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Friday, July 17, 2015

Wilton Felder's "I Want You Back" Isolated Bass

Wilton Felder image
I always question myself when I post old song nuggets, because I don't want to seem like I'm dwelling in the past. The fact of the matter is that so many of these isolated tracks are interesting and fun to listen to, not to mention occasional teaching moments. Take for instance today's track - Wilton Felder's bass track on the Jackson 5's first hit "I Want You Back."

Felder was not only a great bass player but was actually better known as a tenor sax player, as he was one of the founding members of the great Jazz Crusaders. He was also part of Motown's studio team when the company moved to Los Angeles.

There are lots of cool things to listen for on this cut.

1. Listen to the tone of the bass. There's not a lot of really deep bottom to it, which was the case with many records of the time. Engineers didn't concentrate on the bottom end back then like they do today.

2. There's a lot of compression on it. The bass sits at the same level for every note, something also common from the era, especially from the major studios of the time.

3. The playing is very clean, but not perfect. It's about as good as you could get in the days of tape and few tracks, but it's something that we'd fix a little today (although that didn't stop anyone from enjoying the final record).

4. Check out the bridge at around 2:15. Felder plays a difficult part with ease and makes it flow like water.







2 comments:

Delsin Elu said...

Wonderful post and awesome video. thanks for sharing.
Sinema Films

George said...

One of my favorite bass lines.

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