Cliff Williams
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Thread: Anchors away

  1. #1

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    Anchors away

    I met Jack a long time ago when he used to live here in San Antonio. I had never owned an Ernie Ball Musicman bass prior to meeting Jack. After playing some of his basses, I went on a Stingray 5 mission and ordered fretted and fretless versions online. The fretted version I received was a sunburst/rosewood bass that played fantastic and sounded incredible. The only problem was it weighed about 11 pounds. I am a little guy and it was just too much weight for me to deal with. Jack begged me not to send it back. Picture that.....Jack begged....really. I did send it back and got a replacement that sounded fine...but not as fantastic as that 11 pounder did.

    Today I think if I had that bass I would just sit when I play it. I wonder who has it and if he or she recognizes the greatness they own. That one had something special about it. Thinking back through the all the basses that have passed through my collection, I recall several that were something special in the way they sounded and several of them were traded or sold because they were so heavy. There was the SR5, a late 1970's Fender Jazz and a Roscoe SKB 6 that were fantastic sounding but very heavy.

    So, perhaps the next time you are looking at Musicman basses at a dealer and you take one off the wall that is very heavy...plug that sucker in and audition it. You just might take it home.

    Oh, yes I do understand that the newest versions of the basses have reduced weight...probably a nod in my direction...but I'm certain they sound lovely too.

    I wonder who has Heinz?

  2. #2

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    Heinz is hanging on the wall here in North Texas, Chuck.

    Oh, I remember that heavy SR5 you sent back. Every time you plucked a note, there was a bass drum, too. Man, that thing was sonically HUGE.

    I have a four string bass right now that is really a boat anchor. I can't imagine doing a long gig with it, but it sounds so good that I keep it for plinking at home (and recording - it records great). Like you, a few years ago, I might have put it on the block, for sale. Sometimes we do actually get smarter as we get older. Not always, and not in all things!

    So yes, I have Heinz here with me, and also my 20th Stingray 5 which is beautiful. And now I have a new SR5 Special pending, which should come the first part of January. Seems like a lot of Stingray 5s for Lord Bongo, eh? But I've always loved those fivers. It's iconic, isn't it?

  3. #3

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    Yes the SR 5 is iconic for sure. The only thing I never liked about them was the shape of the pickguard. IMO it would look so much better with the oval pickguard.

    I'm glad to hear Heinz is home where he belongs.

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