Pino Palladino (born on October 17, 1957 in Cardiff, Wales, UK) is a noted rock and rhythm and blues electric bass player of Italian ancestry.
Palladino began playing bass in 1973, having played the electric guitar for some time before that. His first professional gig was at a local television station, where he began playing in 1978. In 1980, he joined the band of Jools Holland and appeared on the album Jools Holland and the Millionaires.
In the 1980s, Palladino became famous playing the fretless bass with many artists including Gary Numan, Paul Young, Richard Ashcroft, David Gilmour, Tears for Fears, and Don Henley. In the 1990s, he favoured fretted basses with Melissa Etheridge, Richard Wright, D'Angelo, Elton John, and Eric Clapton. Also in 1991 he joined Paul Rodgers of Bad Company fame, to form the band The Law.
Recently he became a touring member of The Who, after the death of John Entwistle. He, along with Phil Collins, was a member of the house band for the Golden Jubilee of Elizabeth II, which played with Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Cliff Richard, and Tony Bennett, among others. As of the spring of 2006, Palladino was touring with Jeff Beck.
In 2003, he played with Simon and Garfunkel on their "Old Friends" reunion tour and he appears on the Old Friends: Live on Stage CD and DVD from the tour. He also plays on Paul Simon's 2006 release, Surprise.
He also has worked in the John Mayer Trio with John Mayer and Steve Jordan.
After John Entwistle died, Palladino became the fulltime touring bass guitarist for The Who and recorded some of the bass parts for The Who's first album in twenty-four years, which was released in October 2006, called Endless Wire.
He also played on J.J. Cale and Eric Clapton's album The Road to Escondido, which was released November 7, 2006.
Pino Palladino is considered one of the most noteworthy rock and pop session bass players due to his pioneering use of the fretless bass in many 1980s chart records. While it was typical for a bass guitar in a commercial track to have a rather generic sound and stay "playing the low notes" Palladino turned this on its head with a very recognizable personal sound (combining fretless tone with a octave effect) and highly creative basslines that frequently added chords, lead lines and counter melodies. Typical of this style was his playing on Paul Young's biggest chart hits, in particular his iconic introductory bass solo on Wherever I Lay My Hat (That's My Home). His equipment at that time included a fretless Music Man StingRay and Boss Octave pedal (OC-2).
The Fender Pino Palladino Signature Precision Bass is modeled after two of Pino's Fender Precision basses. The body featuring faded fiesta red paint over desert sand paint is based on Pino's 1961 Precision Bass while the neck shape and round-lam rosewood fret board are based on Pino's 1963 sunburst Precision Bass.