The secret of playing bass well is practice, practice and then
more practice. I have lot of people ask me my secrets but there
are no secrets, just practice. It's wanting to always better
yourself. There is so much out there to learn and not enough
time to soak it all in, but a great thing to remember as a bass
player is to learn your triads and that tone is in your hands. I do
not play five- or six-string bass, because I've never had the need
to. I've had a go on a few but it has never really felt right for my
style. I'm not opposed to it, however I think my hands are way
too small for a five- or six-string. I can slap, however I don't
ever really need to for the music I play, plus I'm still waiting
for the phone call from Level 42. My first bass was a cheap
Spector, kind of like a crappy version of the one Sting used.
My favourite bass ever to date is my Lakland Vintage P with
a Jazz neck: originally the Duck Dunn Signature with some
nice vintage pickups. They're so good I have two of them. It's
an absolute dream to play. My bass heroes are Carol Kaye, Paul
Simonon, Joe Lally, Duck Dunn, James Jamerson, Kim Deal,
Trevor Bolder, Andy Rourke, Jessie Keeler, John Paul Jones,
John Entwistle, Geezer Butler, Jon McVie, Tim Commerford
and Krist Novoselic. If I could get the bass tone of any album
ever released, I would choose Paul Simonon's tone on
by the Clash. It's perfect. It's that hard-sounding, almost
growling, with the dub, sub kind of feel. We have a brand new
album called
Two Hands
coming out and we're pretty much on
tour for the rest of the year.
I slap because I absolutely love it! I don't play it so much in
the band's music, unfortunately, because I'm still perfecting the
technique. Slap is for when I get my groove on though, there's
nothing better then a jazzy drum line accompanied by some slap.
The secret of playing bass well is practising to your idols, studying
their technique and taking on board their tips. I've always enjoyed
playing along to CDs, riffs and even YouTube clips in which I'll
try and copy and perfect in a way to try and help me learn from
just hearing instead of reading music. Looking for other tips on
the internet makes it much more interesting and broadens your
horizons, I have found YouTube really useful for this because
there are so many styles and originality on there and it is easy
to be inspired. And of course, the hours of practice involved: you
have to put the effort in to get the results out. My favourite bass
to date is my Schecter: it felt so nice compared to the other basses.
My other favourite is my Dean Razorback bass, simply because it
looks so mean! The greatest bass player that ever lived is has got
to be Geezer Butler, Such a talented guy and the bringer of heavy
metal. He always comes across as original, and he is someone that
I have always enjoyed listening to. Our debut album,
N ew Age Of
Old Ways,
is out now.
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