The Time I Met Marcus Miller

Marcus Miller, a world renowned bassist, has had a huge influence on most bass players all around the world in the last quarter of a century. Born in 1959, Marcus is a producer, composer and multi-instrumentalist who was classically trained on clarinet.

With incredible musical facility he has an extensive list of artists he has worked with, spending much time as a sideman and producer for Mile Davis, David Sanborn, Luther Vandross and Grover Washington Jr among others.

On a pleasant Monday evening in November 2010, Marcus Miller gave a clinic in Melbourne which I attended with some great mates of mine. As he walked out onto the stage, I must admit I did feel a little light headed, giddy if you will. I have been a huge fan of Marcus’s playing for such a long time and to see him in person was such a thrill.

He opened with some stories about Miles Davis. Talk about one degree of separation. I was listening to living modern jazz history first hand.

Marcus shared many insights that night as well as laying down some serious grooves. Afterwards, I got to meet him and he signed my copy of his book. Among other things I asked him about how he plays with a pickup cover on his bass. Just months before I had bought a Marcus Miller signature series Fender 5 string and I tried to play with it on but found it too limiting. He simply said that it was something he just got used to.

jeremy-with-marcus

Marcus is such a gentleman, a very spiritual man and was very generous spending his time with us. Once he had ‘left the building’ me and my buddies went and had a pizza hang. Among other things, we talked about how difficult it was going to be trying to get to sleep later that night with heads still buzzing.

after-marcus-pizza-hang-with-da-boyz

It was one of those days in your life you never forget. You know those ones right?

Marcus: On Sound, Music & Artistry

Meet the Author

Jeremy LaBrooy

Bassist, composer, teacher and producer from Melbourne, Australia.