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Thread: Bass Pedals in Prog

  1. #1

    Bass Pedals in Prog

    My name says it all... I am all about the Bass Pedals!!! What is your favorite moment featuring the Bass Pedals? Some that come to mind:

    Middle Section of Firth on Second's Out (I kills me when Hackett plays it live and they are not there)
    The live version of "Tigermoth" by Steve Hackett
    The beginning of "Dance on a Volcano"
    The intro to "Emotion Detector" by Rush
    "Out of this world" by Marillion

    Too many!!!

  2. #2
    South of Heaven trespass's Avatar
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    So many great bass pedal moments in Genesis and solo Hackett material!

    I recently spun Defector for the first time in a long time (vinyl) and "The Steppes" comes to mind as a song that has booming bass pedals (whether they are actually used or not I'm not sure).

    I'm thinking also of Yes & ELP. Is Squire using bass pedals during the intro/outro of "Machine Messsiah"? I know the first minute of that song always sets the woofers off...I always used to call those booming Yes segments "dinasaur steps".
    Last edited by trespass; 01-03-2013 at 06:55 PM.

  3. #3
    I'm surprised that you didn't mention Hugh Banton of Van der Graaf, as he is someone who actually plays pedals, rather than just holding down a note, or, in Jon Anderson's case, playing with his hands.

    I've been on a VdGG kick this week and have been looking at youtube videos to see if there are any shots of him playing the pedals. Unfortunately, not. I saw the concert at the Sellersville Theater but I did not have a viewpoint there.

    Of course, for some virtuoso playing check out Cameron Carpenter doing an adaptation of Chopin's Revolutionary Etude.

    (You may recognize this since Renaissance "borrowed" it for Prologue).




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    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Phil Collins in "I Don't Care Anymore."
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  5. #5

    I don't believe ELP used bass pedals (except on the pipe organ). You may be thinking of the extremely low not on the Brain Salad Surgery, but that is probably just the modular Moog. Emerson did some left hand synth bass when Lake played guitar. For example, on KE91IP1+2.


    UK opened Alaska with a super-low note, but that was from the CS-80. Although, IIRC, Wetton had bass pedals.




  6. #6
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A. Scherze View Post
    Although, IIRC, Wetton had bass pedals.
    Wetton is using bass pedals on Asia's current tour.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  7. #7
    How about "Hollow Afternoon" by IQ?

  8. #8
    Progga mogrooves's Avatar
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    "Can-Utility And The Coastliners", @ "Far from the North...."
    Last edited by mogrooves; 01-03-2013 at 11:16 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by trespass View Post
    Is Squire using bass pedals during the intro/outro of "Machine Messsiah"? I know the first minute of that song always sets the woofers off...I always used to call those booming Yes segments "dinasaur steps".

    LOL! You must be a fan of the 70s show Land of the Lost. They would use bass pedals when the T.Rex (aka Grumpy) would enter the scene.

    Some other bass pedal examples off the top of my head:
    Marillion--Chelsea Monday
    Rush--Xanadu (Intro section on Exit..Stage Left), La Villa Strangiato

    Is it true that bass pedal players like to do it on the floor?

  10. #10
    In the second part of Cinema Show, after Tony Banks introduces that pretty melody in 7 with just rhythm guitar and drums behind him, when it comes around again, WOMMMMMMMMMMMMM! Goosebump city!

  11. #11
    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    Easy: "That was an unaccompanied bass pedal solo from Michael Rutherford".

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    Quote Originally Posted by mogrooves View Post
    "Can-Utility And The Coastliners", @ "Far from the North...."
    Could not agree more and was about to post this very thing, Can Utlility kills as far as pedals... frankly it kills period, one of their best tunes imho! One of the best examples of bass pedals by Genesis or anyone for that matter.

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    not prog. listen to this – the organ at st. ouen in rouen / france. prepare for landslides towards the end.


  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Bass Pedals Rock View Post
    My name says it all... I am all about the Bass Pedals!!!
    Then A Scherze hit it on the head. The only real bass pedal player in prog (that I can think of) is Hugh Banton of VdGG, who actually plays real bass lines on the pedals while his hands are playing brilliantly on the manuals of the Hammond. Genius. You should check him out if you're into bass pedals. Hunt down a CD of VdGG's "Maida Vale" which is a comp of their live radio sessions for the BBC. It's all bass pedals, no bass guitar overdubbing (the band had no bass guitarist in their classic lineup), recorded live in the BBC studios for John Peel, etc

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Bucka001 View Post
    It's all bass pedals, no bass guitar overdubbing (the band had no bass guitarist in their classic lineup), recorded live in the BBC studios for John Peel, etc.

