When most hear the words ‘solo bassist’ they tend to think of instrumental music. That may be true in many cases but not so much for Virginia singer-songwriter and bassist Scott Varney.
Scott is unquestionably a unique voice in the world of bass guitar. Drawing technical influence from bass greats like Richard Bona and Victor Wooten and combining them influence from artists including Keller Williams and Bobby McFerrin who make looping a key part of building and performing their songs have helped to craft Scott’s unique sound. Paired with his soulful voice intelligent lyrics, Scott has paved a road in bass guitar that is truly his own.
Scott has performed live on 93.7 the Coast WKOC and on 106.1 The Bob FM WPYA both stationed out of Virginia. Scott has also had his songs aired quite frequently on the stations as well as NPR shows in Virginia.
Get to know a little bit more about Scott Varney in this edition of How I Play.
Where Are You Currently Located?
What Is Your Current Gig?
I have been performing since 2002 as a solo bassist singer songwriter who performs as a one man band using live looping to fill out the sound. Style is a blend of funk, folk and jazz.
What Is One Word That Describes Your Playing?
Describe Your Current Setup and What is Your Favorite Piece of Gear at the Moment?
Basses: 6 string Ibanez Prestige Sound gear that I have had since 98 and just recently dropped some Aguilar DCB Pickups and a Noll preamp which I absolutely love the combo. I also recently picked up a 5 string Sire fretless bass that is tuned EADGC.
Cabinet: The new Hartke 500W kb12.
Pedals: Boss RC300 Loop Station, Sans Amp Bass Driver, Electroharmonix Freeze Pedal, Electroharmonix Bass Balls, Electroharmonix Mini Qtron, Boss DD20 giga delay.
Other Misc: Korg Microkorg (too much fun and you can go way down a rabbit hole on that thing).
What is One Thing You Could Not Live Without?
My family! I’m a husband with an amazing wife who is so supportive of my music and father of 4 and not to mention my mother could totally be my manager. Nothing but support and inspiration all around.
What is Your Practice Space Like?
It varies. Again, I have 4 kids and my wife so I try to be mindful of others space but usually bedroom corner and other times the garage (one man garage band). We are in the process of a move and I keep mentioning the idea of a music room, so we’ll see.
What Album Are You Currently Listening To?
We Like It Here by Snarky Puppy.
What Book Are You Currently Reading?
I’d Love To See ____ Answer These Questions.
Scott Fernandez would totally be entertaining and I think Darren Michaels or Jared Lees would be great as well.
What’s The Best Piece of Advice You Ever Received?
Write everyday, anything, just make sure you write.
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Watch Scott perform ‘Some Will Say’:
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