Tony Levin. Bass sound. Double Fantasy

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Harmony Head
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Tony Levin. Bass sound. Double Fantasy

Post by Harmony Head » Mon Jan 16, 2006 2:27 pm

I was listening to the hits off John Lennon's Double Fantasy, and was struck by how unique a bass sound this is on this record. Any clues on what he was using? I would have thought it was a Musicman because i was pretty sure that's what he used for a while there (though i'm not familiar with Levin's specific instruments), but it sounds more like a Gibson ripper, or an SG Bass (EB1?). It's definitely a unique tone.

Anyone have any ideas?

HH
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Roman Sokal
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Post by Roman Sokal » Tue Jan 17, 2006 8:08 am

i asked tony- he replied:
"The guy has good ears. It was indeed a straight ahead 4 string Musicman StingRay (sometimes with the dampers on) except for a bit of fretless Steinberger bass."

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Harmony Head
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Re: re

Post by Harmony Head » Tue Jan 17, 2006 11:06 am

Roman Sokal wrote:i asked tony- he replied:
"The guy has good ears. It was indeed a straight ahead 4 string Musicman StingRay (sometimes with the dampers on) except for a bit of fretless Steinberger bass."
Wow.. that is fantastic. Thank you for that.

Just goes to show that it is all in the fingers. I can't get my Musicman to sound like that..

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Post by Roman Sokal » Tue Jan 17, 2006 11:22 am

i've always said its 90% in the fingers, 10% gear!

Winstontaneous
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Post by Winstontaneous » Tue Jan 17, 2006 2:07 pm

As a bass player, I am continually inspired by the artistry of Tony Levin. One of my earliest musical memories includes my mom playing a Judy Collins record--the purple one with her beautiful face on it--that featured Tony's playing.

I normally associate the StingRay with cutting, twangy, harsh tones but Tony manages to get a big furry earthy gelatinous sound out of them. I'm not sure of his signal chain on this album but I do know that many of his recorded tones are heavily compressed, sometimes with stompboxes. Anybody interested in finding out more about Tony should read his book, "Beyond the Bass Clef."

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Post by Roman Sokal » Tue Jan 17, 2006 3:04 pm

you'll be able to catch tony live when he tours for his upcoming album, 'resonator', due out in april...these shows give a good opportunity to view his gear up close, including that big custom stompbox board of his!

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Post by rolandk » Tue Jan 17, 2006 7:39 pm

I read he has a Stingray bass with interchangeable fretboards- fretted and fretless- that stay in place with magnets. He also uses JDI di boxes.
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Post by the brill bedroom » Wed Jan 18, 2006 6:39 pm

One of my most inspirational and yet disheartening moments in life was stalking Tony outside a Peter Gabriel show when i was 16 and struggling to become a bass player. i was convinced that he had some magic piece of gear that made his notes sound so full and was very sad when he told me that there was nothing i could buy, that it all had to come from my fingers and that only years of devoting myself to it would help me. That was not the answer I was hoping for. I was really hoping that it was some gadget that i oculd save up for.
check out what I did on my Otrari 8 track at
http://www.myspace.com/3903599

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Post by Roman Sokal » Mon Jan 23, 2006 7:33 pm

p.s. have a look at http://www.patmastelotto.com
the jan 18th news posting has a link to very recent session pics at a kentucky studio with tony and the great ronan chris murphy! (who posts here once in a while!)

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