Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

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Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by BR16ADE_R055E » 12 Mar 2014, 12:33pm

Does anyone know for certain what date Paul smashed his bass? Evidence? The widely accepted date is the 21st, and even the back cover of LC states such. However, there are people who say they were there when the bass smash happened and insist that it was on the 20th.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by matedog » 12 Mar 2014, 12:39pm

I'll give the 1979-09-20 boot a spin and see if there are any audio clues. The radio broadcast from the 21st sounds chaotic enough towards the end of WR (and what sounds like the bass crapping out and weird clipping noises) that it seems likely to be the 21st. The interview immediately after doesn't discuss it, but perhaps it wasn't novel enough to be discussed.
Look, you have to establish context for these things. And I maintain that unless you appreciate the Fall of Constantinople, the Great Fire of London, and Mickey Mantle's fatalist alcoholism, live Freddy makes no sense. If you want to half-ass it, fine, go call Simon Schama to do the appendix.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Jimmy Jazz » 12 Mar 2014, 12:53pm

[youtube][/youtube]

This video is from the 21st. If you can tell if that's THE bass in the video then it wasn't smashed the night before right? I can't get a good look at it in the video but I suspect you have a better eye for this stuff Briggs

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by matedog » 12 Mar 2014, 1:17pm

[youtube][/youtube]

At 1:30 there is a good shot of Paul. This video is from the 21st.
Look, you have to establish context for these things. And I maintain that unless you appreciate the Fall of Constantinople, the Great Fire of London, and Mickey Mantle's fatalist alcoholism, live Freddy makes no sense. If you want to half-ass it, fine, go call Simon Schama to do the appendix.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Jimmy Jazz » 12 Mar 2014, 1:23pm

Looks like the bass to me

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Jimmy Jazz » 12 Mar 2014, 1:26pm

I remember one of the books (was it Last Gang? I read so many) said he smashed it during Garageland. This always confused me because I heard nothing like that on the boot and there was still bass. Nothing to do with The Clash is ever properly documented.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by IkarisOne » 12 Mar 2014, 2:23pm

Jimmy Jazz wrote:I remember one of the books (was it Last Gang? I read so many) said he smashed it during Garageland. This always confused me because I heard nothing like that on the boot and there was still bass. Nothing to do with The Clash is ever properly documented.
It makes it harder to make shit up out of whole cloth when you document things properly.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by 101Walterton » 12 Mar 2014, 2:26pm

This was debated a few years back and I found it. He smashed it during White Riot and it is clearly audible on the boot.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Wolter » 12 Mar 2014, 2:43pm

101Walterton wrote:This was debated a few years back and I found it. He smashed it during White Riot and it is clearly audible on the boot.
Yeah, I was about to post that. It's very audible once you find it. I can't miss it now.
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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Rat Patrol » 12 Mar 2014, 3:15pm

9/21/79 on the ubiquitous SBD boot. Last track, White Riot. Start listening at about 1:30. You'll hear the bass cut out first, an audible *clunk* at 1:38, then some fucked-up sounding bass feedback going in and out through the end of the song where the smashed instrument was presumably being dragged across the floor.

It's not particularly dramatic since that whole WR performance was a shambolic car crash, but it is pretty conclusive tape evidence of a bass guitar meeting its untimely end or otherwise getting broked real good.
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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by BR16ADE_R055E » 12 Mar 2014, 8:07pm

Jimmy Jazz wrote:[youtube][/youtube]

This video is from the 21st. If you can tell if that's THE bass in the video then it wasn't smashed the night before right? I can't get a good look at it in the video but I suspect you have a better eye for this stuff Briggs
This was one of the vids I checked. Too difficult for me to tell which bass he's playing.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by BR16ADE_R055E » 12 Mar 2014, 8:11pm

matedog wrote:[youtube][/youtube]

At 1:30 there is a good shot of Paul. This video is from the 21st.
This was the other vid I checked, and yes, I can see at that mark that he's playing a different bass than the one he smashed. The one in this vid appears to have a checkerboard/ska-like design on the bottom of it.

Looks like Paul wore the same clobber for both nights (Mick, too), so I can't compare what he's wearing in the vids to that of Pennie's photo. Joe wore a different shirt.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by BR16ADE_R055E » 12 Mar 2014, 8:16pm

matedog wrote:I'll give the 1979-09-20 boot a spin and see if there are any audio clues. The radio broadcast from the 21st sounds chaotic enough towards the end of WR (and what sounds like the bass crapping out and weird clipping noises) that it seems likely to be the 21st. The interview immediately after doesn't discuss it, but perhaps it wasn't novel enough to be discussed.
I listened to the WNEW broadcast (21st) and can barely hear something that might be it, but I figure the smash sound would be more obvious. Yeah, the announcer guy doesn't even mention it...strange.

