Hannah Dexter has been playing bass for 8 years, studying electric with Alphonso Johnson (Weather Report, Santana), jazz upright with Rodney Whitaker (Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra), and classical with Peter Rofe’ (Los Angeles Philharmonic).
Music was always being performed in her house growing up, as her dad is proficient at Middle Eastern hand drums. From the moment she could hold a doumbek, he was teaching her poly-rhythmic patterns and taking her to local drum circles. She bounced around on viola, piano, marimba, guitar, hand drums, and bass for the rest of her adolescence.
In her sophomore year of high school, she was accepted into the Portland Youth Philharmonic as the Assistant Principal Upright Bass. She played and toured with the group for two years, studying and performing complicated classical works by Mahler, Bruckner, Beethoven, Dvořák, Tchaikovsky, Mozart, and countless others, while maintaining a strict solo bass repertoire and working part-time at Pete’s Bass Shop to save for her very own upright.
She didn’t start playing electric bass until 2010 when she made the transition to jazz and funk music. She was selected to join the highly competitive American Music Program/Pacific Crest Jazz Orchestra under Grammy winner, Thara Memory. Along with the experience and discipline of this band, she was taught and adopted Memory’s mantra, “You can’t keep it unless you give it away.
She has shared the stage with Esperanza Spalding, Wes Anderson, Terell Stafford, Curtis Salgado, the Oregon Symphony, Obo Addy, Malcolm Goldstein, Vinny Golia, Tommy Faragher, and many others. She is currently studying at the California Institute of the Arts on a music scholarship and playing around Los Angeles with Man and The Smells and The Ruckus Family Family Band.