Horse Sense: Billy Talbot on Energy, Emotion, and Free Expression with Neil Young | Bassplayer
A great interview with Crazy Horse's Billy Talbot in Bassplayer "Horse Sense: Billy Talbot on Energy, Emotion, and Free Expression with Neil Young" By JIMMY LESLIE:
Bassplayer: What is at the heart of your bass style, and how do youMore of interview with Crazy Horse's Billy Talbot in Bassplayer "Horse Sense: Billy Talbot on Energy, Emotion, and Free Expression with Neil Young".
apply it to Crazy Horse?
Billy Talbot: My bass style is simply to keep the feel flowing. I don’t like to make up things, per se. I like to let elements beyond playing the changes and the groove come to me within the feel as the song progresses.
We don’t play R&B songs built on dominant bass lines; our songs are all about the lyrics or the sincere expressiveness of Neil’s lead guitar, so mostly my job is to play a lot of root notes with the main feel, and stay that way for however long is required with energy. Capturing that magic is really important to Crazy Horse, so we like to record a new song the first time we perform it.
Bassplayer: Can you cite an example from Psychedelic Pill?
Billy Talbot: “Driftin’ Back” was the first real jam we’d played together in eight years. It’s mostly Asus2 to Em for nearly a half an hour. You’ll hear us expound on the feel in different ways during long instrumental sections. The important thing is when Neil starts singing again the song isn’t in a completely different place.
Bassplayer: How much direction does Neil offer?
Billy Talbot: He might offer suggestions, but Neil never tells anybody what to play, and neither do I. When you
start telling someone what to do, you lose a dimension of that person. You’re not letting them breathe,
so they’re not going to bring all of whatever they’ve got to your song. The key is getting the right people.
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