This fretless Fender Precision Bass from 1978 is a thing of beauty, and I'm saying that even as a non-fan of sunburst finishes. However, I always do a double take when I see a fretless bass with a maple fingerboard instead of the more usual rosewood or preferably ebony. It looks totally weird to my eyes, which isn't to say that it's unattractive.
I think I'd upset a few Fender collectors if I ever got my paws on a bass such as this because the very first thing I'd do would be to rip off the dreadful flatwound strings that people insist on putting on fretless basses and replace them with proper roundwounds.
I know WHY fretless basses got saddled with flatwounds - it's so as not to mark the fingerboard. However, they totally kill the tone. Put roundwounds on and the bass will sing and sound glorious. I'd rather have a bit of fingerboard wear rather than a bass that sounds dead.
G L Wilson
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