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Archive through August 19, 2005palembic30 8-19-05  5:23 am
Archive through September 01, 2008jacko50 9-01-08  5:24 am
Archive through February 18, 2009jakebass50 2-18-09  11:35 am
Archive through April 14, 2009dannobasso50 4-14-09  6:35 am
Archive through September 20, 2009jimmyj50 9-20-09  8:34 pm
Archive through April 30, 2010jcdlc7250 4-30-10  10:37 pm
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Archive through April 26, 2011jimmyj50 4-26-11  2:13 pm
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Archive through November 26, 2012rustyg6150 11-26-12  3:54 am
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Author Message
lbpesq
Senior Member
Username: lbpesq

Post Number: 5617
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Sunday, December 15, 2013 - 10:25 pm:   Edit Post

And congratulations on your new gig as closer for my Oakland Athletics. You sure are a busy guy!

Bill, tgo
davehouck
Moderator
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 11265
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Sunday, December 22, 2013 - 1:46 pm:   Edit Post

Cool video, and great sound quality; I had the volume turned up, and the bass was sitting very nice in the mix, despite it being a drum-centric session. Nice playing Jimmy; perfect for the tune.
jacko
Senior Member
Username: jacko

Post Number: 3471
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Monday, December 23, 2013 - 1:01 am:   Edit Post

Jamestaylor.com just emailed me my seating allocation for next september in Glasgow. Front Row centre stage! woohoo! I'll try not to look too smug :-)
celebrating by playing JTs Christmas album. Some very tasteful festive playing on there Jimmy.

Graeme
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 492
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Monday, December 23, 2013 - 10:37 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Dave. Dennis Moody was the engineer and he does a good job of looking after the low-end.

Graeme, great that you were able to arrange those tix! Guess I'll be seeing you in the fall (can't miss you in those seats!). JT's Xmas album also has some nice upright playing by the late Dave Carpenter.

Happy Season to everybody,
Jimmy J
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1119
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Friday, February 07, 2014 - 5:49 pm:   Edit Post

Jimmy, I know you don't like to toot your own horn, so I thought I would post this info from the upcoming James Taylor tour!

All-Star Band Revealed!

Following the announcement of his Summer 2014 U.S. Tour, James is pleased to reveal the lineup of his All-Star Band. He is excited to be touring again with these amazing musicians!

Kate Markowitz – Vocals

Andrea Zonn – Vocals/Fiddle

David Lasley – Vocals

Arnold McCuller – Vocals

Lou Marini – Horns

Walt Fowler – Horns/Keyboard

Mike Landau – Electric Guitar

Jimmy Johnson – Bass Guitar

Larry Goldings – Piano/Keyboard

Luis Conte – Percussion

Steve Gadd – Drums

https://tour.jamestaylor.com/

Unfortunately I will be in Alaska when you play my hometown of Houston! I'm SO BUMMED!!

Have a great tour!
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 496
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Saturday, February 08, 2014 - 12:52 pm:   Edit Post

Rusty,

Thanks for the horn tooting. It's an honor to get to play this music with these folks!

Sorry to miss you in Houston but Alaska should be nice that time of year, maybe preferable...

Jimmy J
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1120
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Saturday, February 08, 2014 - 1:13 pm:   Edit Post

Jimmy, had I known you were coming to Houston before I booked my vacation I would have changed my vacation dates to come see you! Unfortunately it's already booked. I'm still hoping to catch you at the Spud on one of my trips to visit my son in LA!

Rusty
jcdlc72
Advanced Member
Username: jcdlc72

Post Number: 308
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Sunday, February 09, 2014 - 5:31 pm:   Edit Post

Well, that is one amazing lineup for sure!! Jimmy, have my very best regards, and my best wishes for a wonderful tour!
enzo
Advanced Member
Username: enzo

Post Number: 349
Registered: 4-2009
Posted on Sunday, February 09, 2014 - 9:09 pm:   Edit Post

No dates in Chicago? Aarrgh! :-)
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 497
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Sunday, February 09, 2014 - 10:30 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Juan Carlos.

Wait for it Enzo...

Sorry in advance that I can't invite everybody to these shows. "Comps" are scarce in this day and age......

Jimmy J
jacko
Senior Member
Username: jacko

Post Number: 3488
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Monday, February 10, 2014 - 1:13 am:   Edit Post

Really looking forward to seeing who turns up in Glasgow. I'm guessing David Lasley probably won't but it would be fantastic to have Luis Conte, Lou marini and Walt Fowler over here. The last couple of times JT came over he brought a reduced band (although by no means lacking in anything) so it would be great to hear the full ensemble for a change :-)

Graeme

p.s. Seeing as you'll have the whole of the 'gadditude' band how about getting Steve to open the show with a few of those numbers :-)
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 498
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Monday, February 10, 2014 - 5:08 pm:   Edit Post

Graeme,

I know, it would be nice to have perc and horns with us over there. There is still a slight chance but I don't think it's going to happen this time either. We will however have the full rhythm section plus Markowitz, McCuller and Zonn, so we should be able to make a considerable noise.

James has never had an opening act that I can recall, he has too many songs to play! But yes, if he needed a break I guess now we have instrumental tunes available to fill the void. Ha! That's unlikely to happen though as we sidemen prefer to keep our musical projects separated. James is such a great chap that he encourages band members to bring their solo CDs on the road and makes them available at the merch table alongside all the JT gear. So it's possible the Gadd record will be for sale at these summer gigs, which is pretty crazy. "If you want to hear the band with no singer, well, here you go".

