Connect with us

Latest

Chris Tarry by Brent-Anthony Johnson

Published

on

When I first heard that Chris Tarry was releasing “Almost Certainly Dreaming”, his 2007 follow-up to the previous year’s” Sorry To Be Strange”, and the 8th release under his own name, I had to get his unwaveringly humorous look into the process that brought about the this latest result of his mind boggling prolificacy!  Chris relocated to NYC in 2003 from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada and has been incredibly busy playing with John Scofield, Ben Monder, Mino Cinelu, Dave Binney, Jim Rotondi Group, Keith Carlock, Anton Fig, Donny McCaslin, Lew Soloff, Chris Cheek, and Oz Noy.

BAJ: Hi Chris!  Congratulations on your Juno Award for “Almost Certainly Dreaming”!  What was different about how this disc came together?

CT: Hey BAJ, how are ya?   Long time no chat…  Lets see… “Almost Certainly Dreaming” came together in one very different way – as it was recorded live in the studio in basically one day.  Which, I guess, is a little different from how some of my albums were made in the past (time-wise that is).  We did it the “ol’ fashioned way”… we just went in and played the music live off the floor.

BAJ:  I think it’s funny you’ve had such a tremendous career in Canada, yet most US listeners remember you from Metalwood – the US/Canadian group!  What has changed for you since relocating to NYC?

CT:  I guess what’s changed is the variety of kinds of gigs I get to do.  In New York I play with so many different types of players and all types of music.  Moving to New York has made me a more well rounded player, I think.

BAJ:  Who are the current players in the Chris Tarry Group?  Also, does the group morph as you spend a great deal of time on the road?

CT:  It’s been the same core group of players for the last few years.  Dan Weiss (drums), Henry Hey (piano), Pete McCann (guitar), and Kelly Jefferson (sax).  Kelly is the only non-New Yorker, so when we do gigs in the city it’s usually Dave Binney or Donny McCaslin who fill in.  The group is such a tight bunch of guys, not only musically, but personally as well.  The music is always growing, morphing, we never really play a tune the same way twice! We always try and push ourselves each and every night.

BAJ:  Okay man, let’s do the gear/tools thing…  what are you using in the realm of basses, amps, effects, and recording tools and process?  Also, what is you take on endorsements?

CT:  I dig the endorsement thing and I’m fortunate to have a few endorsements of gear that I actually really like to use! I recently switched to Markbass amps and really enjoy the sound of them.  I also really dig the company! Everyone there helps hook me up with amps on the road and around the world! Markbass is just terrific!  I  also use DR Strings “Sunbeam 5” string set – having switched to them a few years ago… and love them!
As far as basses, for my gig I mostly use my Fodera Emperor 5-string.  For gigs as a sideman I use a bunch of different basses.  My current favorites are the bright orange sparkle bass made for me by Jimmy Copolo, and a baby blue four string jazz bass made for me by the great Carey Nordstrand.  I also use my four string 65′ P bass on a lot of stuff.

BAJ:  I was listening to your composition, “Same Clothes, Different Day” while running errands the other day… What a great tune!  What is your composing process and what inspires you to write?

CT:  Well thanks! “Same Clothes, Different Day” was written by keyboardist Henry Hey specifically for the band. It figures…  (laughs) Generally, though, with composing I spend a lot of time playing things into the computer via Apple Garage Band or some type of other sequencing software.  Once I get the tune to where I want it I make a lead sheet, send the guys an mp3… and we just get to work playing it, taking it in, and messing with it.  I generally give the band stuff in lead sheet format to keep the music as open to interpretation as possible.  I never tell anyone what to play.  These guys are in my band because of how they sound, and I never try and stifle that energy.  I play in a lot of bands where the leader is very uptight and trying to control everything…  This is not the way to build a great band! You have to let the music happen, and trust the players around you.

BAJ:  Other than the release of “ACD” what else are you working on to promote your incredible playing ability?  Will there ever be an instructional DVD?  Along those lines, your soloing approach (and touch) nod heavily to a couple players.  Who are you primary influences?

CT:  The band actually just did a DVD that may see the light of day sometime soon.  There are also some instructional aspects to the DVD that may be included in a new book I’m working on.  Have been talking to a friend at a big publishing company that’s helping me put it all together.  Stay tuned for some word on that!
(Editor Note: When I know, Bass Musician Magazine will know!)

As far as influences… Well there are many!  Most of who aren’t bass players (piano, sax, etc..) at all!  But of course I spent a lot of time checking out the greats.  I’ve been really into Pino Palidino, lately, and old R&B guys!  I’m always trying to grow, get better, and become better rounded.

BAJ:  As you do spend so much time on the road, how do you attempt balance?  Are you still into mountain biking and being in Nature, in general?

CT:  Not so much of the mountain biking thing lately – as a good friend of mine broke both his arms and it kind of scared me!  But I am still really into hiking! In fact, we’re heading off for a vacation next week, to hike the famous John Muir trail in California: 211 miles in 11 days, 6 peaks over 10,000 feet.  I’ve been preparing for that quite a bit over the past year!  It’s hard to keep up with the training on the road. I try my best, a lot of running, going to the gym in the hotel… and drinking beer late into the night.

