As the world continues to recover from the Coronavirus, we're all finding ourselves in unfamiliar territory given the subsequent lockdown that is keeping us off of stages and confined to our homes. Luckily, there's comfort in the fact that we're all in this together, and that there are still many outlets for us musicians to keep us active and sane throughout this quarantine. We're checking in with bass players from all over the world to see what they're doing to stay entertained, healthy, productive, and safe during this trying time.
Bass Player: Stefan “Reno” Cutrupi
Bands & Artists: Weapons of Anew
Home: New York City
How have you been passing time during the lockdown?
I finished all the bass tracks for our new album, Art of War. There were a couple of tunes I needed to finish or wanted to tighten up. Otherwise, I’ve been doing the quarantine thing like everyone else, which has been kind of a bummer. I miss performing and being around people. I've been working on my blackjack game, and I recently relocated to New Jersey from New York City, so I’ve been on a quest to find suitable pizza.
What have you been working on in terms of your bass practice routine?
I’ve been working on getting all of our new songs under my hands and trying to commit them to my muscle memory banks. I’ve also been watching bass videos to improve my right hand picking technique. I watch a lot of Bobby Vega, Cody Wright, and David Ellefson to try and pick up what they’re doing. For me it’s all about getting the right hand as clean as possible and then making the left hand follow suit.
What music, songs, recordings, artists, bass players have you been listening to as a source of comfort and inspiration that you can recommend?
There are so many to recommend, and thanks to social media I’ve been finding something new every day. I recently discovered a piano player-composer named Tigran Hamasyan, his music is amazing. With regard to bass players, I’ve been digging on Bubby Lewis, Daric Bennett, Darrell Freeman, Evan Marien, Stanley Clarke, the late Rocco Prestia, and I recently went on a Primus binge and listened to every album front to back—I'm a huge Les Claypool guy.
What bass gear have you been playing and trying out?
I recently connected with the great people at Ibanez and I picked up an SR2605 5-string for the songs on The Collision of Love and Hate  and an SRMS805 Multi-Scale 5-string for the songs on Art of War. Both basses are incredible and the Multi-Scale has become my main bass. My Ampeg rig is awesome. It’s an SVT4PRO head with Pro Neo PN210-HLF and PN-115HLF cabinets. I was using an 810 but I needed the 115 for the lower tuning we use, and it’s been great. I run the basses in passive mode and I hit the front end of the amp with the Tech 21 dUg Pinnick DP-3X pedal, which just kills. I’m a longtime user of GHS Boomers, but they recently made me a custom set [.50-.70-.90-.110-.140] for the new album, which I’m using on both new basses. They’re total bridge cables but they make all the big low end happen.
What non-music activities, books, shows, movies, or workout recommendations do you have?
I play a lot of video games in my spare time, I recently finished the Resident Evil 2 and 3 remakes, which were amazing. I don't watch a ton of TV, I watch mostly YouTube videos. I’m into Barstool'sone bite reviews, Hot Ones, and anything from the Angry Video Game Nerd or Cinemassacre channels. If drinking coffee is a workout then I highly recommend it, I have a cup in my hand right now!
What projects do you have coming up when the world gets going again?
Weapons of Anew is my only project and I’m grateful and blessed to be a part of it. I’m pumped about the first single, “Sick Boy,” and I’m excited for the rest of the album to come out. [Guitarist] Freddy [Ordine] wrote an amazing record.
What advice can you offer fellow bassists for staying positive and keeping morale high?
The best advice I think I could give fellow bassists would be to keep striving to get better and look for inspiration wherever you can. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box in your approach to the instrument. Always find your place in the music, where you can support the composition while having your voice heard, as well.
Read all 180+ Bass Magazine Check-in Features: Here
All check-ins compiled and edited by Jon D'Auria & Chris Jisi