"You Just Do It": Talking Heads' Tina Weymouth on the Secret of Great Basslines | Bacon's Archive

Tina Weymouth.Wikipedia Commons.

Editor's note: This post is part of a series of unpublished interviews from the personal research archive of noted guitar writer Tony Bacon. For previous installments, take a look at Tony's interviews with Paul McCartney and Geezer Butler.

I interviewed Tina Weymouth in London toward the end of 1988 when Tom Tom Club were in town. We met at the Halcyon Hotel in Holland Park, an early boutique-style hotel where she and Chris Frantz were staying while they played dates at the Wag and the Borderline.

I wanted to know about her bass playing, primarily in Talking Heads—their final album, Naked, had come out earlier that year—as she'd always seemed to me a fine and underrated bassist, from that perfectly simple intro to "Psycho Killer" to the spacier realms of "I Zimbra" or the worldly charm of "Totally Nude." She began our conversation with an ominous evaluation of her own instrument.

How important is the bass these days, Tina?

Well, when you think about the way things have changed over the last 10 years, this is almost an obsolete instrument.

Tina Weymouth

You mean the bass guitar is almost obsolete?

Yeah, it's really amazing now, to read what's going on in acid house and stuff. It's almost all keyboards. Mind you, Marshall Jefferson is going back to the old stuff. He's the acid house mixer from Chicago. He's going back to live, regular, electric instruments and real drums. It's really strange, but apparently that's the hippest thing now. A lot of bass players really resented the arrival of keyboard basslines.

When you started with Talking Heads in the mid-'70s, there was no doubt about the importance of the bass, though.

Well, yes [laughs]. And you know how it is with these young bands: One person has the amplifier, the other has the drum kit, another has a guitar, another has a microphone stand. I had the car. I had the Plymouth Valiant. It was as reliable as a little old-fashioned Singer sewing machine. It would get us there.

In fact, at first all I was was a good friend. We had written "Psycho Killer" in the studio together, but I was still hopefully going to become a painter. But I did encourage Chris and David, and anyone else of our friends, to go to New York, because I pretty much figured New York was where it was at. I'd come to London, I'd gone to Paris, and I figured that New York probably the best place, because we're in a place where everyone, um…

Was accepted?

Yeah. Where everyone was broke! New York seemed a good place to begin, because nobody seemed to mind the fact that they were broke, you know? There wasn't a complaining or moaning attitude about it, it was just—but the art scene was not that healthy, and that's why I became a musician.

How did that happen?

Well, I was always playing music and making art. I never trained. I moved too much to become part of a regular orchestra or to have lessons, even—I moved every year. [Tina's father was in the Navy, which meant frequent new postings.] But I did become part of a group of English bell ringers when I was 11, and again when I was 12.

Must have been good harmonic training.

It was great, and I went to see a lot of concerts, but they were classical. My parents were always interested in a variety of things, and I had a much older brother and sister, so I'd been turned on to Buddy Holly since I was five or six, and early rock'n'roll, Little Richard, Bo Diddley. Even Desmond Dekker and "The Israelites"—that was like one of those big hits in America, like Bobby McFerrin's "Be Happy." It just hit a nerve. So I was always interested in music, and I taught myself to play guitar from books when I was 14.

Desmond Dekker - "Israelites"

Can you remember the books? Were they any good?

Sure, they were Woody Guthrie, old songs, traditional folk songs.

Things like "She'll Be Coming Round The Mountain"?

Right, those kind of things, but also things written by Elizabeth Cotten, even very old standards like "House Of The Rising Sun," that was the second tune I ever learnt. First one was "I Gave My Love A Cherry," then "House Of The Rising Sun," then it moved into "Poor Wayfaring Stranger."

Sounds like you have a concept album there.

Yeah [laughs], but it was good, because I was just figuring it out from the books. I was living in Iceland at the time, so I never heard the records of those songs until after I'd learned to play them.

So how come bass?

That was just because Chris and David were looking for a band, and Chris played drums, David played guitar. They were looking for a singer, and they didn't find a singer, so David sang. And they couldn't find a bass player, so as I was living with them, I began to play bass. It was Chris who encouraged it, actually. Otherwise, I was never encouraged. In fact when we first started playing clubs like CBGBs, pretty much the reaction to a female bassist was like it's a trained monkey doing it.

