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: dUg Pinnick
Bands & Artists: King’s X, KXM, MC5, Grinder Blues
Home: Los Angeles, California
How have you been passing time during the lockdown?
Not much is different. I work from home, so everything I do is here, really. I don’t go out much, so when I’m not on the road, this is what I’m normally doing.
What have you been working on in terms of your bass practice routine?
I don’t practice. Whatever I choose to pick up, bass or guitar, I will always throw up Superior Drummer and write something. I love to do this because I don’t see a need to practice after playing bass for 50 years. I’m not gonna get any better! [Laughs]
What music, songs, recordings, artists, bass players have you been listening to as a source of comfort and inspiration that you can recommend?
Chris Squire was a very important musician in my life. He was technical but he could lay down a groove. He was a huge inspiration and influence in how how I play, not to mention his tone, which I’ve based my whole sound around. I was listening to the Buddy Miles live double album from the early ’70s [Buddy Miles Live, Mercury, 1971]. I’m not sure who the bass player is [David Hull], but I think I’ve used every lick he played on both discs. It’s total good, bump, fun, groove bass. [Below]. I also enjoy listening to any Coldplay or Meshuggah albums.
What bass gear have you been playing and trying out?
I’ve been playing with my DP-X3 signature pedal made by Tech 21. It’s really all I need straight into my ProTools. If I’m playing live, I’ll use my Tech 21 dUg Ultra Bass 1000 amp. I just got my first signature 12-string bass from Schecter Guitars. I’ve been writing like crazy. Got nothing better to do!
What non-music activities books, shows, movies or workout recommendations do you have?
I don’t read books. I’m dyslexic and ADHD [Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder], so reading and writing is a nightmare for me. I’ve been watching a lot of the new Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard. I’m a big sci-fi lover. I do my daily pushups, sit ups, pull ups, and ride my rowing machine every day.
What projects do you have coming up when the world gets going again?
I’m starting to put together a list of all the tunes I’ve written for a new solo album. No release date yet. KXM (me, George Lynch, and Ray Luzier) are talking about a new album, which will be number four for us. Grinder Blues (me, Jabo, and Scott Bihlman) has a new album in the can! King’s X is finishing up our new album. And we’re in the middle of shooting a King’s X documentary. Should be finished in a year.
What advice can you offer fellow bassists for staying positive and keeping morale high?
This is a perfect time to practice, write, and explore everything there is about playing bass and music in general. There are so many distractions in our modern lives, so take advantage of everything you can’t do normally.
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All check-ins compiled and edited by Jon D’Auria & Chris Jisi