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CCU to host international bass competition finalists in concert

September 15, 2005

The first Bass Extremes International Bass Competition and Concert will be held at Coastal Carolina University on Friday, Oct. 7 at 7:30 p.m. in Wheelwright Auditorium.

The concert, which will feature a performance by five celebrity judges as well as the four finalists, is open to the public. Following the judges performance, the finalists will play individually, then the winner will be announced from the stage at the end of the concert. Tickets are $15 for the concert or $50 for the concert and a private reception with the performers.

Nearly 140 musicians from 19 different countries have entered the competition, which is designed to discover new solo bass players who are inventing and exploring new techniques that have contributed to making the bass a solo instrument.

Internationally renowned bass player and CCU Artist-in-Residence Steve Bailey created the competition and is one of the judges. All the judges are accomplished and influential stars of the instrumental music world.

Bailey, who has performed with legendary top artists of every style from Dizzy Gillespie to Willie Nelson, is renowned for his revolutionary use of artificial harmonics and chords, performed on electric six-string fretless and acoustic bass.

Other judges include:

Victor Wooten, known for his solo recordings and tours, is a member of the Grammy-winning supergroup, Bla Fleck & The Flecktones. Soul Circus is his new CD from Vanguard Records this year.

Anthony Jackson is a bassist whose discography spans many genres of music. He invented the six-string contrabass a couple of decades before five-string basses became popular.

Gregg Bissonette has traveled the globe with some of the biggest names in the music world, including David Lee Roth, James Taylor, Carlos Santana and others. His new DVD is called Musical Drumming in Different Styles, from Hudson Music.

Will Lee is best known for his role in the CBS Orchestra, which performs weeknights on The Late Show with David Letterman.

The winner of the competition will receive $10,000 in cash and prizes, plus the opportunity to record with Bailey and Wooten on the next Bass Extremes CD release. Cash and prizes will also be awarded to second through fourth place contestants, as well as five honorable mentions. Concert tickets can be purchased at the Wheelwright Box Office or by calling 349-2502. Tickets are $15 per person; VIP tickets are $50, and include a private post-concert reception with the celebrity judges and musician finalists.

For more information, contact Sandy Smith, executive director of the competition, at 843-349-4129 or by e-mail at