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Kinga Glyk: "The hardest thing to do onstage is to stop playing - we play because we are afraid of silence, but silence is part of the music"

Kinga Glyk
(Image credit: Kinga Glyk)

When I was a toddler, I would listen to the radio, pretending to be a bass player. I never knew why this instrument in particular fascinated me so much - I guess I was always drawn to low notes. My dad brought home a mini Fender bass for me when I was 10 years old. 

He couldn’t get his head around his daughter wanting to play such a ‘masculine’ instrument, but he was very supportive and always encouraged me in my musical journey. 

When I was 10 or 11 years old, I was playing in our family band: my dad on the vibraphone, my brother on the drums, me on the bass. We played together a few years and released the album Glyk Pik Trio, doing a lot of concerts in clubs, and sometimes on bigger stages.

I’ve experienced both amazing and difficult situations, but I’ve learned a lot. One time we played a concert for a single person, but it was still great to be a part of it. My dad always told me to be 100 percent involved in what I play, no matter whether there are 5,000 people or one person in the room.

When I was 18 I started to lead my own band: I’ve released three albums and the fourth is coming out soon. The sound of one bass I have is just perfect and totally clear, no matter where I am. I’m not sure I could say this is my favorite one, because I only use this instrument sometimes but the sound always touches my heart. I bought this bass by accident. Once we went to my my dad’s friend to buy a Fender Precision bass.

Have fun, because playing music should give us joy, not stress

When we entered his house I saw maybe four or five different basses. I got to try the Precision because that was the reason we visited this man, but after a short conversation he let me try a burgundy Greco SG bass - and that’s the one I have today.

It’s hard to name all of my bass heroes, but I would mention Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, Jaco Pastorius, Pino Palladino, Marcus Miller, Victor Bailey, Christian McBride, Avishai Cohen and Tal Wilkenfeld.

(Image credit: Future)

My musical heroes are not only bass players - I’m inspired by many, many other artists. Listening to different kinds of music and many musicians gives me freedom and does not close my mind to a single way of thinking. Always be yourself. Never try to be someone else. If you play, play as well as you can, but you don’t have to prove to anyone that you can do more than you can.

Have fun, because playing music should give us joy, not stress. I’m still working on a healthy approach to the music. In music it’s very important to put your heart into what you play. 

For me, music is a language which allows me to express more than words. When I play I always try to think what I’m playing about. I try to find beautiful melodies. 

The hardest thing to do on the stage is to stop playing - sometimes we play because we are afraid of silence, but silence is also a part of the music.