Michael Hamer grew up in a house full of music. That, plus the fact that his parents bought him a bass and amp for Christmas when he was 14 set him off on a life-long musical journey. Nearly five decades later, Michael is still at it, performing regularly with two groups.
Michael is this week’s No Treble reader in the spotlight. Here’s his story…
I love playing the bass guitar! It’s the thing that I’m best at, and that I’ve done the longest. There was always music playing at my house when I was a child. Jazz and R&B were what I heard growing up. I remember hearing Miles Davis, Ahmad Jamal, Bill Evans, James Brown, and lots of Motown. I didn’t realize that my ear always gravitated to the bass in all of those songs. That increased as I became a teenager. My parents got me a bass and amp for Christmas when I was 14. I’ve been playing ever since.
Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA
Bass guitarist for “The Soul of Motown” show and “The American Hit Parade” show at the Grand Majestic Dinner Theater in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
Lakland 55-01 (modified), Modulus Graphite Q6 TBX, Revsound 410t, Acme Low B2, TC Electronics BG250, Carvin B1000.
Why I play the bass:
I had aspirations of playing bass with Jimi Hendrix one day. Sadly, he passed away before I got the opportunity. I was raised in Jamaica, New York. There were a lot of really great bass players back then. Some are well known and some are not.
My bass superpower/claim to fame:
I have learned that less is more. That silence is one of the loudest notes that a musician can play. With bass, timing and groove are the most important things. To treat every gig with a positive attitude, and be as compliant as possible to whomever I am working for.
Marcus Miller, Jaco Pastorius, James Jamerson, Mark King, Stanley Clarke, David Dyson, Gerald Veasley, Andrew Gouche, Fred Hammond, Bernard Edwards, and David Frank of the System.