Meet Gerald Mystille, a bassist who got his start early in music on classical guitar. One day, his dad came home with a Marcus Miller record, and Gerald’s life was changed forever.
Gerald is No Treble’s reader in the spotlight for the week of September 14, 2015. Here’s his story…
I was born and raised in Paris, France and I’m now living in New York City.
I started PLAYING music at 5 years old on Classical guitar. As a teenager, I played music from Fernando Sor, Heitor Villa lobos… It is not the coolest thing but I remember that day my dad came by the house with that Marcus Miller album Tales, it changed my life!!! Immediately, after the first song I knew that it was what I wanted to do!
This year when I discover the Maestro, I pass my summer to play bass, I mean… to slap!!!
I’m a graduate of Paris VIII University with a bachelors in musicology and from the National Music School of Cachan.
I’ve been a professional musician for ten years and had the chance to perform all over the world (France, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Cabo Verde, USA, Caribbean) with artists from different genres (funk, jazz, caribbean, hip-hop/r&b).
New York City / New York / USA
I’m a professional musician. A big part of my time is also dedicated to my bass guitar lessons, which is a good way for me to share with my students my passion for music and for the bass guitar.
Bands & Gigs:
As a session bassist I play with different artists in live gigs and studio sessions, I also have my own projects :
Solo Bass: For the last 2 years I have focused on a solo bass project. Every song I arrange for solo bass allows me to learn new things about technique, harmony or melody. It requires such virtuosity. I like that challenge of being able to play all by myself with no looper a song on a 4 string bass guitar.
Gerald Mystille Group: Composed of 4 musicians : guitar, piano, bass and drums. We play original music, standards and songs. We can define the genre as a mix of jazz, funk , hip hop and rock, influenced by artists like Roy Hargrove and the RH factor, Chris Dave and the Drumhedz or Victor Wooten.
- Fender American jazz bass deluxe V strings (sunburst)
- Warmoth PJ (Caribbean) (Piccolo bass – 4 strings ADGC)/emg Pickups/Sadowsky preamp
- Ibanez GWB35 Gary Willis signature Fretless (black)
- Squier jazz bass 4 strings (sunburst)
- EBS reidmar
- EBS CL 112 Cabinet
- Aguilar tone hammer
- Electro harmonix holy grail max
- Boss RC20-XL
- Boss DD7 digital delay
Why I play the bass:
My big brother is a drummer so obviously picking the bass was a good choice. I had the chance to play with a drummer for ever.
One interesting thing with bass is groove. Of course every musician should groove but as a bassist it is really our job. It’s really what I enjoy while playing!
My bass superpower/claim to fame
I’m a big fan of slap, tapping and special techniques, so I like to incorporate flashy licks in my playing.
I also pay attention a lot to my sound.This is the secret, to always match your sound with the music you play.
Firstly, my brother! I learned everything from him musically.
Then, a random list of artists who have influenced me would include : Marcus Miller, Victor Wooten, Sylvain Luc, Tommy Emmanuel, Bireli Lagrene, Roy Hargrove, Herbie Hancock, Sting, Michael Jackson, Bob Marley, Richard Bona, Red hot chili peppers… The list is pretty endless…