Interview & Live Photos by Scott Preston
Freekbass & The BUMP Assembly, SHAG, DJ Big Bam
Southgate House Revival, 111 E 6th St, Newport, KY
8pm doors, 9pm show, $8 adv, $10 dos, Buy Tickets
Going into 2015 Freek has a lot of things on the table. He just released his next album , “Everybody’s Feelin’ Real”, which is produced by Duane Lundy (My Morning Jacket’s Jim James/Ben Sollee) and includes P-Funk/Rubberband keyboardist Razor Sharp Johnson, horn man Skerik, and Trey Anastasio Band vocalist/trumpet Jennifer Hartswick . Also, he was a part of this year’s London Bass Guitar Show in the UK giving a master class and performing. Plus he will be doing extensive touring with his mainstay funk group, “Freekbass & The Bump Assembly”. (from freekbass.com)
Cincy Groove: How does your latest album compare to your previous releases? did you do anything differently? special guests?
Freekbass: very excited about this new album because of the way Producer Duane Lundy had us record it. We set up in a tight circle, with my full bass amp at the full volume I play at live, and recorded all of the bed tracks altogether. No overdubs on initial bed tracks. If someone made a mistake or didn’t like the way they played on the track, we started all over together. So what went to track was the same energy, feel, and vibe as you would have from a live performance. As well as drummers Chip Wilson, and Big Bamn who both play with me live, we had original Rubberband and P-Funk keyboardist Razor Sharp Johnson (who will be playing with us at Southgate tomorrow night) on most of the tracks. Also, Jennifer Hartswick from Trey Anastasio Band, and horn madman Skerik join in on many of the tracks.
Cincy Groove: How did the idea of having a SHAG reunion come about for this show? Who will be performing?
Freekbass: I gave SHAG guitarist Chris Donnelly a call a couple months ago when the show got booked. With it being Thanksgiving weekend, and folks in town for the Holiday, seemed like a good time to do it. We all have been talking about getting together for a bit now, and this seemed like a good opportunity. Chris got in touch with Duran, Johnny Miracle, and Buzz, and it fell into place. It is going to be bittersweet with not having Mark/The Colonel there, but hopefully he will be looking at us, and he will definitely be there in spirit. I have been getting emails from different parts of the country over the last couple weeks with folks travelling into town for the show, which is wild.
Cincy Groove: Who have you collaborated with on stage this year?
Freekbass: Besides touring more with my group, The Bump Assembly, I have bounced around sitting in or playing with different folks such as Bernie Worrell, Dumpstaphunk, The Kelly Richey Band , Particle, and The Joe Marcinek Band.
Cincy Groove: Your latest music videos have been amazing. Who came up with the concepts? Where were they recorded?
Freekbass: Thanks Scott! I have always been into the multimedia side of music, so videos are always very exciting to do. When we finished this new album, “Everybody’s Feelin’ Real”, I really wanted to make as many videos as we could for it. So with a combination of different directors who I have both worked with and were fans of, we connected. So far we have two ,”Victoria Thunder” (by Ted Mandell), and “Mama’s Like A Cowboy (by Team HiHo Productions who did one of the last Primus videos.) We are having the world premiere of the third video , “Never Enough” (by director Gary Templeton) at the Southgate show on Saturday, and it will be everywhere online next week including CincyGroove!
Cincy Groove: Do you have any new projects or collaborations in the works?
Freekbass: I do. We are just getting started wit ha new project for festivals and some club dates this coming season called “The Band Is Bond”. The band is Jennifer Hartswick , Nick Cassarino from The Nth Power, Razor Sharp Johnson, Skerik, Big Bamn, and myself. We will be doing the music from James Bond films. Both title tracks, and also the soundtrack music. Very excited about this. We go into the studio in Lexington,KY week after next with Duane Lundy to start recording some of the ideas.