Adam Clayton: Stage and Studio
Home | New Gear | news | U2 | news | ACCESSORIES | AMPLIFIERS | CABINETS | BASS GUITARS | EFFECTS | MIDI CONTROLLERS | Articles | Features | Gear Overview | by era | Icons Of Music Auction | 2008 | Related Links | Video Links
FENDER - Precision - 197x - tobacco finish

MAKE: Fender
MODEL: Precision
VINTAGE: 197x (reported various times as 1972, 1973 & 1976 by Adam Clayton *)
FINISH: tobacco sunburst (finish is worn)

I am not 100% certain as to the vintage of this bass. In a 1995-95 era issue of "The Guitar Magazine (UK), states: "Clayton's main bass is a mid`70's - he thinks a `76 - Fender Precision bought for him a friend during U2's early days.


Yet, he's called it by different vintages in his last two Bass Player magazine features.


Adam referred to it as a 1972 in the Dec 2000 Bass Player magazine.


In the Janaury 2006 issue of Bass Player, he referred to it as a 1973. "I have a ’73 Precision Bass that I’ve used since day one. I used to think, This is the old work horse—old faithful. I loved it. I still love it, and I play it all the time, but I try to branch out and play different instruments. I’m not so attached to any of the others." 


Finish & body-wise, this bass has had many alterations. It's had various stickers over time. Pickguards have been varying over time from nothing to the PopMart era mirror pickguard to it's present black pickguard. It has also had a few necks over time. While having a dot inlay neck during The Joshua Tree, it had `70;s style black, big block inlays during the Vertigo 2005-2006 tour.

information forthcoming
  • STAGE: information forthcoming
  • STUDIO: information forthcoming
  • VIDEO: information forthcoming

Jazz neck on his Precision.
Adam w/black block inlayed Jazz neck on his 1970's Precision bass. Vertigo era.

Adam playing his 1970's Fendre Precision at...
Tibetan Freedom Concert, NY, 1997.



"So there I was, fifteen years old, with a dark brown Ibanez-copy bass guitar and no amp. I had no idea what I was supposed to do with it. Absolutely none. Not a clue. It just sounded good to me." - Adam Clayton