Jimmy J
keith_h
Senior Member
Username: keith_h

Post Number: 1971
Registered: 2-2005
Posted on Friday, February 28, 2014 - 3:48 pm:   Edit Post

I don't know how many other tracks Jimmy is on but Dave Weckl and Jay Oliver have released the album that contains the track from the YouTube video of Higher Ground. It's called Convergence. Listening to the flac version of the track as I write this. The remainder of the album I've heard so far is great too.

Keith
basriber
New
Username: basriber

Post Number: 2
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 06, 2014 - 3:38 am:   Edit Post

Hi Jimmy J

I've been quite a follower (and subsequently Alembic-owner) for some years now and am very much hoping to catch the JT show in Copenhagen this september.

Speaking of which - and well, this may be way off the mark - but if you're in any way interested in having a cup of coffee and a (possibly bassy) chat with me and a fellow bass player and JJ-digger (no, we're not stalkers - just serious players with excellent taste in heroes) it would mean a great deal to us :-).

In any case, I'm really looking forward to hopefully hearing you live for the first time later this year!

This is me: www.mikkelriber.dk.
If you prefer, you can reach me at mikkelriber@mikkelriber.dk. Or not - you choose :-)

All the bass(t)
Mikkel
jseitang
Advanced Member
Username: jseitang

Post Number: 333
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 06, 2014 - 7:29 am:   Edit Post

hi Jimmy

been a fan for a long time... just love your tone and the way you play...
ive got a question ( sorry if you have already answered it, as i was looking through most of the archive postings on this thread) i recently started recording and playing my series 2 in earnest, i got a REDDi di box which i think is great, but i wanted to ask the following: how do you hook up the power supply outputs ( which are stereo; neck and bridge)to the single input of the REDDI? looking at your pics in this thread i see you only have one REDDI on your live set up. am i missing something here? or is it that you have the stereo output going to a stereo quarter inch into the REDDI?
again sorry for my ignorance, just tryin to learn.
thanks

Jimy
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 506
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Thursday, March 06, 2014 - 10:05 am:   Edit Post

Mikkel,
Thanks for the note and hope to see you in Copenhagen. We're probably playing Tivoli Gardens again but I haven't seen the itinerary so I'm not sure. I hope you can come and enjoy the gig. Maybe I can meet you at the Lakrids shop? Ha!! Post something in here to remind as we get closer to the date and maybe we can connect for a chat. Bass talk is always good.
-----------

Hey Jimy with one "m" (love it),

Thanks for your kind comments and glad to hear your series machine is getting some playtime. Your gonna get spoiled!

97.65% of the the time I run my basses in mono. I used to run a stereo amp rig simply because it sounded so fantastically huge and was fun to stand in front of. But there have only been two bands for which I have made the effort to record in stereo: Flim & the BB's and Allan Holdsworth. And even then I barely used the effect.

My approach in those cases was to record both outputs separately but only pan them slightly off center from each other. I prefer more bridge pickup than neck pickup in my blend so it would end up looking like the bridge pickup was maybe panned to "1 o'clock" with the fader at 0 and the neck pickup was at "10:30" and down about 10db. Even though the bass sonically appeared to be in the center of the recording, this slight spread did something interesting to the overtones and harmonic content that I liked. Subtle...

I also only touched on using effects pedals but I can see where running stereo could open up a whole bunch of options if you were into that. I used to use a chorus on the bridge p/u only and when turned on would simply add the "wet" sound to the bridge pickup's output. This essentially changed the p/u balance and overall volume while adding the slight smearing of chorus. I used it mostly for soloing.

I'm still doing this stereo split for Holdsworth (I have a few REDDI boxes) but everything else these days is straight up mono.

Does your PSU not have a mono output option? If not, you can build it in pretty easily. Or, you can buck the trend and always request TWO channels for bass. Yeah!

Cheers,
Jimmy J
jseitang
Advanced Member
Username: jseitang

Post Number: 334
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Friday, March 07, 2014 - 11:19 am:   Edit Post

Jimmy-
wow thats kind of crazy, mono 97.65% of the time! your sound still sounds huge but still very YOU. :-)
thanks for letting me know, i was just trying to figure out your signal chain, only because recently ive been more and more into a no amp setup like you. funny how alembics can do that! playing the series 2 is getting already getting me spoiled silly!
my power supply does run mono, i should it more often!
my other question and maybe you have already discussd it: whats up with the big aluminum block you have on your recording bass? are all of your basses equipped with aluminum blocks?
thanks
J
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 508
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Saturday, March 08, 2014 - 8:42 am:   Edit Post

Thanks Jimy,

And you know, what I describe above is just what I've done. With all the options available from these instruments - including our active Q controls, stereo out to different amps and/or effects processing - everybody can dial in their own unique sound. There's no "right way" there's only "your way".

You've spotted my aluminum blocks... This happened more or less by accident and here comes the boring story.

The first 5-string I got was in 1976 which was early for the low-B. At that time GHS was selling single gauges of their hilariously named "Boomers" including a very heavy E-string @ .120. So I used that along with their normal set: .45, .65, .85, .105 to string the bass.

Due to the type of string, the gauges, and the way I like to set up my action, I couldn't quite get the bridge to intonate correctly. I needed to move a couple of the saddles further towards the tailpiece but had run out of room. So the answer was to relocate the bridge about 1/4" in that direction.

My dad had a great shop full of tools including tap and die sets, etc. He did not have a chunk of brass the size of our bridge block but he did have some aluminum so we used that to make a replacement block with offset bridge mounting holes. We didn't know if or how it might effect the sound, and truthfully I still can't say what effect the change of material has. But I loved that first 5-string so every subsequent fretted bass I ordered from Alembic was built with an aluminum bridge block.

