Whether it’s four, six or twelve strings, they’re still guitars to us.
And when you’re talking the four-string variety, there are few players like “Madman Bassist” Rev Jones.
And while he remains in high demand among music insiders, he continues to fly under the mainstream radar. That strikes us as both puzzling and grossly unfair.
(photo courtesy of planetbass.com)
Put Rev Jones in the category of modern rockers who have innovated their craft. His two-finger tapping style and over-the-neck technique single him out as both a gifted bassist and a sought-after stage presence — he has toured with Schenker, Mountain, Fuel, Black Symphony and a slew of others.
“I’ve always pretty much been somewhat the same on stage,” Jones told Modern Guitars magazine in 2006. “I grew up seeing all these great bands that put on a show and that’s what I thought you were supposed to do on stage, and I still feel that way.”
Jones first picked up the bass in 1985, and was on the road a year later. According to his bio, he hasn’t stopped touring since. That certainly seems to be true: His litney of bands also includes Steelheart, Kottak, Forte and stints with Paul Gilbert and Jeff Martin of Racer X. To top it off, he’s also recorded several bass-technique training videos.
Oddly, he told Modern Guitars the bass wasn’t his first choice.
“Well, when I first started I played guitar for three months and I met this guitarist named Ron Phillips and we started a band,” he said. “This guy was an unreal player and I thought I’d never be that good, so I moved to bass — the smartest thing I’ve done in my life.”
No doubt. And not to be outdone by the six-stringers, Jones says he’s toyed with eight, ten, twelve and fourteen-string basses.
So keep an eye out for the man. Few can touch him in the genre.
Here’s a clip from one of his instructional videos. But hold on to your seats. Not many can do what Rev Jones can do with a bass.
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(NOTE: This is part of my ongoing series of reports on guitar players who fly under the mainstream radar. Keep checking The Listening Room for future installments of guitar players you should know – JF)
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