Contents

Issue 59 October 2010

20 MATT GARRISON about his Mike Flynn chats to Matt
groundbreaking new solo project

Regulars
08 THE LOW DOWN
Keep up with all the latest new gear and industry news…

Interviews

14 BASS TO THE FUTURE: ZANDER ZON
Introducing solo bass specialist, Zander Zon

16 TAKE FIVE: JOHN ‘RHINO’ EDWARDS 18 BASSICALLY SPEAKING

Still rocking all over the world, the Status Quo bassist reveals his top ve albums We talk to Marcus Keenan, Adam Irwin, Markus Laakso, Simon Wright, Matt Armstrong and Frédéric Leclercq
BassicallySpeaking BassicallySpeaking

Bassically Speaking
Bassists tell us what they do in a minute or less!

26 FREEBASS

Matt Armstrong, Murder By Death
e secret of playing bass well is knowing your job in the band. Sometimes it’s OK to be upfront, but a lot of times you just need to be there to keep things from falling apart. What you don’t play is often as important as what you do play. My basses are a First Act Custom semi-hollow body, a Fender American Deluxe Precision, a modified 70s Precision, an Epiphone Jack Casady and a Michael Kelly acoustic/electric. I currently play through an Ampeg SVT-4 Pro head. I use an Ampeg 8x10” and an Emperor 2x15” together in the studio and am currently touring with a Schroeder 4x12” cabinet. My bass heroes are Simon Gallup ( e Cure), John Curley (Afghan Whigs), Dominic Aitchison (Mogwai), Greg Edwards (Failure) and Eric Abert ( e Life and Times), but I was reminded recently that the greatest bass player of all time may very well be John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin. His playing is so intricate, yet so tasteful. www.murderbydeath.com

Markus Laakso Chaosweaver
e secret of playing bass well is understanding that bass and guitar are completely different instruments. Don’t try to play bass like a guitarist: focus on the groove and writing bass arrangements that complement the wholeness of the song. My bass style is stripped down and to the point. I use Ibanez BTB basses, SansAmp bass effects – mainly fuzz and distortion – and Fender tube amps. My first bass was an Ibanez BTB 400, and I’ve stuck with the series ever since. BTBs are affordable, easy to play, well structured and good-looking. My bass heroes are Sami Yaffa (Michael Monroe, Hanoi Rocks, Joan Jett, New York Dolls) and Robert Trujillo – masters of the groove. I absolutely adore Trujillo’s innovative Latin funk thumbing style on the Infectious Grooves and Suicidal Tendencies albums. I know people are going to hate me for saying this, but I think his unique talents are being wasted on Metallica’s not-so-bassist-friendly music. He doesn’t get the opportunity to shine. e greatest bass player that ever lived is Geezer Butler. He might not be technically the most advanced, but he’s the coolest. www.chaosweaver.info
18 BASS GUITAR MAGAZINE

Everything I play is really quite basic – root notes, power chords and so on. I use an ESP LTD EC-254AT with EMG pickups. It’s beaten and battered at the edges, but well loved. My rig is an SWR 750X amp and an Ampeg 8x10” cab. e only effects I use live are a Boss Equalizer pedal and a Fulltone Mosfet Bass-Drive. For the last record I spent some time playing with an Electro-Harmonix POG. Together with the Bass-Drive it makes a noise somewhere between a circular saw and a spaceship. I don’t play a 5-string because, as it stands, I barely use all of the four strings I have. Adding a fifth would just confuse me, or give me ideas above my station. When the Pixies were looking for a bass player, they specified ‘please, no chops’ in the wanted ad. Or so I heard. Kim Deal writes effortlessly cool basslines and is in one of the greatest bands ever. Enough said. My first bass was a hand-me-down, handmade, sky-blue Precision copy. It had a mirrored scratchplate, weighed a ton, and played like a suspension bridge. I still have it somewhere. I’d sell it, but it might be more valuable as firewood when the time comes. I do not slap, because it conjures up an image of Alan Partridge playing air bass to a Gary Numan song in his caravan. So it mostly has negative or hilarious connotations, I’m afraid. www.65daysofstatic.com

