Well, it has been over a week now since Bass2012 wrapped up in Copenhagen. Life is somewhat back to normal, but I’m better now because of the experience. I’ve been attending and playing at these events for over 10 years now. I should be bored by now, but I’m not. Why is it still exciting, not just for me, but for so many folks that I keep seeing at these events?
Are we strange? Probably, but you’re one of us. You’re strange too. 🙂 Looking back at my previous bass-blowout experiences, here are 3 highlights that keep re-surfacing for me:
New City: Every convention is in a new city. I won’t remember the year of the convention, but I’ll remember where it was. I remember the restaurants, the venue, and something significant about the town. Even though I live in Copenhagen now, I had never been in the Opera House before. It is a stunning building to hang out in for a week. We’ll also remember the picture-perfect weather. Even the Germans were saying, “Wow! I didn’t know it could be so nice here in Denmark!”
Looking ahead, Rochester, New York has some beautiful areas with big trees and sidewalk cafes. There is a lot of American history to take in as well. The Eastman School of Music is bound to be memorable for a lot of reasons. This is a place where music is made. It is a wonderful blend of historic recital halls and brand new facilities. I don’t want to give away too much, but I’m looking forward to getting a morning coffee at Java’s next door.
Old Friends: I remember my first time at ISB. The only people I knew there were my heroes. Wow! It was amazing, but I was a little nervous to talk with folks. I didn’t need to be nervous. Everyone is incredibly approachable. They hang out to meet you! Over the years, I’ve built my network of bass buddies. In fact, we start our conversations early: “Are you going? When are you getting there? Let’s grab a meal together and catch up!” This is the one time of the year where we know we can see each other and share some great moments together. While some of my favorite moments are memorable dinners with friends, there are also those concert moments that you share. It’s powerful stuff. Your bass friends get it. Others in your family might not.
Where else can you hear a bass concert and have 1000 friends to discuss it?
New Discoveries: I want to be inspired. I want my battery re-charged. I need new ideas. The world is full of amazing musicians who happen to play the bass and I need to hear them and meet them. At Bass2012, my new discovery was Arild Anderson. I’m embarrassed at my ignorance. I should have known who he was, but I didn’t. He’s a Norwegian jazz artist who has done a lot, not just in Europe, but in the US as well. Hans Sturm was heading in to hear Arild, so I joined him. It was 45 minutes of solo bass with looping techniques. One piece was so beautiful that we were all wiping tears out of our eyes. There was a row of bass luthiers in front of me. They were all checking out Arild’s new bass from Jean Auray. That was their discovery.
We’ve got a lot of new discoveries ahead of us in June. I can’t tell you what they’ll be, but I know you’re going to love it. Congratulations to Jimmi Roger Pedersen & Ursula Dieterich-Pedersen on all their work. We had a great time. Now, let’s continue the excitement and enthusiasm into June for ISB2013!