BAJ: In your opinion, what is the most important aspect of leading a group and what is a valuable tip you’ve gained from being led by other great musicians?

CT:  I think my work as a sideman – in great, and not so great situations – has taught me how to be a good leader.  I know how I want to be treated as a sideman, so I treat my guys that way.  It’s hard to be away from home.  But if you, as a leader, can make it as painless as possible and have the rest of the band trust that you’re looking out for their best interest’s at all time… it makes a big difference.

A few golden rules: 
Everyone always gets his or her own hotel room
No connecting flights
Sound Check as late as possible
Travel with as little gear as possible
Never talk about the music… let it happen
Have fun

BAJ:  What is the coolest sideman gig you’ve ever played… and why?

CT:  Wow, there’s been a few.  One of the best is not with someone who’s actually that famous but is a great leader and good friend: New York jazz trumpeter Jesse Selengut and his band Noir.  He took us to Kenya, Africa for three weeks last year and it was one of the best organized, and most life changing, tours I’ve ever been on! The places we played, the people we met, the care he took of the band… really, really amazing.

BAJ:  How often do you allow yourself to simply listen to music?  What is your favorite disc at this writing?

CT:  I’ve been slightly lax in listening over the past few months as my schedule has been pretty grueling!  Which is odd… because I’m always generally listening a lot.  As of late though I’d have to say I really dig the new Viktor Krauss solo album, and the new Avashi Cohen.

BAJ:  Thank you for joining me at Bass Musician Magazine, Chris!  What’s next for you?

CT: Hey BAJ thanks for having me, it is always a pleasure!  What’s next?  Well… after a long few months of touring with a bunch of different acts (as well as with my own band) I’m taking a few weeks off to hike the John Muir trail at the end of July and then my wife and I are heading to China for a few weeks during the Olympics.  I’m excited about that!  It’s going to be pretty amazing!  Man cannot live on bass alone and life experiences like these go a long way to making me a stronger musician! Thanks again man, we’ll see ya on the flip side!

Visit online at www.christarry.com

Latest

This Week’s Top 10 Basses on Instagram

Published

on

TOP 10 Basses of the week

Check out our top 10 favorite basses on Instagram this week…

Click to follow Bass Musician on Instagram @bassmusicianmag

FEATURED @zonguitars @shukerbassguitars @bite.guitars @adamovicbasses @mayonesguitars @bassbros.uk @capursoguitars @overwaterbasses @saitiasguitars @ramabass.ok

View More Bass Gear News

Continue Reading

Gear News

New Gear: Elrick Bass Guitars Headless Series

Published

on

New Gear: Elrick Bass Guitars Headless Series

New from Elrick Bass Guitars, Headless Series added to Custom Lineup…

Elrick Bass Guitars is excited to announce the addition of a headless option on hand-carved series bass guitars. Initially previewed on the 2023 Gold Series SLC MkII bass of prolific solo bass practitioner and educator Steve Lawson, a headless bass option is now available to all. According the Elrick, “The excitement surrounding Steve’s MkII SLC bass at 2024 NAMM confirmed that the time is right to add a headless option to our extensive range of custom options.” To date, Elrick instruments have only been offered with traditional headstock construction but, in response to market demand, custom features will now include a headless option in 4-, 5- and 6-string models.

Headless bass guitars share these features with the traditional headstock series:

24 frets + zero fret
exotic wood top
hand-rubbed oil finish
2-way adjustable truss rod
custom Bartolini pickups
custom Bartolini 3-band preamp
fully shielded control cavity
Hipshot bridge
Dunlop Straploks
Elrick Fundamental strings

The headless option can now be selected when submitting custom order requests via the form on elrick.com, contacting the Elrick Sales Office directly, or working with your favorite Elrick dealer.

Continue Reading

Gear News

Bruegel Masterpiece (1565) Inspires BITE Masterpiece (2023)

Published

on

Bruegel Masterpiece (1565) Inspires BITE Masterpiece (2023)

Bruegel Masterpiece (1565) Inspires BITE Masterpiece (2023)…

Flemish Master Pieter Bruegel the Elder probably had many things in mind when painting his Hunters in the Snow in oil on oak wood in 1565. This masterpiece tells plenty of little stories about winterly pastimes and precarious livelihoods in the Early Modern Age. What Bruegel presumably did not have in mind was that this painting would, several centuries later, become one of the most popular ones in fine arts globally, displayed in a permanent exhibition at Kunsthistorisches Museum (Museum of Fine Arts) Vienna. The painting’s popularity was lately taken to a different level as it was replicated by hand to design an exclusive BITE bass.