Talking Heads


Because I was a woman. But I was well pleased with the result, because what happened was, a whole lot of young kids started playing. Because if she can do it, I can. So I was well pleased.

Most people who start playing in bands start at a mundane level, apart from those who are trained.

But I was no more mundane than anybody else in the band. It was just really the fact that I was a woman. And I tried for a long time to look like a boy, but then there were these odd comments, like, "Oh god, what's wrong with me [laughs], why do I fancy the bass player?" But you know, for a woman it always requires a great deal of sacrifice. And a lot of it has to do with physical stamina.

To play?

Yeah, I mean women just aren't built for it, they'll never have the shoulders of a man. Over a year ago now, when I was playing on the Naked album, I had to go to a physical therapist after one session, because we were playing for 10 hours, that "(Nothing But) Flowers" part. It required holding muscles that I'd never developed, and I was just locked up tight. And she said oh yeah, this happens a lot, I have violin players and pianists that come in, they'll learn a new piece, and with rehearsal and repetition they're doing it all at once, and they'll come in just like you, completely locked up. That's just one of the hazards.

Talking Heads - "(Nothing But) Flowers"

But you don't need particular physical attributes to play bass, surely? That's no reason why women shouldn't play bass. You prove that.

No, there's no reason why they shouldn't. But it does require a great deal more muscle than playing guitar or playing keyboards—a lot more.

The weight of it, or the actual playing?

The weight of it and the actual playing. I remember Carol Coleman [bassist for Kid Creole] used to go around squeezing a rubber ball, because her shoulders were in knots. I just told her to stop practicing. I guess it's like these zen archers. It's very difficult to pull back the bow until they stop caring so much about trying to do it. Soon as they stop trying to do it, it all gets easier.

Percussion and drumming, too, it's like a lot of instruments—the less effort, the more the strength comes out. It's like Mike Tyson's punch. He's not that much stronger or bigger than the other men, but when he connects, all the energy is right at the end of his fist. His whole body is behind there. So, of course, that's the one thing I have learned, to relax. I used to just strain constantly at it and end up exhausted.

Tina Weymouth

What was your first bass?

I still have it. It was a Fender Precision, a good pre-CBS one.

Many people start with some old piece of junk.

No, I'd had so much junk that I decided the best way for me to obtain pleasure from it, and a good tone, at least, was to get a good instrument right from the start. It took me a few months to make the down payments on it so that I could take it home. It took me from October '74 to January '75 till I could take the thing home. Otherwise I was just going to the store and putting $10 down on it every week.

So you started playing.

In January '75, yes, and Chris would be shouting out things. I guess Chris was the only one who was technically adept at the very beginning. But if you've got to start with one technically adept person in a band, I think starting with the drummer is the right place. I think if anything made us listenable then, it was his drumming. It was always consistent, always musical. It was the whole heartbeat. So I suppose he was really my teacher, more than anyone. But then you always have to rely on your taste.

How long did it take to get going?

Well, we started playing at the end of May '75 at CBGBs. We had a repertoire of about 19 songs to begin with, which grew to about 60 by the end of the year.

And still the Precision?

Yes, I stuck with the Precision until early 1976, when Robert Palmer brought Chris Blackwell of Island Records down to see us. He said, "Would you like to jam?" He took us over to the Island Records place, a little townhouse in the West Village, and he had a little Fender Mustang Bass. I thought, now, this is probably gonna be easier for me to start moving a little faster with.

A shorter scale.

Yeah, a three-quarter neck. Frets were closer together. It was helpful.

What did Chris Blackwell think of you?

He passed [laughs]. Robert stayed interested, but Chris Blackwell I think was kicking himself years later. So when we told him about The B-52's, he signed them. But I think we would have been pretty off-putting at the time.

Why do you say that?

Well, Chris Blackwell is into his jazz, and Bob Marley was his very special project. But his favourite music was always jazz, not reggae.

He and Island signed a lot of interesting British groups, neither jazz nor reggae.

Yes, like Roxy Music. He had a pretty good ear. Didn't say much for us!

What were you playing when you made the first Talking Heads album, in 1977?

I was still using the Precision, and by this point I had a Fender Musicmaster, too, so I was using those two for the first album. It was difficult, because we were working with a fellow named Tony Bongiovi—yes, the uncle of Jon Bon Jovi. I've heard they don't get along too well.

