(plays with Danielle Taylor)
1. For the first question we want to know when did you start to play the bass guitar? Was it easy for you to learn bass?
I was a bit of a late bloomer…started playing when I was 17. I was always into music and loved it, but was usually preoccupied with sports or something else. In high school my love for music really took over and I ultimately decided I wanted to participate, rather than just attend and listen. It was relatively easy for me to learn the basics because I took a few lessons and joined a band right off the bat. Being in a band is really a good way to extend your abilities right away. It helps you stay in time, listen to the other instruments, want to get better for the purpose of the song, etc. Really helped me right away.
2. Playing on the bass for you is… Hobby? Job? Lifestyle?
A little bit of everything at this point. But above all, It’s definitely a lifestyle…I don’t think I’ll ever not play bass.
3. Who is your musical inspiration among bassists?
There are several inspiring bassists for me, but my top 3 would probably be Les Claypool, Flea, and Geddy Lee.
4. Do you play any other musical instruments? If you start to learn another one which would you like?
I wouldn’t say I play any other instruments…I dabble with an acoustic guitar I’ve got, but wouldn’t call myself a multi instrumentalist. If I were to start playing another instrument it would be the drums. Drums and percussive sounds in general really resonate with me. It’s usually where my head is at when it comes to the creative process.
5. Musical instrument with which you can be associated with is…
Well you’d think it’d be bass…but I always say I’m a drummer in a bass player’s body.
6. Tell us about the projects in which you participate?
I play bass with pop singer/songwriter Danielle Taylor. That’s the only project I’m currently associated with, though I played in a metal band for about 6 years and played with a jam band for a short period of time too. I just recently did some studio work for someone on a few rock tunes as well. But my main focus is recording and performing with Danielle. Our latest EP entitled „The Chase” is currently being mixed and we’re gearing up for a ton of dates in support of that release. We worked with Erich Talaba (Sara Bareilles, Fall Out Boy, Switchfoot, Yellowcard) on it and are beyond excited to share the final product with all of our fans and friends alike!
7. What do you feel on live performances? How friendly and open are you with your fans?
I love performing live! There is no single greater feeling than putting on a great show for all the people that have spent their hard earned money or taken time out of the day to come see you live. I feel us as performers owe them our best. Being on stage is electric and gives me a rush like no other, but after a performance you’ll usually find me at the merch table hanging out and meeting all kinds of people. And that can be just as enjoyable as the show itself…always a great time!
8. What do you like except music? Can you imagine yourself in other areas of life?
Other than music…I love to travel, wine taste, and eat bomb food…what more could you ask for really? I’m a huge basketball fan and never miss a Laker game. I also love stand up comedy. I can’t really imagine myself in other areas life though besides music. Music is and always will be a constant for me I think.
9. Maybe other bass players or those who start to learn bass are reading this article now. Let’s talk about technical stuff. Which brand do you prefer? Does quality of music depend on the guitar’s brand or of the skill of the bass player?
For me, Fender is where it’s at. I love my Fender ‚American Special’ P-Bass. It’s perfect for the type of music I play with Danielle and just has a great overall tone. I use DR strings (gotta love the brightness!) and normally play out of my Markbass CMD 102P. It’s the most powerful, rich sounding combo amp out there in my opinion. It’s small and relatively light…but packs a serious punch. I’ll throw a Tech 21 SansAmp into the mix to add a little more depth and call it a day! I try to keep my set up as simple as possible with out compromising on the tone and power I’m looking for. I think the quality of music can be improved by a good bass or guitar sure, but does not necessarily depend on it. You of course want to use great gear, but if a song is not good..then gear isn’t going to help much in my opinion. The skill of the player is actually quite important I think when it comes to bass. A lot of people hear great songs and can’t really make out what the bass is doing…or just a hear a general low frequency moving along with the chord changes and assume it’s no big thing. But I would say it takes a fair amount of skill and practice to stay in the pocket, play what’s right for the song, keep a great consistent tone going and not be noticed. I’m talking about general bass playing…not virtuosos or bands that feature the bass more…those obviously take a great deal of skill. But the skill level behind simple basslines of great songs that we all love should not be underestimated.
10. And the last question is about your musical dreams and plans. What are you planning for the future? What are you dreaming about? What should we wish for you?
My musical dream is simply to continue to be a part of the creative process with great new music and tour the world. Continuing with my current band Danielle Taylor is my main plan for the future. I am very excited for the release of „The Chase” and look forward to performing the new songs live, meeting tons of new people, and making new friends!