Canadian Musician


Jason Raso

The Incomparable Rhonda Smith

rhonda smith

One of the goals of “Jay Walking” is to feature prominent Canadian bass players. This week I put 4 questions to the incomparable Rhonda Smith. Rhonda may best be known for her playing with Prince and Jeff Beck, but she is also a gifted singer and solo artist. I first heard Rhonda live in 1997 with Prince and was blown away by her playing. She truly is one of the greats! “Man In A Uniform” and “The One” by Prince are two of my favourite Rhonda performances.

JR: When did you start playing bass and who were your early influences?

RS: I started playing bass when i was 12 or 13.  My brother brought it home one day and told me not to touch it:-)  I was influenced then by more rock n’ roll groups/bassists.  Rush, Yes, Led Zeppelin, Hendrix….but soon got into Stanley Clarke, Uzeb, Jaco, Ray Brown, Mingus…etc

JR: At what point do you feel you came into your own as a bass player?

RS: I’m constantly striving to be a better player, so i’m not sure if i’m comfortable saying that…  I do love the moment when the bass and drums lock and the bass sounds great and powerful….

JR: Which non-bass player has had the biggest impact on your playing?

RS: I’d probably say guitar players in general.  I like to study with guitar players and see how they look at their fretboard and positions and apply it to bass.
JR: What is something you enjoy doing away from music?
RS:  I love to cook and i research stocks and day trade often.

One Response to “The Incomparable Rhonda Smith”

  1. Mike Says:

    Rhonda Smith is Canadian? I had no idea. And into Rush – man, revelations aplenty in this short interview!

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