Anyway, Tony was hired by the record company, he was not our choice. There was Lance Quinn as well, assisting him, and he was wonderful. But there were times when Tony wanted to replace David's guitar and my bass with real musicians. And when it was attempted, they couldn't, because the parts were so weird anyway.

Did they tell you about that?

Yeah, they told me they were gonna try to do it. Pretty bad, huh?

Can you remember on which tracks they tried to replace stuff?

No, I never knew which ones. But it didn't work, anyway. I think on "I Wish You Wouldn't Say That" [B-side to "Psycho Killer"] David was very keen to have an upright bass sound, and that didn't work. The thing is, I was always playing then within the limitations of my capabilities. That was all I could do.

Talking Heads - "I Wish You Wouldn't Say That" Live at CBGBs 1977

But also it was about the band and how you worked together.

Yes, and I never attempted to do anything flashy.

Which wouldn't have worked—what you did worked for those songs.

That's right, and those songs were odd in their way. The structures were always very defined—it was almost as if you could insert a bridge or another section anywhere you wanted to, as long as it was within the eight-bar or sixteen-bar structure.

Next, you got your Hofner bass, a Club-style 500/2, I think?

I got that primarily because it was very lightweight. For the first two years, after we made that first recording in '77, we'd play two shows a night in every little city everywhere we could get, and that was pretty grueling. So I was looking for something lightweight. And then it was Sid Vicious who told me I should play with a pick, because he saw my fingers all bloody. Being that I was still learning to play bass, I really wanted to hear myself clearly on stage, and that helped a lot.

Did your playing with the pick coincide with when you switched to the Hofner?

No, I actually started just before, and then I bought the Hofner.

The second album, More Songs About Buildings And Food, you did in 1978 with Brian Eno.

Yes, with Eno at Compass Point studio [at Nassau in the Bahamas], which was just built, the last touches were being finished. It was a wonderful experience, but it was a real fight for us to get Eno, because they said, "Oh, but he's not commercial."

Why did you want Eno to do it?

Because we absolutely loved the unique and eccentric approach of his records. And we had met him, and he was a fan of the band, and we felt that was going to be a big plus, as opposed to someone who really would have preferred to have Donna Summer in the studio [laughs]. It was a real pleasure, always, working with Eno, he was always really funny and different. In fact, he taught us about the studio. He never kept it a private secret. He's a very good teacher.

Which is just what you need at that stage.

Yes, he simplified it, explaining it in terms of it just being a big giant stereo, with treble and bass and stuff. He taught us to feel free about using various outboard equipment in unconventional ways.

Talking Heads

In the studio with Eno, did he ever use his Oblique Strategies cards?

He did on one occasion. I'm not sure which song that was for, I can't remember now. But we did one time. But, you know, ideas were flowing thick and fast, and that was always the pleasure of the five of us working together—us and Eno—there was never a lack of ideas. By the time we did Remain In Light [1980], if anything the creative friction grew because there were so many ideas.

Most people would say that too many ideas is a luxury.

It could create friction.

So what was the working method at that time? Would you create songs by jamming?

We were always doing songs, off and on, by jamming. But sometimes David would have a skeletal guitar riff, and a very skeletal spoken vocal. And then it would grow, in the live situation. Fear Of Music [1979] was the first album where the songs were all written before they were played live, and then we got into the situation where they got better live than in the studio. That became the case.

But Remain In Light, coming from those jams, was a really pleasurable way of working for us. When we did this last album, Naked [1988], we did it that way as well. And the Tom Tom Club albums have basically been that way, except the tracks were laid directly on to tape—we didn't have a band. It was just me and Chris and an engineer. There was really no way to jam ahead of time, but they were like jams, putting down a part and figuring what goes with it. I guess that's pretty conventional in a lot of ways, at least for the R&B people it is.

Talking Heads - "Big Business/I Kimbra" Live from Stop Making Sense

Did any more basses come your way around this time?

So I had the Hofner, I had the Mustang, and for a while I had a Gibson Triumph Bass. The one with all the knobs, yes. It was a real awkward one, because it was so heavy, but I liked the short-scale neck. I was still into short-scale necks. Now I'd rather have the full-scale [laughs.

I would do things like stick the bodies of pens on the ends of the strings at the bridge, to extend the length of the string, so that there was more string vibrating—it was horribly buzzy because of the shortness of the scale. But that was not a good solution to the problem. A case of not finding the right thing.

