1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
     
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

the misleading P/J concept (Wilbur Bascomb)...

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by williamk, Jul 27, 2012.


  1. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    hi all
    my all time favorite bass tone is the one that Wilbur Bascomb has (look him up if you don't know him, he's amazing). Here are perfect examples of his tone and style:



    these are excerpts from the movie Hair; if you have the CD soundtrack, it'll obviously sound better than these youtube videos, but you'll get the general idea by listening to these.

    To me it's the perfect bass sound, that fits remarkably well in the mix and seems to fit any style (if you listen to the whole Hair soundtrack, you will see what I mean).

    As a bassist, I have tried for years to try and emulate his sound and playing style, and have done a lot of research to see what gear he used; there is surprisingly little info on this guy (what a shame, he's genius!). However, I discovered that he played a fender p-bass (so far that was pretty obvious) but I've played many p-basses and I could not sound quite like this. I also later discovered that apparently he had a j-bass pickup installed at the bridge, which might explain that extra "nasal" quality.

    I then bought my first P/J...and that worked even less! Is it just me or when a p PU and j PU are played together, the sound is terrible? No mids at all, impossible to cut in any mix.
    Was my bass just a bad one (an aerodyne with upgraded PU's)? Maybe a better match of specific PU's works better? Is the P/J sound a scooped/muddy one?

    What's the secret to this guy's tone? He doesn't use flats because there's a lot of slap. It sounds like a p-bass with an extra kick, but I have yet to hear a good P/J sound. Any P/J guys out there to help?

    I'm seriously ready to do all it takes to have that sound.
    Help another "I wanna sound like this guy" guy!
    And enjoy Wilbur Bascomb if you don't know him yet!! ;)
    thanks!
     
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    A lot more to Wilbur Bascomb's sound than the bass...namely, Wilbur Bascomb ;)
     
  3. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    here's another one I can't believe I forgot!

     
  4. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    no, I'm pretty sure it's just the bass ;)

    if anyone has info/interviews/any thing about him, please share!
     
  5. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    bump
     
  6. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
    No.

    PJs kill.
     
  7. RED J

    RED J Lol

    Jan 23, 2000
    Not all P/J's are created equal. I've had ones that did not blend well at all. The acid test for me is if I like the sound of the J solo'd. Very few suit me. My current P/J, a Peavey Foundation "S" is super. Mixing the J with the P actually thickens the overall tone and broadens the range, It's beautiful. YMMV.
     
  8. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    ok, well can someone give me an audio example of what a good P/J is supposed to sound like? (fender-ish sounding if possible)
     
  9. moles

    moles

    Jan 24, 2007
    Winnipeg, MB
    I played them for years. EMG's, Quarter Pounders, the Godin Freeway 5 I picked up when I started playing 5'ers and missed the PJ thing (it was pretty much the only stock P/J 5 string that I could find/afford) I left that stock passive for a year, and then put a Basslines pre in it...

    I can say they pretty much all sounded different in their ways. I'd think a really strong/loud P with a wimpy J might not sound the best, especially with both pickups dimed. I know that with a J/J bass, I need more neck pu in my tone that with a P/J, so they are a bit darker in that respect. Again I think it depends on the bass/particular pickups used.
     
  10. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    what about the clips I posted? do they sound like a P/J or just a P?
     
  11. nostatic

    nostatic Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2004
    lost angeles, CA
    Endorsing Artist: FEA Labs
  12. ransombass

    ransombass

    Dec 16, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
    I owned an Aerodyne with after market p-ups as well and didn't care for the sound either. A friend of mine has a Lakland Bob Glaub PJ and it sounds amazing. I think it would compare favorably to Wilbur's tone. It has a great mid growl and bite.
     
  13. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    doesn't sound a thing like Bascomb, but I like it! more "bass" it seems. what was this recorded with?
     
  14. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    laklands are a bit on the "too expensive" side for me...
    I'm looking for under 1K if possible
     
  15. ransombass

    ransombass

    Dec 16, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
    Wow!!! That is awesome. Great tone, great groove and feel and pocket. Color me totally impressed.
     
  16. ransombass

    ransombass

    Dec 16, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
    Keep looking the Skyline Series Bob Glaub's show up from time to time for under a grand. In fact a new one is just a bit more than a grand brand new.

    Edit: $1,049.00 at Bass Central and they're always willing to deal. Then throw a Fralin jazz p-up in and voila! Awesome PJ. The trick is that it has to sound good to begin with, then make mods to it.

    http://www.basscentral.com/lakeland_usa/skyline_bob_glaub.shtml

    [​IMG]
     
  17. To me, the clips all sound like a standard P with some semi-fresh strings on it. When I think PJ, I think of the Fender Jazz Bass Special, like the Duff McKagan one I personally have.



    Played with a pick through a GK 800rb, into the board. Slightly nasally, just the way I like it. On the Jazz Specials, however, the pickups were both moved closer to the bridge, and had the Fender TBX (Treble bass expander) tone pot, which cuts bass one way and treble the other.
     
  18. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    ill go check that bass out, and the lakland too
     
  19. What about a G & L SB-2? The Tribute series can be had for well under 1k.
     
  20. williamk

    williamk

    Apr 2, 2008
    do you have any sound sample of those? I kinda find it ugly so it better sound damn good :p
     

Share This Page