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Why call it an axe?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by bassistjo, May 13, 2006.

  1. bassistjo


    Jun 22, 2005
    It seems just about every where I go at least one person refers to there instrument as an ax does any one know how this started?
  2. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    ... 'cuz it's best used in the woodshed.
  3. Bassist4Life


    Dec 17, 2004
    Buffalo, NY
    Maybe it has something to do with "chops".

  4. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    cause paul bunyan was the first one to play the bass, and he accidently called his bass his "axe" one time (because he had that huge axe) and it just stuck ever since then.
  5. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
  6. Akami

    Akami Four on the floor

    Mar 6, 2005
    Hey I can verify that because I think I've even got the original Bass Player issue with that interview.:D
  7. d8g3jdh

    d8g3jdh Guest

    Aug 9, 2005
    What interesting responses. :)
  8. FriscoBassAce


    Dec 29, 2004
    Frisco, Texas
    Independent Manufacturers Representative
    It's got to be because of the shape...I mean, who hasn't thought about holding their axe by the "handle" and chopping some wood with it??

    I did a little research online, and apparently it was first called an axe by jazz musicians in the 50's.

    Maybe it has to do with the fact that, like an axe, a guitar (or bass) is a tool that needs a strong person behind it to give it it's power.

    I'm just guessing though. Good question! I had never considered the origin, although I always snickered when Gene Simmons played his AXE bass...that was too cool! Here's a link to Gene's Axe: http://www.gui****en.com/simmons/AXE.gif
  9. One time I saw I guy get hit in the head by a guitar. He jumped up on stage trying to start something with the band and the guitar player raised up his mighty axe and came chopping down onto this idiots head. The bass player was ready to let one fly on his buddy. And he played a heavy 70's axe.
  10. keb


    Mar 30, 2004
    I get people calling guitars and basses "axes," but I draw the line at people calling keyboards "axes." I see that all the time, and I'm just ...wut?
  11. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    That makes sens...I'm pretty sure horn guys were also calling their respective instruments an 'axe'.
    Woodshed, chops, tool, etc all work for me.

    About the EB's shape...when my parents bought my 1st bass, the salesdude told them(in front of me)-
    It can always be used as an oar in the event he loses interest.
  12. tappingtrance

    tappingtrance Cooke Harvey Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2005
    I am going to guess it was pre-50's like Woody Herman's Woodchoppers Ball which was a shredding tune.
  13. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    Why call it an axe?

    Because of this guy!

  14. It is true that it was Paul Bunyan. He and George Washington once had a bass battle, George with his hatchet and Paul with his axe.
    Needless to say, Paul won displaying a superb variety of techniques.
  15. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    +1, hahaha

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