The Real World: Brad Bailey

Occupation Creative arts pastor
By BassPlayer ,

Occupation Creative arts pastor

Gigs Solo & backing various jazz vocalists, church (yes, I play 8-string at church!), Mr. Nigel & Friends (kid’s music)

Basses Custom 8-string banjo (three bass strings, five banjo strings)

Rig Phil Jones Flightcase BG-150

Effects EBS Multicomp, L.R. Baggs Para DI

Strings La Bella L760N (bass side); D’Addario EXL115 (banjo side)

Heroes & Inspiration Edgar Meyer, Tim Lefebvre, Victor Wooten, Mike Bitts

How did you come to play bass? Principally a guitarist, I always volunteered to fill the bass gap in bands. I quickly fell in love with the gentle but undeniable influence that a bassist has over the music. I eventually merged my love for guitar, bass, and banjo by building my 8-string.

What’s a lesson you’ve learned along the way? Very few members of an audience can process that hip tritone substitution, but they all can feel the rhythm and heart that comes from the stage. Music is less about what I do, and more about how I share my soul with others.

What are your musical goals? To feed my kids by making music; I don’t need to be famous, just busy and happy.


Want to introduce yourself? Find submission guidelines at Get selected for The Real World and receive a set of D’Addario EXL170 bass strings and a T-shirt. All those who submit will receive D’Addario’s FretBuzz newsletter.