Original Article Written for Bass Guitar Magazine
Famous for it’s distinguishable offset body, bright tone and rich midrange frequency, the Fender Jazz Bass is an obvious choice amongst bass players across the world. Whilst browsing Andy Baxter’s Showroom in Hoxton, there was a particular Jazz Bass that really caught our eye.
A black 1973 Fender Jazz Bass with a Maple neck and fingerboard, black block inlays and black binding. This bass resembles an instrument that most will be familiar with; Geddy Lee’s 1972 Jazz Bass, which is almost identical – all but a calendar year and a Badass II Bridge.
Geddy Lee’s pawnshop purchased Jazz Bass has been a firm favourite of his since the recording of Rush’s ‘Moving Pictures’. Until then, Geddy had always proffered his Rickenbacker. Geddy was surprised how easily he could shape the top end to sound like a Ricky, yet the Jazz Bass offered more shape and punch in the bottom end.
Fender has subsequently introduced the signature series Geddy Lee Jazz Bass as well as the USA custom shop version. Both are great replicas and carry the same great features of the bass that Geddy Lee originally picked up at a pawnshop in Kalamazoo. But nothing quite compares to the ‘gnarly, growly, grunt’ tone of an original early 70’s Jazz and a new bass will also never match in terms of the look and feel.
The 1973 Fender Jazz Bass on offer at Andy Baxter Bass is original including the case and metal covers, with the exception of what appears to be a rewound back pickup. Overall the bass shows little wear considering its age.
“I personally love these Maple neck Black block Jazz basses. I owned one for many years in this very same finish. This bass has tons of tone and the growl is fantastic. With both pickups and tone up full this bass really sings with tons of top end, the mids punch through and the bottom end holds it all together”, said Andy Baxter.
Pictured: The Black 1973 Fender Jazz, together with two more 1973 Jazz Basses – Candy Red and Lake Placid Blue, all sporting Black Block Inlays on Maple necks.
Players, collectors and Rush fans alike would agree that £3,495 is a pretty decent price to pay for the real deal.