Interview with bassist Jason Cornwell of Eric Martin Band
Name: Jason Cornwell
Date of Birth: 07/20
Place of Birth: Stroud England
Favorite CD: Blizzard of Oz, By Ozzy, Randy Rhoads' involvement with Ozzy's first two albums that he followed the trend of having a solid axeman. Rhoads may not be as memorable a riffer as Tony Iommi, but his technical skill playing and soloing rooted in classical music is what sets him apart from the rest. The end result is not grinding and brooding, but rather, an upbeat and epic rock sound. Even the album's darker moments, such as Mr. Crowley and Revelation (Mother Earth), feature Rhoads' epic style. His solos and riffs alone on Crazy Train, Mr. Crowley, Goodbye to Romance, Suicide Solution, and Steal Away the Night is what designates his status as an all-time great and essential piece to Blizzard's puzzle for success.
Bass: I play Brubaker Basses. I play The Brute MJX series is available in 4- and 5-string versions. Each bass is built with an alder body, maple neck, and maple fretboard with 22 frets. They sport an MM/J pickup configuration with Brubaker’s 3200 series Dual Coil humbucker in the bridge position and a 3200 series single coil in the neck position. Electronics include a Brubaker 5200 Series two-band EQ with volume, blend, bass, and treble controls. It also has a coil tap switch for the MM pickup. I love these basses so much.
Favorite Musician: Bill Sheehan, Legendary bass player, played with Talas, MR Big, UFO, Steve Via, Winery Dogs and David Lee Roth.
Favorite band or group: Talas. Talas was a popular local band in Buffalo for over a decade, attaining a cult status which spread into the northeast US and into Canada. In 1978, Talas released their eponymous debut album, which generated the regional hit single, "See Saw". It was during this time that Sheehan wrote "Shy Boy" (later re-recorded with David Lee Roth), and the complex and frenetic "Addicted to that Rush" (later re-recorded with Mr Big).
As you describe yourself: Multi-faceted bass player, I'm a very out front player, I'm big into chording and controlled feedback, slap and multiple two handed techniques. I have been lucky to have studied with some bass legends. Currently endorsed by Brubaker Basses and Hartke amps.
Jason, how did you become a bassist?
I became a bassist due to a need for a bass played in my band back when I was in high school. From there I just began playing venues and clubs. I fell in love with the instrument.
Who were the bands or musicians who had the greatest influence on you?
As a small child I met Rudy Sarzo, he influenced me by not only being a great player but nice person. I would say both Rudy Sarzo and Bill Sheehan have been great influences. Both personal and technically.
Almost everyone has a song that is special, you would like to reveal what is your song special and why?
Songs can mean so much there is the technical aspect as well as the emotional. It's hard to find both. One of my favorites which have played quite a bit live is Daddy Brother Little Boy, by MR BIG. This is very challenging but has a great melody.
Up to this point in your career, what has been your most memorable moment?
Was opening for Heaven and Hell featuring Ronnie James Dio.
You've worked with so many great musicians over the years. Do you have a favorite?
I will tell you there are so many, but a huge thrill has been working and touring with Eric Martin, one of the best vocalist and hardest working guys in the industry.
What are your next projects?
My Band 3 Parts Dead will be part of the Red Gorilla event, at South by South West as one of the featured acts. I will also be doing tour dates Burning Heat the features Ethan Brosh, I also have some dates coming up with Scotty Dunbar and a kick ass new release with him and notorious drummer Izzy Rock. 3 Parts Dead also plans a new release on Demon Doll records and some huge tour dates, one in particular is Farm Rock, it's a 3 day festival with some legendary bands. It put on by Frederick Entertainment. Takes place Sep 04, 5 and 6, 2015.
To end the interview, a phrase you want to leave ....
Being a musician it's very difficult. First of all, you really have to want it. You've got to be willing to sacrifice just about everything in your life. And if you really believe in it, you've got a good chance of getting lucky and getting somewhere. That chance doesn't exist if you don't put your heart and soul into it and give it everything you've got. Remember if you don't try you will never get there. But most of all believe in yourself.