Laboriel, Kumalo, and Hutchinson

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Friday / December 7, 2012 / 1:00 p.m.
Berklee Performance Center
136 Massachusetts Avenue
Hutch Hutchinson
Abraham Laboriel
Bakithi Kumalo

Three of the greatest bass players in the world—studio recording legend Abe Laboriel (Herbie Hancock, Madonna, Michael Jackson), Bathiki Kumalo (Paul Simon), and Hutch Hutchinson (Bonnie Raitt, Willie Nelson)—come together to share their expertise and experience.

Sponsored by U-BASS, by Kala Brand Music. There will be a drawing for a free U-BASS at the event.

Abe Laboriel

Abraham Laboriel is a world renowned bassist and the founder of the band Koinonia. He was born and raised in Mexico City, where he received his earliest musical training from his father, a gifted guitarist and composer. His first recording was at age 10 as part of a "rock and roll" group, Los Traviesos. After performing in Mexico through his teen years as both a musician and an actor, he moved to Boston where he earned a bachelor of music degree in composition from the Berklee in 1972. During that time he recorded with faculty member, famed vibraphonist Gary Burton. He traveled with Johnny Mathis, Michel Legrand, and Henry Mancini and moved to Los Angeles in 1976 to begin a very diverse and fruitful studio recording career.

He has performed and recorded with many jazz artists including George Benson, Larry Carlton, the Crusaders, Ella Fitzgerald, Dave Grusin, Herbie Hancock, Freddie Hubbard, Al Jarreau, John Klemmer, Manhattan Transfer, Joe Pass, Joe Sample, Lalo Shifrin, Diane Schuur, Sara Vaughan, and Joe Zawinul. He recorded with Lee Ritenour, Ernie Watts, and Alex Acuna in the band Friendship, and has continued to record and travel with Lee and Dave Grusin for GRP Records. He also has been much in demand for work with artists like Lionel Richie, Quincy Jones, Jeffrey Osborne, Chaka Khan, Robbie Robertson, Kenny Rogers, Kenny Loggins, Ruben Blades, and countless others. He was voted by his peers in the L.A .Chapter of NARAS as the Most Valuable Player in the bass chair for the three years in a row, joining Ray Brown and Chuck Domanico in that honor.


Bakithi Kumalo

South African composer, vocalist, and bassist Bakithi Kumalo was born in the Alexandria Township of Johannesburg. Abandoned by his father as a toddler, he was raised by his mother, who was a singer, and his family in nearby Soweto. He was exposed to local musical styles such as mbaqanga (a groove peculiar to the townships), mbube (a cappella vocal music), and jive (electric, urban pop) while he was very young.

At an early age, he decided to become a musician and at 7, was already performing in his uncle's band. Due to his persistence, he quickly became a regular on the wedding and party circuit around the township. At 10, he went on a tour into Zululand where he remained for a year and a half. During that time, he practiced the bass tirelessly. It was at this time that he developed his unique approach to bass playing.


Hutch Hutchinson

Best known for his work with Bonnie Raitt, James "Hutch" Hutchinson grew up in Cambridge and Somerville, Massachusetts. He hung around the clubs in Harvard 
Square and Boston in the early and mid 1960s during the folk and blues revival that took place there. In the late 1960s, he attended some classes at Berklee. Boston and Cambridge were great places (as they still are) for seeing, hearing and playing many different types of music from around the world. As a pre-teen he had sung and played some guitar and mandolin in some bluegrass bands, but zeroed in on the bass at age 12 or so after seeing Wilson Pickett and his great touring band in the mid 1960s. Throughout high school, "Hutch" played electric and acoustic bass in a variety of bands in the New England area.

He's also enjoyed a very rewarding and interesting career as a studio musician working with the Neville Brothers, Brian Wilson, Ringo Starr, Al Green, B.B. King, Crosby Stills and Nash and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, the Chieftains, Boz Scaggs, Joe Cocker, Elton John, Jackson Browne, Keb Mo, Ziggy Marley, Hank Williams Jr., Alejandro Escovedo, Pops Staples, Toots Hibbert, Bob Seger, Kathy Mattea, Garth Brooks, Lyle Lovett, the B 52s, Etta James, Willie Nelson, Pattie La Belle, Vince Gill, Bryan Adams, Randy Newman, Anne Murray, Stevie Nicks, Ritchie Sambora, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, and many other artist's as well as on numerous film and television projects.