I am a bassist with 27 years experience in performance and recording in various genres that range from rock (alternative, progressive, metal, and pop), country, Cajun & zydeco, blues and jazz. I have been involved in several recording projects over the years done in high end studios, artists' apartment, and in my own house. Come see what I can do!!
My love of music began in the 2nd grade when I started out on piano, taking weekly lessons, and nervously performing at annual recitals. Fast-forward two years later and I discovered the world of rock n' roll via Motley Crue and Nikki Sixx. Three years after that I started playing bass, rocking out to the "hair metal" genre of the day and performing with my band in high school. Later on, after digging into the music and playing of John Patitucci, Jaco Pastorius, Geddy Lee and Rush, John Myung and Dream Theater, Flea from Chili Peppers, and Paul S Denman of Sade my tastes and style shifted dramtically. Music was going to be my life. So I attended the UL of Lafayette School of Music from 1991 till 1995, but left before I graduated to get out on the road playing gigs with cover bands and recording. I did that until 2010 and became a husband, father, and I.T. professional, but continued to play occasional gigs over the years filling in for other bassists and playing with a few bands. The last two years I have been participating in another online session recording platform recording for other artists internationally out of my house. So far, I have not had one unhappy client, and I know I can do the same for you and your music. I'm all about style, taste, tone, and, most of all, GROOVE!! Brandon Trent is my name....and I am here to play some bass for you!!
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1 ReviewsEndorse Brandon Trent
I’ve been playing with this fabulous bassist for a few years with our band “Lafayette’s Bayou Boys”. Brandon is the most professional of pros out there. His musicianship and solid foundation is exactly want I need as a drummer. I love playing with my partner Brandon Trent! Hire this guy, I promise you will be glad you did.
Interview with Brandon Trent
Q: Tell us about a project you worked on you are especially proud of and why. What was your role?
A: In 2006 into 2007 I worked an hard rock project out of Lafayette, LA called "Raining In Paris" and the album was called "Lullabies Of For The Lovesick". I spent about 2 to 3 month period of going to the guitarist's apartment and recording that project out of his bedroom. He gave me complete freedom to do whatever I wanted from putting together parts, to my recording setup, and playing technique. I used an Ernie Ball Music Man Stingray 5-string, played with a pick, utilizing a Tech 21 Sansamp Bass Driver DI, and recording to two tracks (one for dirty and one clean tones to blend together). To this day it remains my number one representation of my recorded work (I am VERY proud of that project and how it turned out).
Q: Is there anyone on SoundBetter you know and would recommend to your clients?
A: I don't think they are on this platform yet (they may be ??), but I have a couple of super-talented musical partners/good friends of mine - a drummer and a guitarist. The drummer is named Brian Petry (gmsdrummer) and the guitarist is Justin Lewis (jjlw225). These guys are absolute masters at what they do and deliver nothing but supreme product!!
Q: Analog or digital and why?
A: I don't have a preference one way or the other. I've doing things nothing but digitally, but whatever the client needs. I will say that digital is a much easier media to work with and manage.
Q: What's your 'promise' to your clients?
A: I will not leave you hanging. What does that mean? Well, it means is that I will work on my tracks, my playing, for you until you are satisfied, however long that takes. My promise to you is that you will be completely satisfied with the product I deliver.
Q: What do you like most about your job?
A: Playing regular gig is cool because you get that real-time spontaneous interaction with your fellow musicians, and if you have decent enough players you just feel this magic inside of you. With recording, especially with recording out of my house, I am able to record for practically anybody anywhere in the world, and do it in a way that is completely comfortable, affordable, and easy. It's especially rewarding when you hear what you did when the work mastered and completed, and you have the client saying "this came out great, you did an awesome job".
Q: What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A: Pretty much all the stuff I've answered previously...."can you read or follow charts?", "can you improvise or stick to what's written?", or "can you get this to me by a certain date?". My answer is "yes" about 99% of the time.
