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Geno Arce: Legendary Rocker – June 2019 Issue

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Geno Arce, this legendary rock bassist has been on the scene for many amazing years!

It was a real pleasure to interview Geno and learn what has transpired over his many years in the music industry.

What first influenced you to play bass and bring you to where you are today, career wise?

You know, I was very lucky.  In 1978 I saw my first concert, it was Van Halen, and just like everyone else I wanted to be a guitar player.  As fate would have it, the first band that I was in already had two of those.  Thank God for Dave Owens, he talked me into taking up the bass and it did not take me long to understand that bass players were in demand. I can truly say that I have had very little downtime as a bass player.  

Funny story… The bottom had just fallen out of the heavy metal scene.  I knew that I had to keep working, so I decided to go country.  I was living in Phoenix, Arizona at the time and was going through the local rag to see what bands were playing when I came across Ronnie Lee Keel and Western Heart.  You know, I thought to myself,  there is no way that this could be the Ron Keel!  I grabbed my sister and headed out to the show. Sure enough, it was Ron Keel! He stepped down on break and walked right up to me and said , “You play bass?” I replied  “Yes I do.” Ron then said, “We need to talk!” That was 21 years ago. Oh, what a ride it has been as a member of  Ironhorse, KEEL and The Ron Keel Band.

There was a recent release with the Ron Keel Band that you are a member of, can you give us some insight on the writing and recording process that took place with the new album?

I have to say that  “Fight Like A Band” is by far my favorite album that I have ever done. I am so happy with how this CD turned out.  Thanks to David Ellefson, Tom Hazaert and everyone at EMP LABEL GROUP for giving us this opportunity. The CD is now available at Itunes, Googleplay, Target, Walmart and Amazon.  

I have recorded several CD’s with Ron over the years.  He has always been a very hands-on guy when it comes to writing the music. He knows what he wants to hear and it is usually a finished product in his head before we even get started. Not that we don’t write our own parts, but the song is pretty much complete. 

With the newly released RKB “Fight Like a Band” CD, we took a different approach.  It was much more of a group effort. We all got in the same room and no idea went unheard. By the time that we entered Cat House Studio in Sioux Falls, there was very little  pre-production that needed to be done.

First, we recorded the drums with some scratch guitar.  Then, I went in and laid down the bass parts. As a bass player, when you do it this way, it really gives you the chance to listen to the drums and tweak your part for optimum results. I say this because it is very important that the bass is in sync with the kick drum and any drum rolls that your drummer may have added when recording. Drums and bass have to work together to get that tight bottom end and song structure. 

How about a game of chess?  Playing chess while recording has become somewhat of a ritual between Ron and I. I am not sure who has won more games, but I’m going to say that it’s me. I’m also pretty sure, that I will be getting a phone call as soon as he reads this to dispute that last statement.

Now time for  the guitar parts, keyboards, lead vocals, backups and percussion to finish the recording aspect. After this, we pass it to the engineer for mix down and send it out for mastering. 

Can you tell us about some of the other artists you have worked with?

About three years ago, I got to participate in an event called “The Invitational“. It was with the band that is now the Ron Keel Band. We were backing six singers,  Mark Slaughter, Steven Pearcy, Don Dokken, Jack Blades, Kip Winger and Ron Keel. I know what you are thinking, dealing with one lead singer is hard enough let alone five, right?  This event was so great, it was like the ultimate rock reunion on stage.  I have nothing but great things to say about all of these guys.  They were all very professional and their performances were top notch.

Another highlight of my career was playing with Paul Stanley at The District in Sioux Falls.  Not everyone gets to play their favorite KISS songs with Paul Stanley actually singing them. You want to talk critical audience? I had guys that were dressed in full KISS makeup watching me like a hawk for mistakes.  They would nod their heads in approval after each song. Talk about pressure.   

Back in 2009, I became a full time member of KEEL. I have toured in the U.S. and Europe, playing mostly large festivals with Queensryche, Stryper, Great White, Saxon and the list goes on. 

Out of all of the shows that I have played with KEEL, playing the “Monsters of Rock Cruise” definitely ranks at the top of my list .  It’s like the best paid vacation you could ever have.  If you have never been on one and you are a fan of 80’s hard rock, I highly recommend it. You get to mingle with your favorite bands and the entertainment is off the hook. Let’s just say, you spend very little time in your cabin.

