Photo by Sophia Cacciola/Sophia’s Rock Beat
Meet Corin Ashley, a bassist with one of the more remarkable stories we’ve seen. Corin suffered a stroke a year ago and used his bass as a tool for rehabilitation. He’s this week’s No Treble reader in the spotlight, and here’s his story…
After suffering a stroke in January, 2016, which left me with the fingers on my left hand paralyzed (as well as a paralyzed vocal cord and major face droop), I used my 30+ years of bass playing as the focus of my rehabilitation. I was lucky to have a neurologist who specializes in musicians with brain injuries and he guided me back to my fundamental building blocks as a musician as a way to reconnect the synapses and get my fingers moving again. It was many, many hours of trying to songs I learned as a teeneager at a very, very slow tempo. I recently returned to gigging after a solid year of physical therapy, speech therapy, vocal therapy, etc. I caught a really bad case of the co-pays along the way.
Boston, MA, USA
I own an agency that books bands for weddings and corporate events and I lead our most popular band, Flipside, a nine-piece dance band.
Bands & Gigs:
In additional to my day job, I am an active singer/songwriter. I used to lead a very hyper rock band called the PIlls and we toured all over the place, opening show in the US, Canada, Spain and the UK for Supergrass, the Libertines, The B-52s, Ian Hunter and any 90’s radio band with a number in their name. I have three solo albums out. I also recently played bass in Ex Boo Radley’s Martin Carr’s solo album in Cardiff, Wales (legit session man, me) and I was the touring bass player for Cardinal.
- Rickenbacker 4001 with LaBella flats
- 1963 Hofner Senator bass with LaBella flats
- 1967 Hofner Violin bass with black tapewounds
Why I play the bass:
In my teenage band, my best friend just happened to be a virtuoso (he still is, Richie Kotzen), and we could never find a bass player, so one day showed up at rehearsal and RIchie’s Dad had bought a P bass at a yard sale. I said “Oh cool, who’s going to play bass?’ and everybody just smiled at me. It was the best thing that ever happened to me. I found my thing.
My bass superpower/claim to fame:
Once played a show in Toronto about 20 hours after having kidney stone surgery in Boston. They removed the stone through the very worst place and I was loaded into the van like piece of gear, driven to Toronto and a bass was placed around my neck. I am told it went really well.
Paul McCartney, Sting, Chris Squire, John Wetton – mostly guys who sing and play.