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!  

Which flatwounds did JPJ use in the early Led Zepp days?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by KoalaBass, Dec 30, 2012.

  1. KoalaBass


    Aug 12, 2011
    Rotosound 77? Fender's? Labella's? Anything else? What are your thoughts?
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Regular Human Bartender Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    45 years ago? I'll bet even JPJ has no idea!
  3. barebones

    barebones Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2005
    Denver, CO
    While the fat sound he got leads many bassists to believe he was using flats and tube amps, JPJ stated in a Bass Player article I read about a dozen years ago that he used round wound strings and solid state amps on all of his recordings.
  4. stony


    Apr 10, 2007
    this has been discussed with him many times....he did not use flats they were rotosound rounds
  5. Matt R.

    Matt R.

    Jul 18, 2007
    Huntsville AL
    ^^ That
  6. mccartneyman


    Dec 22, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Managing Editor, Bass Guitars Editor, MusicGearReview.com
    Apparently many bassists forget that basses have a tone control. Swing Bass 66 need not sound like they did for Chris Squire and Greg Lake.
  7. jasper383


    Dec 5, 2004
    Durham NC
    He has said conflicting things over the years.

    Can you get Roto rounds to sound like this?

  8. stony


    Apr 10, 2007
    yes HE did.....with his fingers
  9. Stranger Danger

    Stranger Danger Feel Like A Stranger Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2010
    Maybe yes, maybe no but if someone really wants to cop that sound, it would be a lot easier with flats.

    If he was playing rounds, it wasnt just a tone roll off, they must have been really dead.
  10. OhValhalla


    Dec 16, 2008
    He has said conflicting things in different interviews. One he states that he kept flats on his jazz and rounds on his Alembic, another he says he stopped using flats after his session days.

    I'm of the belief that he switched strings around a lot and definitely used both rounds and flats, based on isolated tracks. And if you want to cop his sound, you'd have to listen to the specific song and go for that sound in what ever way works for you. Most recording guys don't care what gear they are using, as long as they get the sound they want.
  11. barebones

    barebones Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2005
    Denver, CO
    Has JPJ said that he used flats and tubes at some point? If so, that would certainly contradict what he said in the article I read. He was adamant about having not used those things.

    To me, the most interesting thing about that article at the time was the interviewer's apparent assumption that JPJ's sound could only have come from flats and tubes. I had pretty much assumed the same and was surprised to learn the opposite from the player himself.

    Kind of funny, too, regarding the clip you posted--that very song is the reason I bought my first Warmoth fretless neck for the old Frankenbass and started playing fretless almost exclusively. Once upon a time, someone told me JPJ was playing a fretless bass on that track, and that was supposedly how he got that big fat tone. Apparently that claim also was false, but I still love playing fretless!
  12. See, that sounds like roundwounds to me.
  13. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    That sounded like Roto flats to me. BTW, first time I ever listened to it all the way through...man, he sure clammed up a couple good ones in there!
  14. Guitar Mag, 1977 - JPJ states, and I am paraphrasing: "Jazz bass, Rotosound Flats, RS77. Alembics, Roto RS66 (rounds). Single Coil Precision, Roto RS66." He elaborates on these string choices as well, these were not just tossed off statements, and explains why he prefers rounds on the others, vs. flats on the jazz. He mentions his fender fretless P in the interview as well, but does not mention strings.

    Re: Amps - "I prefer solid state to valves (tubes), used all sorts of amps in the early days and blew most of them up until the Acoustic 360/361 rig". Note the Acoustic is solid state pre, tube power. By the time of the interview he was in the process of changing over to Galien Kruger amps, the B400 I think.

    Re: recording - "I primarily go direct into the console".

    So there you have it. I'll take the mans word as stated during the actual time period when these things were in use, rather than what he stated 30+ years later.

    I think I have the word for word quotes elsewhere here, so do a search if you like. Others have posted the same (as yes, this comes up all the time).
  15. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Sorry, but the 361 power amp is solid state, too.
  16. Then I might have the model wrong?

    One of the old acoustic cabs w/ the 18" folded horn design has a tube power amp in the bottom, as far as I know.

    Could be wrong though.
  17. bigbajo60


    Nov 7, 2003
    Laredo, Texas
    If memory serves correctly, I'm pretty sure that through those old 18" folded horn enclosures, the brightest roundwound strings will sound as deep, dubby and dull as any flats!
  18. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    yeah, never heard of any old Acoustic folded-horn tube amps.

    i do remember the interviews where he said it was all roundwounds, though, that flats just didn't respond the way he liked.
  19. Again, long interview, guitar mag 1977, he is very specific in his answers about strings. At that time, he indicates he had flats on the Jazz.
  20. I don't mean to quibble with everyone here, but I have bootleg concert recordings from 1977 that contradict that. In 77 he was using the acoustic folded 18 cabs with GK tops, and Alembic basses (with rounds). This setup sounds quite bright to me, and a big contrast to say, the sound from 1973s Song Remains the Same recording.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 6, 2021

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.