I'm sorry but I can't remember why the recording bass has a double-sized block. We must have been going for something but I haven't got a clue. HA!! Whatever the reason, I do like the sound of that bass.

Best to everybody,
Jimmy J
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1166
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 8:22 pm:   Edit Post

Hey Jimmy, I finally got around to ordering cable & connectors to build some spare 5 pin cables & was wondering which pin is the ground? I'm guessing it is pin 5 which has the black wire in Mica's picture, but I wanted to make sure since I'm using the braided shield for my ground. I don't want to use that on one of the pickup leads or the positive lead for the LED's. Thanks in advance for your help!

Rusty

sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 3282
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 9:13 pm:   Edit Post

Hello Rusty,
( sorry Jimmy ) I am not Jimmy , but the answer is PIN 1 is Ground
This diagram has been posted and reposted on this site a few times so I hope I am not out of line . DS5.jpg

Wolf
edwin
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1724
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 10:32 pm:   Edit Post

Ah, you beat me to it, Wolf! I have the exact same diagram except that mine urges me not to try to build it into an oboe. It seems like good advice so I have refrained.
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 510
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 10:38 pm:   Edit Post

Yep, Wolf is right. Pin-1 serves as both audio ground and 0 voltage (between -15 and +15) so that should be connected to your cable's shield. The rest of the colors don't matter as long as they agree on both ends. :-) Good luck with the build.

Jimmy J
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 3285
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 10:40 pm:   Edit Post

HI Edwin ! __LOL __
sonicus
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 3286
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 10:43 pm:   Edit Post

HI Jimmy __
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1169
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Wednesday, March 19, 2014 - 11:25 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Wolf, Jimmy, & Edwin! Glad I asked because obviously my assumption was wrong! I was hoping the ground would be one of the outside lugs so I didn't have to have the braided shield in the middle where it could short out on the adjacent lugs. I'm going to try to use heat shrink on each of the solder connections like Alembic does to keep the wires from fraying & shorting out on the other pins. The cable I got has 2 blue & 2 white wires & the braided shield so I will have to ohm out the wires to make sure I get the same blue & white connected to the same pins on both ends.

I'm so thankful to be a part of such a knowledgeable & caring community who are always willing to help each other out! Honda used to have a slogan "You meet the nicest people on a Honda!" Well, Honda doesn't have ANYTHING on Alembic!
keith_h
Senior Member
Username: keith_h

Post Number: 1978
Registered: 2-2005
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 4:46 am:   Edit Post

Rusty. You want to split the shield so one half goes to pin 1 and the other half goes to the ground lug on the connector.

Keith
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1170
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 9:55 am:   Edit Post

I was wondering about the ground lug on the connector shield, thanks!
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 511
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 11:13 am:   Edit Post

Ah, now we get into the details of everybody's cable building technique... Good subject!

Rusty, first of all be patient and take your time, it can be pretty frustrating. Once you start working with these small parts you will suddenly feel like a giant. Ha!

What kind of cable are you using?

As Keith said, splitting the shield to pin-1 and the shell is a good way to go and I believe is how the stock cables are currently built. They use tubing or small heat shrink to insulate those twisted shield wires on the way to their destination. They do not however use heat shrink on the other pins because there is just so little room to work inside these cable mounted plugs and jacks. (The pic above may be from the inside of an instrument and thus separate wires converging on the jack)

First tip: PUT THE STRAIN RELIEF PART ON THE CABLE BEFORE YOU START SOLDERING. Ha!! How many times have I made that mistake? You get only one chance to forget, then when you start working on the other end you'd better remember.

When I work on the male end of the cable I usually plug it into a female jack while soldering - because I've mistakenly overheated those pins to where they've moved in their plastic (nylon?) mounting and gone out of alignment.

Curious to hear other tips. I'm in the middle of building a combo Alembic / in-ear cable right this minute...

Jimmy J
keith_h
Senior Member
Username: keith_h

Post Number: 1979
Registered: 2-2005
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 11:58 am:   Edit Post

What I did for building my 5-pin Alembic cable was use a plastic jawed vice. Since it is not something I need to do often I can't justify building a jig.

Mic cables on the other hand I need to repair fairly often so I built a jig for 3-pin XLR's. The jig uses panel mount male and female connectors mounted in a piece of wood. It also has some Velcro straps that I use to keep the cable from flopping all over while I work. Kind of rustic but it has worked well for me over the years.

Keith
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1171
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 12:56 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks so much for the instructions Jimmy! I'm using Canare L-4E6S I got from NY Pro Audio

http://www.nyproaudio.com/servlet/the-2051/CANARE-L-dsh-4E6S-STAR-QUAD/Detail

I got the gold pin Neutrik connectors you suggested from Markertek

http://www.markertek.com/Connectors-Adapters/Audio-Connectors/XLR-Connectors/Neutrik-USA-Inc/NC5FRX-B.xhtml

http://www.markertek.com/Cables/Computer-Data-Cables/DMX-Cables/Neutrik-USA-Inc/NC5MX-B.xhtml

Even though I know better, I already cut the insulation off the 1st end of the cable before I slid the strain relief on! No worries though, I haven't soldered anything yet so I can still put it on.

Great idea to use the other jack as a heat sink! I have also melted my share of connectors from using a soldering gun that was way over powered for the job. I just bought a soldering iron so hopefully I won't get these too hot.