Adam Irwin Black Spiders
I don’t play 5-string basses. You can do everything you need to do with four strings; in fact, at a push I could probably manage with three! Anything more is superfluous and, frankly, showing off. My main bass is a Marcus Miller series Fender Jazz, and I have a standard Jazz as a spare. I play them through a clone of a Brassmaster octave fuzz pedal, built by our guitarist Ozzy, into a Bugera BVP 5500 amp and an 8x10” Peavey cab. My first bass was a very cheap Jazz copy by a company I’ve never heard of before, or since, called Legend. When I first started playing I was in a punk band, and we’d often indulge in the cliché of trashing our gear at the end of a show. Anyway, at one gig I threw my bass across the stage and looked on in horror as the body snapped in two! I couldn’t afford to buy a new bass, so I glued it back together with the stuff they use for attaching skirting boards to walls, and carried on gigging it for another six months or so until I could afford a new one. I’ve still got it now and play it at home. It sounds terrible… Paul Simonon ( e Clash), Krist Novoselic (Nirvana) and Kim Deal (Pixies) were the three bass players who most influenced me when I decided that this was what I wanted to do. e greatest bass player that ever lived was probably John Entwistle. He was technically outstanding but never overly flash; everything he did served the song. www.theblackspiders.com

I started playing upright bass and tuba in an orchestra when I was a kid. I picked those instruments because they were big, loud and looked cool. Later I switched to electric bass and continued playing the tuba in orchestras. Around this time, my dad brought home a drum set that he won in a poker game and gave it to my twin brother. We played together every day, never really saying a word. We learnt to communicate with each other through our instruments – communication is key. I play a Fender Jazz into an Ampeg SVT Classic with an 8x10” cab; the range of the 4-string bass is completely suitable for the style of music I play. I played a 5-string briefly and realised that I wasn’t using the extra range of the instrument, because it made everything sound too heavy. When I first started playing I was completely blown away by slapping. I ended up just spending hours in the bedroom slapping the heck out of my bass. I later found out that if I wanted to play with anyone else, I would have to tone it back and rely on musical judgement. e greatest bass player that ever lived is Donald Purvis © Helen ‘Duck’ Dunn, the house bass player at the legendary Stax record label and bassist for Booker T and the MGs. I first saw Duck in the Blues Brothers movie and wanted to be just like him. Everything he plays is so tasteful and well crafted. www.myspace.com/thehundreddays

32 JON THORNE AND DANNY THOMPSON 41 COLIN EDWIN

Frédéric Leclercq DragonForce
My bass style is simple, efficient and uses fast picking. I play my signature ESP bass, the FL 600, and also the Forest, B and Surveyor series. I use Rocktron Blue under and Utopia B300 effects, with Peavey Tour heads and cabinets. I don’t really need more than five strings – I have small fingers so it wouldn’t be as comfortable for me – but I do use a 5-string when I’m demoing songs for my other band, Maladaptive, because we tune to C. I don’t know the secret of good bass playing – maybe someone could tell me? I guess you need a good sense of rhythm and harmony, and you need the humility to serve the music. My first bass was from a friend who got it from another friend. It had no brand, since someone scratched out the brand name. I never really had bass heroes, but I would mention Steve Harris and Nikki Sixx, not particularly for their style but for their attitude and charisma. e greatest bass player that ever lived is Victor Wooten or Jimmy Johnson! www.dragonforce.com

Jon Thorne unveils his new album, written in tribute to double-bass legend Danny Thompson

45 ‘FIELDY’

BASS GUITAR MAGAZINE 19

Basically Speaking_1nw.indd 18

09/09/2010 16:41Speaking_1nw.indd 19 Basically

09/09/2010 16:41

Joel McIver meets Colin Edwin, bassist with Britprog legends Porcupine Tree

The Korn bassist talks us through their best album to date

4 BASS GUITAR MAGAZINE

© FRANK WHITE

Simon Wright 65days ofstatic

Peter Hook, Mani and Andy Rourke have joined forces to create the ultimate bass supergroup
Marcus Keenan e Hundred Days

48 MANSON JOHN PAUL JONES E-BASS

Gear Reviews

We get rst look at this striking signature bass, modelled on John’s own rst-call Manson 4-string, ‘Son of Eric’

54 KRAMER D-1

At just under £350, this impressive axe is aimed at cash-strapped strummers
Bass Techniques

