Bass Player LIVE! 2011 was an incredible success, bringing players, manufacturers, and artists together in an intimate environment for hands-on access to the latest instruments, equipment and instruction on playing technique and application. This year's event featured two-days of exhibition, live demos, and clinics on Oct. 22 and 23 at SIR Studios, and a special evening concert at Key Club on Saturday, Oct. 22 featuring performances by Larry Graham, James Jamerson Tribute Band featuring James Jamerson Jr., Jack Casady and Acoustic Hot Tuna, and an all-star Jam hosted by Steve Bailey. Throughout the weekend, participants were able to take part in open discussions, watch live performances, try out new bass gear, and listen to many stories on how some of these bass legends made it to the top.
The evening concert featured a Lifetime Achievement Award presentation to funk legend Larry Graham presented by Marcus Miller, rock visionary Jack Casady presented by Anthony Jackson, and posthumously to Motown Master James Jamerson received by James Jamerson Jr. Casady opened the concert with guitarist Jorma Kaukonen as Acoustic Hot Tuna. Jamerson Tribute Band featuring James Jamerson, Jr. and Pino Palladino followed, and then Larry Graham performed a stellar set with members of his Graham Central Station and special guests Marcus Miller and Verdine White. An all-star jam with many of the participating musicians including Tal Wilkenfeld, Alex Al, Janek Gwizdala and Brian Bromberg concluded the evening.
Special guest appearances and performances throughout the weekend included Larry Graham (Sly & the Family Stone/Graham Central Station), Jack Casady (Jefferson Airplane/Hot Tuna), Anthony Jackson (Motown Records), Rickey Minor (Tonight Show Musical Director), Hadrien Feraud and Janek Gwizdala (fusion phenoms), Andrew Gouche (Gospel great), James Jamerson, Jr. (Motown Records), Divinity Roxx (Beyonce Knowles), Marcus Miller (Miles Davis), Pino Palladino (John Mayer Trio), Verdine White (Earth, Wind & Fire), Darryl Jones (The Rolling Stones), Robert "Bubby" Lewis (Lupe Fiasco, Snoop Dog), Rob "Blasko" Nicholson (Ozzy Osbourne), Tal Wilkenfeld (Jeff Beck), Lee Sklar (James Taylor), Mike Inez (Alice In Chains), Norwood Fisher (Fishbone), dUg Pinnick (King's X), Allan "Dr. Licks" Slutsky, Igor Saavedra, Stu Hamm (Frank Gambale), Jonas Hellborg, Abraham Laboriel,Brian Bromberg, Tim Lefebvre, and Adam Nitti.