The singing, humming, whistling, hollering, growling, storytelling bassist

double bass 1

During the past half-century many works have been written for vocalising double bassists. Lisa Mezzacappa delves into this highly creative phenomenon

At last summer’s BassEurope congress in Lucca, Italy, amid an embarrassment of bass riches, I was especially taken by a presentation by the young American bassist Cody Takács, ‘The Double Bass-Voice’, in which he gave an overview of the wide range of works written in the past fifty or so years for vocalising bass players, and outlined the considerable challenges of preparing those works for performance. The lecture made me curious about the origins and trajectory of this unique subgenre of bass repertoire, and I soon came to realise that this idea of ‘bass plus voice’ connects a diverse and thrilling set of musical practices across genres and generations.

Subscribe now to keep reading …

This article is available exclusively to subscribers – subscribe now

Already subscribed? Please sign in

Strad subscription

We’re delighted that you are enjoying our website. To access this content you need to be a subscriber.

As a subscriber you’ll receive:

  • Monthly issues* packed with news, interviews and features
  • Special supplements including Accessories, Degrees, Cremona and String Courses
  • A monthly digital edition and an archive of online issues going back to January 2010
  • Full access to all premium online content on thestrad.com
  • Two posters a year and the annual Strad Directory*

*To receive the posters, the Strad Directory and issues and supplements in print, you will need to take out a print + online package

 If you are not ready to subscribe, register now to enjoy a selection of free content (excludes premium subscriber-only articles)