Dave Marks: DevelopMent rhythM section n to 5/4 tiMe an introDuctio
Dave Marks
freelance Dave Marks is a busy out of bassist living and working and recording London. His playing rage of bands credits span a wide Larry Carlton, and artists, including Paul Albert Lee, Carl Palmer, others. Carrack and many is spread At the minute, his time out 8th note between pounding Jr. band, rock with the Rick Parfitt grooves for playing deep soulful for Ola Onabule and depping West End. Thriller Live on the playing, Aside from his full rs teaching and Rhythmmatte Dave masterclass schedule, web presence, maintains a heavy his own site and blogging on channel keeping his Youtube up with fresh content. stocked www.davemarks.com

from our we’re moving away t Part 3. This month Section Developmen Welcome to Rhythm into 5/4 time. and charging ahead exploration of 3/4 These are: when playing in 5. most commonly see signatures you will There are two time

pulse, we use a 5/8 If we have an 8th-note pulse). subdivision of our

time signature (remember,

the number on the

bottom shows the

Exercise 1

Bass Techniques

In 5/4 time, we count

five quarter notes

per bar.

using these smaller parts and counted or into smaller composite pattern of the groove can be broken down 3. Usually, the accent Many odd time signatures as a composite of either 3 & 2 or 2 & Exercise 2 felt systems is most appropriate. of these counting ‘cells’. 5/4 is most often will determine which the flow of the melody

taking place onstage. The length of this may not be the same every time, so a repeated section such as this allows the music to continue for as long or as short as required that time.

Gear
59 STERLING BY MUSIC MAN RAY34 SILVERBURST
We inspect a limited edition from the Sterling by Music Man stable

All

will use of this month’s examples

the more common

3 & 2 feel.

Exercise 3

of ‘Take Five’ feel and uses strong Fig 1: In the style has a bouncing swing simple and classic ‘Take Five’. It of Dave Brubeck’s to keep the part harmonically root–fifth pattern here This groove is reminiscent and 5. I’ve used a simple accents on beats 4 feel. reinforce the 3 & 2

The nal repeat marks this are rst- and second-tim month e bars. These can occur at the end of a repeated section and signify that the second time through there is a di erent ending. The question are bracketed bars in o with a number above them. The rst-time bar is to be played the rst time, then you repeat back to the start of the repeat mark. The second time through you miss out the rst-time bar, jump over this, and go straight to the second-time bar and carry on. These can be used in conjunction with multiple repeats, and you can, in fact, have a thirdtime bar, or more, although this can get quite confusing!

First- & SecondTime Bars

in association with
Exercise 4
to you Dave’s column is brought RhythmMatters in association with www.rhythmmatters.co.uk
MaGazine

92 Bass Guitar

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Dave Marks_2nw.indd

74

Exercise 5

The rst few exercises are written in compound time signatures to give you more practice with these new time feels. As ever, count out the subdivision and go slowly to start with. The best plan when reading music with repeats is to scan over the entire piece rst, work out which bits are repeated and where to go back to. This is often referred to as the ‘geography ’ or ‘route map’ of the piece – it is really helpful to know where you are going. If you’re stuck with anything, refer back to previous issues of Bass Guitar Magazine, or send me an email and I will try to help! Many of the past tuition tips are available on the Bass Guitar-X website: www. bassguitar-x.co.uk.

EXERCISES

If there’s anything you’d like me to cover, or if you have any questions, email me on andrew@g uitar-x.co.uk. See you next time.

Andrew McKinney_1n

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BASS GUITAR

MAGAZIN E

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Techniques
66 THE WOODSHED

10/09/2010

15:51

80 ANDREW MCKINNEY
Tuition Tip: Reading Notation

Regulars
66 THE WOODSHED 62 AMPEG HERITAGE SERIES SVT-CL & SVT-410HLF CABINET
Musitronics Mu-Tron III The science part… We drop in on Bernie Goodfellow of GB Guitars

82 STEFAN REDTENBACHER
‘Funkyologies’

73 ESSENTIAL EFFECTS

86 JANEK GWIZDALA
Modern Bass Improvisations

76 BUT THIS GOES TO 11… 78 ON REVIEW
We preview the latest bass-related CD and DVD releases from the likes of Matt Garrison and Esperanza Spalding

88 FRANC O’SHEA 92 DAVE MARKS

A guide to reading chord symbols

Kevin Sanders auditions Ampeg’s agship SVT

Rhythm Section Development

BASS GUITAR MAGAZINE 5

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