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Bass players unite interview with Bass player Marten F. Andersson

By Julie Pavlova and Kathy Loran

Marten Andersson

1. For the first question we want to know when did you start to play the bass guitar? Was it easy for you to learn bass?

I actually started to play the guitar, I was about 13 when I saw Gene Simmons on some TV show and it made me want to switch to bass. I wanted to breathe fire and fly with bat wings on stage. I was pretty much begging my dad every day to buy me a bass, he eventually bought me a little Fender Mustang bass. I started taking lessons and figuring out how to play the music that was played on the radio. I donít really remember this part, but when I run into people that were around then, they tell me I always had a bass with me or I was always practicing.
I was not one of those people where things came easy, some people do it once and they get it right off the bat. I worked my ass off, practiced all day and night and took lessons. Once itís in my head it doesnít leave Ė so I guess itís a trade off. Plus, I became very passionate about playing, and you cant help yourself but to do it all the time, when you have passion.

2. Playing on the bass for you isÖ Hobby? Job? Lifestyle?

When Iím sitting at home a hobby, in the studio or at rehearsal itís a job or responsibility, when Iím on stage or on tour itís a lifestyle. I always tell people, getting paid to do your hobby for a living is the ultimate reward!

2. Playing on the bass for you isÖ Hobby? Job? Lifestyle?

When Iím sitting at home a hobby, in the studio or at rehearsal itís a job or responsibility, when Iím on stage or on tour itís a lifestyle. I always tell people, getting paid to do your hobby for a living is the ultimate reward!

3. Who is your musical inspiration among bassists?

I had so many different inspirations through out the years (many different musicians, bands and styles of music). I like all kinds of music and I am not one of those guys who is snowed in listening to just metal and screw the rest type (laughter). Like I mentioned, the initial trigger for me to switch to bass was seeing Gene Simmons on TV so I got heavy into Kiss, then all the 80ís bands, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, guitar gods like Schenker and Blackmore. I got into a lot of classical music and for a period of time a lot of the instrumental metal music (mainly through Shrapnel records and Mike Varneyís huge catalog of shredders). 

4. Do you play any other musical instruments? If you start to learn another one which would you like?

I write songs on guitar. I always regret not learning the piano on a deeper level. Itís never too late to learn something new of course, but everytime I sit down wanting to practice the piano the phone rings or I get pulled elsewhere. So, obviously Ė my passion to do it is not there one hundred percent. Perhaps one day!   

5. Musical instrument with which you can be associated with isÖ

6. Tell us about the projects in which you participate?Marten Andersson2

Longtime bass player with Lizzy Borden, x-Lynch Mob and a bunch more stuff, to long to brag about here. I am playing bass on Dario Lorinaís (Black Label Society) latest instrumental CD (out on Shrapnel records, you can find it here) it has a ton of cool shredding on it if you are into that.  Also my old solo CD āLegacyí was re-released digitally with bonus tracks and I just found out it on the Top 100 N1M metal Charts, which is mind blowling but it feels awesome. It can be found here: http://cdbaby.com/cd/Legacy15

7. What do you feel on live performances? How friendly and open are you with your fans?

Itís amazing playing live. I like looking out and seeing the fans smiling, singing along knowing that our music is putting them in a happy place, even if just for a couple of hours. Make them forget about the issues and problem we all face in our daily lives. With Lizzy Borden we always do a meet and greet after every show (for free!!) like a gesture to thank the fans and we try and make sure everybody get their stuff signed. We just played in Russia and we went to the Red Square after the show with a ton of fans, something I will always remember, it was awesome. The fans are everything!

8. What do you like except music? Can you imagine yourself in other areas of life?
I am a pretty normal guy aside from my music. I like hanging out with my friends, good dinners and wine, interesting conversations, watching hockey and motorcycles. I often think about where to go from here and what to do after my touring/playing days. So far Iíve got nothing, music is my life..

9. Maybe other bass players or those who start to learn bass are reading this article now. Letís talk about technical stuff. Which brand do you prefer? Does quality of music depend on the guitarís brand or of the skill of the bass player?

I play ESP Bass guitars and have been playing them since I was 18, I have some Fenders and a few other basses but ESP is the company I am loyal to and play in the studio and live. I feel their products are superior, reliable and they provide great customer service. They have not let me down in 20 years so why switch.  

Marten Andersson3Skill is always a plus (laughter) but I think its part of a bigger question, and itís a tricky question. Why? Well, because so much can be created and fixed in the studio now-days. I recorded in situations where the producer goes: ĄOK play a verse, play the pre chorus and a Chorus, OK DONE!Ē I am like, what? He copies and paste them in (fly in the parts in the song) and bam itís done. I am definitely not use to work like that but with the technology moving so fast itís the way of the future.    

10. And the last question is about your musical dreams and plans. What are you planning for the future? What are you dreaming about? What should we wish for you?

We are currently finishing up the Lizzy Borden 30th Anniversary, we have played in places like South Korea, South America, U.S.A., Europe and Russia, itís been a crazy last couple of years and there are still many countries I would like to see and play in. I am still waiting for Blackmore or Schenker to call me (Laughing) some things havenít changed since I was 14 years old.

Music wise there as are still many bands and musicians I would like to play with. Some have already died, but since you asked me about my dreams. In other aspects of life I have the same daily issues as you do, we all do. I try to do my best in whatever I do. I hope we all can figure out a way to live on this planet in harmony, wishing people the opportunity to have a happy life without poverty and health issues. Yes it sounds like a Facebook post or meme.

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Labels: Bassists, Lizzy Borden, George Lynch, Hard Rock, Interviews, Marten Andersson, Marten F. Andersson