Photos & Interview by Scott Preston
Freekbass has released five full-length CDs, including the current “Concentrate” (available HERE for free download) with guests Bootsy Collins, DJ Spooky, Adam Deitch, and Steve Molitz, and ”Junkyard Waltz” which includes guest appearances by Phish bassist Mike Gordon, guitarist Buckethead, keyboard wizard from P-Funk/Talking Heads Bernie Worrell, and is produced by funk legend Bootsy Collins. Also, national music DVD instruction company, The Rock House Method, recently released two Freekbass instructional DVDs “Learn Funk Bass with Freekbass (Level 1 & Level 2) “, and TrueFire.com just released the instructional DVD/download “50 Freekbass Licks You Must Know” . Freekbass has also connected with DJ Logic, and Particle keyboardist Steve Molitz to form the funktronica trio, Headtronics. He also tours with the bass and DJ livetronica duo, “FREEKBOT”, with DJ Tobotius and with the Kelly Richey Band. (from Freekbass.com)
Cincy Groove: Tell me about the new record, are you going back to your funk roots? who is on the record?
Freekbass: Very excited about the album. It is being produced by Duane Lundy (My Morning Jacket/Ben Sollee) and Bootsy. I wanted this album to sound and feel like the albums that I fell in love with growing up ( There’s A Riot Goin On and Fresh by Sly, Maggot Brain by Funkadelic , Scary Monsters by Bowie, Abbey Road by the Beatles, etc. ). So to try and capture a similar vibe we are all setting up and tracking in the studio together in a circle. If someone makes a mistake we all start over and do another take. For the bed tracks , no overdubs.
On the initial bed tracks are my drummer Chip Wilson, Razor Sharp Johnson on keys (Bootsy/P-Funk)and myself on bass. There will be more musicians as we move forward including some sit-ins such as Skerik on sax.
Cincy Groove: Who will be a part of your touring band in the coming year?
Freekbass: The live band ( Freekbass & The Bump Assembly) is getting “assembled” as we speak.
Cincy Groove: I see you have a Kickstarter campaign for the new record, what are some of the incentives you are offering?
Freekbass: We have some pretty cool ones such as coming to a studio session and being on a track for the new album. Another where I write and record a bassline you can use for your song or sample.
Cincy Groove: How was your experience at Bear Creek this year? Who did you get to perform with?
Freekbass: Bear Creek is like no other festival out there. It is a special place , very musician friendly, and one of the funkiest spots on the planet. This year I sat in with Bernie Worrell, the Orchestra At Large, and Skerik and I did another Silent Disco again which was a good one.
Cincy Groove: Do you think Kickstarter is a good way to fund a record?
Freekbass: Yes, not just because of the funding , but mainly because you get folks involved and they become a part of the album. It becomes almost like a community. It has been a journey above and beyond what I expected.
Cincy Groove:I know you have been busy this year, who have you been performing with?
Freekbass: When not out with my band I have been hitting the road heavy with The Kelly Richey Band , and some festival dates with Headtronics ( DJ Logic, Steve Molitz, and myself ), and FREEKBOT.
Cincy Groove: What have been some of your favorite shows this year?
Freekbass: Catskill Chill Music Fest in New York with Headtronics was really fun this year and we had a solid show. Touring Canada with KRB was very cool too. Going back to Canada for a tour in spring with KRB.
Cincy Groove: Have you been a part of any other recording projects this year?
Freekbass: Not yet. Mostly been focusing on my new album and working in the studio for that.
Cincy Groove: What plans do you have for 2014?
Freekbass: Once the new album drops in spring I will be doing a lot of touring for that. Plus I will still be on the road a lot with The Kelly Richey Band. My truck-driver-gene will be working overtime.
Freekbass website – http://www.freekbass.com
Check out Freekbass’ Kickstarter campaign here – http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1304926791/freekbass-the-bump-assembly-project