12 QUESTIONS WITH DERRICK ANDERSON

Can you give us a brief history of your playing career?
I’m from Toledo, Ohio and started playing bass at 15. Joined my first band at 17 with some high school friends and moved to Los Angeles in 1990. Within a few years, I began gigging with my band The Andersons! (with Robbie Rist on guitar) as a part of the burgeoning LA power pop scene. That led to playing on a pair of posthumous Pete Ham (Badfinger) releases, 7 Park Avenue and Golders Green, touring on bass with Dave Davies from The Kinks in the early aughts, filling in with The Smithereens, The Cowsills, playing and recording with Steve Barton (of Translator fame) and finally playing and recording with The Bangles from ’08 to the present. I also do the occasional gig with Matthew Sweet.

What inspired you to start playing?
AM radio of the late 60′s and 70′s, The Partridge Family and it was The Beatles pushed it over the top for me.

What was your first electric guitar?
A Harmony P Bass copy (although there was no brand name anywhere on it…the guy at the music store told my mom it was a Harmony!)

What are your top 5 favorite records?
Revolver (The Beatles)
Who’s Next (The Who)
Pet Sounds (The Beach Boys)
Especially For You (The Smithereens)
East Side Story (Squeeze)

What was the proudest moment and/or performance of your playing career?
Probably my first gig with Dave Davies, playing “You Really Got Me” for the first time and looking over and seeing “that guy” playing and singing that song! That ties with flying my folks out to LA when The Bangles played The Greek in ’09.

How did you hear about Reverend?
Actually, my “brother” Bill Anderson in The Andersons! (aka Wil O’Brien) had a Reverend guitar years ago and that was the first time I’d seen and heard one. I was in True Tone Music in LA a few months ago and they had just gotten The Decision in the store. I checked it out and that was it!

What Reverend guitar(s)/basses are you using?
The Decision Bass

What do you like about your Reverend guitar?
The rich tone that’s cutting, yet smooth at the same time, the great sustain and the fast maple/walnut neck. Love the unique retro styling and the light weight as well.

What amps and pedals do you currently use?
Gallien Krueger 800RB head, Hartke XL 1-15 & 2×10 cabinets and a Behringer BX 1200 bass amp that I keep in my trunk. I don’t normally use pedals, but I’ve been doing this sort of experimental/psychedelic project with Brian Kassan (who I played with in the band Chewy Marble). For that, I’ve been using the Bootzilla Snarling Dogs Bass Wah Wah, Boss Bass Overdrive, Digitech Digidelay and a Behringer Ultra Tremelo pedal.

Do you have any unusual hobbies, skills, or pastimes you’d like to share with us?
I do abstract photography and had my first gallery show a couple years ago. I also make a carrot cake from scratch that many say is the best they’ve ever had!

Do you have any advice for up and coming players?
Learn what you can by listening to the players you admire, try and develop your own style and play with people that are better than you are.

Please tell us about any of your current projects, tours, cds, etc. we should know about?
The most exciting news on the horizon is the new Bangles album, Sweetheart of the Sun drops on September 27th. Their first album in 7 years and I had a great time playing on it! We have an East Coast tour starting in October, followed by the West Coast in November. I’m also going to start work on my own album this fall and I look forward to tracking with my Decision bass