On January 19, 2024, the Catalina Jazz Club on Sunset Blvd. was the epicenter of an extraordinary musical event as legendary bassist Bunny Brunel headlined his Bass Ball 2 CD release concert. The sold-out affair was a once-in-a-lifetime gathering of iconic bassists, featuring Stanley Clarke, Kyle Eastwood, and Armand Sabal-Lecco, alongside stellar performances by Larry Dunn and Kaylene Peoples. Hosted by Kevin Foster and opened by Pat Prescott, the evening was a celebration of bass virtuosity, surprise collaborations, and a captivating blend of jazz, blues, and Bossa Nova.
The lineup of bassists was unprecedented, with Bunny Brunel, Stanley Clarke, Armand Sabal-Lecco, and Kyle Eastwood gracing the same stage for the first time. Known for their pioneering contributions to the jazz-fusion bass movement, Brunel & Clarke’s performances elevated the bass to the forefront, setting the stage for an unforgettable showcase of talent.
Throughout the evening, each bassist showcased their distinctive sound and style, leaving the audience mesmerized. Larry Dunn, the original keyboardist for Earth, Wind & Fire, delivered a nostalgic performance filled with brilliance, while vocalist and flutist Kaylene Peoples brought her unique charm to the stage, earning fervent applause from the crowd.
The show kicked off with Kevin Foster and Pat Prescott setting the stage for an evening of musical grandeur. Bunny Brunel, Stanley Clarke, and Kyle Eastwood opened with infectious grooves, setting the tone for the night. Larry Dunn joined Bunny Brunel and Stanley Clarke for a captivating rendition of “Changing,” showcasing Dunn’s keyboard virtuosity.
A highlight of the evening was the dynamic duo of Stanley Clarke and Armand Sabal-Lecco, whose masterful interpretation of “La Caucion” captivated the audience. Kaylene Peoples added a touch of Romantic Bossa-Nova with her rendition of “Girl from Ipanema,” accompanied by Bunny Brunel on bass.
The climax of the night was the “Bass Jam,” where the four legendary bass players exhibited their technical prowess and dynamic camaraderie on the electric bass. Honoring the iconic Chick Corea, Kaylene Peoples returned to perform a flute solo on Corea’s “Spain.”
The grand finale featured Larry Dunn rejoining Stanley Clarke, Bunny Brunel, Kyle Eastwood, Armand Sabal-Lecco, and Kaylene Peoples for a jazzy rendition of “That’s the Way of the World,” bringing the evening to an exhilarating close.
The Bunny Brunel & Friends Bass Ball 2 concert at the Catalina Jazz Club was an unforgettable celebration of musical talent and collaboration. With its stellar lineup, surprise collaborations, and captivating performances, the event showcased the power of music to unite and inspire audiences.