I have been using this jig with 2 alligator clips since high school to build cables. You can put the jack in one clip & use the other clip to hold the cable in place while you solder. Both clips rotate & swivel in all directions so it's easy to get everything right where you want it. I twisted all the braided shield into one conductor before I read Keith's post about separating it into 2, so I'll have to do that. I have some small heat shrink that I can use on the braided wires.

I have some super reader glasses I use when I check the action & relief on my neck so I can see the tiny marks on my Stew Mac guage. They are like looking through a magnifying glass so it's easy to see really small stuff. I will use them for this project too.

Thanks again for the tutorial! Here's some pics of my soldering jig & parts.



jazzyvee
Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 3919
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 1:30 pm:   Edit Post

Blue cable to match the new bass... good move.
Jazzyvee
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 512
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 3:07 pm:   Edit Post

Let me state a couple more obvious things only because it seems you're new to the 5-pin thing...

When looking at the soldering side of the two connectors, remember that they are mirror images. When looking at them as a big smile, pin-1 of the Male connector is top right while pin-1 of the Female connector is top left. I am constantly looking at my own scribbled color chart so I don't get turned around.

That "star-quad" cable leaves you with one other important task. It was designed to be used as normal mic cable with two conductors per pin. That's why you have two white wires and two blue wires. For YOUR purposes, you need four separate conductors and so you'll need to find which is which at either end. I suggest you go ahead and make one end and then use a continuity tester to figure out which is which at the other end. Go slow, use a permanent marker, write it down, double check, etc...

I also have one of those giant magnifying lens lamps which I now need to solder anything. It allows me to get my face close enough without the risk of flying lava...

Jimmy J

Oh, here's a link to the official assembly instructions for those clever right angle plugs... (Auto-download pdf)
http://www.neutrik.com/zoolu-website/media/download/126/Assembly+Instruction+-+XLR+RX+Series
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1172
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Thursday, March 20, 2014 - 5:14 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Jimmy! Once again you have enlightened me & pointed out something I hadn't thought about which is the mirror image on the male & female connectors. I knew I was going to have to ohm the wires out & make sure I have the same blue & white going to the same pin on both ends, & will do as you suggested & mark one blue & one white on each end so I don't get them mixed up. I will also draw me a diagram of which wire goes to which pin on both ends so I have a point of reference to go by. I always ohm out the cables I build even with just 2 conductor guitar cables to make sure there aren't any shorts & there is continuity from one end to the other. There have been times when a single strand frayed off the wire & shorted out on ground that I didn't see when I built the cable, but the ohm meter doesn't lie.

The magnifying lamp is a great idea, I wish I had one! I have a neon lamp with a flexible gooseneck that I use to polish my bass & adjust the action. It shows all the smudges & makes it easy to read the Stew Mac gage.

Thanks for the assembly link. I downloaded it yesterday after I snapped the pin insert into the right angle housing & couldn't figure out how to get it back out! Yeah, I was one of those kids who never read the directions when I built models, I just looked at the pictures & glued it together only to find out that I should have glued another piece on first!

As always Jimmy, you are a gentleman & a scholar & I appreciate all your help!

Rusty
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1180
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Monday, March 24, 2014 - 11:39 am:   Edit Post

Well Jimmy, thanks to yours & Keith's advice, I was able to build my first 5 pin cable! It took me 3 hours, but the operation was a success! I can see now why these cables are so expensive! This is tedious work indeed! Thanks again to you & Keith for your instruction & vendors. Now if I just had a Series bass to plug this into!!
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 513
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Tuesday, March 25, 2014 - 1:35 pm:   Edit Post

Way to go Rusty! Wait, you did this without having a series instrument? But you have one under construction, right?

I like your approach - start with a cable. By the time you take delivery you'll know the instrument from the inside out! Excellent.

Jimmy J
rustyg61
Senior Member
Username: rustyg61

Post Number: 1181
Registered: 2-2011
Posted on Tuesday, March 25, 2014 - 2:11 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Jimmy! You & Keith were a great help! Yes, I do have a Series II Europa under construction right now, it is going into finish this week, so I still have a long ways to go on it. I'm passing the time while I wait for it by getting everything I will need to cross over into the Series world. Of course I will get the 20' Alembic cable with the bass, but I wanted a a shorter spare for small stages & in case my 20' goes out, so I built this one. I have also bought a 4" wide Levy strap to help with the extra weight of the bass. I'm sure it will be much heavier than my SCSD shortie! I also bought a 4 space rack to replace my 3 space to have room for the DS5R. So I have all my ducks in a row for the blessed event when my Europa arrives in Texas!
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 1
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Monday, March 31, 2014 - 9:45 am:   Edit Post

Hello all, this is my 1st post as I only enjoyed just the reading here sofar. I wanted to ask Jimmy Johnson (who I adore since hearing him play on Wayne Johnson's album "Arrowhead" back in the late '70s or early '80s): Jimmy, can you give me info if your modified tailpieces are available or are they custom made? I am also interested in the hexagon tail screws as they are less prone to damage then the philips style ones.
Gr. Ulli
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 514
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Monday, March 31, 2014 - 1:13 pm:   Edit Post

Hi Ulli,

Welcome to the Alembic forum and thanks for the comments.

I'm glad you enjoyed the Wayne Johnson Trio stuff, that was a fun band. We had played together in Minneapolis and then all ended up in LA a couple years later and were able to continue making music... Bill and Wayne are great cats and no, we're not related. Ha!

