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Top 10: Great Bass Gear in the Spotlight, Jason Newsted’s Celebration with Metallica, the Top Bass Videos and More

In the Gear category, readers loved the Chillbass Pantera, our bass of the week, plus our Custom Shop interview with Mike Lull, and the all new Le Fay Fan Fret version of the Pangton Headless bass.

In player coverage, the news of Jason Newsted reuniting with Metallica for their 30th anniversary – and the video – made the top ten, as did our Player Spotlight, bassist Joaquina “Roqui” Lluma.

We looked back at the top 10 videos for November, plus some newcomers: Nick Mason’s “You’ve Got A Friend in Me” solo bass performance and George Lacson’s bass cover of Alicia Keys’ “Unthinkable” made the top 10 most read.

Rounding out the list are two by Damian Erskine. The first, the latest Ask Damian column focuses on the discussion of paying to play (or playing for free), in response to a reader’s question. Damian weighs in with his thoughts, with readers adding their voices to the discussion. Damian’s review of Loopy, the looper app for iOS that should shake up the looper market in a big way.

Check out the top 10 stories on No Treble for the week of December 11 – 17, 2011.

Nick Mason: “You’ve Got A Friend in Me” Solo Bass Performance

1. Nick Mason: “You’ve Got A Friend in Me” Solo Bass Performance

Bassist Nick Mason put together a great all-bass arrangement of the Randy Newman song, “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”, made popular by the original Toy Story. Nick said he was inspired to arrange this piece after seeing Toy Story 3. If you’re interested in working on this one yourself, you’re in luck. Nick has…

Bass of the Week: Chillbass Pantera

2. Bass of the Week: Chillbass Pantera

This week we take a look at Chillbass Guitars’ Pantera, a sleek fretless bass that takes its cues from minimalism. The bass has a medium, 32″ scale, which the French bass builder explains lowers the string tension and ultimately aids upper register tones, playability, and adds to a “fat low end.” The Pantera has a…

Jason Newsted Reunites with Metallica for 30th Anniversary Celebration

3. Jason Newsted Reunites with Metallica for 30th Anniversary Celebration

During the first night of their 30th Anniversary concerts last week, Metallica brought Jason Newsted back for a special guest appearance. Newsted, who left the band in 2001, was introduced by singer James Hetfield as “someone who lived with us, and toured with us and did stuff with us for 14 years.” The band then…

Top 10: The Best Bass Videos (November 2011)

4. Top 10: The Best Bass Videos (November 2011)

We featured several reader-submitted videos in November (one of our favorite things to do!), showcasing the awesome No Treble community of bassists, and the videos they love. This included a Bass Play-Along Week, where bassists play along to their favorite tracks and show off their transcribing and performance skills. Another week featured all-bass covers of…

Le Fay Introduces Fan Fret Version of Pangton Headless Bass

5. Le Fay Introduces Fan Fret Version of Pangton Headless Bass

Le Fay has released a new fanned fret version of their Pangton headless bass. The bass has a unique bridge, head piece and pickups to accommodate the multi-scale lengths, which range from 35.24” for the B-string and 33.46” for the G-string. Though the design is quite unique, the German bass company says it’s easy to…

Player Spotlight: Joaquina “Roqui” Lluma

6. Player Spotlight: Joaquina “Roqui” Lluma

Meet Joaquina “Roqui” Lluma, a multi-instrumentalist who currently resides in Denver, Colorado and calls music her day job, night job, weekend job and holiday job. One of our favorite lines in this interview feature: Joaquina says she uses “a TC Helicon distortion/distresser for my backing vocals sometimes when I’m feeling frisky.” Bio: I was born…

George Lacson: Solo Bass Performance of Alicia Keys’ “Unthinkable”

7. George Lacson: Solo Bass Performance of Alicia Keys’ “Unthinkable”

George Lacson turns in this nice solo bass arrangement and performance of “Unthinkable”, written by Drake and originally produced and performed by Alicia Keys. George’s Warwick Streamer Stage 5-string is tuned B-D-G-D-G for this tune.

Pay to Play?

8. Pay to Play?

Q: Just recently a drummer friend of mine offered me a gig. It’s a little local bar gig, with a fixed payout (around $150 for the night, for the band). My friend suggested we hire a great piano player for the gig, but to get him on this trio, he said we’d have to give…

Custom Shop: An Interview with Mike Lull

9. Custom Shop: An Interview with Mike Lull

As one of the world’s most respected bass luthiers, Mike Lull’s work has been heard around the world. His Seattle, Washington-based shop has allowed Lull to work on nearly all of the instruments used by bands from the area known as “the grunge capital”, including Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam and others. His story began as…

Loopy: A Look at the Looper App for iOS

10. Loopy: A Look at the Looper App for iOS

I’ve discovered a great looper for the iPhone and iPad. Loopy (and Loopy HD) allows you to create and alter sophisticated loops without the need for a pedal or other hardware. Loopy’s interface presents a series of circles, which become circular waveforms once you’ve started recording. The app offers great features, like pan, volume, timing…