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Lee Sklar

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by eric atkinson, Oct 1, 2002.

  1. eric atkinson

    eric atkinson "Is our children learning "Is our teachers teachin

    Feb 4, 2001
    Hey guys iam just wondering what this cat is up too these days? Who else did he work with besides james taylor? Ya gotta love his tones and just general bass attitude while playing! Hell nobody here probably even knows who iam talking about! This goes back a bit futher than incubas or jason newsted!
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    He gets a really great tone/sound on Billy Cobham's Stratus - but I've never heard him anything else - I would be interested in some recommendations as well - I've only seen him recently in photos promoting EA Cabs/Amps?
  3. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    He's on Vanessa Carlton's CD.
  4. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    Leland Sklar has played on a "bazillion" recordings. Most people have probably heard his playing and don't even know it.

    Here's a link to some Leland Sklar info:


    Be sure to click on the "click here for more" link at the bottom of the AMG Biography, and again at the bottom of Appears On, to see the massive list of his work. (There's probably more than what AMG has listed.)
  5. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Naw, I don't :D Personally, he bores me to tears.

    But I respect him because;

    - he has great instincts for and knowledge of playing patterns that just seem to fit
    - he has stood the test of time
    - he has great insights on playing

    But playing with someone like James Taylor just makes me want to take a nap. Just my taste, but he's too far "in the background" for me. The instrument stands on it's own merits/beauty today, not as some kind of accompaniment pushed off into the wallpaper like the old days.
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    He's certainly not in the background on Billy Cobham's "Spectrum" - the track "Stratus" has the loudest bass (highest in the mix) on any CD I've got - I play it when I want to annoy the neighbours!! ;)
  7. I love Lee's playing for the beautiful melodicism of and effortless flow of his lines. His playing is distinctive, yet "chameleon" to augment any session without overshadowing.

    I ran into him once at a NAMM show and thanked him for providing me with so many bass lines to steal. As you might expect, he was really down to earth and generous in sharing his thoughts.

    He's kinda going heavy on the endorsement thing, though. Lee playing Hofner?
  8. eric atkinson

    eric atkinson "Is our children learning "Is our teachers teachin

    Feb 4, 2001
    Wowi guess i didnt realize how many albums he has recorded! There must be some kind of world record!
  9. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    Yeah the first time I ever heard Cobham's "Spectrum" CD I started wondering who was playing the electric bass so I took a look and saw Sklar's name and was pretty shocked because up to that point I'd just thought of him as the James Taylor/country/adult contemporary kinda guy. Was this really Sklar pumping it out with Cobham? It is indeed. He plays on all the tracks of that album except for the two in which Ron Carter plays upright bass.

    Great album that I wish had better production. It's hard for me to listen to that album if I put it in after a more modern fuller sounding album because it just sounds thin production-wise. Then again it was 1973. Spectrum's definitely worth purchasing though.

    brad cook
  10. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX

    brad cook
  11. Yogi Bear

    Yogi Bear

    Aug 14, 2000
    Before Nathan East took over Lee Sklar played on many of the earlier Phil Collins recordings.
  12. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999
    Couple comments from what I've read in a past life-

    Regarding Cobham's Spectrum
    ...Will Lee was supposed to be the bassist on that Fusion classic. Lee was already gigging with Cobham(in Dreams, I think?).
    Anyway, at that time, Lee was playing a modified P-bass...the thing had about 8 pickups(?). ;)
    In interviews, Lee admits his tone wasn't really happenin'. So, Lee's in the studio & hears what sounds like the stuff he's been rehearsing with Cobham...that's how he found out about Sklar taking his gig on Spectrum.

    Ever notice Sklar's P-bass? The split pickup is reversed...the "D" & "G" coil is closer to the neck, the "E" & "A" coil is closer to the bridge.

    In a Sklar inteview I've read-
    He lamented(sorta) that most assumed he was a Folk bassist('cause of his affiliation with James Taylor, Jackson Browne, et al)...really, he was a Fusioneer & most didn't take advantage of that.

    Also, one of Sklar's practice thingees when he was coming up-
    Play a 33 1/3 rpm LP @45 rpm...I think Sklar mentioned practicing "I Saw Her Standing There" like that. Try to keep up with that tempo...eventually, when you go back to the original tempo, you'll have, like, a 1/2 hour between notes. ;)
  13. silvermaneZ


    Oct 10, 2000
    Houston, TX
    I just recently bought the new Lea Ann Womack CD, and Lee played all the bass on the record. All of the bass lines are wonderfully simplistic. I think it is a great study in playing just enough to make the song work.

  14. I saw him with JT, and I tell ya, he was a mofo. He played some wicked solos, and used all fingers on his right hand, a la Abe Laboriel. To anyone who thinks he's just a folkie, dig a bit deeper.
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    It's never sounded "thin" to me :confused: - have you got a re-mastered CD? It is probably the bassiest CD I own and the combination of Sklar's really bottomy P-bass and Cobham's thunderous drums (on the electric tracks) really moves some air on my speakers!! ;)
  16. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX

    Oh ok!! I actually meant to ask in that post if there is a remastered version of this. According to what you wrote I most surely don't have the remastered CD! I gotta get that!! Thanks for posting that bit of info. The other day I put that CD in after listening to Marcus Miller's M2 and sheesh...it was so thin comparatively it almost hurt.

    brad cook
  17. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    Checked the CD when I was out in the car and it is the Atlantic/Atco Remastered version. Guess it's remastered after all and it still sounds thin to me compared to modern releases. Like I said though I realize it was recorded in '73 so I would expect that it wouldn't sound as full as modern albums.

    brad cook
  18. rustyshakelford


    Jul 9, 2002
    ... but Texas wants you anyway.

    After he left JT, he played a lot for Lyle Lovett (and his very large band).

    In Texas, the radio alternately plays Lyle Lovett and Willie Nelson. Some of the more recent live Lyle recordings have an upright, so perhaps he has again moved on.

    On an interesting side note, my employer hired Lyle Lovett to play our anniversary party (seven fat years). Lee Sklar was then playing with him (mid-2000); Lee Sklar played at the company party!

    People roamed the convention floor with face paint and cotton candy, sang along with Lyle, stopped in front of the stage and gave Lee Skalr the once over. Little did they know he was a bass monster. They all thought he was going for the ZZ Top vibe!

  19. DigMe


    Aug 10, 2002
    Waco, TX
    Hmmm...I think it might be an on and off thing because he definitely wasn't playing bass for Lyle when I saw them in The Woodlands in maybe 98 or so...not sure about the year.

    That's awesome man! My former company hired what's left of the Beach Boys for our company party...it was sad.

    I would have been chattin' up Sklar if I saw him just hangin' around. What a great opportunity to learn a few things or hear some good stories.

    Where do you live?

    brad cook
  20. rustyshakelford


    Jul 9, 2002
    I live in Austin.

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