acoustic or electric bass? Hot Tuna edition

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First time I ever saw Quicksilver play live was during 1966 or 1967 in Riverside, CA (of all places) when Jim Murray was still in the band.


Jim Murray (in top hat)
 

mgod

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Jack’s tone was mostly clear as a bell in the early 70s. Certainly the first time I saw him in January 71, with the sunburst Guild, he sounded just like this. And I’m pretty sure Jorma is playing a Strat.
 

fronobulax

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Jack’s tone was mostly clear as a bell in the early 70s. Certainly the first time I saw him in January 71, with the sunburst Guild, he sounded just like this. And I’m pretty sure Jorma is playing a Strat.
:)

Thanks. This was almost getting to the point where "Can someone ask Jack?" point.
 

adorshki

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:)

Thanks. This was almost getting to the point where "Can someone ask Jack?" point.
Only because one of my earliest memorable experiences here was just that, about what he used on Baxter's, I had an epiphany over the weekend:
Fender Jazz Bass.
REALLY woody tone.
Well duh.
What was the quintessential bass for jazz before there was a solid-body electric?
So it would seem to stand to reason that this is the capability Fender'd be trying to sell to jazz bassists.
Jack himself claimed to be a Scott LaFaro fan in Jefferson Airplane and the San Francisco Sound.


Did you forget a smile?
I could claim it was a dead-pan delivery but actually that sputtering noise you heard was a brain fart.
 
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mellowgerman

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OLD ZOMBIE THREAD, I know! BUT!!!! I finally figured it out. The bass used on this performance of Death Don't Have No Mercy WAS in fact the bass balalaika! I found this particular Quarantine Concert where Jack brings it out and the sound is unmistakably the same as on the DDHNM this thread was about. I knew this had to be an acoustic instrument! Listen below:
*also, well worth rewinding a bit and hearing him tell the full story of the instrument
 
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mgod

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Jazz bass - into Baxter's
Starfire the first (in the video linked here) - used from late Baxter's to just-post Woodstock
Starfire the sequel - used from late 69 to 72
Alembic #1 - used almost exclusively into 74, then Starfire II brought back into use
Flying V - the rampage years
 

mellowgerman

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I found the whole recording from 4/30/1971 on KSAN radio and was also released as a CD in 1996 as "Classic Hot Tuna Acoustic"
What a killer performance! The more I listen, the more I want a Balalaika bass. Even the fret noise/buzz and squeaky strings sound great on that bass. So much throaty punch from that beast.

You can also hear Jack play it on the 1971 self-titled album by James and The Good Brothers. Sits so nicely in an acoustic mix. The cover of "Can't Find My Way Home" and "Never a Loser" were highlights for me, but a great album all around
 
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RVBASS

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I poked around the web a little, looks like they played that tune a bit in 1969-71, and the photos of that period I could find show him playing Starfire or Fender basses. I believe he got his Alembic bass (#001, the first Alembic bass built) in 1972.
 
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