MUDVAYNE Bassist: 'We Are A Piece Of Musical History Now'

Warwick recently conducted an interview with MUDVAYNE bassist Ryan Martinie. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Warwick: Can you name some of your bass influences as well as some bass players you admire for their playing and/or contribution to bass playing?

Ryan: It's always hard to name influences, I grab from absolutely everyone I hear, including somebody who plays the guitar or brass players or drummers. Your style is made up of everything you ever hear, even though your conscious mind might not remember that you heard it. It's amazing to think that our conscious and unconscious mind working together really makes up who we are as people. But in terms of bassists, I'm all about Steve Bailey right now, he put out record called "So Low" that's really beautiful and quite daring with some of the stuff he does on the fretless bass. He lives not far from here and he was kind enough to drop by for a chat and I got to make the master lunch! As far everyone I've heard, I like many of the legends that influence folks like Jaco, Geddy, Les Claypool, etc. But I try to sound like myself even though I draw from these influences. I think everyone should sound like themselves and explore as much music as they can, including less obvious stuff like the role of the bass in more recent pop music.

Warwick: How do you feel about MUDVAYNE's latest album, why did you make such a drastic change in your bass tone?

Ryan: I helped make the record, so I'm proud of it. As far as a change, we changed some of our gear for one thing which made a difference sonically. As well it was produced by us and Jeremy Parker, who hadn't done any of our other records. It wasn't a conscious choice, a lot of people don't realize in recording situations how difficult it is to find and make space, and things are often shaped like that. It's whether something works with anything else or not. I just try to find the best way to be heard and at the same time remain musical with those songs.

Warwick: There are lots of rumors of you having a side project. What musical direction will this be going in? Do you intend to share it soon with the world? Which musicians do you target to work with you?

Ryan: I'm not going to comment specifically on that, because nothing is really solidified in terms of who I'm working with. But yes, of course, I will share it with the world when the time comes and it's something relevant that I'm happy with. I'm always messing around with ideas but I don't necessarily record them. If they are important enough and strong enough ideas then I'll remember it, I'm not about forcing things. I don't like to have to make music. It's good to be able to let go of music after experiencing it. A melody can have an aspect to it that's like nature, has a life cycle, and it can come and go.

Warwick: What is your opinion on the direction that MUDVAYNE has taken since you guys first began, not just specifically your opinion on the last record.

Ryan: I think that what we did is valuable. It's become a cog in the wheel of music in some sort of way. We are a piece of musical history now. I'm not trying to sound pretentious when I say that, it's there whether I like it or not. I don't know that we had the foresight to look ahead, and see where the band would take us and what level we would reach. We were always just responding to our environment. I always saw the band to be important as an aspect of my life, as something that was supposed to take us places that are positive, and in that sense everything that happened with the band has happened for a reason.

Warwick: Concerning your relationship with your fans. Do you try to make yourself available to hang out a little and talk with them or do you find that you have to maintain a little distance from them for security reasons or possibly other reasons?

Ryan: Man, I always try to talk to everybody, unless I'm just burnt, but even in those times I try my hardest. Having said that, in general you shouldn't always expect musicians or performers to talk to you after the show, the performance is the show! You don't go to the movies and, "That was great. Now where's Tom Cruise?" But I usually just choose to go out and talk to everybody, I've always felt really safe around fans, even though there must be disgruntled people out there but generally people are very nice and sincerely want to meet me and talk with me.

Read the entire interview from Warwick.

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