Jazz bassist Gerald Veasley says the best advice he ever got from a fellow musician is, "Be patient. It will happen." As we hear from VOA's Doug Levine, patience is one of Veasley's greatest virtues, not to mention his top-notch skills on the bass guitar.
Once Gerald Veasley decided to become a musician at the age 12, it was just a matter of time before he would join his first R&B band, win a full academic scholarship to the University of Pennsylvania, work alongside famous jazz performers, and ultimately land his own recording contract.
Patience has indeed paid off for this 52-year-old Philadelphia, Pennsylvania native, whose years of refining his craft have produced one of his best-selling albums to date, Your Move.
The title song from Your Move is a play on another Gerald Veasley pastime; chess. He says playing music and playing chess are almost one in the same; both requiring a great degree of concentration and decision-making, with an acceptance of the consequences of each and every move.
As a session player, Veasley took advantage of each new opportunity, recording with hometown heroes McCoy Tyner, Teddy Pendergrass and Grover Washington, Jr. He's shared the stage with Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis, and was a seven-year member of the Joe Zawinul Syndicate.
Exclusive of Gerald Veasley's busy touring and recording schedule are two endeavors that can only be described as labors of love. One is his "Bass Bootcamp," an intensive hands-on training camp for aspiring bass players held every year during the Berks Jazz Festival; and the other is his ownership of a jazz nightclub in Reading, Pennsylvania.
Fans will appreciate Veasley's signature mix of smooth jazz and R&B on Your Move, with a nod to early-1970s funk on Sly And The Family Stone's "Thank You (Falettinme (Be Mice Elf Agin) [Thank You For Letting Me Be Myself Again]."