To meet someone who is a solo upright bass performer, is not an everyday occurrence. Finding a prolific solo upright bass performer, is even more rare. Although it's normal to have bass do a solo part during a song, what I am bring to the table is the bass as a solo instrument on it's own.
Meet Brandon Lopez, a prolific solo upright bass performer.
As a well rounded Bassist, Brandon involves himself with several other groups, recently touring with Wilder Maker a kind of folk group, is an active member in Celosa a Latin experimental pop band, not to mention his own band 'The Courtesy Gang Trio' with Moonhooch saxophonist Mike Wilbur and drummer Max Jaffe, in addition to hired studio work.
I'm going to share a real short history on his solo upright bass style, as it's inspiration pulls between postmodern freeform and European classical music, to give what I hope will be an insight on what was heard at this past weeks 'For Locals By Locals' event on the 25th.
Starting off with the guitar as his main instrument, he did what lots of musicians do after high-school when they want to take music seriously; he joined the Barklee College of Music in Boston. It was there that he picked up the bass.
I asked him why after going to music school for guitar he decided to pick up the upright bass, as its not as easy as 123 like picking up an electric bass which is similarly fretted. His reply was as follows, "going to Berklee and seeing tons and tons of guitar players, I just became very disillusioned with the instrument and I felt like it was time to leave it". Leaving Berklee after a semester, mostly because he feels the schools focus is to garner 'vocational musicians' and not so much on the fostering individual creativity.