About me

I am originally a self-taught bass player. I used to play my father’s acoustic guitar like a bass, until I got my first bass. I have formed and joined many local bands in my teens such as Nássi Barbatão and M’as Foice. My first bass influences were John Deacon (Queen), Pete Trewavas (Marillion), Michael Steele (The Bangles), Derek Forbes (Simple Minds), Peter Hook (Joy Division), Mark King (Level 42) and Nuno Rebelo (Mler Ife Dada) ; but my first close bass teacher was my friend Sérgio Cardoso, who played bass originally on M’as Foice, and would later invite me to join the band.

A bit later on, two other new bands became my favourites and respective bass players – Steve Harris (Iron Maiden) and Chris Squire (Yes), being Chris and Yes Music, the turning point in my musical journey.

In the early 90’s I attended a jazz workshop with musicians of the Hot-Club de Portugal and I was introduced to the double-bass by Bernardo Moreira. Later I would attend the Conservatório de Música de Coimbra, where I would graduate in (classical) double-bass, in 2004.

In the meantime, I played in other musical projects in diverse styles of music, from metal to jazz, through classical orchestras, to rock. In 1999 I joined Caffeine, a band that reached some success, recorded two albums and opened in two occasions for Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.

With internet becoming more available, I began to perform my first bass covers of Chris Squire in audio format, and would post them at the alt-music-yes newsgroup, around the first years of this millennium. I have participated in “Cyberian Khatru – The Sounds of alt.music.yes”, a CD with songs of several musicians from the newsgroup. My song was “New Pictures”, an 8-string solo piece.

Shortly after YouTube arrived, my friend, cartoonist Milton Trajano, challenged me to make a cover video of a Yes song, as we both are big fans of Chris Squire. I accepted and I chose “On The Silent Wings of Freedom”.  That was the beginning of my “miguelbass” YouTube channel.

In my YouTube channel I also published some of my own songs, such as “Practice versus Perfect” and “For Chris”, a song dedicated to Chris Squire’s birthday and “VI – I saw”, an improvisation for the Fender VI.

My love for the Bulgarian traditional music also inspired me to do two arrangements of Bulgarian songs for bass instruments. In 2014 I would start taking gadulka (Bulgarian traditional fiddle) lessons in Sofia with Angel Dobrev. In 2015 I have participated in the Koprivshtica festival, with my teacher.

When Chris Squire announced his illness, in 2015, the idea for a collaboration video was discussed between internet friend Davin Flateau and myself.  “Play For Chris” has since then been a yearly celebration of Chris Squire’s life and music.

In 2019 I had the great privilege to play with Paul Gilbert at his “Masterclass” concert.

I teach bass in local academies and I also offer bass lessons online. I have been doing participation in varied styles of music, exploring the role of the bass and/or double bass in different contexts, especially free improvisation, with the project Basso3, and playing with guitarrist Marcelo dos Reis and bass clarinetist João Pedro Viegas. Recently, I have been also playing manouche (Gipsy Jazz) double bass, with my long-time collaborator and friend Nuno Marinho, and also gathered a local group, called Djangoland

In 2020 I began to attend the degree in Applied Musical Studies in the Polytechnic Institute of Coimbra (IPC/ESEC).

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