Around the time of Fear Of Music, some fellas from Woodstock approached us, said, "Tina, Tina, try this!" And it was this beautiful custom-made bass. I don't think I've ever paid so much for an instrument! It was made by two men, Veillette-Citron. Just nice guys who would come to gigs with Todd Rundgren, bringing us warm chicken soup, you know? It had a lovely neck. I still have that bass, but it's one of those things that I just bring to the studio. I don't take it on the road, because it's much too nice.

Did these different instruments have an effect on your playing?

Well, I think what was having an effect on my bass playing, apart from just playing so much, was playing with the other band members. Everybody was stretching out, and every time we'd write a new song, we were always trying to do something we didn't know how to do yet. That made it interesting, because we were still a four-piece, a quartet. There was still quite a lot of freedom.

So you came back with the Talking Heads big band [adding Adrian Belew guitar; Busta Cherry Jones bass, guitar; Dolette McDonald percussion, BVs; Steve Scales congas, percussion; Bernie Worrell keyboards]. Why did you need another bass player?

That was interesting, with Busta Cherry Jones. What had happened, on Remain In Light, we were all playing different instruments, and switching round, and occasionally a bass part would be built out of two, sometimes even three different individuals.

Can you think of an example of that?

"The Great Curve" I believe was one on Remain In Light. David felt apprehensive about touring behind that album, because he didn't know how we were going to do it on stage. In fact, we could have as a four-piece, as it turned out.

Talking Heads - "The Great Curve"

How did it work for "The Great Curve"?

I put down a part that was in the essential places, and then I think David put a little funk-pop thing on the end, it was what he kept calling a cross six, which I think was quarter-note triplets. He was very interested by now—he'd been reading all the books by Robert Farris Thompson [such as Flash Of The Spirit: African And Afro-American Art And Philosophy] and various musicologists who'd gone out into the African field, like John Chernoff [African Rhythm And African Sensibility]. Both of those are fascinating men. It just set David spinning in excitement.

We never read the books [laughs], so we had no idea—we didn't know about them until after the fact. We didn't know we were playing African styles. No one told the drummer! But it didn't matter, really. I mean, if someone had told us, it would have been really contrived, wouldn't it? We've got too much respect for those guys to have any pretensions of trying to do what they do.

The idea of using different rhythms in electric music has been evolving for years, though. There's all kinds of instances of that.

Yes, but I suppose it's a new thing to be able to actually verbalize it, and for people like us who came from the punk don't-know-how-to-play school of music, it was a lot of fun. When Busta came in, I had a lot of fun, because I was able to play keyboards, I did a little singing, I did some bass playing with him. We had fun, you know? Sometimes we've been taken far more seriously than we feel we should be. In fact, a good dose of Spinal Tap is always just the thing before you have to do a lot of press [laughs].

Tina Weymouth

Which songs did you and Busta play on together?

We just worked them out from song to song, figured out what we'd do. We could do, oh, "Take Me To The River" and just make it really have bottom [laughs]. "Cross Eyed And Painless" or "The Great Curve," too. We would work it out, figure out who was going to play what.

Then, of course, Bernie Worrell was in the band, and you didn't need two bass players, because Bernie was playing these low-end Clavinet parts, which were every bit as full as you needed. You really didn't need anything except the bass on the one and the three and the pick-up, because Bernie was phenomenal, in the pocket. I really enjoyed our tours with Busta and all those guys. Steve Scales was with us for all three tours, Bernie was with us for the first and the last. We learned so much from them.

How has your live bass sound developed? It can be hard work getting that how you want it.

Yeah, that's right, there's always a frequency that becomes a problem in each room that you play. In clubs, it was always fabulous, we had no problems. But when you move to the bigger halls, especially the ballrooms, well…

When was that shift?

That would have been in '78, to small theaters and halls, ballrooms. It got more difficult. It was a constant battle. From that time on, I resolved it by just playing so quietly. I was barely audible to people on stage, but that was the only way to deal with it. I had to trust myself and get used to the feel. There were times with the big band where I barely heard myself, but I could feel at that point. It was a real Helen Keller situation: I could feel whether the vibration was right or not. And oftentimes, you could hear it was louder in the house than it was on stage.

