Meet Gregory Johnson, who first fell in love with the bass guitar thanks to a Fender Precision back in 1977 and has been on a musical journey ever since.
Gregory is this week’s No Treble reader in the spotlight. Here’s his story…
I got serious about playing bass in 2014, and in 2016 I decided to teach myself how to read music (thanks to a Marcus Miller video interview where he said to take three months out of your life and just do it). I also practice scales and modes daily as I find that it helps me learn the bass lines of my favorite artist easier. Playing the bass, and music, in general, has become more and more a religious/spiritual experience for me.
Nashville, TN USA
I teach cycling classes three days a week at my local YMCA, I freelance photography mostly to exhibit and sell portraits, and I’m an Uber driver. My lifestyle allows me to focus on music.
I fell in love with the bass guitar in 1977 when I bought a Fender Precision
Bands & Gigs:
I’m a weekend warrior. I get together with a guitar player and we jam. We have original tunes that we work on to keep it interesting and with the hopes that we will someday play live to an audience. I’ve also played in a Christian rock band, churches, and sat in with artist needing a bass player.
- 1977 Fender Precision w/Aguilar OBP-3 on board preamp
- 1979 Fender Precision
- 2005 Fender Jazz
- Hartke LH1000 amplifier
- Hartke Hydrive 410
- Hartke Hydrive 115
- Fender Rumble 100
- Boss RC300 Loop Station
- MXR Bass D. I.
- MXR 10 Band Graphic EQ
- Yamaha S80 Keyboard Synthesizer
Why I play the bass:
I decided to play the bass because I like the way it sounds, the way it looks, and how it feels. I love the instrument.
My bass superpower/claim to fame
Playing the Hard Rock Cafe with a drummer and aspiring guitarist/songwriter and being told, unexpectedly, to solo. That’s when I realized how important practicing scales and modes were. Once I got started I didn’t want to stop (or I was so nervous I didn’t know when to stop), so the guitarist let me know that it was time to stop. It was a real rush.
Paul McCartney and James Jamerson, but mostly Paul McCartney because of his creativity and melodic playing style with The Beatles. James Jamerson because he played so freely and used ghost notes which I am fond of. However, I’m a huge fan of Paul McCartney and The Beatles.