Spyro Gyra bassist talks about technique and being a luthier
Exclusive video interview with FBPO’s Jon Liebman
July 15, 2019
By David Sands
Usually when people say a bassist knows their instrument inside and out, it’s a metaphor. But with Scott Ambush, it’s literally true. While he’s probably best known for his mastery of melody, syncopated rhythms inspired by Larry Graham and longtime association with jazz fusion greats Spyro Gyra, Ambush is also a luthier; he makes all his instruments himself and also sells custom-made basses through his company Ambush Basses.
A native of Frederick, Maryland, Ambush participated in his high school’s jazz ensemble and played rock, funk, R&B, straight-ahead jazz and fusion in a variety of bands during his formative years. While studying psychology at the University of Maryland at College Park he soon became entrenched in the Washington D.C. music scene. Regular gigs with artists like Stanley Turrentine, Special EFX, Noel Pointer and Lonnie Liston Smith paved the way for him to join Spyro Gyra, who he’s played with since 1992. In addition to his work with Spyro Gyra, Ambush also leads his own band and has appeared on albums by artists like Omar Hakim, Ken Navarro, Deanna Bogart, Gumbi Ortiz and Tom Williams.
FBPO’s Jon Liebman spoke with Ambush at Gerald Veasley’s Bass BootCamp in Philadelphia during a lively interview that covered his recent work, his work as a luthier, thoughts on technique and plans for the future.
Watch our interview with Scott!
See Jon’s blog, with key takeaways from this interview, here.