Regarding my tailpieces; these were special order items on these basses and I don't know if anybody else has ever requested them on their instruments. The reason they wouldn't be a normal "option" is because they are specific to the ball-end portion of the strings which are likely to vary between manufacturers or even string types from the same manufacturer. In other words, we designed these tailpieces specifically to work with ghs Boomers - which limits my ability to even try other strings. I like to change strings often so the idea was for these tailpieces to make the operation quick and easy.

The very first of these tailpieces (on the bass I lost many years ago) was simply a brass plate with pins sticking up at differing intervals. Crude looking but functional. The second version (seen on the far left bass in the pic of 3 above) is a straight brass piece with angled pins. This works OK but the tension does try to pull it out of it's mounting bolts. The latest version is the curved style which seems to be a more solid anchor.

Do you currently play an Alembic? One of the joys of working with this company is that they can literally make whatever you can dream up. They've built some amazing instruments over the years, great examples of combining form and function.

I could go on... Ha!

Not sure what you mean by "hexagon tail screws". If you mean the screws securing the bridge and tailpiece to the bass, these are actually bolts which screw into threaded inserts in the wood so that (in the case of the bridge) you can continue to adjust them without ruining the wood. These bolts could have any type of head on them but those currently supplied seem like a logical choice. If you are talking about a different part let me know.

Thanks for visiting!
Jimmy J
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 2
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Monday, March 31, 2014 - 2:39 pm:   Edit Post

Thank you so much Jimmy for the info, I was already fearing it would be a custom solution. I can't afford an Alembic but i always enjoy the reading here. I do have the copy version made by Fernandes looong ago. I am busy right now to exchange some parts of the bridge. I ordered at Alembic the "Bridge Rehab Kit" since the original screwheads were all worn out. It was sent very quickly. I was just thinking if I could order such tailpiece too as I found it a very nice solution. I meant the screws for mounting the tailpice to the body. these are inside threaded inserts too? hexagon type i meant the screws which use the allen key type ones. I saw your tailpiece uses such screws. Many thanks again, I will never forget when i saw you in Lee Ritenours backup on North Sea Jazz Festival 1985 in The Hague. at first standing in the shadows, not regognizing you but during 2 solos you came out of the dark, and my brother yelled at me "thats the bassplayer from Wayne Johnson's album!". was a very special experience for me back then..:-)
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 515
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Monday, March 31, 2014 - 11:10 pm:   Edit Post

Ulli,

Alright, good luck getting that Fernandes back in shape. I see the "rehab kit" comes with those allen-key mounting screws for the bridge so I hope all the parts included are compatible with your bass.

I'm glad you like my odd tailpiece design but fitting one to your bass could be a challenge as the mounting bolts are not in the standard locations. And I'm pretty sure these tailpieces are also "bolts into inserts" though I don't think I've ever removed one to look. That seems like a good system - like a large wood screw with a removable core... Very clever!

Wow, you guys were at that North Sea gig in '85 and that was your brother yelling out there? (Ha! Just teasing!) Cool that you recognized me from the WJ3. I am always awed by how music can reach listeners all over the planet. That Rit tour was a long time ago but brings back fond memories of playing with Carlos Vega - such a groove... Thanks for the story.

Good luck with your bass rehab!
Jimmy J
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 3
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Tuesday, April 01, 2014 - 3:15 am:   Edit Post

thank you Jimmy, yes we (me and my 2 brothers)were in complete shock at that time. Yes Carlos made an impact on us too. I was sad when i heard about him. A few months before we went to this concert or sister passed away because of cancer at age 32. We thought the Festival could move our attention away from our loss for a while, and we were so happy it did seeing you and the others, music can have a healing effect and i never had such a great time again with my brothers, I think we slept in the car along the highway after we found out that the trip home was still a long one.

I included a closeup of my Fernandes FAB-180,it has the rehab parts already on the bridge, it all fitted, only did Alembic provided the wrong size allen keys, but could use my own ones. And to show that mine has no bolt inserts for the tailpiece. I will just use the original tail again, its okay.
Thanks Jimmy :-)
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 516
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 10:44 am:   Edit Post

Yes, music is great for getting us through life's twists and turns.

I've never seen a Fernandes up close, that's interesting. The small hardware details are definitely different - pickup mounting style, pickup selector switch (maybe that's not original), even the truss rod cover might use wood screws. But it's a nice looking bass and now you've upgraded the bridge. Enjoy playing it!

Cheers,
Jimmy J
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 4
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 2:31 pm:   Edit Post

Jimmy, I got this bass from Dino Walcott who was the regular bass player with the dutch guitarist Jsn Akkerman in the early 80's. I recognised him from the videos i recorded from german tv channel back then. He wanted to give this bass to his son, who preferred to spent his time with other passions instead. Yes you right about the PU selector. originally it should have had the rotating switch too. And I noticed in the old videos that Dino removed it and did put a closed metal pate on that spot. Afterwards he came with this one. I msg'd him if he still has the otiginal switch but got no reply yet.Btw, somehow I was in the mood again to listen to one of my old cd's with you; Alan Holdsworth's "Atavachtron", a nice album. Sometimes I just bought albums because you are on it (Like Sadao Watanabe's "Maisha" or Sergio Mendes's "Oceano") You and Anthony Jackson are both my preferred bassplayers for listening :-) Thanx for the kind words about my bass, I hope to play it soon. Gr. Ulli
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 5
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2014 - 2:31 pm:   Edit Post

double post sorry

(Message edited by Ulli on April 02, 2014)
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 517
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Thursday, April 03, 2014 - 10:13 am:   Edit Post

Thanks Ulli,

I don't know Dino's playing but some folks find the location of the p/u selector to be inconvenient and they cap it off as you've described. Usually they relocate it closer to the bridge but I guess not in this case. I don't know how your toggle switch is wired, maybe simply "mute" and "on"? Because if it's: neck pickup / both / bridge pickup, then with no master volume control it will be a little inconvenient to shut the bass off... I guess switch to neck pickup and turn that knob down - which you would get used to doing in a second...