Q: What's the biggest misconception about what you do?
A: Haven't had any misconceptions about me or what I do. When I say "I'm a bassist, I play bass parts" that usually says it all....so far, anyway. :o)
Q: What questions do you ask prospective clients?
A: 1. Where can I improvise and do you want me to play it exactly the way you have it written? 2. Do you prefer finger-style playing or with a pick? 3. Do you have any lead sheets or written parts you need me to follow? 4. How quickly do you need my tracks delivered?
Q: What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A: Just be as prepared as possible and know what you want from me. That just makes things go so much smoother and quicker if I have all the info without too much guesswork. Let me know where I can improvise or where I should stick to what's written or how you prefer something executed. Just be a decent communicator is all.
Q: What are you working on at the moment?
A: I am always trying to figure out how to improve my recording setup, understand my recording software, or my audio interface driver settings. These days, and maybe it's where I am at this stage in my musical life, I don't practice playing scales or technique too much. I practice more with working on or playing along with songs I am either playing at upcoming gigs or about to record (I feel pretty confident in my execution with playing my bass).
Q: If you were on a desert island and could take just 5 pieces of gear, what would they be?
A: At this time, my favorite basses right now are Yamaha TRBX605 5-string bass and my Spector NS-2A's. I love my Music Man basses, too, but the Yamaha and my Spectors I can cover ANY style. I also just added an Eden WTDI preamp to my recording setup and it's super-cool.
Q: What was your career path? How long have you been doing this?
A: I started playing bass when I was in high school at 15 and started playing in a little band a year later (we did it to get the girls to notice us, not for money). I went to school initially to earn a degree in music and be a more educated musician learning about and getting exposed to jazz and classical. At 23, I left school because I wanted to play music for a living and get out on the road to play gigs which lead to occasional opportunities to record with people. I did this until 2010 at which time I had earned a degree Information Technology and Networking, got a regular day job, and became a father. I went from full-time playing gigs to doing it very part-time, and then added recording for artists from all over the place out of my house utilizing the Internet and technology.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: From a hard rock perspective, I loved the playing of Mike Starr with Alice In Chains (his tone, his attack, and the lines he played). I also love Billy Sheehan's actual bass parts and sound (not just his soloing) when he's supporting the band and dUg Pinnick's playing and sound with King's X. Also, Eddie Jackson of Queensryche from that band's "Operation: Mind Crime" and "Empire" era; his playing and tone on those recordings were super impactful to me. When I go for smooth, sophisticated type playing I always try to think "how would Nathan East or Pino Palladino do this".
Q: Which artist would you like to work with and why?
A: I don't really have a preference for one particular artist over another; I have enjoyed working with every single musician/songwriter I have played with. I do prefer playing or working for people who are honest, good people, know exactly what they want, how to explain it, and they are just organized. So far, I haven't had to work for any "bad apples". If I had to pick a particular famous artist....because of the level of musicianship and level of players these artists have played with....I would love to see if I could handle and hang with the demands and needs of guys like Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Sting, or Carlos Santana.
Q: Can you share one music production tip?
A: From a bass player-point of view, I feel like you have to really make sure your gear is in tip-top shape. Make sure your strings aren't too old (unless you like that sound), keep your instrument in good playing condition (intonated and neck set up for comfortable playing), make sure your cables aren't causing any signal issues or adding unwanted noise, and watch out for the level of the signal your sending, plus, how much gain your using (you want a good strong signal, but you don't want it to sound distorted either). I always have several basses close by, too, so that I play the right one for a particular song. Also, I'm not afraid go between playing with a pick, fingers, or my thumb.
Q: What type of music do you usually work on?
