Bass Guitar Review: American Vintage II 1954 Precision Bass®
According to Fender, they literally wrote the book on electric basses, laying the foundation for musical innovation and evolution.
From Fender: The Fender® American Vintage II series presents a remarkably accurate take on the revolutionary designs that altered the course of musical history. Built with period-accurate bodies, necks and hardware, premium finishes, and meticulously voiced, year-specific pickups, each instrument captures the essence of authentic Fender craftsmanship and tone.
Quincy Jones, the Fender bass was “…the one technological breakthrough that changed music forever.”
The Precision Bass was first produced in October 1951 and if Clarence Leo Fender were to be remembered for nothing else, surely it would be the Precision. It was a whole new kind of instrument that didn’t exist before he invented it.
Although it initially shared many design cues with the Telecaster®, such as an oversized Tele® headstock, slab body, and chrome control plate, by 1954, the P-Bass® had been updated with the same sweeping curves and contoured edges of the newly launched Stratocaster®. The American Vintage II 1954 Precision Bass reproduces the quintessential tone and feel of the original.
If you’re in the market for a Fender Precision Bass, shop with this link. Your purchase is a great way to support Worship Leader and it costs you nothing.
- Ash Body
- Gloss Nitrocellulose Lacquer Finish
- Pure Vintage ’54 Single-Coil Precision® Pickup
- “C”-Shaped Neck Profile
- Pure Vintage 2-Saddle Precision Bass® with Fiber Saddles, Serialized
- Pure Vintage Reverse Open-Gear Tuners
About Raul Aguilar
Raul was born and raised in Lake Tahoe, California. He, his wife (Katy) and three kiddos (Ashton, Ava and Nora) decided to leave CA in 2015 for a much slower pace in Nashville, TN. Music was the vehicle God used to bring Raul and his family to TN. He’s been a bass/guitar player with artists in Nashville like I Am They, We Are Messengers, Steven Curtis Chapman, and many more and toured off and on for the last 7 years. He’s since come off the road and is enjoying time with his family, church, and surrounding community.
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I just want it to feel worn in. I want it to feel like it’s been my bass for a long time. Even out of the box. And I know this bass, it feels that way. The neck just feels so good. It’s a, it’s a wider neck than most, it’s a c-shaped 1954 neck. But it just feels so good the way they fretted it.
There are no sharp edges, nothing. And it just feels so good with these flat-wound strings that they put on here. It’s just nice and smooth. Reminds me of my upright bass playing days. Out of the box, I had to make a few minor adjustments, which were just preferences. I had to take the action a bit lower. Cause, I like, I like my strings a little closer to the fretboard.
I had to adjust the pickup here, which was pretty hot for the G string on the bottom here. So I had to adjust that down a bit. But aside from that, as far as the action, the intonation was great. Everything else was great. Good action. So with good action, I mean, it’s, it’s just the way the strings feel on the fretboard.
So a lot of people like their action high. There are some players out there that like their strings higher up on the fretboard, a little harder to get down in it and really dig into the string. As for me, I like them a little lower. I traditionally play a five-string Fender jazz bass, and there’s a lot of funk stuff that you play. So my action, I like it a lot lower and I’m used to that. So again, it’s preference. This is modeled after 19- the 1954 Precision Bass. Everything is pretty much original to what they did back in 1954. Very simple. There are very simple controls. There’s a volume knob and a tone and the tone all the way down, you get somewhat of a, just the muted kind of a muted type of type tone.
You turn it up and the brightness I mean, see, you start getting it really bright. Here’s the one. Here’s kind of in the middle. And then there’s all the way bright. So definitely different rock, a lot of rock, a lot of punk rock. You want, you want to hear the high-end notes, the treble. So sometimes you’ll hear that on the higher end if you playing fifties music again like this was, this bass was made in the fifties.
I mean, a lot of it was jazz stuff. A lot of it was like early rock and roll stuff. It’s a little more scaled back as far as the treble was concerned. It’s great, it’s pretty versatile, for just being one tone knob. I would definitely use this to play a few things at my church. One song that kind of jumped out at me that I would like to use this my church, the have a song called Passion. It’s pretty, it’s bass-driven.
It starts out with bass, the way this sounds, and as a P-bass, it has a certain unique sound different than the jazz bass. It just kind of fits that criterion for me. So I would definitely use it for that song. I know a lot of gospel-type bass players love their jazz basses. This is more of a rock-type bass, punk rock.
It has a whole look, rock-and-roll type of look. You know, the jazz bass was built for a unique type of sound, you know, funk, R&B, soul, that type of thing.
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