Professional bassist, Edgar Pagán shares a few options in A-minor that are sure to bring depth to your playing and color to your arrangements.
The down-low on Edgar
Edgar Pagán has been performing music for over 25 years and has shared the stage with Spyro Gyra, Xtreme, Ismael Miranda, Andy Montanez, Lou Gramm, B.B. King, Dave Valentin, Bernie Williams, [Read about Bernie Williams promoting music education] Ambrosia, Bela Fleck, Earl Slick, Bernard Fowler, Joey Molland, and Average White Band to name a few.
Living in the world of bass
Chuck Schiele: What does a life as a bass player mean to you?
I continue to strive for the audience and my fellow musicians.
Chuck Schiele: What gets you interested in working with any particular artist?
Chuck Schiele: The top 3 habits that make you the player you are today:
Chuck Schiele: Are there things that happen in your off-stage life that factor into your onstage world?
Edgar Pagán: Yes. Music is very emotional and spiritual to me. The attitude and spirit on the stage can affect the music. We all deal with stuff but I try and leave it off the stage. It’s also important to do your homework and be prepared, especially if you want to be invited back! To me, rehearsals are not the time to learn parts but to bring the music together and refine the show.
Chuck Schiele: The art of listening. Please discuss.
Edgar Pagán: So important when it comes to the vibe of the song and interaction with the other musicians. Things happen on stage that may require you to adjust; different styles of music require different approaches. Also, working with different musicians also can require adjusting. As a bassist, I try to work with the drummer to make the song feel good. Different drummers feel things differently, as do bassists, so you adjust and work together for the good of the song.
Chuck Schiele: Main role and soul of the bass as you see it.
Edgar Pagán: THE GROOVE, BABY! Different styles of music require a different feel. I listen and study the style of music I will be playing. It may sound silly, but I also make an effort to dance to it; it helps me feel the groove.
Good gear and sound are important as they deliver what moves the audience.
Chuck Schiele: What would you say to a kid interested in picking up the bass?
Edgar Pagán: Make an effort to understand what the other instruments are doing and where you fit in. Be aware of how it all works together. It also helps to be able to play some piano and/or guitar.
If you’re really interested in pursuing music as a career learn as much about it as you can! And finally practice, practice, practice until you’re blue in the face and then practice, practice, practice Hard work pays off.