Bryan Bellar

Monday / November 26, 2007 / 6:00 pm
David Friend Recital Hall
921 Boylston Street
Boston
MA
United States
02115

The unifying core of Bryan Beller’s triple-threat talent lies in his mastery of the bass guitar. Degreed in 1993 by Berklee College of Music at 22, he immediately landed a gig with Dweezil and Ahmet Zappa’s tweaked rock project Z. Also in that band was one Mike Keneally, a true Frank Zappa band alumnus and freakishly talented guitarist/composer. In a lasting gesture of solidarity with his avant-garde pop/rock/fusion musical vision, Beller left Z when Keneally did in 1996. Over 10 years, seven albums, and countless tours later, their musical partnership continues to this day, strong as ever. Highlights include the Mike Keneally Band’s performance at the North Sea Jazz Festival in 2002, their acoustic duo work as clinicians for Taylor Guitars, and a 2005 performance of Keneally’s composition "The Universe Will Provide" along with Holland’s prestigious Metropol Orchestra. Keneally’s 2006 release, Guitar Therapy Live, is the musical culmination of his and Beller’s shared live experience.

During his 13 years in Los Angeles, Beller acquired a reputation as a uniquely talented yet supremely tasteful hired gun bassist for adventurous rock guitarists and singer/songwriters alike, touring and recording for Wayne Kramer (ex-MC5 guitarist) and indie singer-songwriter Janet Robin (Lindsay Buckingham) among many others. Now, after relocating to Nashville in early 2006, he’s played everything from country (with up-and-comer Kyle Wyley and others) to r&b (with artist and session singer Kira Small) and everything in between, and is actively soaking up the new surroundings and rich musical influences while remaining true to who he is.

Beller’s other main creative outlet is writing, and he serves currently as a contributing editor for Bass Player magazine. His cover story on Tool’s Justin Chancellor ran in the July 2007 issue, and he’s interviewed a long list of bass luminaries—Neil Stubenhaus, Oteil Burbridge, Michael Rhodes, Edgar Meyer, Jonas Hellborg, John Patitucci, Lee Sklar, Dave LaRue, Adam Nitti, and more—for his advanced master class column. Additional interviews include Billy Sheehan (Mr. Big, David Lee Roth), guitarist Jon Butcher, and film scorer W.G. “Snuffy” Walden (The West Wing, thirtysomething). Beller’s work has run in seven different publications to date.

Always seeking new challenges, Beller continues to work as a freelance bassist; a master class clinician for Mike Lull Custom Guitars, SWR Amplification and D’Addario Strings; and a freelance writer, and is working up material for an eventual second solo release. He remains open to whatever life has in store, both musically and otherwise.