Wes Wehmiller Scholarship

Wes Wehmiller '92 was an accomplished bassist, athlete, and photographer. His family and friends from around the world invite you to join them at the Roxy in Hollywood on Sunday, March 3, 2013 for WesFest 8, a celebration of Wes's life and legacy, and fundraiser for the prestigious Wes Wehmiller scholarship, which is awarded annually to the electric bass student that best carries on Wes's talent, generosity, and verve.

The Wehmiller family and Wes Wehmiller's extended family of friends from around the world invite you to join them in the ongoing celebration of the life of Wes Wehmiller '92, who died of thyroid cancer in January, 2005. The Wes Wehmiller Scholarship is awarded annually to a continuing student of the electric bass at Berklee whose musicianship, spirit, and visibility as a performer demonstrate his or her potential to carry on the talent and spirit of Wes.

WesFest, a tribute concert held annually in Hollywood in celebration of Wes' musical legacy, serves as the centerpiece of the continuing drive to raise funds for what has become one of the most prestigious awards given by Berklee College of Music. Click here to make a contribution to the scholarship and to become part of the spirited WesFest community giving forward in the way Wes so generously gave and still gives to us.

Wes, who won a scholarship to attend Berklee, was mentored here by bassist/professor Danny Morris who became a close colleague and friend. In 1993, Wes moved to the west coast where he collaborated with a vibrant Los Angeles community of Berklee alumni. From 1997 through 2001, Wes toured worldwide with the multi-platinum pop band Duran Duran, and appeared on many TV shows with them as well, including The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Today Show, VH-1's Storytellers and Hard Rock Live. Wes also performed with Missing Persons, avant-garde solo artist Mike Keneally, and several other L.A. based bands, and his work appears on numerous recordings produced in the L.A. area and in Vancouver. At www.weswehmiller.net you can learn about Wes, and the people he touched. This site is packed with music, videos, photography by and of Wes, and much much more.

WesFest 8, the eighth annual benefit concert in support of the Wes Wehmiller Endowed Scholarship Fund at Berklee, took place at The Roxy in Los Angeles on March 3, 2013.

The WesFest concert series serves as the centerpiece for a continuing fundraising drive for the scholarship fund, which honors the legacy of Wehmiller, a Berklee graduate (‘92) and highly accomplished bassist, athlete, and photographer who died of thyroid cancer in January, 2005.   For the second year in a row, the WesFest concert and related fundraising drive broke all previous records, raising more than $27,000.

This year’s concert headliner was rock guitarist/composer/actor/producer Brendon Small ‘97,  the creative mastermind behind the smash-hit animated [adult swim] TV show Metalocalypse and the metal band Dethklok.  WesFest 8 marked the live debut performance of Small’s all-star 11-piece band Galaktikon, featuring guitarists Jude Gold (Jefferson Starship, Billy Sheehan), Mike Keneally (Dethklok, Frank Zappa, Joe Satriani), Rick Musallam (Ben Taylor, Carly Simon), and Small himself; bassist Bryan Beller ‘92 (Dethklok, Steve Vai ’79, The Aristocrats); and vocalists Ben Thomas (Zappa Plays Zappa), Kira Small ’93 (Peter Frampton, Martina McBride), Ali Handal (Neil Young, Paul Williams) and Jude Crossen ‘91 (Patti Austin, Lee Ritenour, Phil Perry).

Jed Lingat at WesFestIn typical WesFest tradition, the 2012 Wehmiller Scholarship winner, bassist Jed Lingat, performed onstage with Danny Mo & The Exciters, showing the 300-plus crowd exactly what they were supporting.  Lingat laid down heavy grooves alongside legendary drummer John “JR” Robinson ‘75 (Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Madonna, Eric Clapton).  The band was led by Wehmiller’s Berklee Bass Professor and close friend Danny Morris ‘78 who said “the LA experience is unique and cherished every year by the award recipient, and Jed’s bass playing and demeanor are exemplary of the kind of person Wes would have loved and grooved to”.

Among other performers at WesFest 8 were alumni Joe Travers ‘91 (drummer for Zappa Plays Zappa), guitarist Griff Peters ‘93, sax player Bob Reynolds ‘00, and vocalists Colin Keenan ‘93 and Krysta Youngs ‘05.

WesFest 8 was memorable not only for its great energy and exciting performances, but also for its impressive fundraising results.

You can make a contribution to WesFest/Wes Wehmiller Scholarship Fund using the form below.