Today music fans are not only listening in the comfort of their homes but they are also watching. Thirty years ago, there may have been one or two TV shows a week – other than Lawrence Welk – that featured any kind of musical performance. Today, not only does cable TV regularly offer performances, but videos of all kinds of musicians – some famous, many unknown (and for a reason) – are available both commercially and free on the Internet at sites such as YouTube.com.
Happily, bass players have not gone ignored in this new age of video clips. There are amazing videos of your favorite bassists, sometimes performing with people who might surprise even the most knowledgeable fans. In addition to presenting some jaw-dropping videos of the world’s greatest bass players, we will also offer up some the funnier bass performances on video. Warning: Videos on YouTube and similar sites have a habit of disappearing quickly for all kinds of reasons – most of them legal – so catch them when you can. Sorry if they are already gone by the time you try to view them.
Richard Bona, the man sometimes referred to as the African Jaco, can do it all: sing, compose, groove and play stunning solo bass. Here he is displaying what makes him one of the most entertaining bassists as well as one of the most gifted.
Michael Manring introduces himself here as a “crazy bassist from California.” After watching this display of unworldly superpowers, complete with constant detunings, you will doubt that his place of origin is anywhere on this planet.
John Patitucci is shown here on upright with the Wayne Shorter Quartet. Also check out the incredible drum work by Brian Blade.
Kai Eckhardt, now with Garaj Mahal, is shown here on stage with guitar giant John McLaughlin. There are other good videos on YouTube showcasing Kai’s considerable talents that are highly recommended but of lesser quality in terms of picture and sound. Check those out as well.
Finally, a shout out to some bass clef high school sisters who acquit themselves nicely on a trombone-only version of Stars and Stripes Forever. So why is that a big deal? Check this out…..