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Terrence Richburg

     A native Washingtonian talent renowned for his God given musicianship, from an early age Terrence Richburg has amazed audiences with his adaptable, authenticated style and "smooth" delivery. He has performed throughout the country and is characterized by his peers as "The Quincy Jones of gospel," "a musician's musician," and "a producer's producer." Although he's played with such artists as Richard Smallwood & Vision , Maurette Brown Clark , Vanessa R. Williams , Marcus Johnson, Alyson Williams, Cee Cee Michaela, Yolanda Adams, Aretha Franklin, The Winans, Jennifer Holliday, Tramaine Hawkins, Walter Hawkins, Isaiah Thomas, James Cleveland, Shirley Caesar , and many others, he proclaims accepting Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior is his most significant life accomplishment.

     Son of former Atlantic recording artist Wilhelmina and John Richburg, known as The Richburg Singers, and nephew of the late jazz singer Ronnie Wells, Terrence Richburg is a prolific composer, lyricist, writer, poet, vocalist, arranger, orchestrator, producer, director, pianist, keyboardist, electric and acoustic guitarist, percussionist, 4/5/6/7-string bassist, recording engineer and the list goes on. He's written, produced, and performed music soundtracks for several aerobics videos, theme songs and music beds for local radio stations and jingles for major corporations, including D.C.'s WYCB and Heaven 1580, as well as Marriott. He's also been called on as a Musician/Musical Director for theater and musical productions including "Lord I'm Coming Home," "Dream Girls," "The Wiz," "Ain't Misbehavin!" "Wait 'Til the Fat Lady Sings," "God's Trombones," and "City at Peace," along with other events such as the Washington Performing Arts, music award shows, AIDS and Cancer fundraisers, benefits for "Katrina" and "Tsunami" victims, and many other prestigious events.

     On the horizon, Richburg has much to look forward to. He is the Executive Producer, Production Team Supervisor, Producer, Lead/Rhythm/Acoustic Guitarist, Percussionist, and Vocal Arranger/Arrangements Consultant on the new Praise and Worship CD by Minister Terrell Hunt entitled "Awesome", which released on the RichEscape Music label in summer 2007. Fans will also be able to catch Richburg as piano soloist and 7-string bassist on the double-CD entitled "My All" planned for release on the RichEscape Music label also in 2008. Inspirational duo R&R , consisting of Terrence and musical partner Howard Riley, Jr. , are planning their sophomore CD release entitled "Completion" also on the RichEscape Music label in 2008. A new R&R Christmas CD is planned to hit store shelves in late fall of 2008. Also, in 2008, Richburg will be starting a new e-zine called "Jazz Gospel Central" which will be a resource for Christian musicians with expertise in jazz as well as gospel jazz musicians. In addition, he serves as Minister/Director of Music and musician at the Bethesda Baptist Church of Washington, D.C.


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Terrence Richburg’s Conklin Experience

How did you find out about Conklin Basses?

     I first saw a Conklin bass when I viewed a clip from a video of Bill Dickens playing one.  But as good as it was, I still considered that somewhat second-hand knowledge.  I found out more about Conklin basses from a personal, hands-on perspective when I was invited to a show at Blues Alley in Washington DC in which a drummer friend of mine Eric Valentine was playing for Jean Carne.  When I walked in, to my amazement, another friend of mine, Avon Lucas was playing bass.  I knew Avon from way back when we played together in a jazz fusion trio “Riches” with me on drums and my brother, Dehrric on keys.  Avon was already a monster bass player then so I could only imagine how much more he had developed over the years.  When I saw Avon’s bass rig, it was full of lights, lit up like a Christmas tree—a whole other show in and of itself, but when I saw the bass he was playing, I knew it was something I had never experienced before.  The bass shined like a brand new piece of fine furniture created by a master builder.  It had a deep, rich golden honey-orange brown wooden finish, beautifully crafted and was only accentuated with the gold hardware—and only eclipsed by the sound which was purely incredible.  I started counting and noticed that he had a seventh string, where I was only playing a 6-String at the time.  From that point, I couldn’t wait until the end of the first show to catch Avon on break and find out what in the world he was playing.  When I approached the stage, it was like old times seeing Avon again, who had not changed a bit.  But what was really surprising was that he immediately wanted me to try out his Conklin 7-String; so I did.  It was a little strange at first, but the action and sound and tone completely floored me.  Then as if that wasn’t enough, Avon told me that he was going to be selling it soon and offered me first crack at buying it. You have to understand the gravity of this situation in that this was all totally unexpected, for me seeing him, and for me being in that place at that time to be offered this bass.  Well, needless to say I jumped at the chance to buy it.  Over time I got really comfortable with it and have been playing my Conklin ever since.  Looking back at that experience now, I would have to say that it was both God-ordained destiny and a career defining moment for me—since now playing a Conklin 7-String is what I’ve become most known for. 

Your experience while working with Conklin:

     I believe Conklin is one of the finest and most amazing bass instrument producing companies on the planet in terms of how they craft their instruments to specs and in the way their basses consistently perform without problems.  Their basses also wear well with age and sound even better the older they get—probably a “wood” aging thing.  I also especially like the fact that Bill Conklin is not only reachable and approachable, but he proactively takes the time to personally correspond and talk with me not only as an artist but also as a client to ensure I’m happy as a Conklin owner and performer. Conklin really works hard to form partnerships to provide other opportunities for mutual success with players like me that enjoy the products they make.  This has been great for me and I expect great for them each time someone sees me playing my Conklin and then goes seeking to purchase one of their own.

How you have enjoyed the bass since you got it:

     Besides being a great looking and sounding bass, my 7-String has the most clarity and flexibility of any bass I’ve ever owned in terms of facilitating my ability to play any style of music comfortably.  It allows me to dial up any of its crystal clear tones and pump them out at the right time with quality sound legitimacy for the appropriate musical style.  I also believe that the model I have is a totally unique instrument—even different from all the others made before and after and one I would never sell nor trade, ever.  Conklin goes a long way in defining my personal sound as a bass player, musician and an artist.