|Ask Willis - June - 2000|
Are you aware that the Japanese Ibanez catalogue has a picture of you smiling?
Thanks for bringing this problem to my attention. Please accept my apologies.I've spoken to the proper authorities at Ibanez and the catalogue designer has been punished and demoted. "Zero-Tolerance" guidelines have been introduced for the catalogue and the artist's expressions will be strictly monitored in the future. I thank you and Ibanez thanks you.
Do you think that a fretless bass should be lined or unlined?
Even with fret lines, you still have to compensate for where you are on the neck.
Check out my bass set up manual. The intonation section shows where your finger has to be in relation to different parts of the neck. Even with lines, you have to adjust your finger postision. At first it's hand-eye coordination (the reason for the lines). Then later that becomes muscle memory.
GHS Progressives are a stainless steel string, no? You use those on your fretless??
I was under the impression that the best thing for a fretless bass was nickel beacause it is softer???
BTW, on your Signature bass, you have three strap pins, why???
Thanks in advance Willis.
Actually, no. They're an alloy wrap over a stainless core. Kind of the best of both.
2 reasons for the extra button. I always had my back strap button even with the top of
the bridge, the bass seemed to balance better there. It was Ibanez's idea to add a 2nd button
so that when you leaned the bass against an amp, it wouldn't topple over....the best of both....again.
Having read some of bass magazines I often hear well known players talk about the "Real Book"? Can you tell me what that is (I guess it's a book of standards)? Do you know who the author is and where I could get it, preferably over the internet (I'm in Australia)?
Technically, the REAL BOOK is illegal. Most copies you find are bootlegs. It's basically lead sheets to hundred of tunes that are considered "standards". Learning and studying these standards are a big part of anyone's jazz and harmony education.
Try this one, it's legal: http://www.shermusic.com/standard_real.htm
I have a little question. When I use the right hand muting technique (the one where you place the side of your palm on the strings by the bridge) Itend to get a clicking noise in the attack of my note. Listening very closely to your recordings, I've noticed that you don't seem to have any fingernail issues. I tried clipping them far far back, but that didn't work either. any suggestions?
It could be your nails, but if you don't get that sound when you play normally then that's probably not the problem. You might be hitting the string against the pickup. In that case, either you're playing too hard or your pickup is too close to your stings. If playing softer doesn't work and you still get the sound, try lowering the pickup and see if that gets rid of the click.
I love TT's work and also your website! I'm a guitarist (don't hold it against me!) and I've been getting into the whole jazz and fusion side of playing. What i've been doing is I've been trying to play over changes, this is the procedure I use:
1. Pick a song and then analyze what key it is in.
2. Then I write out above each chord on the chart the notes in the chord ed. Em7 = E G B D. This is so that I can follow the changes with the notes I play.
3. I then record the Chords and solo over them using the appropriate scale making sure that when the chord changes I follow it with the note I'm playing.
My problem is this: It sounds forced and it sounds like I'm too concerned with making the change then making music! Any tips would be much appreciated since at the end of the year I'm auditioning for some music schools.