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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by Rat Patrol » 12 Mar 2014, 9:06pm

BR16ADE_R055E wrote:
matedog wrote:I'll give the 1979-09-20 boot a spin and see if there are any audio clues. The radio broadcast from the 21st sounds chaotic enough towards the end of WR (and what sounds like the bass crapping out and weird clipping noises) that it seems likely to be the 21st. The interview immediately after doesn't discuss it, but perhaps it wasn't novel enough to be discussed.
I listened to the WNEW broadcast (21st) and can barely hear something that might be it, but I figure the smash sound would be more obvious. Yeah, the announcer guy doesn't even mention it...strange.
Paul is nearly inaudible on that atrociously mixed FM 'board. Somebody was twiddling too many knobs at the deck all night, because you can hear the entire bottom disappear and reappear throughout the set. And occasionally several times per song on some tracks like Wrong 'em Boyo. With Gluggo being mixed twice as loud as the rhythm section and the percussion occasionally whittled down to snare-only. It's a fucking mess of a broadcast, and there's no way they sounded that atrocious in real life.

WR has about 20 seconds of halfway-audible bass before the mixing deck monkey decided to turn Paul down to 1 and Gluggo up to a 9. When he stops playing at about 1:32 the only overt clue you get that there's only 2 guitars going is the mix suddenly seems even treblier...but without the volume changing on any of the other instruments like it had the whole rest of the night when the mixing knobs were over-fucked with. It's only from everything else sounding the same that you sort of delayed-realize that the bass has outright stopped. Then the audible *thunk*, which you wouldn't expect the vox mics to pic up in full glory on a tinny SBD. And then the death croaks of the smashed instrument sounding like a swarm of bubbles from a prodigious bathtub fart...again, because he was turned down so inaudibly to begin with.


I'm sure it sounded terrifying and very very impressive in real life. A hall-rattling *SMASH*, then everyone's eardrums in the theater getting blown out on the FoH. But unless WNEW has raw-feed multitracks in its possession to remix from scratch all of that got lost at the hands of coked-out mixing deck monkey.
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Re: Simmo's Bass Smash - Sep 20th or 21st?

Post by biopunk » 12 Mar 2014, 9:34pm

Rat Patrol wrote:
BR16ADE_R055E wrote:
matedog wrote:I'll give the 1979-09-20 boot a spin and see if there are any audio clues. The radio broadcast from the 21st sounds chaotic enough towards the end of WR (and what sounds like the bass crapping out and weird clipping noises) that it seems likely to be the 21st. The interview immediately after doesn't discuss it, but perhaps it wasn't novel enough to be discussed.
I listened to the WNEW broadcast (21st) and can barely hear something that might be it, but I figure the smash sound would be more obvious. Yeah, the announcer guy doesn't even mention it...strange.
Paul is nearly inaudible on that atrociously mixed FM 'board. Somebody was twiddling too many knobs at the deck all night, because you can hear the entire bottom disappear and reappear throughout the set. And occasionally several times per song on some tracks like Wrong 'em Boyo. With Gluggo being mixed twice as loud as the rhythm section and the percussion occasionally whittled down to snare-only. It's a fucking mess of a broadcast, and there's no way they sounded that atrocious in real life.

WR has about 20 seconds of halfway-audible bass before the mixing deck monkey decided to turn Paul down to 1 and Gluggo up to a 9. When he stops playing at about 1:32 the only overt clue you get that there's only 2 guitars going is the mix suddenly seems even treblier...but without the volume changing on any of the other instruments like it had the whole rest of the night when the mixing knobs were over-fucked with. It's only from everything else sounding the same that you sort of delayed-realize that the bass has outright stopped. Then the audible *thunk*, which you wouldn't expect the vox mics to pic up in full glory on a tinny SBD. And then the death croaks of the smashed instrument sounding like a swarm of bubbles from a prodigious bathtub fart...again, because he was turned down so inaudibly to begin with.


I'm sure it sounded terrifying and very very impressive in real life. A hall-rattling *SMASH*, then everyone's eardrums in the theater getting blown out on the FoH. But unless WNEW has raw-feed multitracks in its possession to remix from scratch all of that got lost at the hands of coked-out mixing deck monkey.
Bastard mixing deck monkeys! :hmph:
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