VIDEO FEATURE: Tal Wilkenfeld, A Goddess of Bass

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A few days ago a friend told me to check out a YouTube video of a bass player and all he said was, “wait til you see this girl prodigy play.” That’s not something you hear everyday so I paid attention and watched the video below.

After the impressive :53 seconds were up I immediately started looking up as much info on her as I could. Better to be late to the Tal Wilkenfeld party than not be invited at all.

It’s not every day you see a musician able to hold it down with Jeff Beck. Then after a few google searches I became even more impressed at the resume she had already put together. Playing with the likes of The Allman Brothers Band, Herbie Hancock, Eric Clapton, and Chick Corea (I could go on and on).

She learned guitar at age of 14 before focusing soley on the bass instrument, dropping out of high school and moving from her home in Syndey, Australia to New York City. There she gained a name for herself playing jazz clubs. She recorded her debut album Transformation at the age of 20 in New York City and has consistently produced music with some of the bigger names in the business.

You may have even spotted her on the season finale of Saturday Night Live in May. She was a guest of Jeff Beck, who was performing alongside with host, Mick Jagger. I watched the episode and didn’t even realize it was her until now. That won’t happen again. Tal Wilkenfeld is officially on the concert radar and should have been on it a lot sooner.

She just updated her Facebook page with a Los Angeles date promising new material at the Roxy Theatre on August 11th. I will try my darndest to get there for a review if at possible.

Here are a few more videos I dug up to give you a better idea of her talent:

  • wesleyhodges

    Jeff Beck sure knows how to pick ‘em. When I saw him in 2010 he had a different (a) short (b) female bassist who was a complete master and maybe an even better singer:

    Rhonda Smith:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fwnU66fXs78

    • Gary

      I was at that JazzFest show. I think she used to play with Prince.

  • Jeff Beck fan

    Just for the record, Tal was not on SNL “performing with Mick Jagger”. Its because of the fact that Jeff Beck was performing (along with Jagger on vocals) that Jeff’s former drummer (Vinnie Coliauta) and his former bassist (Tal) were there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sschibuola Steve Schibuola

    Better late than never . . . but about frickin’ time! Tal is wonderful. Check out her solo CD, Transformation.

  • Chuck D

    The first time I saw her was when Jeff Beck performed at Ronnie Scott’s (from one of the videos you have, above), and I was impressed by her playing. Glad she’s getting the attention.

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