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It took a lot to get me to play bass again!

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  • It took a lot to get me to play bass again!

    Hello all.
    Back from my trip to The Future Music Forum 2015 in Barcelona.
    I’ll talk about the forum in an upcoming post. (http://www.billboard.com/articles/ne...ggest-audition

    Today’s post is about why I’ve stopped (for the most part) playing bass in live situations. There is this generally accepted and (in my view) incorrect idea that a drummers main responsibility is to “hold it down” and “keep the groove”. Here’s a news flash, holding it down and keeping the groove is the “main responsibility of EVERY player and vocalist in the ensemble. Every vocal part, every guitar solo, every keyboard solo, every bass solo and all of the comping is part of the groove and is not the eclusive responsibility of the drummer. If you need the drums to stay “in perfect time” in order for you to do your thing, you should be at home practicing with a metronome.

    With that said, let me explain what a drummers job is. The drummer is there to play the beat/composition and represent the tempo average of the group as a whole. When other players look to the drummer for tempo and groove, they abdicate their responsibility and often shift blame away from themselves.
    This viewpoint is so prevalent that many drummers are now too robotic and restricted for fear of being accused of not keeping ‘perfect time’. This is the kiss of death, sort of like being called racist or anti-Semitic. Who wants that on their rap-sheet!

    So I’ve decided to return to my favorite instrument, drums. My career has been built as a bassist, but I honestly haven’t enjoyed it that much. When I play drums, I feel more at home and effective.
    I enjoy responding to audiences dancing (especially women) and enjoying the music. I certainly can identify many drummers that DO play in an exciting and compositionally effective manor (Gadd, Jordan, Bryant, Ferrone to name a few), but I’m not in bands with them and it's tough to find players like that.

    I did have the opportunity to play with Steve Jordan at Bootsy Collins’ compound outside of Cincinnati in preparation for the Catfish Collins Memorial concert. I also toured across Europe with Rocky Bryant back when the Berlin wall was still standing. He was killin’ it then and even more of a badass now!
    I’m looking forward to my new project with Stewart Copeland because he's an exiting and compositionally expressive cat on the drums. The few times we’ve played together thus far have been a joy and I don’t leave him holding the tempo bag. We handle it as a team. This is what it took to get me to play bass again!
    [IMG]file://localhost/Users/The_Pilot/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/msoclip/0/clip_image002.png[/IMG]








  • #2
    I've seen you play and it is slammin'. It amazes me people who are talented enough to play guitar, bass, drums and keys. I was only granted "gifts" in the area of drums and percussion.

    Keeping the Harmony at Harmony Central

    Comment


    • Mr. Hardgroove
      Mr. Hardgroove commented
      Editing a comment
      I'm guessing that you have additional talents musical that you've yet to seriously explore.

  • #3
    Oh, and AMEN to what you say about keeping time!
    Keeping the Harmony at Harmony Central

    Comment


    • #4
      Hey Brian - do I get a prize for saying all those years ago that I like you as a drummer more than a bass player? Don't get me wrong, you do great on bass, I just think your drumming is something special - John Bonham with more finesse, or something like that.

      OTOH I see what you mean about playing bass with Stewart Copeland. But I think it's because you two have similar a similar mentality about drums, that it's not just bashing...finesse is required.
      CHECK IT OUT: Lilianna!, my latest song, is now streamable from YouTube.

      Subscribe, like, and share the links!

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      • Mr. Hardgroove
        Mr. Hardgroove commented
        Editing a comment
        Hey Craig. When you and I rehearsed for the EV2 festival gig, I hadn't played drums in any serious setting
        for nearly 8 years. I remember being rusty and uninspired about being in PE. After a few rehearsals you gave me some insights on how you viewed my approach that I'd never heard before. It was those rehearsals and gig that put me back on course to do what I really enjoy most, and that is playing the drums.
        I was so inspired that I sent clips and photos to two of my biggest drumming inspirations, Lenny White and Diamond Williams!

    • #5
      I'm just a piker but I always thought Stewart Copeland was one of the most creative drummers EVAH. I also always thought that Sting was the Lucky one in that band. His talent not withstanding, he had the best of fortune to land two incredible musicians to support his songs.
      I'm thinking, Mr Hardgroove, that I should investigate your work tootsweet if you are the caliber of musician that can share space with Messrs. Copeland and Anderton.
      http://thebasement.createaforum.com/

      Comment


      • #6
        Well Holy Crap...Amazing Mr. Hardgroove...I'm thinking now that Messrs. Copeland and Anderton feel honored to work with YOU having checked out your Dossier.

        Forgive my ignorance...chalk it up to my being an ignorant Old Cracker..
        http://thebasement.createaforum.com/

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