Author: Crystal Gloistein

Gerald Veasley

Gerald Veasley’s musical odyssey has taken him to the top of the contemporary music world as a bassist, bandleader, composer, producer and educator. His performance as a bassist has been top shelf, as his memorable work with the late, great Grover Washington Jr., Joe Zawinul, and the Jaco Pastorius Big Band attests.

He has recorded and/or performed with many of the world’s top performers in various genres of music such as Chuck Loeb, Special EFX, Pieces of a Dream, McCoy Tyner, Gerald Levert, Teddy Pendergrass, Nnenna Freelon, Philip Bailey, The Dixie Hummingbirds, Phil Perry, Will Downing and Pat Martino.

Gerald currently has a residency at Philadelphia’s most prestigious jazz venue, SOUTH, where he is curator of the “Unscripted Jazz Series”. The series has presented more than 75 events featuring notable guest artists such as Kirk Whalum, Raul Midón, Alex Bugnon, Kim Waters, Keiko Matsui, Maysa, Rick Braun, and Gerald Albright. He is in the process of producing two recording projects, “The Purple House” and a salute to the legacy of The Sound of Philadelphia.

When not collaborating with notable artists, Gerald tours and records with his band, which features talented musicians in their own right. Gerald’s recordings as a bandleader are: Look Ahead, Signs, Soul Control, Love Letters, On The Fast Track, Velvet, Live at The Jazz Base, Your Move and The Electric Mingus Project.

Veasley is on the faculty of the University of the Arts (Philadelphia), where he shares his knowledge of the electric bass and jazz performance. He is founder and artistic director of Gerald Veasley’s Bass BootCamp, which has nurtured a growing army of bassists of all skill levels. Whether performing, recording, collaborating, or teaching, Gerald brings a joyous, polished professionalism to the process of making music.

Joe Aranda

Joe found his passion for bass in 1983 at age 16 while attending Siena Heights College and later at Washtenaw Community College focusing on jazz. He has studied with great mentors such as Victor Wooten, Steve Bailey, Marcus Miller and Dan Pliskow.

Joe currently teaches bass privately and also is a member of the John E. Lawrence Band and has recently performed with national jazz artists Jessy J, Eric Marienthal, Chris Standring and Jay Rowe.

Chris Farr

Saxophonist Chris Farr graduated from University of the Arts in 1994 with his Bachelors degree in music and then continued on to finish his Masters degree in arts and teaching in 1995. Since then he has been a highly sought after performer and educator. Chris is currently a full time professor at the University of the Arts, where he serves as the undergraduate instrumental division head.

Chris is also a clinician and endorser of Andreas Eastman saxophones. Throughout his career he has performed, toured and recorded with the likes of Blood Sweat & Tears, Elvis Costello, Jill Scott, Sting, John Legend, The Roots, Maynard Ferguson and Big Bop Nouveau, The Philly Pops and The Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia. Chris was also part of the horn section for the 2020 super bowl halftime show with Shakira and Jennifer Lopez.

Freekbass

Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Freekbass was an only child who initially wanted to be a magician. He later developed his own obsession for cartoon superheroes and comic books, relating to the underlying themes. Living in Cincinnati exposed Freekbass to genres of music he may have missed otherwise. While most kids were listening to Nirvana and Green Day, he connected with the bottom-heavy sounds coming out of the boom boxes like Zapp and Midnight Star. While working in a music shop to pay off his first electric bass he had in lay-away, he began to study the classics of Larry Graham, Sly Stone, Stevie Wonder, Parliament and Bootsy with a bass in one hand, and an MPC2000 in the other.

Freekbass has released six full-length CDs, including “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.” In 2010 Freekbass connected with DJ Logic, and Particle keyboardist Steve Molitz to form the funktronica trio, Headtronics.

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,” which also includes Razor Sharp Johnson (Bootsy’s Rubberband/P-Funk) on keys and synths and Rico Lewis (George Clinton & P-Funk) on drums. And just last month, he signed with the esteemed label Ropeadope, which you can read about by clicking here.

Bass BootCamp 2016

Bass BootCamp EXPO 2016

Bass BootCamp 2015

Bass BootCamp EXPO 2015

Chico Huff

Chico Huff has been playing electric bass professionally for about 40 years. He is primarily self taught, learning from all the wonderful musicians he’s had the pleasure of making music with over the years. He did his first paying gig when he was about 14 years old, playing standards on Martha’s Vineyard.

Over the years Chico has had the pleasure of performing and/or recording with these fine folks:
James Taylor, Kate Taylor, Alex Taylor, Carly Simon, Jeff Golub, Richard Elliott, Jef Lee Johnson, Kit Walker, Solas, Seamus Egan, Karan Casey, Liz Carroll, Chuck Leob, Terrance Blanchard, John Belushi, Dr. John, John Swana, Cathy Ryan, John Hall, Jefferson Airplane, Francois Corneloup, Susan Werner, Antje Duvecot, Lizanne Knott, and many more.

Chico has traveled in the USA and Europe extensively through the gift of music as well as Japan and Morocco.