It's an ongoing problem, but being back in clubs now with Tom Tom Club is fantastic. And I'm definitely the quietest person on stage. We're just a four-piece [Tina Weymouth bass, Chris Frantz drums, Mark Roule guitar, Gary Pozner keyboards in 1988] and we put nothing but vocals in the monitors. Because it can get ridiculous, you keep having to compensate and compensate, and each person wants to hear something different. We just try to get our settings and leave them there once you've found something that works. And that requires a lot of discipline and it requires a lot of confidence in the players.

The same with Talking Heads?

Well, it was a forced situation, because our records were not selling that hot, and yet our live shows, they were our bread and butter. This was before videos, so live shows were still something magical. People still jammed. They didn't use tapes. Samples didn't exist. This was 10 years ago.

Surely the records were beginning to sell by then?

Actually, Tom Tom Club [1981] outsold Talking Heads.

That first Tom Tom Club album outsold which Talking Heads album?

It outsold all the Talking Heads albums.

Was that a good feeling?

It was … and it wasn't. Because we couldn't figure out what we'd done wrong or right.

Tom Tom Club - "Genius of Love"

It's hard to analyze sometimes, and maybe in fact you shouldn't try to—you should just keep going.

Well, that's what we figured out by the second Tom Tom Club album [Close To The Bone, 1983], because by that time we'd brought in a lot of Talking Heads personnel who'd just been on the road with us, and they had a preconception of what Tom Tom Club was about, whereas we'd had none of that with the first album. Tom Tom Club was stylistically very, very free, trying to please ourselves and make us happy, at a point in our lives where there was something definitely missing.

What was missing?

Well, I guess what was happening was that from being very close friends we had more or less begun to develop separate lives. David was beginning to wish to do other things. Now, of course, in retrospect I see that as very, very healthy. He started it, individuating as an artist, starting to work with Brian Eno on Bush Of Ghosts, and then us with Tom Tom Club. It was really the best thing that could have happened to us, because it meant that we did remain together as Talking Heads.

Even though all those outside projects were in their own way a success, a success in our minds—maybe not to the record companies—but to us, there was always a great pleasure in finding ourselves again, finding the band again. And it's kept us together as very much a band for all this time.

Tina Weymouth

That's how collaborations make everybody happy—you aim to please yourself, but you have to please everybody else, too. Otherwise, the other members of a band won't be happy to play with you. The wonderful things that have happened to us have been those hybrids. It's always things coming from a different head.

And, you know, every time we finished a tour there was a feeling of Oh my god! We've just been living and breathing inside of each other for this amount of time, and we have to get back to ourselves. There was always a feeling of It's finished now, that's it, see you around. But there was always so much brouhaha about our breaking up. As there continues to be, because of us touring with Tom Tom Club, which is to my mind ridiculous.

Because when you find something that clicks, which is so rare with members, all of the little things seem so petty in contrast, and you do find that there's great pleasure in getting back together after a good breathing space. Time to lie fallow [laughs]. And doing various things, also, is very rejuvenating and nourishing for us. We all get excited all over again about what it was that made us want to get into music in the first place.

What amplification are you using on this Tom Tom Club tour [in 1988]?

A reliable old Gallien-Krueger 400B amplifier and a Trace Elliot 2x15 cabinet. Some people can't stand that amp, but I like it because it's very clean. It cuts better.

I bought myself a book on guitars and it had a picture of me from way back in 1978. I got it because they had a picture of an old Martin acoustic, just like this hundred-year-old Martin that I bought for next to nothing. I got it from some convent somewhere, and it looks exactly like one they have in the Metropolitan in New York, which they say is from somewhere between 1870 and 1880. So I bought the book for that reason, and then I found this picture of myself with this severe criticism, "What she uses is not what a bass player should use."

See, I wasn't using folded horns in the amp setup, and they seemed to think that what a bass player should be using was a little PA. But if I used that on stage, the other players would kill me [laughs]! I just need something that tells me where I am, and then I have to rely totally on the soundman. I can get the finest sound, and then in the hall it's going to be entirely different anyway. It's just a constant losing battle, stage sound.

And what basses on this tour?

Now I have a five-string Steinberger—and because the strings are so closely spaced, that again encourages light playing. What I love about the Steinbergers—I have a four-string, too—is their even intonation up and down the neck. No notes that pop out. The other reason is that they're so replaceable, unlike something really precious, handmade. Even though they are really different from other basses.

Not cheap, either.