I'm proud to have been a part of those Holdsworth albums. That music is not for everybody but I still love it!

best,
Jimmy J
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 6
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Thursday, April 03, 2014 - 11:16 am:   Edit Post

yes its regular neck/both/bridge selection wired. Indeed your suggestion for muting is the best with this. My first impression of AH was that i needed to get used to his music, But I always prefer to need time to get into the music while listening it a few more times before getting it.My brothers prefer music which is more accesable. Btw I love your work with Lee Ritenour alot. After seeing you with him I bought his Harlequin album. Love all the tracks but esp "Early A.M. Attitude", "San Ysidro" & "Grid Lock" those are burned in my mind and fingers! Gr. Ulli
rapsak_v
Junior
Username: rapsak_v

Post Number: 13
Registered: 8-2013
Posted on Monday, April 07, 2014 - 10:59 am:   Edit Post

Hi Jimmy.
I'm Kaspar from Denmark. I wouldn't expect you to remember me, but we had a brief email exchange some 10 years ago. I sent you my transcription of your Pud Wud solo, as well as a little intro I did on a record. The last nine years I have had the gig in the Danish Radio Bigband.
Anyway, your persisting influence finally caused my to get an Alembic, a beautiful custom Essence with Europa electronics. It's really heavy, though! I'm a bit worried, my back will give me trouble over this. I can imagine your series basses have some heft to them too. Have you ever had any problems with your back in this regard?

Thanks

Kaspar
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 518
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - 10:35 am:   Edit Post

Hi Kaspar,

Thanks for the note, nice to hear from you again.

I love it that there are Radio Big Bands in Europe! My pal Gary Husband sometimes plays drums for NDR. We have no such "sponsored" bands over here except for the house bands on late-night TV shows, and maybe the Lincoln Center groups. Even though some would say jazz originated in the 'States it's only considered a legitimate business in other parts of the world. Ha!!

And those bands over there are great so congratulations on your position as bassist for DR. It must be a blast playing with those fantastic musicians.

Also congratulations on your new Alembic, I hope you are enjoying the big sound! To answer your question, no, these basses haven't resulted in any back issues for me. If the weight is bugging you I can only recommend sitting down. I'm guessing you play upright as well so maybe you already have a stool on stage? I think a bari sax weighs more than an Alembic bass - which is probably why they always sit. Ha!

All the best,
Jimmy J

(Message edited by jimmyj on April 08, 2014)
rapsak_v
Junior
Username: rapsak_v

Post Number: 14
Registered: 8-2013
Posted on Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - 11:45 am:   Edit Post

Hi Jimmy

Yeah, I'm really grateful of my gig. I even got to play with Larry Goldings a couple years ago. A true gentleman, in fact, it's been my experience that alle the truly great musicians, I've played with, have been wonderful people.
The only downside to the gig is that we're only hired 6 months a year. But then again it's nice to be able to play in smaller combos.
I hope to get to see and hear you when you hit Copenhagen this September with James Taylor. My buddy Mikkel has already contacted you in the hope of getting to meet you. I hope you're up for it. Nothing too ...elaborate? Just a handshake and perhaps a coffee. It's SO COOL, you're hanging around this club!

Thanks

Kaspar
rapsak_v
Junior
Username: rapsak_v

Post Number: 15
Registered: 8-2013
Posted on Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - 11:57 am:   Edit Post

Sorry, I continue my rant :-)
Yes I guess sitting is an option. Just not very sexy. Oh, shoot, I'm 45 and overweight so....
The Alembic sound certainly is different from what I'm used to. Only played one gig with it so far. The B string has the voice of God! And the tone, which seemed a bit to "hifi" in my bedroom was wonderfully clear and open on the gig.

Thanks again

Kaspar
reinier
Member
Username: reinier

Post Number: 52
Registered: 1-2003
Posted on Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - 2:37 pm:   Edit Post

Jimmy, great fun to read more people had the "Wow" experience seeing you back in '85 onstage with Lee Ritenour at North Sea Jazz!! I too knew you only as "Flim" Johnson from the Arrowhead sleeve (from which I put your pic up here when starting this thread).
In that same year '85 there was this floppy single inserted in Guitar Player of Allan's "Metal Fatigue", crediting a certain " Jimmy Johnson" on bass and although you knocked the listener right out his socks with that part, me and my band mates, all Arrowhead worshippers, didn't make the connection.
When the North Sea Jazz Lee Ritenour line up announced "Jimmy Johnson" on bass too, boy, were we eager to go and check that cat out!
Due to other performances we watched, we were a little late in the door in the huge "Tuinpalviljoen" and ended up next to the front of house board, far from the stage, so it wasn't until your first solo spot that we could clearly see that shape we all love so much [your hairdo helped a bit too ;-)] and all pieces of the puzzle fell into place: it was THE Flim Johnson we were hearing! Priceless night and although almost 30 years ago in the meantime, remember it as if it happened only yesterday.
Take care, Reinier.

