Leland Sklar: “Stratus” Playthrough and Discussion

When Leland Sklar kicked off his new Youtube series late last month, we shared the first one.

At the time, I hoped he would eventually get to “Stratus” from Billy Cobham’s Spectrum.

Well, good news. Two days ago, Lee did just that. At the beginning of the clip, he grooves along with the tune before telling the story behind it.

“There was no click in those days. Was only used in film. Billy did a press roll, a downbeat and we were off. Took a couple of beats to lock in for we had no count off,” he shared.

Back in 2013, Lee shared more about this tune in this “Stories Behind the Songs” feature as well:

“Those two days were so intense. It was almost like an out of body experience. I couldn’t even hear myself because I had a little Univox amp and it was set up right in front of Billy’s kit, which is basically like sitting with a bunny in front of a freight train. It was like you almost didn’t even know what you did until you went and listened to a playback.”

He even pulled out the same bass he used on the recording for this video!

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Share your thoughts

  1. Tom Sherman

    That right there. The best part of my day. And, yes, it is time to queue up Spectrum and play with more insight – ready for more joy. Thank you, sir Leland!

    • Klaus Werner

      Stratus, Red Baron, Billy and Lee. They made history those days.

  2. Wendell Simpson

    Sklar is an awesome player. I also enjoyed his work with James Taylor…