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Talking About A Revolution – Feb 2001, Bass Player Magazine

July 3rd, 2012 | 2 Comments | Categories: journalism · New Music Strategies |

From the February 2001 issue of Bass Player Magazine – the strapline on the cover was “The Future Of Bass – Fearless Forecasts From 40 Pros” – of which I was one.

Here’s the last paragraph of what I wrote: “As the major labels focus their attention on an increasingly vapid and temporal bunch of faceless clothes horses, the Net will open up more and more channels for heartfelt independent original music”.

…I guessed right :)

[I was also right about the first half – the number of records made by bassists that transcend any nonsense idea of being ‘bass albums’ is going up every year. So many great bass players are now making amazing music, regardless of the instrument fetish predilections of the listener – Julie Slick, Janek Gwizdala, Matthew Garrison, Squarepusher, Trip Wamsley, Michael Manring, Jeff Schmidt, Jonas Hellborg... all making truly amazing music centred around their bass, but not bound by any preconceived notions of ‘bassness’ – it’s just a voice through which to communicate. Long may it continue :) ]

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2 Comments so far ↓

  • Mike Reese

    The internet and digital music have been both a dangerous weapon; one, because it has been a bane to the old business model of selling music (which undercompensated all but some artists, anyway) but has also taken away some reward for creation. Art for art’s sake is fine, but you still gotta eat, pay rent/mortgages/see doctors and dentists, take care of kids (no matter where you made ’em), and such. Still, anything that sharpens the distinction between the ‘American Idol’ crapola and genuine music, can’t be all bad.

    • Steve

      Hi Mike,

      I’m not sure the metaphor of weaponry is one that makes much sense to me. It’s a delivery mechanism, one that bypasses entirely the mediated, gatekeeper-owned channels of yore, and gives the power of relationship back to the artist if they choose to give it some thought and make themselves available to be a part of that massive global conversation about music and music making.

      So for those who want to force that new mechanism to behave as a conduit for some new mediation, it’s going to be a source of immense frustration. Much the same way that people who tried to ignite a lightbulb with a match would’ve found the transition away from candles to be a terrible, awful regressive step, given how bad lightbulbs are at being candles.

      However, those who put the lightbulbs into those lovely new fangled sockets in their houses saw the light levels in their houses go up and the amount of soot on the ceiling drop considerably :)