He’s the cat who orchestrated the fretless takeover of the instrument in the 1980s/90s. Then he commandeered the triumphant return of the fretted Fender Precision in the 21st century.
For nearly forty years and counting, the chameleonic Giuseppe Henry “Pino” Palladino has been among the most in-demand session and touring bassists on the planet. Greatly inspired by classic rhythm & blues and American soul music, Pino mostly plies his craft with frets nowadays, utilizing a vintage 1961 Precision which has been replicated for the masses by way of Fender’s signature bass series.
Pino’s genre traversing work spans Paul Young, D’Angelo, John Mayer Trio, Don Henley, Adele, David Gilmour, Jeff Beck, Nine Inch Nails, The Who, and Herbie Hancock, among many other high-profile artists.
Palladino’s use of a an “octaver effect” (Boss Octave O2 pedal) on his fretless MusicMan Stingray set a precedent for the instrument in a pop context throughout the Regan / Thatcher years. On the hits (such as Melissa Etheridge’s “Come to My Window” and Paul Young’s “Every Time You Go Away”) and the album tracks – Pino almost always rendered an upper register motif which severed as a main or secondary hook to the composition.
His work on D’Angelo’s Voodoo slab in 2000 reignited interest in the fretted Fender Precision bass which continues well into the present day.
Pino Palladino Sound & Vision…
D’Angelo “Chicken Grease” https://youtu.be/m4XI6LXCsH8
Paul Young “Every Time You Go Away” https://youtu.be/nfk6sCzRTbM
Melissa Etheridge “Come To My Window” https://youtu.be/Gk4CwPQCbAE
Gary Numan “Music for Chameleons” https://youtu.be/_586NoZSr-Y
Erykah Badu “Cleva” https://youtu.be/XO0KY6Fry5M
Eric Clapton “Bad Love” https://youtu.be/qY2vjv8aEas
The Who Quadrophenia Live https://youtu.be/9NEQb6LdHGQ