PS: did you enjoy the Peavey 2x10/2x18 walk-in closet they made you stand in front of (FoH sound was very good, don't worry)?
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 8
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - 3:38 pm:   Edit Post

Reinier, what a coincedence, I got that free single too from that magazine, and after that I bought the CD which my brothers could not dig. i happen to make some photos of that RIT performance, and i lend the prints plus natives to a friend of mine, right before we lost contact with each other. I met him again on FB and after a few reminders he send me back the prints plus negatives last week, 29 years later! It was nice to see them back, from both Rit and Casiopea(my middle brother's fav band)I did not print the shots of Jimmy because in the spirit of a true bassplayer, he preferred to stand in the dark most of the time. I will see if can make prints of Jimmy after i manage to scan the negatives. gr. Ulli
ulli
New
Username: ulli

Post Number: 9
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, April 09, 2014 - 9:29 am:   Edit Post

Btw, I am thinking to install a 4way rotary switch again in my Series One copy. How much does it cost to order the switch plus the install plate? Anyone knows?
Gr.
Ulli
jacko
Senior Member
Username: jacko

Post Number: 3516
Registered: 10-2002
Posted on Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 1:08 am:   Edit Post

Ulli.
You might be better posting your question in the troubleshooting section. or better still, phone Mica, She is a delightful person to talk to.

Graeme
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 11
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 4:51 am:   Edit Post

Thank you Graeme, I will do that.

Ulli
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 519
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Friday, April 11, 2014 - 10:16 am:   Edit Post

Thanks for the notes everybody.

Kaspar, glad you're enjoying the big tone! To me it's a natural, almost acoustic sound more closely related to piano than electric guitar. As such it's not what everybody is looking for in an electric bass but obviously I'm hooked on it...

And as you guys have pointed out, although this is the only sound I know how to make I've been lucky to do it in a variety of different musical settings. I've enjoyed my never-know-where-he's-gonna-show-up career. For what I do it helps to not be too famous for doing one thing. Instead, some people think of me as a jazz guy, others a pop guy, some mostly a fretless player, I even had a short stint working for a rock producer back in the day. Only curious bass players can figure out that those are all the same guy. Ha! I've had loads of fun. It's all music to me and there is great stuff in every genre.

Ulli, good luck with your work "Alembisizing" your Fernandes. You could probably purchase a prewired rotary selector switch from Mica (not a cheep piece) but I don't know about compatibility with your electronics. Possible though, especially if the Fernandes originally had one there and if it functioned the same with the circuitry.

There may be a bit of an issue if you continue down this path of buying Alembic parts for your "copy". I don't really know how the family would feel about that. I suspect they'd rather you saved up to buy a real one... But if you love the way this bass feels and plays then you are of course free to upgrade it as much as you wish.

Carry on,
Jimmy J
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 12
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Saturday, April 12, 2014 - 12:45 am:   Edit Post

Thank you Jimmy, yes i realised that after i read about the Alembisizing thing and getting "a bat with hairy eyeball".If I get a no as amswer I can respect that. I have an idea already of the type of Grayhill switch. I could buy it from their site directly. But somehow it would be nice if i can buy the whole set from Alembic themselves. I will never be able to buy a real one, so this is my only fav option.
Ulli
jcdlc72
Advanced Member
Username: jcdlc72

Post Number: 317
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Saturday, April 12, 2014 - 6:16 am:   Edit Post

Sorry if this comment somewhat hijacks the thread, but I wanted to answer to Ulli on this regard. I used to say I could be never able to afford an Alembic, living in a third world country (the paradox is that we have the largest oil reserves in the world, but at the same time our living standards are WAY below most "not-so-wealthy" countries). Since about 13 years we have a strict currency control (ie. we´re not allowed to freely buy foreign exchange, we are limited to a certain (pretty small) amount of foreign currency available for transactions abroad (this year the quota is only of 300 USD per capita YEARLY for online operations abroad), and our own currency has underwent in the last years 4 devaluations. This has been the situation in this country for... ever (only aggravated in the latest 15 years, but we have never really been the equal, comfortable, wealthy society you would expect from "one of the richest countries in the world" as they say). And so, 25 years ago I was lusting for an Alembic since I played one, and thought exactly the same. My closest approach was to buy (1993), secondhand, a neck-thru Hondo bass with 2 DiMarzio "P" pickups and brass hardware, which seemed somewhat similar to me (go figure). Then in 2009 there simply was the chance to buy my Epic 5 secondhand, and "all the stars lined up"... and so I am now the proud caretaker of this wonderful instrument. I cannot assure if or when I will be able to have my dreamed MK Series 5, or a Rogue 6, or... but I see no reason why, if it has happened once, it couldn´t happen again. There are surprises beyond what we are currently able to see, so don´t give up hope!
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 13
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Saturday, April 12, 2014 - 8:59 am:   Edit Post

Jcd, thank you for your reply. One day I hope I can meet Jimmy and save him by accident from something evil. Maybe then he wants to donate me one of his trio instruments ;-)Just kidding ofcourse, I just want to make my bass ready, thats all :-)
Gr. Ulli
jcdlc72
Advanced Member
Username: jcdlc72

Post Number: 318
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Saturday, April 12, 2014 - 8:18 pm:   Edit Post

There´s a song I´ve been LOVING for years and years since it came out... and it has been not until tonite that I´ve found out it must be our dear Jimmy J on bass! I´m talking about a wonderful tune on Sergio Mendes´s "Confetti" album from 1985 called "Real Life". I was playing it and almost went immediately to WIkipedia to find out about the credits... and found a dream team which credits James Johnson on Bass, Carlos Vega on drums, Robbie Buchanan on keyboards (By the way... does anybody remember his "Maxus" band from the early 80s? I must have worn out that vinyl so many times... it´s great!) and Dan Huff on guitar!. Needless to say, I played the song twice after that :-)

Thank you, Jimmy, for so many wonderful moments of good musicianship!
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 14
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 5:31 am:   Edit Post

I didnot know Jimmy already played with Sergio that early. I tought Oceano was his first album with mr. Mendes. I do know Anthony Jackson already was on Sergio's Projects in the '70s
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 520
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 9:50 am:   Edit Post

Yes, well spotted Juan Carlos. That must have been my first time working for Sergio, thus the odd "James" credit. His sessions were always musically interesting and I found him to be a very nice guy. And his wife Gracinia a fabulous singer! I think Robbie was also new to LA at that time and finding success as an arranger / producer - in this classic 80's synth-pop style. Another talented guy!

