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Fender Jazz Bass Guitar

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Fender Jazz Bass Guitar
Fender Jazz bass. Image taken from the 1970 Fender catalogue
Fender Jazz Bass Guitar
Fender Jazz bass. Image taken from the 1972 Fender catalogue

The Fender Jazz bass (or J-bass) is a classic instrument, as well known and played today as any other bass. It found favour with so many bass players, from legends like Noel Redding of the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Jaco Pastorius (who now have signature models) to small time artists who just love that thin neck, and bright sound.

The Jazz bass was launched in 1960; a two-pickup companion to the Fender Precision.

In the late fifties, buyers were still wary of solid-bodied basses, being used to upright acoustic basses, and so string mutes were standard until 1962, giving a more 'upright bass' sound.

As the sixties wore on, this became less relevant, and the Jazz bass was accepted for what it was.

The bass went from strength to strength, and has been made ever since, with only minor changes in half a century of manufacture. Vintage Jazz basses change hands for very large sums; not only are they highly collectable, they are also desirable players instruments, particularly amongst jazz and funk musicians.

The following description is taken from the 1969 Fender lovin' care catalogue

Tops in sound at the bottom of the musical register…Jazz bass by Fender. Included among its design features are two separate pickups, each having eight pole pieces to capture the full vibration of the string in the magnetic field giving full string tone responses and precluding fading or decay.

The tone and pickup mixing circuit employs a separate volume control for each pickup a single tone control operating both pickups. In this manner, any degree of bass and tremolo may be attained with further tone values increased or decreased by using individual volume controls.

The Jazz Bass "off-set" waist design contributes greatly to playing ease and comfort of the player. It places the arm in a natural position over the strings which facilitates playing technique. In addition, the portability and light weight of the Jazz Bass will be readily appreciated by every bassist. It afford ease of movements on stage and ease of storing. Individual bridges are adjustable for perfect string lengths and heights, and the truss-rod reinforced neck is adjustable to retain alignment. Extremely slender, the comfort feel of this neck is readily noticeable. Binding and inlaid position markers add beauty and make fretting easier.

Available in shaded Sunburst or in selected custom colors. Left-hand models available by special order

Have a look at some Jazz bass publicity in the Jazz bass adverts section, technical information and catalogue appearances.

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There are 1 comments on this article so far. Add your comment
Anthony Long Comment left 12th January 2016 02:02:23
I have a 1969 Fender Jazz Bass American made, It is in very good shape except for belt buckle usage My Dad bought in 1969 after he got home from Vietnam I also have the fender bassman amp and the cab with two 15's, He has traveled all over the world with the gear on a USO tour in 1977, just figured that I would share the story with you, Could you tell me the approximate price range for bass and amp? I also have a 1984 strat and a tele B-bender both in excellent shape.

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