Christian Stenrøjl is not just another gigging bass player. He’s going way above and beyond with the goal of curing people with the bass – through music therapy. We’re thrilled to share his story as this week’s Reader Spotlight.
I am 21 years old, and I’ll be studying Music Therapy at Aalborg University this year, with the electric bass as my major. I play bass in a hardrock band called Lady-Like, in which I put most of my musical energy.
I work at an institution for people with severe mental disabilities, mostly autism. That’s what really inspired me to study Music Therapy – because music is so much more than a craft. It’s art, it’s every imaginable emotion and it’s in every single one of us. I want to help people with the unfathomable power of music. It’s an incredible inspiration for me to see what music can do to people who have very limited cognitive ability and I believe the bass (with a little ingenuity and practice) is perfect for the task.
I’ve been playing the bass for eight years.
Bands & Gigs:
I’ve played in a ton of bands, constellations and groups and explored (played) everything from free jazz over classic rock to big musical productions with huge budgets. At one point I decided to follow my heart and dedicate my time to a sole project. I got the chance to join Lady-Like right about that time. A no-nonsense, 1-2-3-4 rock band with punk, stoner and classic rock influences. I play a lot of 8th notes! I love my musical role in the band ’cause I have the occasional space to color the music with small harmonic changes, melodies within melodies etc.
- Fender Precision Bass
- Fender Hybrid Fretless (J-bass body, P-bass neck)
- Squier Vintage Mod. J-bass
- TC-Electronic BG-250
- TC-Electronic Mini Shaker Vibrato
- TC-Electronic Corona Chorus
- TC-Electronic Mini Hall of Fame Reverb
- TC-Electronic Polytune Mini Noir
- MXR Phase 90
- T-rex Bass Juice
- Electro Harmonix Freeze
(I’m a wandering TC-Electronic ad!!)
Why I play the bass:
I started playing the guitar at first and quickly found out that I felt more at home as a rhythm guitarist. I started a band with some friends and we were three guitar players, but no bass player – so we flipped a coin! I lost the toss but won in the end; the minute I grabbed the bass it just felt perfect for me. Life does that to you sometimes!
Funny enough, I’ve started to take a more expressive approach to the bass and dig in to what the bass can do as an instrument on it’s own.
My bass superpower/claim to fame
To cure people with bass!
Seriously though, my goal is to become one of the leading powers in the use of electric bass in musical therapy. It’s a massively expressive instrument if used right and I utilize that in my playing. I work a lot on using modulation effects to make soundscapes as well.
Sir Paul McCartney, John Paul Jones, Uriah Duffy, Phil Lynott, Duff McKagan, Chris Minh Doky, Michael Manring, Dan Roberts, Kenneth Dahl Knudsen, Jaco.. The list goes on!