Steve Moore (aka Stebmo – b. Jan 9, 1976) is a multi-instrumentalist hailing from Seattle, WA. Known as a pianist, with a love for wurlitzers, casiotones and bells, he is also a trombonist and composer. As a studio musician and sideman, he has a resume that reads like a cult top-10 list with artists as diverse as songwriter Sufjan Stevens, jazz hero Bill Frisell and black metal mavericks sunnO))).
Moore’s formative years were spent playing jazz and free improvisation in the pacific northwest and briefly in New York City. A rich scene, it allowed collaboration and study with some of jazz’s modern masters including Julian Priester, Steve Turre, Robin Holcomb and Wayne Horvitz. Eventually, he met and recorded with producer Tucker Martine in 1997 – this meeting had a profound impact on the direction of Moore’s music and career. Together they have collaborated in the ambient collective Mount Analog and on dozens of albums ranging from the far-left twang of Jim White to classic Seattle rockers Mudhoney.
Since 2001, he has performed regularly as part of Laura Veirs’ band Saltbreakers playing keyboards, trombone, singing and occasionally playing bass. Together they have toured the world many times over and recorded four albums, three of which are released on Nonesuch Records. Sweeping synthesizers, catchy hooks and a flair for improvisation are all trademarks of Moore’s playing with Saltbreakers.
As a composer, Steve Moore first began to make a name for himself as a member of Skerik’s Syncopated Taint Septet. A chance run-in with the saxophone veteran prompted Moore to join a weekly show performing at Seattle’s Owl N Thistle and a return to improvised music. What followed was the Ropeadope Records release Skerik’s Syncopated Taint Septet in the fall of 2003. Causing a small revolution in the jam band scene, the band toured heavily and took the opportunity to record in LA with grammy winning engineer Husky Huskolds. The resulting album, Husky, is a dark, masterful take on funk and jazz released by Hyena Records.
In the fall of 2005, for the recording of their comeback album Hex, Moore joined the legendary Seattle band Earth at the behest of producer Randall Dunn. With their first studio album in nine years, Dylan Carlson’s Earth had begun to explore a new sound — cleaner guitar tones and more open, pastoral compositions. Moore’s trombone and keyboard played a crucial role on the album as well as the tours that were to follow. This sound has evolved over the course of three albums together, reaching a psychedelic pinnacle on 2008’s The Bee Made Honey In The Lion’s Skull, which also featured Bill Frisell. Southern Lord label-mates sunnO))) asked Moore to join the band for the recording of their collaborative album Altar, with Japanese band Boris, in 2006. In addition to touring the US and Europe, he has also gone on to record two more albums with the band, including the most recent Dømkirke, a live album from Norway’s Borealis Festival.
Celebrating a a sonic palette as diverse as the artists he’s worked with, Steve Moore’s self-titled debut album STEBMO is a breath of much needed fresh air into the jazz pantheon. Produced by long time collaborator Tucker Martine, the album is alive with a fresh compositional outlook and the spark created in a one day session with an all star rhythm section. Matt Chamberlain, having worked with everyone from Brad Meldauh to Tori Amos, is one of the most celebrated drummers of our time and he’s joined by another heavy hitter in bassist Todd Sickafoose, trusted musical sidekick for Ani DiFranco, Jenny Scheinman and many others. To complete their vision, Moore and Martine enlisted the help of violist Eyvind Kang, providing masterful string arrangements alongside brooding woodwind treatments by Doug Wieselman. The resulting nine tracks are a beautiful and truly original take on instrumental music.