Welcome to what’s become my Rush/Geddy Lee Tribute Page. I’ve been playing electric bass since I was 16. Played professionally for years after getting my degree in jazz performance. Below are just a few clips here and there of various bass projects I’m playing around with. These are recorded in one take, with exceptions that are noted for technical reasons.
Re-recording the bass line to Analog Kid by Rush. I play Geddy Lee’s bass part fairly note-for-note with some embellishments here and there, as well as a few mistakes. Still, I like a live take. A million thanks To Troy Hughes, a fantastic bassist I follow on YouTube. Watching him play this made is easier to learn.
My personal Mount Everest has always been Jeff Berlin’s INSANE take on Bach’s Prelude in C Minor from “Pump It!” The Bach section took about a month to learn and longer than that to play to tempo, and I still don’t play it perfectly, but close. However, the solo “over” a modulation to Am? It’s one of the hardest solos I’ve ever learned and a bitch to transcribe. Here’s my first take at it at 90% tempo. I can now play it at 100%, but have yet to record it yet. I left in a few mistakes, but the transcription is note-for-note. Even the master approved, sending me a really nice Facebook message complimenting my playing. Made my day. Jeff is, to me, the greatest.
Re-recording the MONSTER bass line to Free Will by Rush. Damn if this isn’t hell to play, at least for me. I learned this a few days ago, tackling the super-challenging section (the intense solo section that changes from 6/4 to 7/4) and tried to get all the passing notes and muted triplets Geddy Lee is playing here. Other than a few mistakes (oddly on the easy parts!) this came out pretty good for a few days work. When mixing the video I had an old bass track in parts. Hard to catch unless you’re watching every frame, but the original video and recording was a single take.
Re-recording the bass line to Circumstances by Rush. This bass line always gave me fits for some reason, in particular the lead-up to the chorus. But I managed to play it right this time around. A really killer bass track.
Re-recording the bass line to Digital Man by Rush. This is a total bitch to play correctly, and I tend to rush (no pun) parts of this song, especially if I feel I’ve played most of the hard parts correctly. This is definitely a work in progress. One thing for bass players: I’m playing this entirely on the bridge pickup (the only one I have on the Godin). This makes it more difficult to play but far more crisp, especially when doing the lower-string triplets.
Re-recording the bass line to Entre Nous by Rush. One of my favorite songs since high school. The bass line is simple but has some very interesting parts. The bridge is especially fun to play. I improvise a bit here and there.
And rush here and there… it’s an ongoing challenge : )
Re-recording the bass line to Spirit of Radio by Rush (practice session). I learned most of the track and decided to give it a go. I botched the 18/6 lick as I usually do but not too terribly off. More for my ear than the general public. Interesting that my Sadowsky bass (played on this track) sounded thicker but I like the overall tone of the Godin better.
Roundabout by Yes. I tried to mimic Chris Squire’s sound to the best of my abilities. The bass is mid-heavy, loud in the mix (with every mistake nice and clear), and for this 16th note runs during the organ/guitar solo section, I found it easier and a bit more like the sound of Squire to play it all on two strings. Messed up the first go at it, but the second one is pretty good. Oh, and sorry about the crap video positioning. Thought it was right when I recorded it. Also, I tried slight detuning to get a chorus effect (again to mimic Squire), but yeah… kinda didn’t work. : )
Queen has always been one of my favorite bands, but even as a bassist, I never heard the intricacies in John Deacon’s amazing bass linen to “You’re My Best Friend.” Extremely syncopated, melodic, and chord-tone focused. I made a few mistakes, but not a bad take. The tone and feel were my focus anyway. To get that P bass tone took some doing.
An impromptu jam on my new Godin acoustic/electric bass, with nods to Mark King (Level 42) and the great Scott Devine (ScottsBassLessons.com). My friend Nicky gave this to me, and I absolutely love it. Nothing in the mix here. Just straight into the preamp. I wanted to capture the natural tone of the bass.
(Includes a nasty string slip…still getting used to this baby!)