KEEL and The Ron Keel Band will be in Columbus, Ohio on May 10th for KEELFEST! This is a concert that will feature The Ron Keel Band, KEEL and Steeler.  It is also a show that I get to pull double-duty in as a member of  KEEL and The Ron Keel Band. What an undertaking! Just imagine 10 musicians that are all original members of Ron’s bands over the years. If you are a fan, you don’t want to miss this show.  For more information, go to RonKeel.com or RonKeelBand.com.

What gear do you use on the road and in the studio?

I like to keep it simple.  On stage I like the old Ampeg SVT III power amp and I go through two Paevey Michael Anthony Signature MA-410 cabs. One on either side of the stage to make sure that I am heard by the rest of the guys.  I play Jackson 5-string basses and Dean Hardtail 5’s. I always have my GOGO tuner and my Pic-Stick, although I never use a pic, they are just to throw.

In the studio I go direct and use a number of plug-ins.  It depends on what’s right for the song. You have to learn to trust your producer and engineer so it’s different every time.

Any advice for aspiring bassists?

Never forget that it is always about the song. I like to stay employed and I like to record.  When approaching a song I always think, “Is what I am playing right for the song?”  As a bass player, you are the backbone of the band and the glue that holds it all together.   Never stop reaching for that dream, whether it is studio work or on stage.  Music is the one universal  language that touches everyone.

Visit Geno Arce online at:

Cover Photo, RonKeel.com

Bass Videos

Brian Bromberg, Paying Tribute to Scott LaFaro, April 2024

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Brian Bromberg, Paying Tribute to Scott LaFaro, April 2024 - Header

Brian Bromberg, Paying Tribute to Scott LaFaro, April 2024…

Brian Bromberg, Paying Tribute to Scott LaFaro, April 2024

Brian Bromberg is one heavy-hitting bass player and I am in awe of his talent as one of the few individuals who is equally proficient on electric and upright bass.

You might remember our conversation back in 2018 when he released his powerhouse Funk album. Brian’s “A Little Driving Music” album is a staple on all our road trips and his Jaco and Jimi Hendrix tribute albums are mind-blowing… and I could go on and on.

Now, Brian has taken on the arduous task of producing an album paying tribute to the late, great, Scott LaFaro. He teamed up with pianist Tom Zink and drummer Charles Ruggiero and Brian delivers a commanding performance on upright. The entire album is a masterpiece and a real treat to listen to track after track.

Join us as Brian shares the details behind this project and more.

Photo, Michel Bocandé

Visit Online

brianbromberg.net
FB @BrianBrombergBassist
YouTube

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Leland Sklar, Over Half a Century of Bass, March 2024

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Leland Sklar, Over Half a Century of Bass, March 2024

We all have enjoyed Leland Sklar’s Bass lines for over half a century.

You might remember that we had him on our cover back in 2017 and did an update when he launched his book “Everybody Loves Me” in 2020. It was exciting to hear that The Immediate Family had got back together in the studio to work on their own music in 2019 and are now up to two albums.

Just last December, Magnolia Pictures released a documentary titled “Immediate Family” where we got a behind-the-scenes look at the massive contributions Danny Kortchmar, Waddy Wachtel, Ross Kunckle, Leland Sklar and Steve Postell have made in countless songs that are the very essence of our daily personal musical soundtracks. Seeing the astronomical roster of performers they have supported over many years is very eye-opening. It is a must-see for any music lover!

Now, I am thrilled to bring you a special chat with Leland Sklar where we go more in-depth into the bass side of his musical journey.

Photos: Header, Rob Shanahan – Cover Photo, Jay Gilbert/Chris Schmitt

Skin In the Game – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhbnzIrdjJ8 
from new album Skin In The Game

The Toughest Girl In Town – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVQLZIRfLjU 
from new album Skin In The Game

Fair Warning – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DN18DYwLsU –
from the self-titled album The Immediate Family

Visit Online

www.immediatefamilyband.com/
www.facebook.com/TheImmedFamily
www.instagram.com/theimmedfamily/

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Bass Videos

Ricky Phillips, STYX Bass And More – February 2024

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Ricky Phillips, STYX Bass And More, January 2024

Ricky Phillips, STYX Bass And More…

This Week’s Top 10 Basses on Instagram

I have always been a huge Styx fan. Their music kept me awake during countless nights studying and gave my imagination a place to escape when I had a moment to take a break. 

