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FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Don Was on bass


Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Sep 11th, 2017 07:53 AM   Edit   Profile  

Don Was, remember "Was (Not Was)?", is a musician who literally sets the standard for players and producers in the industry who live the "large" life.

I won't go into the details here because it would take so much room on this thread many would get tired of reading and hang up.

Besides, WIKI has already done the work.

I want to concentrate on Don's bass playing, in which I have seen him more than a few times the last six months (on TV) performing at large venue concerts with all-star lineups he put together. The latest was a gathering on the AXS channel to celebrate the life of Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead.

To me, Don is the kind of player I have always practiced hard to be good at: solid as a rock, nothing flashy, impeccable big, round Fender P-bass tone, plays only what the song requires, dedicated to making the band sound good, every note right where it should be, the ears of an elephant.

In other words, he shows off by not showing off.

How he manages to do bass at such a high level, with the zillions of other things he has going on, as the president of Blue Note Records, as a producer who has earned Grammy awards for a who's-who list of world class entertainers, is nothing short of jaw-dropping.

Any other Don Was fans out there?


(This message was last edited by edmonstg at 09:35 AM, Sep 12th, 2017)

Te 52

Laws of Physics

strictly enforced
Sep 11th, 2017 11:19 AM   Edit   Profile  

He is a smart guy and a smart musician.

If you can get through Larry Klein's rambling answer, Marcus Miller and Don have some very perceptive comments toward the end of this...




Sep 11th, 2017 08:33 PM   Edit   Profile  

George here is one for you. Larry and Earl Scruggs all Star Review doing Lonesome Reuben. Includes Don Was and many others.

Lonesome Reuben

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Sep 12th, 2017 06:17 AM   Edit   Profile  

The last I saw of him, he played upright bass backing up Paul McCartney at a Beatles tribute. Takes guts and confidence to play bass behind McCartney. I've been a fan since Was Not Was.


Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Sep 12th, 2017 07:30 AM   Edit   Profile  

Lou...great stuff...the perfect illustration of the old axiom that the best judge of how good you are is to look around the stage and see who else is standing there.

My admiration of Don Was is generally based on his electric stuff.

His current main squeeze (according to what he recently shared in an interview I saw) is a Custom Shop Precision bass equipped with a Tele headstock neck, no pickguard, and La Bella Deep Talkin' flats.

This is the one he used on the Jerry Garcia tribute show.




Sep 13th, 2017 07:15 PM   Edit   Profile  

I will check out his stuff on electric bass. I use Deep Talkin Labella Flats on one of my Fender Jazz Basses and like the tone. A bit higher tension than TI Jazz Flats. Manageable though for slower stuff as I have Arthritis in my fingers but use the Jazz bass with TI's for faster stuff.



Who is E. Sandoval?
Sep 16th, 2017 06:28 PM   Edit   Profile  

You can see Don Was commenting on the Funk Brothers and Motown in the SITSOM movie.

Contributing Member

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 1st, 2017 10:34 PM   Edit   Profile  

Ha!!! This came on the radio today. Don and his brother 29 years ago. Pretty funky!

Walk the Dinosaur



Oct 7th, 2017 07:24 AM   Edit   Profile  

I read that the bass credit for walk the dinosaur belongs to marcus miller

Contributing Member

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Oct 11th, 2017 08:51 PM   Edit   Profile  

Lukky, I did a quick search but didn't turn up anything. Even so, you still can't lose with Marcus Miller.

I also watched the video closer. What I thought initially to be a P with leopard skin paint is actually some other kind of bass. Maybe a Univox??



Oct 12th, 2017 04:59 AM   Edit   Profile  

I did a pretty exhuastive search for credits, and I just found reference to the marcus thing on basschat I believe. Certainly doesnt make it true, however, the song clearly has some slap, and while i'm not saying don was does not slap, there certainly is no evidence of it in the video. Doesnt mean he didnt do it obviously, since the video doesnt in any way have to represent the recording....but production credits are all I could find for don was on this.

FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Don Was on bass

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