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Tone on Elvis costello "angels wanna wear my red shoes"

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


  1. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    Noticed the tone on this track, sounds GREAT!,..

    definitely FLATS going on here...

    anyone know who and what they played on this track?

    Sounds very RICK with flats, I couldnt think of it being a P-bass unless its been P/J, but its still very thick and fat, UNLIKE a Jazz.
     
  2. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    Almost answered my own question, Bruce thomas.. and he is a hardcore P-bass guy from what i have been reading, wow.
     
  3. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    Bruce Thomas didn't play on the My Aim is True album, Clover and John McFee (later of Doobie Bros) were the backing band, and some of Graham Parker's band played on the original recordings of Watching the Detectives.

    The Attraction were assembled afterwards and recorded with EC on the This Year's Model album.
     
  4. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    gotcha, back to square 1 ;)
     
  5. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    John Ciambotti was the bassist. I have no idea what he played.
     
  6. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    Only pictures i could find of him is that p-basses as well, including this picture with as SLab-p. pretty cool
    clover232.
     
  7. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    There weren't too many options back then, ... but having said that the slab P is a rare beast according to John Entwistle's book.
     
  8. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Chicago
    Ah, good research! I never knew who the bass player for Clover was on My Aim Is True.
    I thought the slab Ps all had maple necks. Maybe Ciambotti switched out necks.
     
  9. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    perhaps it just the angle of the photo? It sure looks like a slab to me.
     
  10. One Drop

    One Drop

    Oct 10, 2004
    Swiss Alps
    Some of the slab Ps had roeswood 'boards, I think from the second run of the few made.

    I always wondered who Clover's bassist was, too. Thanks for the info!

    I wore out a copy of that album, great songs throughout. I have a wicked recent version of '...Red Shoes' on a DVD filmed at a concert in Montréal from a year or so ago, when Alain Toussaint played with EC and the Imposters on a bunch of songs. Elvis is a genius in my book and he is so great to see and hear live. real pity he can't play with Thomas these days, but davy Faragher holds the chair nicely, and his tone is pure gold on this DVD, playing a split-coil P.
     
  11. GregC

    GregC Johnny and Joe Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 19, 2007
    Chicago
    I didn't know about the rosewood boards--I'm guessing you gleaned that from the FDP.:D

    I completely agree with everything you say about the album, Elvis, the lack of Bruce and Faragher's ability to step in. I'm going to have to PM you about that DVD!
     
  12. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    I saw the Impostors on tour here a couple of times, Faragher fits in nicely as a traditional supporting bass player. He used a P and had a Hofner club on stage.

    Bruce T, on the other hand - in the words of Napoleon Dynamite himself - was the 'lead' bass player in the band. Completely different strokes. D F is good for the band, but I don't know if he will remake an EC song in the manner that B Thomas made "I don't want to go to chelsea". It would have ended up as a 'Mother and Child reunion' ripoff. I suppose the active remaking of the songs was one point of friction between the two, amongst several other points of friction.

    Back in the day I was always bothered about the band and their sound on "My aim is true' - the lack of lunacy, it was so "70's MOR" - it was much later that I found out it was Clover - there just was no lunacy in the playing that the early quartet of EC, S Nieve, B & P Thomas had. Nothing against Clover, I love that first album.... but I remember back in the day thinking "You call this Punk rock???"
     
  13. CrimsonGhost

    CrimsonGhost

    Nov 14, 2000
    What EC record would you guys reccomend for the harder edge punkier stuff along the lines of radio radio? to be honest to my ears alot of his stuff is really out there and corny... but i LOVE that harder stuff, like his SNL stunt..
     
  14. plopswagon

    plopswagon

    May 17, 2008
    Oak Cliff TX
    Radio Radio is off of "This Years Model" also "Armed Forces" is excellent though not as raw.
     
  15. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    I don't know... EC is one of those character's whom you can talk about a catalogue of work or a songbook...every one of the early albums explored a different genre and the band tried to keep up, playing through their gritted teeth sometimes but usually making a decent stab at it. (S Nieve hates motown, which he calls Monkey music, and B Thomas hates Country... see BT's Big Wheel book)

    Paul Weller on the other hand, disbanded the Jam as he thought he needed different musicians to move into the different genres of song he was exploring. As much as I love the energy of the Jam, I think he was probably right.
     
  16. I was a huge EC fan right from when My Aim Is True was released in 1977. The next few albums were good, but by the time "Trust" came out in 1981, it was obvious that EC was transitioning from what made him popular. I'm glad that I got to see him and the Attractions on the Armed Forces tour in 1979. It was the second Rock concert that I attended. While it was a very short set (about 1 hour with the encore), it was intense and a great show. Then I saw them again a few years later on the Imperial Bedroom tour and it was totally different. We wound up walking out before the end of the show. It was very boring. But back to the first few albums, those recordings still stand the test of time to me. Brilliant writing and performances. Bruce's bass playing can be very fast and complicated, yet it completely fit the songs. He never sounds like he is over playing. That says a lot about him.

    BTW, see if you can find the old live recordings. They would play around with the song riffs/basslines/arrangements and it often sounds better than what was recorded in the studio. Very raw. The combination of live tones from EC's Fender Jazzmaster guitar and BT's Fender Precision Bass is so cool.
     
  17. Particle Man

    Particle Man

    Aug 24, 2004
    The "Live At the EL Macambo" disc that came out in the boxed set that was issued sometime in the 90's was a beautiful example of that raw and furious energy. It was recorded either '77 or '78. (I can't remember and am too lazy to look it up). Well worth the effort in finding it.
     
  18. Particle Man

    Particle Man

    Aug 24, 2004
    By the way, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Clover become The News, as in Huey Lewis and the...?
     
  19. synaesthesia

    synaesthesia

    Apr 13, 2004
    UK
    No, the band split and went separate ways. Huey Lewis and Sean Hopper went on to HL and the news. McFee was in a late incarnation of Doobie Bros. before they eventually split as well.
     
  20. js1

    js1

    Oct 1, 2006
    Yeah, I have that - on vinyl... The band is on fire.

    Agree that anything before Trust is where it's at. This Years Model and Armed Forces, yep. I like Get Happy a lot, too. Bruce Thomas just blows me away.

    js
     

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