Make It So
The main bass line was inspired by the playing of Percy Jones, the bassist from the progressive fusion band Brand X.
On Cloud Ten
I had originally planned to have Karen Kuser sing on this tune. I gave her a copy of the song to work on and she came up with a melody, but no lyrics. This is the melody that you hear being played on bass and guitar.
The Unexpected Answer
I wanted to write a piece where the bass functions like a guitar. The chordal part was finger picked on an Ibanez six-string bass in a way that is similar to what a classical guitarist might play. The bass solo was played using hammer-ons in a legato fashion similar to the style of guitarist Allan Holdsworth.
The Heart Of The Matter
This is a fusion piece that features an extended chord melody part played on guitar. I like the way that strait ahead jazz players mix melodies with chords. I wanted to try something like this in a fusion context. There is also an extended bass solo in the middle.
This piece is from Bach’s cello suite played on a Ken Smith 5 string bass. Bach music is very important to me. It is one of the few examples of musical perfection.
I wrote this song many years ago. Originally, it was a fusion piece, but I later also performed it in jazz and latin styles. It seems to work in just about any format. For the recording, I decided on a Cuban like arrangement. This recording was also my “debut” as a conga player.
The contrapuntal bass part on this piece was performed without overdubs. I played the lower part with my right hand thumb and the harmonics with my other fingers. Chris Garcia played the wonderful Indian percussion parts.
Driving Through Krystal Town
The bass part on this piece was inspired by Tower of Power’s bassist Francis Rocco Prestia. I’ve always like his driving, percolating style and thought that it might work in a fusion context.
This is a latin tinged piece that features a melody played on a Rob Allen fretless bass.
Journey To The Centre Of The Earth
This piece was an experiment for me. I wanted to create a bass guitar sonic collage. Everything on this piece was done on an electric bass. The opening lava like sounds were created with a Line 6 Bass Pod. The mysterious deep glissandos that follow were created using a MTD fretless bass, a volume pedal, echo, and reverb.
Some of the sections were inspired by the sounds produced by the various effects units I was using at the time.
A Bird In The Hand/Mosaic
At the beginning of this piece, a snippet of a live Charlie Parker sax solo morphs into a bebop bass solo based over the chords to Ornithology. This then morphs into a progressive heavy metal bebop line. I think Charlie Parker is one of the greatest musical geniuses that has ever lived. I thought it might be interesting to mix his style with something completely different and see what happens.
Once Upon A Dream
The original title for this piece was “Low End Lullaby.” I wanted to spotlight the melodic capabilities of the electric bass and thought that a lullaby would be an interesting way of doing it.