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Gerald Veasley - Jazz Base
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Gerald Veasley Interview Page 4

Smitty: Yes, you and your colleagues have created an incredible avenue for bass players around the world and it's a beautiful thing. Now, you've got Joe McBride on this record.
GV: Yeah, you know, we have the core band which is Chris Farr on saxophone, Eric Greene on drums, Peter Kuzma on keyboards, Will Brock on keyboards and we've got Pablo Batista, we worked a long time together with Grover (Washington Jr.) and playing percussion and Congas he plays a great solo on "Celebrating Sipho". We also have a couple of horn players, Jeff Bradshaw a trombone player, a great solo player and Matt Cappy on trumpet who, getting back to name dropping, who worked with Maxwell. And while we were mixing the record, the one area where we had to cheat a little bit, I was hearing a little something that I needed somebody to add on one of the songs, I can't remember which song it was, I think it was a song called "Deeper", and Joe McBride just happened to be in the studio. So we asked Joe to do it. It wasn't a big feature thing that he did but it was just great. And speaking of Joe, he and I just finished working at the Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz concert with the Heads Up Super Band. I don't know if you remember that project.
Smitty: Oh yeah, how could I forget?

Gerald Veasly - Jazz Musician

GV: We did a really special concert with the super band which is Joe McBride, myself, Keith Carlock on drums, Kenny Blake on saxophone, Joe, of course, sings and plays piano. We had a horn section, a five piece horn section and we had three background singers. The reason why we needed all those other instruments and vocalists was because we were doing the music of Ray Charles.
Smitty: Ohhhhhhhhhhh!

GV: Yeah, that's right, so the Heads Up Super band is…., we are not promoting it as a Ray Charles concert but we are doing concerts with Heads Up Super band…. and if you come expecting the stuff on our records well, you might not get that but you're going to get the music of one of the greatest artists that has ever lived. So, it's been a lot of fun, a lot of fun. We are going to be down at Rehoboth Beach Jazz Festival as the Heads Up Super Band, because I can't say we're going to play the music of Ray Charles. But in case you're there you might hear songs like "Hit the Road Jack" you know, I'm not saying that we're not going to be playing Ray Charles but in case you're there you might hear songs like “Georgia” (Both laughing), I'm not SAYING you're going to hear the music of Ray Charles (Both laughing) but you might hear songs like "(Night Time is) the Right Time", so we just have a ball with that particular project.
Smitty: Oh that is too cool man. That is great news.
GV: Oh it's a lot of fun.
Smitty: Talk to me a little about working with Keith Carlock.
GV: Keith Carlock, yes. You've been keeping up with Keith? Keith has been a busy guy, heading up our Heads Up Super Band some years ago. In the years since the Heads Up Super Band has come together, Keith has done some interesting work, aside from playing with us, Harry BelaFonte, he toured with the Blues Brothers, he toured with Steely Dan and the last couple of years he's been touring with Sting. More name dropping again but we're really proud of Keith.
Smitty: Impressive company.
GV: He's a fantastic drummer. A Mississippi boy who's got a feel like, like you just would not believe. A big ole funky groove.
Smitty: I'm digging his groove. I like the trombone thing that you've got working on this record too.
GV: Oh yeah, Jeff Bradshaw, I did some recording for his first Hidden Beach release. He's been on my last couple of records. We're good friends and I marvel at his career because he's doing for the trombone what some of us are doing from the bass. The trombone is one of these instruments that you don't think about as lead but he's changing that perception.

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