Reader Spotlight: Justin Almquist

Justin AlmquistJustin Almquist got a later start on the bass, but he’s a quick learner. He continued his work through college and got into the gear side of things by working at Mackie.

Justin is this week’s No Treble reader in the spotlight. Here’s his story…


I had a lot of interest in music growing up, but never played any instruments or even participated in the school band. That changed when I was 17 and I decided to try out the bass. I was immediately hooked, quickly jumping into lessons, forming a rock band, and playing my first concert within 6 months.

In college, I was fortunate enough to study with an exceptional jazz bassist and get a music degree (with electric bass!!) After college, I shifted into the business world, spending 5 years working at Mackie (which eventually became LOUD Technologies and purchased Ampeg). I learned a ton about music gear and made some great lifelong friends.


Seattle, WA, USA

Day gig:

I manage a product support group for ultrasound medical devices.

Years experience:

23 years

Bands & Gigs:

I don’t do much gigging and prefer to focus on releasing my own albums (where I play all the instruments and do all the recording and mixing). I do have a jazz combo made up of friends that have been jamming together just for fun over the past 15 years. We don’t play gigs, but we do enjoy playing together for fun.


  • 1994 Yamaha RBX250
  • 1995 Carvin LB75 5-string
  • 1996 Carvin LB75 Anniversary 5-string fretless
  • 2000 Czech made double bass
  • Mesa 4×10
  • Mesa M9 Carbine
  • Darkglass Alpha-Omega
  • Strymon Blue Sky reverb

Why I play the bass:

I really got into 90’s rock, particularly Stone Temple Pilots, Nirvana, Soundgarden, and Pearl Jam. I remember seeing Robert DeLeo on MTV Unplugged playing some tasty fills and wanting to play bass!

My bass superpower/claim to fame:

I write very dark compositions and basslines. I tend to blend together various styles in unexpected ways, with the bass being the focal point.

I just released an album called The Speed of Dark which explores this.

Here’s a fairly amusing summary of said super power.

My influences:

Robert DeLeo, James Jamerson, John Paul Jones, Cliff Burton, David Ellefson, Trevor Dunn, Pino Palladino, Scott LaFaro, Eddie Gomez, Paul Chambers, Charles Mingus, Drew Gress, Jimmy Garrison… just for starters.

More on the web:

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