Thanks cats!
Jimmy J
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 15
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 12:19 pm:   Edit Post

Gracinhia has a marvelous voice. I think Steve Kahn said once she is the singer with the best voice in the world.
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 16
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 12:36 pm:   Edit Post

Gracinhia has a marvelous voice. I think Steve Kahn said once she is the singer with the best voice in the world.
edwin
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1734
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 1:35 pm:   Edit Post

Speaking of amazing voices, I'd highly recommend 20 Feet From Stardom. It's a documentary about back up singers. Jimmy, I daresay you've probably worked with at least of few of the singers featured. Lisa Fischer stands out particularly.
jcdlc72
Advanced Member
Username: jcdlc72

Post Number: 319
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 1:49 pm:   Edit Post

Ohhh yes yes!. In fact, on that song ("Real life"), right after the guitar solo (brilliant Dan Huff!), Jimmy plays, if I´m not wrong, an F to pass then to E minor for the chorus (coming from B7 or Bsus4, not sure right now)... that note had been HAUNTING me for YEARS! You know what I mean... when a single note gives all the character to that moment, I´ve spent a lot of time wondering if I would have "solved the puzzle" any differently, and THAT note simply HAD to be there. I do love a lot of music, and I like a lot of "more complex" music, but then I think it is subjective... a lot of times it´s only a matter of ONE single note, placed in that spot where nothing can replace it, what makes the whole difference. And I LOVE it when it happens!
jimmyj
Senior Member
Username: jimmyj

Post Number: 521
Registered: 8-2008
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 9:22 pm:   Edit Post

Ha! Now we're getting down to some details!

Ulli, I think Steve Khan fell in love with Gracinha after only hearing her voice. But he was too late because she had married Sergio years before...

Yes Edwin, great movie. David Lasley is one of James Taylor's regular BG singers and has some great lines in the film. I understand Arnold McCuller also appears in the extended DVD version. A lot of extremely talented folks! I recently got to observe David, Arnold, Kate Markowitz and Andrea Zonn working on background parts for a new JT record. James usually comes up with the parts and the team then executes his direction beautifully. It's a pleasure to watch the pros at work.

Juan Carlos, you forced me to dig out that track and listen. (1984? 30 years ago? Holy cow, how did that happen?) Fun to hear it again. Reminds me of that time and those great musical experiences. So listen, the F coming out of the guitar solo ... as much as I'd love to take credit for that it was most likely all Robbie Buchanan's idea. Sorry, hope that doesn't ruin anything for you... I think he liked me because I could play whatever he would come up with on his sequenced synth bass part. And just having a human play it (me in this case) would put a bit of "life" into it. Something like that. But he was a "thorough" arranger and didn't leave much to chance so I am quite sure that passing note was all part of his plan.

I do understand what you mean about the power of one note. That's why they are ALL important! Any one of the bunch you play might be "that one note" for somebody.

Cheers,
Jimmy J
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 18
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Sunday, April 13, 2014 - 10:32 pm:   Edit Post

Edwin , the 1st time I saw Lisa Fischer performing, was on a concert I recorded back in mid 80's where she outperformed Chaka Khan in loudness while being in the backgound section.What a body she has!
Jimmy , Steve was in love with Gracienha? wow, nice gossip hehe. And i will checkout the F note Juan mentioned, great way to start the week here.
jcdlc72
Advanced Member
Username: jcdlc72

Post Number: 321
Registered: 11-2009
Posted on Monday, April 14, 2014 - 9:15 am:   Edit Post

And to continue the gossip (and the hijacking of the thread, for which I offer my apologies)... back in the early 80s (probably near the time of the Gracinha affair ;) there was a local TV actress, called Caridad Canelón, who was on the rise here. She had acted on lots of soap operas and enjoyed a huge success in the country. Around the same time, Jeff Berlin knew a Venezuelan vocalist (who used to sang jazz with one of my guitar teachers of then, Mr. Gonzalo Micó) called Vicky Fulop, who he eventually married (Her sister, Katherine, is also a talented TV actress, and maybe here is where the two stories unite). Then Steve Khan met Caridad, and fell madly in love with her... but it didn´t last neither. So, for a while there was a little chance of having two talented U.S. jazz musicians married to a couple of talented and beautiful Venezuelan women!.

Now I cannot listen to Khan´s "Modern Times" album (One of my all time favs) without thinking of Caridad Canelon. Go figure.
ulli
Junior
Username: ulli

Post Number: 19
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Monday, April 14, 2014 - 12:29 pm:   Edit Post

wow thats a cool story Juan. I happen to have a few of Steve Khan's Eyewitness albums, like Casa Loco,Public Acces & Crosssings. I know the Modern times and love especially the track "Blades" alot, I also heard the live version from it, when they did a live recording in Germany. Anthony Jackson did some out of this world Solo Intro for "The Suitcase" with his trademark reverb/flanger sound plus his volumepedal.

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