Monday, October 14, 2013

Fender Precision Bass

Fender Precision Bass

So many stories have been told about Fender basses...

Whether you're a beginner or a pro, if you haven't learned something about the history of Fender guitars you are missing an important piece of what bass playing is about.

Leo Fender originally brought out the Precision to "free the bass player from the big doghouse" referring to the size of the double-bass that was prevalent in bands of the day.
Leo actually wanted to create an instrument that was easier to handle but would sound like the double-bass, albeit amplified. He also wanted to help professional guitar players who needed to double on bass so they could get more work.
In designing the Precision, Fender created an instrument with a similar shape to his solid-body electric guitars, but bigger. It had two cutouts, which helped balance the instrument.
Leo designed the P-bass as a four-string instrument tuned to E-A-D-G, with a 34-inch neck. Unlike the double-bass it was designed to replace, the Precision used frets (20 of them) to ensure precise intonation for all notes.
Originally the P-bass used a single-coil pickup but later changed it to a split-coil.

Originally Precisions came with metal covers over the bridge and pickups. Many bass players removed them. Today Fender basses can be purchased with or without the covers.

Fender also included a finger rest below the strings, expecting bass players to pluck the strings with their thumb. Like the covers, many players removed them.
Fender has made a few more subtle changes to the P-bass over the years but the instrument remains a musical icon.