In the same way one making their own music still loves others' and still enjoys what influenced them in the past, I am still a total geek for all kinds of guitars & basses. I'm not a purist or all that self-absorbed into my own trip, past what it takes to be "all in" and deliver the goods. I know I have an answer for some but for others there are other answers. This is one bass I truly love.
Its story is for another time, and let me be clear - I don't love it because it plays great, sounds fantastic, and is a great design that balances... it's not even close to any of that. It wasn't close to any of that when it was new in 1969 (or designed in the late '50s) and the "reissues" didn't fix anything, mostly just made everything cheaper somewhere else. The back pickup is useless - most of these just had the big ol' neck pickup, it's the iconic - if a bit soupy - tone of this design.
But I love it. It's got soul. Aside from the character & honest road wear of this specific example, and the fact that its neck profile is a big part of what became the Birdsong neck, it's fun. It has its own tonal personality. I wish it had more clarity, deeper lows, less sludgy mids, and a body that would balance. I wish it had better hardware and a better bridge design. I wish for a bit more resonance, few more frets, and a few less dead spots. In short (pardon the pun) I wish it were a Birdsong...
(Tom Waits-style voice: "What's he DOING in there...")
Thoughts for Thanksgiving weekend:
Wherever your road takes you, know I am thankful for you; for what you share into my life, for what you allow me to share into yours. We are together today in gratitude for results of sacrifice and union; of time spent and of gardens from seed that bloomed. The chairs full will empty, and those empty will fill again. Time and tide wait for no one; we must take the hours as they come and make moments as we go. From our circle to yours we offer wishes for a warm and safe Thanksgiving. Please pass some of this blessing along in your own way unto those who are neither, and share the riches in your heart with all around you. Peace and love be upon you and your home on this day.
Listening to: The Wipers Follow Blind; T.J. Kirk If Four Was One; Mudhoney Mudhoney.