Reader Spotlight: Ian Pettersson

Ian PetterssonMeet Ian Pettersson, an electric and upright bassist from Dublin, Ireland. Ian is our player in the spotlight for August 17, 2010.


Married with one child and three Basses. Started playing bass at 16 and have been hooked ever since. Adam Clayton was my bass hero and I spent hours on end locked in my bedroom listening to The Joshua Tree, Rattle & Hum and War. Then I heard Flea and my jaw dropped. Then I heard Bootsy, Jaco, Stanley Clarke, etc.
I play bass as much as I can and would never refuse a gig. Playing in a band without any egos, where the musicians are there to play and enjoy the music is one of the most satisfying things I like to do.


Dublin, Ireland

Day gig:

ePOS/IT engineer (About to be made redundant)

Years experience:

18 years

Bands & Gigs:

Playing in a few different things at the moment. My main is gig is with singer/songwriter Colm Lynch (videos below). I play electric bass for all these gigs. The set consists mainly of original material, not your usual singer/songwriter stuff. There are some great rockin’ numbers in there. We also do a few well chosen covers – Rock and Roll, Roadhouse Blues.
I play double bass with two other bands: The Big Muddy and Phelin Drew and the Pseudo Brothers. Both are extremely enjoyable and lots of fun. The sets are mainly country and rockibilly. Im still really getting to grips with the doubler, but playing this kind of stuff is great practice.


  • Fender Jazz ’78 original with J-Retro Preamp
  • Musicman Stingray ’92 Fretless
  • Musicman SUB
  • Double Bass made in Germany with Fishman pickup
  • Ampeg 4×10 Cab
  • EV CP 1200 Power Amp
  • Tech 21 Sansamp Rack Mount

I usually use a limiter with the Double Bass and occasionally a Chorus for fretless but apart from that, no other effects.

Why I play the bass:

My brother and I started playing guitar together. He was much better than me so I decided to try bass so we could start a band.

My bass superpower/claim to fame

A few years ago, flying home from Tallinn I had a stop over in Stockholm. I got off the plane expecting a few hours of boredom while I waited for my connecting flight. As I am walking around, I spot a familiar face. My jaw drops, its Victor Wooten, just standing there talking to some dude. I immediately make my way over, shake hands and have a chat. He’s as nice as could be, then I realize that the dude standing beside him is Marcus Miller. He says hello and shakes my hand and we chat. Then it dawns on me that SMV are on tour in Europe and guess who comes walking over???? Stanley Clarke. I met my three greatest bass hero all in one go. How lucky was that? And they were all very cool, taking the time to chat to me. I was so chuffed with myself, I never even asked for a photo. Then I gave them stick for not playing in Dublin. True story.

My influences

Victor Wooten, Stanley Clarke, Marcus Miller, Flea, Adam Clayton

More on the web:



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