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: Davey Faragher
Bands & Artists: Elvis Costello & the Imposters, David Crosby, Cracker, Sheryl Crow, John Hiatt, Buddy Guy, Elton John/Leon Russell, Lucinda Williams, Mandy Moore, Jackshit
Home: Los Angeles, CA
How have you been passing time during the lockdown?
I spent the first part of the lockdown in quarantine with Covid 19. I had come back home from our cancelled [Elvis Costello & the Imposters ] tour in England in mid-March and I started not feeling well right away. Luckily we have a small guest house in back and I stayed back there. Never got too terribly ill, but it hung in for about six weeks. After I started feeling better I settled into a routine. I figured I might as well take advantage of the isolated time and set some goals for myself. I get up early and go for a long walk and listen to music. This has been inspiring for me as I have not been a real active listener of music lately, unless it is something I need to learn or am working on.
What have you been working on in terms of your bass practice routine?
I’ve used this time as an opportunity to learn how to use Logic on my computer, and I’ve started recording bass at home for artists. I’ve also been spending a lot of time practicing my upright bass, which has been staring at me since I bought it in 1976! I will never be Christian McBride, but I am enjoying the challenge of learning it as best I can. I want to come out of this pandemic with new skills and something to show for all time spent at home.
What music, songs, recordings, artists, bass players have you been listening to as a source of comfort and inspiration that you can recommend?
I share an apple music account with my 18-year-old son, who is a very active listener, and I basically listen to what he is listening to! Some favorites include Mambo Sinuendo, Ry Cooder and Manuel Galban, Love and Theft, Bob Dylan, Johnny Guitar Watson, Larry Williams, and Marvin Gaye, especially In Our Lifetime. My son is a big Paul Simon fan, so I’ve delved deeper into his catalog then I had previously. I’ve enjoyed checking out some bass players that I had not been as familiar with, like Jack Cassady. Also anything Ray Brown played on, or Chuck Rainey, that is my spiritual center for bass! The Aretha Franklin album, Amazing Grace, with Chuck and Bernard Purdie, is out of this world. My brother turned me on to a ’70s album by Chicago Pastor T.L Barrett, which is amazing.
What bass gear have you been playing and trying out?
I have my DeTemple P-55 and a collection vintage basses for home recording, as well as my Tonecraft 363 Tube DI and 1964 Ampeg B-15. Live with Elvis, I had just started using Ashdown amps when our tour cancelled. They sounded great and I look forward to digging into them further whenever touring resumes.
What non-music activities, books, shows, movies, or workout recommendations do you have?
Outside of music, I love to cook and bake bread, and I’m lucky to have family that likes to eat it! I’ve started a garden, growing tomatoes, which I’m very excited about! I’m never home in the summer, so this has been an opportunity to try that.
What projects do you have coming up when the world gets going again?
I’m looking forward to getting back into the studio with pals, and playing live shows. But in the meantime, I’m trying to be disciplined and taking advantage of the time.
What advice can you offer fellow bassists for staying positive and keeping morale high?
I find that in these uncertain times, setting goals and keeping healthy routines are helping me to stay centered. That is allowing me to maintain a positive outlook.
Read all 180+ Bass Magazine Check-in Features: Here
All check-ins compiled and edited by Jon D'Auria & Chris Jisi