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Stage Presence: A Much Needed Overview by Kilian Duarte



Meet Kilian Duarte –

As the lights go up on a stage, the amps warm up and the knobs get turned. You are standing in front of a crowd, big or small, who are waiting for you to impress them for the next 15- 180 minutes. As the drummer counts off, the guitarist strums his chord ala Pete Townsend, the vocalist jumps up and yells, and the bass player immediately hides behind both of them.
Sound familiar?

This issue I wanted to discuss a plague that has been afflicting the bass player community for years and years. This stage-ridden disease is one of horrible and really boring STAGE PRESENCE, even in the most lively of settings. I would like to state before the bashing, that there are many notable and even exemplary bass examples of amazing stage presence throughout the years. Many times this is a result of bass/vocals duty, and the many free spirits who understand the importance of getting the crowd moving.

This is not a rock and roll thing, and to say that this argument is about genre is not the point. In general the average bass player in a band has the worst presence out of all the members in the ensemble. We have all seen him/her, dressed in cargo shorts and wearing a baseball cap when the rest of the band is dressed like they are in Led Zeppelin. The player who has a lot of room to move and jump around, but does not dare stray from their 3×3 little comfort zone. Looking down at their neck, never staring out into the “horror” that is the gawking crowd.

Luckily, there is a cure.

The first step is one of acceptance. Many people raise their eyebrows at this point and wonder what there is to accept, but its something that is more commonly ignored than it seems.

You must accept the fact that while you are truly an artist, when you step up onto that stage, you are an entertainer. Sorry to all of you out there who feel a need to bury your head in the sand to this fact, but when you play for a crowd, simply fretting notes does not cut it.

People want to see you move, see something exciting, passionate or interesting. Being a great bass player is not a common thing, so why should your performance be so common. Stage musicians exist to give people an escape from the hardships of the human condition, take pride in your role as the master of the subterranean sounds that make people move and feel free.

The second step is to reevaluate your wardrobe. Trust me, I am not a fan of the fashion industry, and I am so not into the fake and plastic façade of many performers. But to be perfectly honest with you, getting into your role, whatever the genre really helps the vibe. If you are in a rock band, don’t show up wearing a John Deere cap and some flip-flops. Just like you wouldn’t wear leather pants and a boa to a be-bop gig. Find something that’s cool, and comfortable to wear, that fits the music and the crowd your going for.

The third step is standing up for yourself to the sound guy. Lets face it, sound guys only really care about vocal levels, drums and guitar. In their minds, you are a nuisance that needs to be dealt with as little effort as possible. Don’t make the bass too loud, but make damn sure you are heard and great in the mix. I promise you, that playing a low B with the right volume makes the crowd react as if they just heard thunder. A very powerful thing we have to our disposal to make crowds want to see you perform again and again.

You don’t even need to go nuts and do summersaults to get a great vibe across. Look at the Ox Mr. John Entwistle. John barely moved around on stage but his presence was just enormous in the Who. Every time that man played, he gave an aire of pure and raw confidence. He had a look on his face of a man who was a rock legend, and a damn good one. A lot can be accomplished by just seeming like you know exactly what you are doing. Arrogance is a bad thing, but being really sure of yourself and just adding a little cocky flair to your vibe does wonders for your general playing. If you think about messing up, you will mess up. But if you act like the Ox and give off a vibe that you are holding down the low end with an iron fist, then the low end will be. Try and sing the vocals too, the key to not making mistakes live is to just let go and feel the music and hear it as a whole.

The next gig you play, make it a point that the crowd notices you, don’t just be a face in the back, be known and be proud. We are the masters of thunder, and thus we should play accordingly.

Bass Videos

Interview With By the Thousands Bassist Adam Sullivan



Interview With By the Thousands Bassist Adam Sullivan

Bassist Adam Sullivan…

Hailing from Minnesota since 2012, By the Thousands has produced some serious Technical Metal/Deathcore music. Following their recent EP “The Decent”s release, I have the great opportunity to chat with bassist Adam Sullivan.

Join me as we hear about Adam’s musical Journey, his Influences, how he gets his sound, and the band’s plans for the future

Photo, Laura Baker

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Bass CDs

Album Review: Mark Egan, Cross Currents



Album Review: Mark Egan, Cross Currents

Mark Egan, Cross Currents…

It is exciting every time I get a new album from Mark Egan as he is such an amazingly versatile player and I never know what to expect (except for excellent artistry!) In his latest release, Mark has teamed up with Shawn Peyton on drums and Shane Theriot on guitar to bring us “Cross Currents”.

This collection of eleven tracks transports me to the Gulf Coast (New Orleans specifically). Mark’s fretless basses lay down a solid groove and lots of juicy solo work for this rootsy collection of funk, ambient, swamp-rock, second line, ballads, Cajun and even Indian Raga.

This trio is super-tight and the musicianship is flawless as each member has ample opportunity to shine. Even though each player is very talented in their own right, I feel that the collective energy is greater than just the sum of the players on this album. Each musician contributed to composing music for this project but the lion’s share are Mark’s original pieces.

I spent the summer of 1981 in New Orleans and this wonderful music takes me back to those fond memories. I participated in a wacky raft race on Lake Ponchatrain and this opening track elicits images of fun, sunshine, music, and great food.

This is another superb album that everyone will enjoy. Get your copy today! Cross Currents is available online at Visit Mark online at

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Gear Reviews

Review: Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp



Review: Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp

Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp: A Tribute to 90’s Iconic Sounds

Disclaimer: This pedal was kindly provided by Joyo for the purpose of this review. However, this does not influence our opinion or the content of our review. We strive to provide honest, unbiased, and accurate assessments to ensure that our readers receive truthful and helpful information.