Yeah, but I get them for a lot less, although I don't endorse them. I first started playing a Steinberger with The B-52's. We did a little tour of New England and then went and played Rock In Rio [in 1985]. You may know Chip Stern, he writes for various music publications, and he said Steinberger were very interested that I try a bass, because they felt that many large men had rejected it on the basis of how it looked, and that it might be right for someone as small as myself. And it actually is. It was a little strange getting used to no headstock. It was [engineer] Eric Thorngren who helped me to adjust the pickups for sound—he'd already worked with Steinberger quite a lot.

The five has an extra low B?

Yes, it's a low B. You can't ever really use the open string, it's just too low, a little woolly. But I suppose every bass you take in the studio, the technicians always complain. Always! It's easy to get keyboards and guitar, but when it comes to drums and bass, there's always these little things that they've got to adjust and so forth.

Has your playing changed much?

Well, when we added the extra five pieces after Remain In Light, the whole thing changed. In fact, even while we were doing Remain In Light, the whole thing changed, because by that time, it became important that what I played was exceptionally minimal, in order to leave plenty of room for whatever else was going to happen.

That's part of the essence of good bass playing, to know the value of space.

Oh surely, yes. Well, I was always simple, so to get even more simple became an enormous challenge. Up until that point, I often felt that my parts were like repetitive James Brown horn parts. David was playing an extremely trebly, bright, almost brittle, scratchy rhythm guitar, so I felt then that my function, in order to serve the song best, was to be a kind of melodic go-between, between the drums and the keyboards and the guitar. By the time we reached Remain In Light, I was thinking in terms of drum parts, or like tuned drums, where the bass was almost like a tuned drum and extremely simple.

Also, it would change depending on the song. I would even switch basses, depending on the song, or switch from playing with my fingers to playing with a pick, depending on the song. I think Chris and I were always very conscious of the kind of R&B feel, and David as well. Jerry was more kind of a rock'n'roll feel. And that was what was always interesting, that we were different people coming from different places. We were so white, you know? Not so much with Chris—he'd been in a Chuck Berry pick-up band, that type of thing, he knew what the black thing was all about, that was his whole inspiration. He definitely encouraged me to look into the playing of people like Bootsy Collins.

Talking Heads

What do you like about Bootsy?

Oh, I love Bootsy. Another one I adore is Frank Blair—he's on tour right now with Robert Palmer. Robert is somebody I've known for years, and he's quite an experimentalist, even though whenever he does a record it's a little bit safer than what I know him for. But Frank is—you know what an idiot savant is, right? They're usually idiots who can do phenomenal computer sums in their brains or play piano like Bach or something, but they can't cross the street themselves.

Now this all came about because someone complimented Adrian Belew's guitar playing to Robert Fripp after they'd done the Discipline record together, said he's phenomenal, isn't he? And Robert was so miffed, he said oh, he's a mere idiot savant. So when I went up to the studio to see Robert Palmer, and Frank was playing, Robert said [whispers]: He is my idiot savant. He's really a phenomenal guy! He's constantly coming up with fantastic lines.

I guess you've met Bootsy?

Oh yes. My mother, of all people, was on tour with us, because our regular babysitter had not arrived yet—this was the Stop Making Sense tour. He came backstage to see us, and my mother came in the dressing room as we were getting ready to go on and said, "Tina, Tina, there's this marvelous man outside, his name is Tootsie. And you should see how he's dressed!" So I said Tootsie? You must mean Bootsy. "Yes, yes, that's right."

My mother is French. So she brought big and tall Bootsy back with her—and he was quite charmed by her, so I hardly got a word in edgewise. That was my first meeting with Bootsy. He actually played on some of Jerry Harrison's album.

Did Bootsy tell you the secret of great funk basslines?

No. You know, none of them ever do. I guess everybody has the same problem: You have some blank tape or space and you just have to do it to the best of your ability. Nobody tells you how to do it. I expect that's the way it is in all things. Nobody tells you how to do it. You just do it.

About the Author: Tony Bacon writes about musical instruments, musicians, and music. He is a co-founder of Backbeat UK and Jawbone Press. His books include The Bass Book, Electric Guitar Design & Invention, and Paul McCartney: Bassmaster. His latest is a new edition of Electric Guitars: The Illustrated Encyclopedia. Tony lives in Bristol, England. More info at tonybacon.co.uk.

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