I had the immense opportunity to chat with STYX bassist Ricky Phillips for our August Cover in 2017 and follow his projects as time passed. Now, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to catch up with Ricky as he has been super-busy over the past six years. 

Join me as we take a deep dive into the band’s most recent album “Crash the Crown” and EP “The Same Stardust”. Ricky shares some insights into the herculean team effort behind the scenes and the musical process that keeps them ever so busy and how he has updated his sound. 

Without further ado… Here is Ricky Phillips!

Photo: Jason Powell

“Crash of the Crown” lyric video

“Reveries” lyric video

“Save Us From Ourselves” lyric video

“Sound the Alarm” lyric video

“Too Much Time On My Hands” Zoom video 2020

Visit online:

www.Styxworld.com
FB & IG @styxtheband

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Bass Videos

Jeff Pilson, Foreigner Low End – January 2024

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Jeff Pilson - Bass Musician Magazine - January 2024

Jeff Pilson, Foreigner Low End – January 2024…

Those of us who were around back in the 70’s remember how certain songs on the radio resonated with us. It turns out that many of these iconic melodies came from Foreigner and they were part of our personal soundtracks! 

After all these years, the band is going as strong as ever with Jeff Pilson firing away on bass midstream into a 2-year farewell tour. 

I am excited to be able to bring you all the details about Jeff’s musical Journey, the farewell tour in progress, how he gets his sound and his plans for the future.

Cover Photo: Krishta Abruzziini / Video Photos: Krishta Abruzzini, Karsten Staiger, Gina Hyams

For more news on FOREIGNER and upcoming Farewell Tour dates, fans can visit:
foreigneronline.com
facebook.com/Foreigner
twitter.com/ForeignerMusic
instagram.com/foreignerlive
youtube.com/user/FWebTeam
Also on FB @officialjeffpilson

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Bass Videos

Rodney O’Quinn, Rockin’ Hard Through the Years – December 2023

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Rodney O'Quinn, Rockin’ Hard Through the Years – December 2023

Interview With Foghat Bassist Rodney O’Quinn…

Rodney O'Quinn - Bass Musician Magazine - December 2023-v2

Many rock fans have enjoyed music by Foghat, who originally formed in London back in 1971.

Over the many decades of playing, the band members have changed, leaving behind only Roger Earl as the only original member. Bassist Rodney O’Quinn left the Pat Travers Band and joined the group in 2015 and has been laying down the low end for this iconic quartet keeping the Foghat legacy alive. With a new album titled “Sonic Mojo” which dropped on November 10th, the band is as busy as ever and there is lots of very tasty music to come.

Join me as we learn of Rodney O’Quinn’s musical journey, how he gets his sound, and his plans for the future.

Photos:
Cover,
Jake Coughlin
Video Thumbnail, Tom Apathy
Photos used in the video: Kerry Quinn, Chuck Lanza, Kim Granger, Kenneth Strohm, Jake Coughlin, Jay Jylika

1st Single from Sonic Mojo – Official “Drivin’ On” 

2nd Single from Sonic Mojo – “She’s a Little Bit of Everything Official Video

 “Road Fever”- California Mid State Fair – Paso Robles, CA – 7-27-22

“Stone Blue” – Rodney O’Quinn Bass/Lead Vocals – Don Odell’s Legends – Woonsocket, R.I – 10/15/22 – The Stadium Theater

The Earl’s Court – Season 2, Episode 7: Funny Guys 

“I Just Want to Make Love to You” – CasinoRama – 6-9-23 

FOGHAT “Somebody’s Been Sleepin’ in My Bed” – Mohegan Sun, Uncasville, CT – 1/28/22

“I Just Want to Make Love to You” – California Mid State Fair – Paso Robles, CA – 7-27-22

Visit Online:

www.foghat.com
www.facebook.com/Foghat
www.twitter.com/FOGHAT
www.instagram.com/foghat_official
www.youtube.com/user/FOGHATMUSIC

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