American Jazz Bassist, Jamaaladeen Tacuma discusses his musical journey

Joselyn Green, Reporter

Bakersfield College had a virtual music summit with the American jazz bassist, Jamaaladeen Tacuma on Dec. 2. Tacuma is a jazz bass player who grew up in Philadelphia.
“The visual is just as important as the audio,” Tacuma said throughout the meeting.
Tacuma explained that he would always think of dressing up and his image as well as the music. He said that all the other jazz musicians would try to dress the best they could as well.
Tacuma once went to see Miles Davis an American Jazz trumpeter, and after the concert.
“He looked me up from my feet up to my head and sort of gave me like a nod” Tacuma explained how that was cool to him.
“Dancing in your head” was the first record that Tacuma had with Ornette Coleman who is an American saxophonist. Tacuma said that record was recorded in Paris.
Throughout this virtual meeting, a video was played from YouTube by the title of “Jamaaladeen Tacuma’s Outsiders Improvised & Creative Music Festival 2019 highlights.”
“Since COVID-19 came about, I started doing something from the red-carpet room called the Covid clean sweep sessions” which was when he would communicate with other musicians.
Tacuma said that before he began playing bass, he was a singer. Tacuma also said growing up in Philadelphia they would always listen to all the singing groups which motivated him to play music. He would always see those types of things in Philadelphia at the place called Uptown Theatre.
According to Tacuma, he had the scholarship to go to Berkeley, but he did not want to because of his choice to be a musician. He mentioned that when he was 19, he had a very stylish fashion and had a gold guitar strap.
Tacuma mentioned Reggie Lucas who later told him how they would like to go on tour with Ornette as Tacuma did. Reggie was told that they needed a bass player. They asked Tacuma if he knew a bass player, and he said he knew a bass player by the name of Rudy McDaniel. Rudy Daniels was his name before he went by Jamaaladeen Tacuma.
When Tacuma met with Ornette and stayed for a rehearsal, Ornette asked if Tacuma would like to stay in New York for two weeks and they ended up in Europe for 6 months. Tacuma said that is when their record “Dancing in your head” was recorded.