An international art collector and bass player who regularly visits Vienna to immerse himself in the wonderworld of Kunsthistorisches’ Bruegel Hall asked BITE to replicate the painting on a bass body. BITE Guitars, an Austrian premium manufacturer exporting most of their basses to the US, has become renowned for colorful artwork basses, offering a range of manual and digital techniques. The firm’s art director Peter, a trained scenic painter of Oscar and Palme d’Or rank, specializes in photo-realistic reproductions. He also painted the bass for Robbie Williams’ 2023 world tour by faithfully replicating Robbie’s own stage design onto the tour bass.

Peter copied the Bruegel motif onto the bass body in minute detail, little twigs even by one-hair-brush. Positioning the rectangular image section on the body shape proved to be a special challege that he met by repositioning little elements, a bird here, a horse and cart there.

It all came together in a memorable video shooting in front of the original painting in the Museum’s Bruegel Hall: venerable fine arts, premium handicraft and groovy jazz tunes.

View video at the museum: www.youtube.com/shorts/2evdqfR6gUE

What’s the conclusion of BITE’s client, our Vienna, art and bass lover? “It’s a magical bass! When I touch the strings, I feel warm inside.”

Specs highlights:
Bass model: BITE Evening Star, the proprietary BITE premium model with inward curved horns
Pickups: 2 x BITE 1000 millivolt passive split-coils (PP)
Neck: roasted maple neck and roasted flamed maple fretboard

Price tag incl. insured door-to-door express shipping:
New York: 4726 USD
London: 3645 GBP
Berlin: 4965 EUR

Full specs available at bite.guitars/old-master-bass/

Bruegel Hall at Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna: 
khm.at/en/visit/collections/picture-gallery/the-best-of-bruegel-only-in-vienna/

Continue Reading

Bass Videos

Interview With Bassist Ciara Moser

Published

on

Interview With Bassist Ciara Moser

Bassist Ciara Moser…

Ciara and I sat down for this interview a few months after the launch of her debut album, “Blind. So what?”

Blind since birth, she is a powerhouse of talent; she is not only a professional bassist, but also composes music, and is a producer and educator. I am just blown away by her talent and perseverance.

Join me as we hear about Ciara’s musical journey, the details of her album, how she gets her sound, and her plans for the future.

Visit online:

www.ciara-moser.com 
IG @ moserciara
FB @ ciara.moser

Photos by Manuela Haeussler

Continue Reading

Gear News

New Gear: Black Ice Boost and Distort, Battery-Free Modules for Bass and Guitar

Published

on

New Gear: Black Ice Boost and Distort, Battery-Free Modules for Bass and Guitar

Black Ice Boost and Distort, Battery-Free Modules for Bass and Guitar…

Black Ice Enterprises introduces Black Ice Boost and Black Ice Distort, small, battery-free devices that can be easily installed in a bass or guitar.

Black Ice Boost offers two selectable stages of up to 7 dB of boost, broadly concentrated in the midrange frequencies to add humbucker-like qualities to Strat®, Tele® and other types of single-coil pickups. Black Ice Distort is an overdrive module that can be configured to offer anything from slight overdrive to distortion. Both models are compatible with all passive guitar pickups and electronics (they’re not compatible with battery-powered active pickups).

Black Ice Boost (SRP: $119.95; MAP, $79.95) can be installed using several wiring options, including a simple “stealth” install that utilizes a single push-pull pot, and a dual-switch option that allows users to select between two different levels of boost. For those using the boost along with Black Ice Distort, a second push-pull pot or switch can be used to select a clean or distorted boost.

The Black Ice Boost module is approximately 2/3 the size of a 9-volt battery, and can be easily installed in most instruments with no routing or permanent modifications required. The tone of the instrument remains completely unaffected when the boost is bypassed.

In addition to use with popular single-coil pickups, Black Ice Boost can also be used with other pickup types. Use it to fatten up a P-90 style pickup, or add girth to a low-wind humbucker. Jazz Bass® players can use the additional midrange content provided by Black Ice Boost to produce a sound that’s reminiscent of a P-Bass® or soapbar-type pickup. Black Ice Boost is not recommended for use with high-output humbuckers and other dark-sounding pickups.

Black Ice Distort (SRP: $27.95; MAP, $21.95) is an overdrive module that can be configured for just a touch of grit, or a more aggressive grind, all the way to a 1960’s-flavored fuzz. While its battery-free circuit will never replace the more refined sound of a well-designed pedal, it provides handy, there-when-you-need-it access to a variety of fun old-school flavors, and is a great way to add additional textures to an already overdriven amp or pedal. Bass players will especially dig its raw dirty grind.

Like Black Ice Boost, the sugar-cube-sized Black Ice Distort provides a lifetime of tone with no maintenance or power source required. A variety of wiring options are included that let you activate the Distort via a switch or push-pull pot, or by easily converting your guitar’s tone control into a control for the Black Ice Distort circuit. It can be used in conjunction with the Black Ice Boost for a wide variety of useful tones.

Black Ice Boost and Black Ice Distort are now shipping.

Visit online at www.blackiceoverdrive.com

Continue Reading

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Facebook

Trending