In the realm of bass preamp/DI pedals, capturing the essence of iconic tones from the 90s can often feel like an elusive pursuit. However, the Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp emerges as a great option for bass players seeking to replicate the signature sounds of that era, particularly the revered tech21 SansAmp. With its robust feature set and compact design, the Tidal Wave offers a faithful homage to classic rock tones and low-gain distortions, all while providing modern conveniences for today’s bassist. Let’s delve into why the Joyo Tidal Wave stands out as a versatile and budget-friendly tool for both stage and studio.


Measuring at 130 * 110 * 50 mm and weighing 442g, the Joyo Tidal Wave strikes a balance between portability and durability, making it ideal for gigging musicians and studio enthusiasts alike. With a power consumption of just 100 mA and a working voltage of DC 9V, the Tidal Wave ensures reliable performance in a variety of settings.


At the heart of the Tidal Wave’s versatility lies its comprehensive control set, allowing bass players to sculpt their tone with precision. Key features include:

– Level: Sets the overall output volume of the pedal.

– Blend: Blends the dry signal with the cab-emulated signal, offering seamless integration of the pedal into any setup.

– Presence: Controls the dynamics of the high upper-mids, crucial for shaping drive tones.

– Drive: Introduces low-gain distortions and classic rock sounds into the clean tone.

– Treble, Middle, and Bass: Provides a 3-band EQ with frequency selectors for bass (40Hz – 80Hz) and mids (500Hz – 1KHz), offering ample control over tonal shaping.

– Middle Shift and Bass Shift: Allows for further fine-tuning of midrange and bass frequencies.

– Ground Lift: Helps eliminate ground loop noise in certain setups.

– DI Attenuation Switch: Adjusts the level of the DI output signal.

– LED Light Switch Control: Allows users to customize the ambient lighting of the pedal.


True to its inspiration, the Joyo Tidal Wave excels in delivering classic rock tones and low-gain distortions reminiscent of the tech21 SansAmp. Whether you’re seeking gritty overdriven sounds or pristine clean tones, the Tidal Wave offers unparalleled flexibility and sonic versatility. The inclusion of a headphone out, XLR DI out with cab simulation, and throughout for the original bass sound make the Tidal Wave a versatile tool for both stage and studio applications. From practicing silently with headphones to crafting quality recordings in an ampless setup, the Tidal Wave delivers on all fronts with clarity, definition, and unmistakable character.


The Tidal Wave boasts an array of advantages that set it apart from its direct competitors:

– Headphone Out: Transforms the pedal into a convenient practice tool.

– Size and Weight: Compact and lightweight design for easy transportation and setup.

– Rugged Construction: Durable build quality ensures longevity and reliability.

– DI and CabSim: Offers professional-grade direct recording capabilities with authentic cab simulation.

– Familiar Tones: Faithfully replicates the classic rock sounds of the tech21 SansAmp.


While the Tidal Wave excels in many aspects, it does have a few drawbacks:

– Plastic Knobs: Knobs may feel less premium compared to pedals with metal controls.

– Cab Simulation Only on XLR Output: Limited cab simulation functionality may require additional routing for certain setups.


In conclusion, the Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of classic rock tones from the 90s. With its faithful homage to the tech21 SansAmp, comprehensive control set, and modern conveniences like headphone out and XLR DI with cab simulation, the Tidal Wave offers bassists a versatile  tool for sculpting their sound with precision and finesse. Whether you’re seeking to replicate iconic tones from the past or forge new sonic territories, the Joyo Tidal Wave Preamp is sure to inspire creativity and elevate your playing to new heights.

Available online at

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This Week’s Top 10 Basses on Instagram



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 @cb_basses @alesvychodilbasses @odiengcustom @ramabass.ok @mauriziouberbasses @mgbassguitars @capursoguitars @thebassplace @adamovicbasses @ishguitars

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Bass CDs

New Project: NEMESIS CALL Announce “Kingdom of Shred” Album



New Project: NEMESIS CALL Announce "Kingdom of Shred" Album

ALBERTO RIGONI’s New Project NEMESIS CALL Announce “Kingdom of Shred” Album, Feat. Super Talented Guests Such as Mike Terrana, Alexandra Zerner + Many Others

Worldwide known Italian bassist and composer ALBERTO RIGONI (soloist, BAD As, Kim Bingham, Vivaldi Metal Project, etc.) announces the new album “Kingdom of Shred” of his new project NEMESIS CALL. 

Alberto says: 
“Even if my latest album “Unexpected Lullabies”, dedicated to my newborn Vittoria Parini Rigoni, was released on June 4th 2024, I felt the need to compose new music (yes, I really can’t stop!). This time will be quite challenging because I’m willing to release an instrumental shred/prog/rock/metal/melodic album, that will feature many talented top-notch musicians such as drummer Mike Terrana, Alexandra Zerner, Alexandra Lioness, Aanika Pai (11 years old!), Keiji by Zero (19 years old!), SAKI and many others TBA/TBC). It won’t be easy to manage all such great musicians but I will make it! Are you ready to face a new prog experience? The album will be released in Digipack CD and in high-quality digital format approximately at the beginning of 2025 or maybe for Christmas!.”

As an independent artist, Alberto Rigoni has launched a fundraising campaign to support the project. Support at 20% of the income will be donated to Lega del Filo d’Oro (, an Italian association that helps deaf and blind children!

Visit online at | | |

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