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: Stephen Paulson
Bands & Artists: Remo Drive
Home: Richfield, Minnesota
How have you been passing time during the lockdown?
I’ve been spending a lot of time with the bass guitar, learning songs, practicing, getting more knowledgeable with recording, and messing around with all the gear I have. My band Remo Drive has been starting the release cycle for our next record, A Portrait of An Ugly Man, that’s coming out this summer. I’ve also been streaming a lot of music, TV shows, and movies, and enjoying being home.
What have you been working on in terms of your bass practice routine?
I’ve been working on recording myself when I practice and play, so I can hear and learn from my mistakes. I’m also pushing myself to learn songs that are out of my comfort zone.
What music, songs, recordings, artists, bass players have you been listening to as a source of comfort and inspiration that you can recommend?
Two bands I’ve been diving into, bass-wise, are Queens of the Stone Age and Bad Suns. The rhythm sections in both bands have been blowing my mind with how well they blend rhythmic and melodic aspects of the music to make super cool bass parts.
What bass gear have you been playing and trying out?
For bass gear, I’ve been rocking my Bergantino NV412T Cabinet and Forte Amplifier—hands down the best bass rig I’ve ever used. My Epiphone Jack Casady Gold Top Bass and my 2013 Fender American Deluxe Jazz Bass have been the two main basses. For pedals, I’ve been messing around with the JHS Milkman and the Keeley Synth-1.
What non-music activities, books, shows, movies, or workout recommendations do you have?
For a TV show, I would recommend Mad Men. I watched the whole series at the beginning of the quarantine and I loved it. I recently watched a movie called Waking Life, that was probably one of the coolest movies I’ve seen in awhile. For working out, I’ve been trying to run or bike, which has been a nice way to keep active.
What projects do you have coming up when the world gets going again?
Hopefully to resume touring, and to continue to make music for Remo Drive.
What advice can you offer fellow bassists for staying positive and keeping morale high?
Being able to play music is fun and such a positive outlet for all of the emotions we’re dealing with at the moment. This is the time for growth as a person and a musician, and specifically to become more in tune with the craft of bass playing.
Follow Stephen: Here
Read all 180+ Bass Magazine Check-in Features: Here
All check-ins compiled and edited by Jon D'Auria & Chris Jisi