By the mid-’80s, Bullock was an established New York session player who had recorded with Billy Joel, Steely Dan, and other big names. On stage, his charisma and larger-than-life personality helped him land a solo deal with Atlantic Records, as well as highprofile work with the Saturday Night Live, Late Night with David Letterman, and Night Music (featuring David Sanborn) house bands.
“Hiram was the opposite of a shoe-gazer,” says Lee. “He could take a roomful of blank faces anywhere in the world and, within five minutes, have everyone completely lit up, smiling, cheering, laughing, and totally involved. Every room became his room.” Bullock had a “room” one last time when Lee, along with drummers Clint DeGanon and Charley Drayton, organized a star-studded tribute concert in his honor at New York’s Cutting Room on September 9. (Bullock died on July 25 after surviving throat cancer and years of struggles with substance abuse.)