Gospel and R&B bass legend wows with debut solo album
By David Sands
July 28, 2015
When it comes to gospel and R&B music, bassist Andrew Gouché has been a real force for good. Good playing, good grooves and good times for his many devoted fans!
During his more than 30 years of playing, the acclaimed musician, producer and composer has developed a unique voice that has wowed bass players around the globe and inspired some of the biggest names in the industry to rely on his talents. Over the last few decades, Gouché has put his skillful hands to work for gospel and R&B greats like the Winans, Prince and the New Power Generation, Michael Jackson and Gladys Knight. He’s also served as musical director for funk diva Chaka Khan and won a Grammy for his production work with Mary Mary.
This time around, however, he’s focused his considerable talents on creating a project of his own, a solo album called We Don’t Need No Bass. The name of this debut effort is a bit of an inside joke, referring to the traditional notion that a bass player’s sound ought to be handled by an organ within the confines of church music. It’s an outdated idea he’s spent his career disproving again and again.
While Gouché still sees himself as a church musician, he’s approached the album as a contemporary jazz project that draws on his gospel roots and experience with other genres. With that in mind, he’s put together We Don’t Need No Bass in the hopes of reaching music lovers of many different ages and genres.
“I created this project because, after years of supporting many wonderful artists on stage as well as on recordings, I realized that I have my own voice,” says Gouché. “God has given me the gift of music, and allowed me to create music that I believe will be a blessing to people all over the world.”
The bass player is supported in his new endeavor by a talented crew of musicians that includes saxophonist Marcus Anderson and organ player Phil Curry. Vocalists Fred Hammond and Jackie Gouché also lend their talents to the project.
We Don’t Need No Bass is something of a musical odyssey, featuring funky songs like “Jump Start” and “Geronimo” as well as more reflective pieces like “Secret Place,” Gouché’s take on a song first recorded by the gospel group Commissioned. The title track is a musical interlude that features the bassist reminiscing about his experiences playing in church. Also included is “Early In The Morning,” a tribute to his favorite bass player, the Gap Band’s Robert Wilson.
Gouché recently performed Roy Vogt’s 5th annual Thunder Row Bass Invitational in Nashville, which coincided with this summer’s NAMM show. FBPO’s Jon Liebman was in attendance and witnessed him playing selections from the new album, including a stunning take on the Beatles’ “Eleanor Rigby.” He reports that the audience was absolutely bowled over by the performance.
2. Secret Place (feat. Fred Hammond)
3. Jump Start
4. We Don’t Need No Bass
5. Eleanor Rigby
6. The Vamp
8. Way Back When
9. No Ways Tired
11. Early in the Morning
Title: We Don’t Need No Bass
Artist: Andrew Gouché
Release date: June 9, 2015
Label: Prayze Connection Entertainment
We Don't Need No Bass is available here
FBPO interview #1 with Andrew
FBPO interview #2 with Andrew
FBPO interview with Roy Vogt
Roy Vogt's Teach Me Bass Guitar instructional series (FBPO review)