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Willie Weeks

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by MM, Jan 10, 2001.

  1. I've heard Willie Weeks cited as an influence by some of my favorite bassists (i.e. Tommy Shannon, Roscoe Beck). I confess that I don't know anything about him. Can someone hear enlighten me and turn me on to some good cd's to check out?
    Mr_O'B likes this.
  2. mchildree

    mchildree Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2000
    He's played on lots of stuff, but my favorite is "Donny Hathaway Live". This is kind of hard to find, but well worth the effort. You'll find many, many experienced players (including Tommy Shannon) who feel this album is kind of like the Holy Grail for R&B-style rythym section stuff. In fact, in the new Stevie Ray Vaughan box set, Chris Layton says this is the album he was playing along with when SRV heard him and gave him the gig.
  3. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I couldn't agree more with the choice for a disc to track down. I found it at Border's in Atlanta without much difficulty. Great examples of playing in the pocket without being boring. We should all aspire to have that much taste.
  4. Willie Weeks' solo on "Everything is Everything" off the "Donny Hathaway Live" album is amazing. And within the grasp of most of us, too, which makes it even more inspiring.
    Mr_O'B likes this.
  5. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Willie Weeks played the bass line on David Bowie's "Fame"(& I'm assuming the whole YOUNG AMERICANS album)...Weeks also played in the later Full Moon band(W/ Buzz Feiten & Neil Larsen...remember the hit "Who'll Be The Fool Tonight"?).
    Weeks later became a member of the Doobie Brothers(early '80s...he replaced Tiran Porter; I think Weeks did one studio album + a live double album w/ The Doobies).
    Weeks has also played on countless R&B records(like the aforementioned Donny Hathaway stuff).
    Currently? Is he still in Nashville playing in Wynnona Judd's band?
    AlastairWatts likes this.
  6. I bought a copy of Donny Hathaway Live off of Amazon.com about 2 months ago after failing to find a copy in local stores. I was pretty surpised to get it on CD. I agree 110% with the positive comments in these posts. I love Willie's playing.
  7. i just picked up Donny Live and greatest hits at Cdnow about 2 months ago, every bass player should have DH live, great CD with great bass
  8. pedro


    Apr 5, 2000
    Madison, WI.
    I listen to the Live Donny Hathaway CD at least twice a day. One of the truly remarkable bass solo's for exactly the reasons Dave Siff says. It's not about how difficult anything is but how good it sounds. Willie takes his time, plays within the pocket and is busy as hell within the pocket. It doesn't hurt to have Cornell Dupree laying it down on guitar either.

    Please but this CD - you won't be sorry.
  9. Okay, Donny Hathaway Live it is. Thanks guys. I knew you all'd come through for me.
  10. Niels Keijzer

    Niels Keijzer Guest

    Nov 27, 2000
    He also played on Bowie's "Diamond Dogs", a weird album (with bad-taste albumcover), but Willie really plays great supportive lines, and what a great tone he has...
    thunderstation and AlastairWatts like this.
  11. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    Glad I saw this thread. I just listened to "Everything..." for the first time in years, that solo is just as powerful as it was back then. That is how bassists tried to solo before the pyrotechniques hit. Willie built that thing from the ground up. Solo'd and still kept the groove... harder than it sounds.

    Got to remember that the next time I'm forced to solo;)
    Mr_O'B, Dr. Cheese and JimK like this.
  12. Just got my replacement copy of DH live and am on my 5th listening today. I had a well worn LP that got "borrowed" and never returned like 15 years ago. It's great to hear the whole record again and that bass solo totally rules.
  13. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    I looked for the live album, but it was 42$ for a tape!
    and I wanted to hear everything is everything....
    so I dowloaded it from napster, didn't really have the choice.
    It is really good, now I have to look for the album, but here it is really hard to find.
    Like I said the only place that could order it was 42$ for a tape!

  14. I found Donny Hathaway Live as an import CD on CDnow.com for $16US. I don't know if that helps.
  15. slagheap


    Dec 23, 2011
    great player - his stuff is everywhere.
  16. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005

    That P bass with flats sound is thumb sucking good:roflmao:
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2016
    thunderstation likes this.
  17. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    "Donny Hathaway Live" is the first choice- I had a tape with that album on one side and the live Aretha Franklin (with King Curtis, Cornell Dupree, Billie Preston, and the great Jerry Jemmott) on the other side. I played that tape on the way to every gig for two years. It will always get you into the right frame of mind to play bass.

    Second is John Scofield's "That's What I Say", his tribute to Ray Charles.
    Then cruise Youtube for Eric Clapton performances with Willie- he did the gigs with Steve Winwood, and there's a bunch of the more recent Crossroads Festivals with Weeks.

    He's also all over at least one Wynona Judd album, "What The World Needs Now Is Love", and I believe he's on the first Ron Wood solo album, "I've Got Me Own Album To Do"
    Jhengsman likes this.
  18. MR PC

    MR PC Banned

    Dec 1, 2007
    A player's player, in the regard that he invented a feel, and a diatonic chordal voicing on the bass guitar in popular music. Something that is imitated widely and across many genres, whether players realize it or not. When and if a new messiah such as Jaco hit's the scene, Willie's significant contribution will probably be a part of the formula.
  19. I happened to see Willie Weeks on George Harrison's '74 tour - regardless of the reviews - I thought that tour was great & it was the 1st time I saw musicians actually 'making music' on stage - Willie stood out without standing out- just right in the groove and supporting the rhythm -- strangely - i saw Ringo over this past summer [2016] and it had the same vibe - good musicians plying their craft and enjoying themselves with the audience.
  20. Mr_O'B


    Feb 22, 2015
    Mr. Weeks has been in the entertainment business for a long time
    and doesn't get the credit he deserves.

    Eric Clapton works with the best!

    Continues groove while soloing!
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2016

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