A: Well, there's music that I listen to for enjoyment and then music I listen to for work (gigging and recording). I love it all, though. With that said, though, as a Christian I love praise & worship music, but I also love hard rock. As a working musician I also have to be familiar and authentic with many different styles of music. So, when I'm working on music, whatever style it is, I try to always make it feel right (like I belong to that style). If it's a reggae song, for example, I work on how my tone is for that genre (very deep and pillowy), how I touch the strings (be precise yet sensitive), and try lay it way back in the groove (make it sound like I'm "comfortably numb" with Bob Marley smiling).
Q: What's your strongest skill?
A: I'd like to think that I am good at understanding the needs of the song and can give you a quick turnaround from the time I receive your song till I deliver my tracks. I feel pretty good about establishing communication with my clients. If we're able to discuss things beforehand or while the project is happening I can adjust things pretty quickly when needed.
Q: What do you bring to a song?
A: Feel, groove, and, being from South Louisiana, "flavor". Like I said, I aim to make the songwriter/producer happy (at the end of listening to what lay I down, I want to make you smile from ear to ear).
Q: What's your typical work process?
A: A client will reach out to me (I've gotten a few referrals) and discuss their song and what it needs. Once we work out the details I'll get a copy of a rough mix without bass, I'll get the BPM, sometimes I'll get sheet music, and I'll basically start with learning the tune (which I can do pretty quick). I'll then pick out a bass that I think will work for the sound of the tune. I'll start recording some ideas, develop them up a bit, and get something that sounds good to me. Once that's done I'll send a demo back to client for review and if they like it, I'll send it to them. If not, I re-cut the whole thing or just punch in the spots that need fixing.
Q: Tell us about your studio setup.
A: I'm not into doing full-scale production. So, my setup is basically just to record my bass parts and send them on to my clients. With that said, I have a couple of 64-bit Windows based computers with Reaper Digital Audio Workstation software running (one is using a Roland Quad-Capture A.I. and the other uses a Behringer UMC202HD A.I.). I have a couple of preamp D.I.'s I like using: an Ampeg Classic and a SansAmp Bass Driver. My basses are pretty cool, too. I love Spector NS2 basses (I've got two), Music Man 5-strings (I've got three), I have a Yamaha 5-string that I can switch between passive and active electronics that sounds really nice, and lastly, an Ibanez SR305 with a Tone Monster preamp that is tuned down a half-step (used primarily if the song is in an unusual flat key).
Q: What other musicians or music production professionals inspire you?
A: My influences with the bass guitar are all over the place. It began for me with Motley Crue's Nikki Sixx, but for his rock n' roll look. I then got into Kiss's Gene Simmons because despite his theatrical presence, he played some really cool, melodic parts. Later on as my tastes evolved I got in Rush's Geddy Lee and Red Hot Chili Peppers's Flea; their playing was adventurous and always pushed the envelope. A few years later Dream Theater came on the scene and I was captivated by John Myung's progressive rock style, although, I can only pull off a handful of the things he plays, but it was inspiring. From there I went to college to major in music and I got into jazz bassists, like John Patitucci, Jaco Pastorius, Victor Wooten, Nathan East (with Four Play), and Paul S Denman (he's more smooth jazz/pop). Over the years other bassists' playing have come onto my radar, like dUG Pinnick of King's X, Rex Brown of Pantera, Mike Starr of Alice In Chains, and Billy Sheehan of Mr. Big. For a while I also studied the R&B styles of Donald "Duck" Dunn, James Jamerson, David Hood, and Jerry Jemmot. Sting's work with The Police and his solo albums were quite a lesson in simplicity and sofistication, too.
Q: Describe the most common type of work you do for your clients.
A: It's pretty simple, really: I am a bass player that plays BASS PARTS. My main goal is to make the track feel good, to groove, and to hopefully inspire the artist/songwriter and other players of the song. It may sound cliche to say, but I want to serve the song. To that end, I am given a song to either learn by ear, or given a chart (I can read), and I try to execute either my ideas or the artist's. Whether it's "fancy, clever melodic playing" or "nice and simple playing" that's needed, I have enough experience under my belt to do both.