Fingerstyle: Getting Different Sounds (Pt 2)

Today’s post is part two of a series on getting different fingerstyle sounds using right hand technique.  Part 1 is here.

Today we’ll look at two of the greats on the Fender Precision bass.

James Jamerson:  1962 Fender Precision Bass

“What’s Going On”  (Original)

Isolated Bass

Jamerson is using heavy gauge La Bella Flatwounds on his P Bass.  You can hear the classic P Bass growl on the isolated track.  Jamerson is known for only using his index finger for plucking the strings (famously nicknamed “The Hook”).  He has a very consistent attack in all registers.   The godfather of electric bass.


John Entwistle:  60’s Fender Precision Bass

“My Generation” – Live at Leeds   (Original)


The Ox is playing a unspecified 60’s era Fender Precision Bass.  He is using Rotosound Roundwound Swing Bass 66 strings.  That enhances the P Bass growl to an aggressive roar.  Also, he plays very hard with his fingers.  Dig in right over the pickup.

As you can hear, these two players have very different fingerstyle picking techniques.  You can change your tone and overall sound considerably by the way you pluck the strings.  Try and be consistent with the amount of pressure that you use.  More on both these bassist to come.