Featured Bass Student

Pedro Zappa

Pedro Zappa playing bass

“I'm from Póvoa de Varzim, Portugal. I'm the only musician in my family, but music was always playing in the house when I was a child. My biggest influences as bass players right now would be Paul McCartney, Pino Palladino, Nathan East, and Michael League. I'm also a songwriter/composer, both with my band (Stone Giant) and on my own ‘secret’ side project, Flabergast. My influences range from The Beatles and Queens of the Stone Age to Tame Impala and Snarky Puppy.”

“I started playing cello at the age of three, thanks to two of my friends from kindergarten. One day, they brought their cello and violin to play for us. I loved it and told my mom I wanted to play ‘the big one.’ So I did. A few years later, when I was 15, I picked up the electric bass on my own, using the knowledge I had from my classical studies. Eventually, in my last year of high school, I got to try an upright bass and I immediately realized it was the instrument I should be playing.”

“I ended up playing a lot of chamber music and was part of a few orchestras. That was going to be my life until I found Berklee. Here, I started leaning more towards the electric bass. Right now, the electric is my main axe! I trace back the beginning of my Berklee journey to the day I accepted to play this one gig for free! Don't underestimate a free gig. One of the members of the band I was invited to play with told me I should check out Berklee. He said it was the place for me to be. I looked it up and fell in love instantly; it was exactly what I was (unconsciously) looking for.”

“I came to Berklee because this is the only place I can think of where I was able to explore and study the music I always loved. What I look to get from my time at Berklee is the tools to be successful in music, and an understanding of music theory, my instrument, and the current state of the music industry. What I found most valuable during my time at Berklee is the richness of different people coming from different backgrounds. I learned as much from my peers as I learned from my teachers. It's really amazing!”

“After graduation in May (2015), I'll be touring with Stone Giant and the Frotations in the U.S. and South America. I love doing session work as a bass player and arranger, too. Finding the right bass line and overall arrangement for a song during a session is one of my favorite things to do. And hopefully, I'll keep my YouTube channel flowing with transcriptions as I've been doing for the past three years.”

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