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: George Porter Jr.
Bands & Artists: The Meters, The Runnin’ Pardners, The Porter Trio
Home: New Orleans, Louisiana
How have you been passing time during the lockdown?
Staying home and trying to be very safe. I’ve been writing and working in my home studio. My band and I have are becoming quite adept at Pro Tools Cloud Collaboration, so we can each stay home and still work together. I’ve also been busy doing a regular Facebook Iive chat on Monday nights, narrating prerecorded sets from the Maple Leaf bar, and other virtual work as it comes. all in all, I’ve been pretty busy—not making money, but busy!
What have you been working on in terms of your bass practice routine?
I’ve been playing almost every day, either recording, writing, or virtually performing.
What music, songs, recordings, artists, bass players have you been listening to as a source of comfort and inspiration that you can recommend?
I’ve been so involved with my own music that I haven’t listened much to other artists. If and when I listen to music for relaxation it’s usually classical pieces or ambient sound recordings of nature. It helps me to sonically reboot.
What bass gear have you been playing and trying out?
One of my endorsements is with IK Multimedia. I’ve been using their AXE I/O, which has a dedicated amp-out so you can process recording without the need for external accessories. I’ve also been using their Controller. Both work very well for my current studio needs.
What non-music activities books, shows, movies or workout recommendations do you have?
I like watching action and sci-fi movies but I‘ve pretty much seen everything that’s currently available in those genres. I found myself watching the Family Channel the other day, oh my! I highly recommend getting outside. I try and walk most days and it helps on several levels. I also enjoy sitting in my yard with my dog.
What projects do you have coming up when the world gets going again?
I’ll be putting out the music my band and I have been working on remotely. I look forward to performing live with my Runnin’ Pardners and Porter Trio projects. When the virus shut us down I was about to go on tour with Voodoo Dead and play with Soulive at the opening of Brooklyn Bowl in Nashville. We shall see if that get’s rescheduled. In truth, I’ll be happy to just play my regular Monday night gigs here at home.
What advice can you offer fellow bassists for staying positive and keeping morale high?
Put it all into your music, then sit back and listen—you can never tell what might come of it. It’s also a great time to practice, study, and take a deep dive into learning your instrument.
All check-ins compiled and edited by Jon D'Auria and Chris Jisi