Steve Uccello‘s latest release is Fire Times, an album on which he shares low end duties with UK solo bassist Steve Lawson. The group, dubbed Clarified Birds, is rounded out by drummer Mike Shannon and multi-instrumentalist and singer Dayan Kai.
Fire Times came about after Uccello started thinking of arranging for a single tune he wrote.
“I had this piece I was composing on the piano for like a year,” he explains. “When it was more or less done I thought, ‘what instruments should be playing all these different parts… and which players?’ Since I do a lot of new bass ensemble music, I tried the melody on a few of my different basses. When I picked up my fretless electric it seemed to click, and when I think of killer fretless tone Steve Lawson always comes to mind. Also I realized the melody and composition really fit his style and voice. I knew that if he played the melody and soloed over the song, it would just fit perfectly. After a run through in the studio as we were getting ready to record it, it seemed my instinct were right on, Steve’s whole approach and his “voice” as a player complimented the piece in every way. And drummer Mike Shannon also just fit right in and put down exactly what the music called for. After that initial session, more music surfaced and I brought in my longtime friend and musical collaborator/mentor, the multi-instrumentalist, singer-composer Dayan Kai.”
While Lawson utilizes his 6-string fretless for the album, Uccello debuted his new 6-string reso-contrabass-guitar made for him by Paul Beard. He also plays an upright throughout the album that’s fitted with a custom onboard pickup system designed and installed by Rick Turner.
Fire Times is available on Bandcamp on a “name your price” basis, as well as direct streaming. Half of the proceeds will go to The Food Bank Of Monterey County, a charity near Uccello in Monterey that is dedicated to feeding the hungry.
Listen and download Fire Times:
Fire Times Track List:
- Mysterious Barrier
- Magpie Bridge
- Vermillion Sand
- Celestial Circuit
- Laying the Foundations