Ernest Tibbs

Los Angeles native tells of the gigs with Gladys Knight, Allan Holdsworth and lots more in new video interview.

Exclusive video interview with FBPO’s Jon Liebman
January 11, 2016

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Ernest Tibbs is a renowned bassist, clinician and educator.  Growing up in a musical family, Ernest was exposed to many kinds of music, from pop and R&B to gospel and jazz.

At age 11, Ernest received his first bass as a gift from his grandmother.  Ernest’s father introduced the young boy to sounds of bass legends Ray Brown and Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, instilling in him the importance of playing a great walking bass line.  Ron Carter quickly became a major influence too.

By the time he entered high school, Tibbs became totally immersed in the bass, having discovered the likes of Chuck Rainey, Marcus Miller, Anthony Jackson and James Jamerson.  Other bass greats, including Larry Graham, Bunny Brunel, Jaco Pastorius, Stanley Clarke, John Patitucci, Alphonso Johnson, Will Lee, Rocco Prestia and Abraham Laboriel, eventually captured his attention as well.

After graduating from the Musicians Institute in Hollywood, where he studied privately with Gary Willis, Tibbs embarked on a successful career as a working bassist, covering a wide variety of musical genres.  To date, Tibbs has worked with a long list of high profile musical artists, including Phil Upchurch, Brian Auger, Natalie Cole, Simon Phillips, Dean Brown, Tom Scott, Dionne Warwick, Scott Henderson, Harvey Mason, James Ingram, Andy Summers, Eric Marienthal, Jeff Lorber, Gladys Knight, Lee Ritenour, Brian Bromberg, Ronnie Laws and many others, as well as symphony orchestras in San Francisco, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.

FBPO’s Jon Liebman caught up with Ernest at the 2015 gathering of Bass Player Live! in Hollywood.

Watch our interview with Ernest!

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