It’s John Thompson of The Selecter!

John Thompson

I would describe my bass style as adaptable. I’ve got a five-string which sounds really nice, but to be honest every time I bring it to rehearsals most of the bands I play with just say ‘Why don’t you just play that nice old Fender, it’s much better’ so that’s what I do. I think you need to apply for a licence to slap and they should only be issued by Larry Graham. Of course, I operated for most of the 80s without one, but was eventually caught out and that put an end to that. The secret of playing bass is tone, taste and timing. My first bass was some cheap Jazz copy, either a Hondo or Columbus. My favourite bass is my 1966 sunburst Fender Precision with 15-year-old La Bella flatwounds! I’ve listened to all the usual suspects, and they have all had some sort of influence on me, but my favourite was Paul Gardiner fromTubeway Army whose lines really stood out to me. Also some of the local players from my early days in Nottingham had a big effect on me. Band leaders I played for also influenced my playing: comments like ‘Just keep it root’, ‘Why are you going past the fifth fret?’ and ‘Does the middle eight really need that double-handed tapping thing?’ definitely cut the nonsense out of my playing.
Basses Fender Precision, Hofner 500/5, Gretsch Electromatic, Musicman, Eko acoustic, Squier CV Precision
Effects Line 6 DL4 delay, TC Electronic Polytune, Bright Onion looper, Stageclix wireless, Sansamp VT DI
Amps Alembic FX1, Crown XTI 2000, Barefaced Super 15

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One comment on “It’s John Thompson of The Selecter!
  1. Ben Bogladier says:

    Truly inspirational. I’ve seen you a few times and am always amazed at your cat like prowess both on guitar and your stage moves. Keep fingering!

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