Wendy Phua

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About Wendy Phua

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Breaking conventions is what one can always expect from Wendy Phua, Singapore’s leading female bassist.

Best known for her deft finger-tapping and melodious harmonic playing, Wendy has been working the music circuit since the mid-90’s, honing her craft as a bassist and composer. She founded award-winning progressive-rock band ZHEN in early 2000, and it was during this time that she began developing experimental ideas on the bass using multi-effect pedals to expand sonic possibilities. “Coming from a classical piano background, it became natural for me tap out chords on the bass like keyboard!”

In 2008, she embarked on a solo bass career and released Singapore’s first and only bass solo EP “Between Here And Then” which featured her original compositions in a range of styles from classical to new age. The EP went on to garner rave reviews in the esteemed Bass Frontiers Magazine and Czech publication Muzikus, with CD sales reaching as far as America and Japan. Wendy was later signed on in the same year by Yamaha (Singapore) as its first female bass endorser, and has since been actively holding numerous bass clinics for Yamaha. She also endorses Klotz Cables.

She has appeared on radio interviews for NewsRadio 93.8 FM, Lush 99.5FM and Redifussion, and most recently in a Channel News Asia Primetime Morning interview.

Not one to rest on her laurels, Wendy again chartered new grounds when she began including the rare art of live looping, and bowing on the electric bass in her performances - a technique often used only on the upright acoustic bass. In the true spirit of innovation, most recently Wendy has also begun live-looping and multi-track recording on the iPhone with the bass.

To date, Wendy has sessioned for a diverse roster of artists including Jamaican Reggae superstar Shaggy, cross-over Opera chanteuse Emma Shapplin and rock guitarist Riki Hendrix, and performed at high-profile events like 2002 MTV Asia Awards, 2003/2004 ESPNStar Sports X-Games Asia, 2005 Baybeats and 2010 Singapore Wine & Jazz Festival.

Applying unorthodox instrumental techniques and a dash of wild optimistic bravery in her music, Wendy presents a prowess on the electric bass that is both startling and mesmerizing.

Wendy Phua joined the JazzTimes community on Jul 23, 2010