by Elijah MK Lagman
Besides my sights for medical school, I’ve also got an ear for the electric bass. Before the year ends, I wanted to share a couple of bassists that have inspired me by their pioneering technique in manipulating the instrument to new heights. YouTube bassists don’t tend to release their own material with the exception of 1-2 minute improvisations of programmed synth and drums. So they’re kind of Weird Al without the often cringeworthy (but totally laughable) lyrical manipulation. What are we waiting for?
Note: I’m only considering bassists who’ve gained popularity through YouTube. This is also in no particular order.
1. Zander Zon
The pioneer of YouTube piccolo bass, Zander has had a lovely year being even more experimental than the last. What’s a piccolo bass? No, it’s not guitar strings on a bass. It’s a bass with strings that can reach a higher range than the normal electric bass and can include guitar tunings (EADG) but I don’t think Zander ever did. Using electric bows, acoustic 6 string basses (that pretty much look like acoustic guitars but don’t sound so), electric cellos and finally, he’s started collaborating with the likes of Miki Santamaria, Charlie Puth and vocalists such as KJC. You’d think he was busy this year but having only posted 6 videos, we know he’s been busy teaching as well as coming up with these beautiful arrangements. I’d still consider him one of the best as even if you check the comments in his videos, the bassists I look up to now still comment on his finesse and playing and he’s not even that old, mind you. His quirky username combines the name of his infamous headless 4 string piccolo Zon bass with his own. There’s nothing much like Zander and there might not ever be one.
- Mr. Brightside (cover) I love this song, and what more as a bass solo? It inspired me to learn it and cover it note per note!
- Looking Glass (original). This song was truly ahead of its time and cemented Zander Zon as a YouTube Bassist. I would listen to this more often than his covers of popular songs.