The Fall

from by Ash On Dust

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Initially, "The Fall' was the beginning of a Solo Fretless Bass piece Jeff was working on. It was composed entirely from a deeply felt emotional state rather than an exploration of an explicit musical concept, riff or motif.

This kind of track is often difficult to complete if you don't finish it right away because re-connecting with that emotional state at some point in the future isn't easy. Sometimes, it feels like you'll never find your way back there.

And so it was with this.

We attempted to orchestrate that original solo version as an Ash On Dust track by adding layers of percussion, guitars, basses and sound design including some great arco upright bass parts from Steve.

Yet every layer we added just pushed the solitary somber vibe of the original piece further and further away.

After un-told hours trying to make "The Fall" work as an Ash On Dust track it was abandoned while work continued on other pieces.

Then, one weekend morning, perhaps because of tragic news, Jeff felt drawn to the piece again.

This time though, instead of yet another attempt to make the old bits work - everything was removed except one section of the main bass line played by Steve on upright bass.

Jeff treated that simple bass line as a completely new piece. The only parts that exist here from the original version are some of Steve's arco bass parts and a bit of Jeff's resonator bass part toward the end.

Everything else was created new, in that state that had been so elusive. It was then Jeff realized it wasn't about trying to re-connect with the old solo version and it's melody, but re-conneting with the way the emotional state compelled him to play. In that space, all new melodies and ideas emerged almost effortlessly.

The performance captured that morning expressed the desired emotion far better than the original solo version ever did. And it finally felt like an Ash On Dust track.

Perhaps one day Jeff will return to the original solo version that started it all, but for now, this piece is without question, the definitive version of the original intent of "The Fall"



from Ash On Dust - Vol 1, track released August 19, 2012

jeff schmidt: composition, performance: fretless bass, resonator bass, percussion, production.

steve uccello: composition, performance: upright bass




Ash On Dust California

collaboration between bassists/composers Jeff Schmidt & Steve Uccello

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