    Not quite correct, as Banton occasionally played bass guitar, even live.

    And, he does still play pedals now. So, one may check out any of the youtube videos (most of them are contemporary, but there are some from '70s TV broadcasts) or WHYY's On Canvas to hear his pedal work. Also, the concert CDs of the current group.
    Last edited by A. Scherze; 01-04-2013 at 06:19 AM.

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    I've got a lot of love for the bass pedals too. But I've never quite understood how the pedals made the journey from underneath the keyboards to infront of the bass guitarist.
    I suspect it coincides with the introduction of the Moog Taurus pedals (early 1970's?) as a stand alone instrument.
    Anyone care to suggest who the first bass guitarist to adopt them was and what their earliest appearance on an album (or single?) might have been?
    Could it have been Mike Rutherford? - and does it partially explain why he used to play seated in the early Genesis days?

  17. #17
    Originally Posted by Bucka001

    "It's all bass pedals, no bass guitar overdubbing (the band had no bass guitarist in their classic lineup), recorded live in the BBC studios for John Peel, etc."

    Originally posted by A. Scherze

    "Not quite correct, as Banton occasionally played bass guitar, even live"


    Actually, it is correct because Banton doesn't play bass guitar on Maida Vale (which is the CD I was recommending for someone who likes bass pedals in prog). You're right, though. HB did play bass guitar very sparingly in concert (by '76, it was just one song; two or three in '75) but they're famous for having an organist who plays pedals in leiu of a bass guitarist (in their classic four-piece incarnation).

  18. #18
    Member ItalProgRules's Avatar
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    Banton plays a Fender bass on "Arrow" on the GODBLUFF DVD. Blink and you'll miss it, thanks to the dodgy camerawork...
    High Vibration Go On - R.I.P. Chris Squire

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by ItalProgRules View Post
    Banton plays a Fender bass on "Arrow" on the GODBLUFF DVD. Blink and you'll miss it, thanks to the dodgy camerawork...
    In '76, he played only on Arrow. In '75 (when that dvd was filmed) he played on Arrow, Louse, Forsaken, and Urban/Nadir. Yeah, crappy camera work on that film. It's all "I'm ready for my closeup, Mr Demille" with very few shots of HB at all.

  20. #20
    NEARfest Officer Emeritus Nearfest2's Avatar
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  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by iguana View Post
    not prog. listen to this – the organ at st. ouen in rouen / france. prepare for landslides towards the end.

    That's all sorts of AWESOME!!

  22. #22
    The Taurus pedals started as part of a Moog keyboard system, the Constellation, meant to function as a unit.
    There was the Lyre, a monophonic lead synth; the Apollo, a polyphonic synth; and, the Taurus synth pedals.
    Emerson used two of these prototypes on BSS (and the tour) , but not the Taurus. The Lyre never went into production, but the Apollo became the Polymoog.
    Since it was designed to accompany a lead synth, it had a thinner sound, and was not supposed to be a standalone instrument,
    many criticized its sound (among other things).



  23. #23
    Member ItalProgRules's Avatar
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    But those weren't technically bass pedals that Jon Anderson was playing with his hands in that clip. Actually some kind of home-made synth and he was using the pedals as keys, no? I know we had an in-depth discussion on this topic a while back but iirc, no solid conclusions were drawn? Sure as hell doesn't SOUND like bass pedals, it's clearly some kind of synth, right?
    High Vibration Go On - R.I.P. Chris Squire

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by 10mb View Post
    How about "Hollow Afternoon" by IQ?
    Even better: Last Human Gateway (Middle Section) by IQ. As soon as the full band kicks in the bass is just basspedals. In the days of Jowitt's involvemeny in IQ it was a regular set closer and as soon as you saw him walk on stage without a bassguitar you knew what was going to be played.

  25. #25
    My favorite bass pedal moment is in one of the "Making of..." DVDs from Transatlantic, probably "Bridge Across Forever." The band members are arriving at the hotel in Tennessee to record at Neal's place. Neal walks through the hotel door while filming and zooms in on a set of Taurus pedals propped up against the reception desk. He says, "bass pedals! Can a prog bassist be far behind?" and then pans over to Pete Trewavas with the rest of his luggage.
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