It’s early, and Pete Townshend’s “Give Blood” is reverberating through the shop. No one is working, but not because of laziness. Every time I hear this song it just stops me in my tracks because Pino Paladino’s bass playing is beyond sublime. Most people probably think they are hearing a synthesizer workout—but they’re not. Palidino used a low octave effect on his bass. The whole song is one magnificent bass solo—listen to that hand vibrato on his fretless! Good God, it makes me want to throw my bass in the chipper and become a hermit. Oh wait, I already did that.
Years ago I worked with Paladino, designing a fretless bass, and he was a complete gentleman to work with. He showed me the MXR harmonizer that he used to get his sound—he didn’t think it was a big deal. Of course, when it was me playing through his rig, it certainly wasn’t.