have been lucky enough to see him in a light that few get