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Reader Spotlight: Deoindra Harrell

Deoindra HarrellMeet Deoindra Harrell, a young bassist who caught our attention with her love for bass. It is a love that runs so deep she said, “I honestly feel like I could care less what bass I’m playing, just as long as I have a bass guitar in my hands.”

To us, that’s what it is all about. Deoindra is the No Treble reader in the spotlight for the week of June 8th, 2015, and here’s her story.

Bio:

Hello! My name is Deoindra Harrell and I’m from Newport News, Virginia, but have lived in Utah ever since I was 6 years old. I first picked up the drums when I was 12 after watching a VH1 marathon of a bunch of 80s music videos (random, yes!) I remember being so much in awe watching these people in these bands, playing these cool instruments I’d never really payed much attention to before. I thought the whole idea of playing an instrument was real cool and seeing how I didn’t really have many friends in school, I thought I’d dedicate my time to something that I could enjoy and make me forget about the hardships of being an awkward teenager in middle school.

Location:

West Jordan, Utah

Day gig:

I am currently a student at the University Of Utah, but am not employed.

I am blessed to have two parents who support what I do and help pay my way through college, even if we don’t have a lot of moolah.

Years experience:

About 6-7 years

Bands & Gigs:

I have never performed live, never been in a band, I’ve honestly never played with anyone. I usually just jam along to a nice track, sometimes even a drum track, and a metronome. When I tell most people that, they first think that I am very inexperienced. I remember one time I even told a friend I taught myself to play bass and she thought right off the back that I sucked, said it straight to my face too! Until one day I played for her and she said, “WOW! your really good!”

Gear:

I am fairly a simple bassist when it comes to gear. I honestly feel like I could care less what bass I’m playing, just as long as I have a bass guitar in my hands.

Currently Use:

  • Sterling Sub Ray 4
  • Fender Classic Vibe Jazz Bass
  • Fender Rumble 15

(Nothing special)

Why I play the bass:

I remember being a huge Reggae and Ska fan (still am) and hearing the group Madness. Mark Bedford (Madness Bassist) bass lines were just so different than most of the bass lines I had heard. I just thought that, “this dude is so cool,” and I mean every time I see him play he always has a big smile on his face. I wanted that same feeling he felt, that same smile he had on his face every time he played. He honestly is the reason why I picked up the bass (next to God) and haven’t put it down since and I am truly thankful because his smile and attitude taught me to be not only a great bassist, but to be happy even through my darkest times.

My bass superpower/claim to fame:

Hmm… Superpower?

My superpower doesn’t have anything to do with skill or technique, it’s just basically a duty I have to serve, responsibility to be exact, a superpower every bassist has or should have in my opinion.

Like Uncle Ben said, “With great power comes great responsibility” (I even used that as my HS yearbook quote.) I honestly have been responsible for reminding myself everyday to be myself through my music, not to emulate others through my sound. A great example of this would be my friend Mononeon (chat with him a lot through FB), he told me yesterday to have a persona when I play. He is the best example of a bassist who plays the way he wants to play regardless of what others think, so that’s advice I take to heart.

I believe when someone is blessed with a talent that they be responsible when using it. So basically my responsibility is to keep playing the way “Deoindra” would play and using that as a gateway to the success I hope to have in the future. As well as to encourage other bassist to be them and never think they “suck” no matter how much experience they have under their belt. No one needs to play cool fills or slap to be a great bassist, you must learn to play what you feel, sometimes or most of the time simplicity is the key.

Gosh I hope all that made sense!

My influences:

Anything from the 80s!!!

New Wave, Experimental, Soul, R&B, A lot of 80s Electronic Funk, Hip-Hop, Gospel, Reggae, Ska, the list goes on!

Bassists: Mark Bedford, Mark Adams, Tracy Wormworth, Les Nemes, Peter Hook, Nick Beggs, Victor Wooten, Tyrone Brunson, Louis Johnson, Jo Dworniak, Dexter Redding, Wayman Tisdale, Bernard Edwards, & Robert “Bubby” Lewis.

In all honesty, I am just influenced by primarily others who show a deep appreciation for their music. Not to forget, my family, and most importantly the reason why I have this talent and love for music, God.

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