Bergantino Featured Artists

ayumu
Mitch Starman
David Goldflies

Bergantino Players

Bergantino’s Kenery Kent Smith

Chicago’s Kenery Kent Smith is full of exorbitant passion, not only with playing bass but with his gift of writing. Kenery wears his heart on his sleeve and we are honored to share his story with you.

Growing up in a city that has seemingly produced more successful low-end groove makers per capita than any city in the world, Kenery Kent Smith has worked hard to become one of Chicago’s best. A 25-year music industry veteran, Kenery is part of a rich tradition of world class Chicago bassists. His performance resume showcases the Chi-Town musical trademarks of talent, hustle and a versatility to work in any musical genre.

As a childhood resident of the infamous Robert Taylor Housing Projects, a young and impressionable Kenery was destined to play bass guitar; growing up he would hear nothing but the bass lines to the music coming through the walls of his parent’s apartment, as the neighbors would tend to play their R&B, Gospel, Jazz and Soul loudly (i.e. EVERY WAKING HOUR). Thus, the musical fire was lit. Already possessing an artist’s spirit, Kenery soon began to hang around the local bands rehearsals as well as going to neighborhood talent showcases, learning what he could from watching…and listening. Soon at age 11, Kenery made his public musical debut in his 7th grade talent show and became hooked on the allure of the stage. All this with no true formal training, he began to perform locally with different choirs, bands and theater groups, learning what he needed along the way.

Kenery’s experience includes performances with artists ranging from international Neo Soul recording artist Erykah Badu, to world renowned Jazz vocal siren Dee Alexander, to R&B/Soul diva Terisa Griffin. Kenery has provided low end grooves for Acid Jazz pioneers Liquid Soul, and he has laid down a funky groove or two behind world famous comedian Bernie Mac. He has toured extensively throughout Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Luxembourg with the inspirational voices of Sue Conway and the Victory Singers, and with Pierre Walker & Project: Sanctified. Kenery has also performed with Gospel legend Kim Stratton, Grammy winning recording artist Darius Brooks and has been fortunate to provide the low-end groove with many other prominent Gospel recording artists including Phil Tarver and Bishop Paul S. Morton, Sr. He has also worked in many other diverse musical settings, including performing music with the world-renowned tap dance ensemble MADD Rhythms, touring nationally with Jackie Taylor’s Black Ensemble Theater and with Chicago’s Free Street Theater (most notably at The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C.). Most recently, Kenery appeared in, wrote and produced original music for the independent film “The Rise and Fall of Miss Thang” (available on Amazon Prime). Additionally, for 15 years Kenery was co-founder and bassist of Chicago’s very own Nu-Jazz legends Detour JazFunk, with whom he shares writing, arranging and co-production credits on their debut CD entitled JazFunk.

Currently, Kenery can be seen and heard each week in the role of first chair bassist on the syndicated weekly Sunday morning broadcast of Victory Apostolic Church in Matteson, Illinois, as part of their extraordinary music ministry.

Q: Please share any accomplishments or achievements you would like to share with everyone.

A: I have been able to live a wonderful and fulfilling life using a God-given gift, sharing music with the masses! In the process I have been blessed to travel the world, meet and perform with many extremely talented people (some of whom were childhood musical inspirations), and most importantly, I have been able to share the healing and inspiring power of music. As musicians, when we take to the stages of the world to play our instruments and sing our songs, what we are doing is having interactive and meaningful conversations with each other; we are sharing our stories, our history, our dreams, our pain…our joy with each other. Then, subsequently invite the audience into those musical conversations so they can feel what we feel…so that they can share in our common human experiences through music and to inspire the audience to therefore reciprocate in the sharing.

Q: What else do you like to do besides playing bass?

A: I LOVE classic movies, comic books (I’m a Marvel Man…sorry DC!), listening to music on high end audio gear on quiet afternoons with my favorite beverage in hand. I enjoy writing both music and prose when I can squeeze it in.  I, also, enjoy a good book or two.

I love house parties with close friends, breaking bread with the same, deep conversations with deep minds, and laughing hard and often. Every now and again, I will attempt to revive my skills as an artist and draw something cool. Also, if God says the same, I love the idea of being in love with a woman who truly knows and loves me for me. Maybe someday…J

  1. Why do you choose Bergantino gear?

A: For as long as I can remember, in my head the ideal sound of my live bass has been the sound of best recorded basses in recorded music history. Whatever the appropriate tone for the tune, that’s what I’ve always wanted to hear in the setting of a live performance and that means that I want to hear ME, my bass, my fingers, my inflections and expressions.

Bergantino Audio Systems is literally the FIRST time I have felt fulfilled in this aspect. Playing through my forté, in combination with either my HD210, HD112 or through my Reference 210…I don’t hear a “company sound”. I don’t hear coloration, unless I choose to color. I don’t hear snippets of my playing while the rest of my bass line is swallowed up in the band mix.

I now hear MY voice.

I now hear articulation of every note I play…warts and all…lol!

I now…finally…hear ME.

And THAT is why I LOVE Bergantino!

You can follow Kenery on the links below here:

https://www.facebook.com/musical.low.b

https://www.facebook.com/k2sproductions/

https://www.facebook.com/detourjazfunkchicago/

https://www.instagram.com/kenerysmith/

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1019449/fullcredits/?ref_=tt_ov_st_sm

https://wordpress.com/view/aviewfromthebottomofthegroove.wordpress.com

Performing on the latest release by Andrea Love, “Twisted”: https://www.andrealovemusic.com/music

Bassist with Simone Green https://simonegreenlive.com

http://www.ascendantmusic.com

Coming Soon: K2S Productions.com

Bergantino’s Van Gordon Martin

We are excited to add Van Gordon Martin, an amazing Boston-based electric guitarist to our roster of Bergantino endorsing players. Van Gordon Martin has been a veteran of the east coast music scene for over a decade. He just finished a run run of shows with Toots and the Maytals.  Also, Van is now heading out with Mighty Mystic’s Summer Tour and he will be using the Bergantino AD212 Guitar speaker.

Van has many hit song releases including his new single “Life Is One” from May 2019 and his 2018 album, “Let it Grow” was inspired by Van’s endless devotion and love for Roots Reggae and Dub Music.

While Van started his music career at age 7 in Chicago, he is now a part of Boston-based Reggae collective, Dub Apocalypse, a Moroccan/Jazz/ Electronic group Club D’elf, Hip Hop Legend Big Daddy Kane’s live band, Paul Wolstencroft of Slightly Stoopid’s Organically Good Trio, The Naya Rockers and many others. Van Gordon Martin is a guitarist, (that’s right, he is not a bass player) songwriter and multi- instrumentalist producer. He always pushes acoustic boundaries…just watch him on stage!

“My goal is to share my story and love for guitar with the world.  It has been always been the thing that makes me feel connected to the spirit realm. Rasta, Reggae, Soul, Jazz, Blues and Roots Music…it speaks the truth. Every artist is part of the building blocks of our social and creative consciousness. I feel honored and blessed to share my ideas with anyone that will hear me.  Every note we play with honest intention, we tear down a part of the injustices in the world. Love and music are indeed one. Music:  It is our highest meditation” – Van Gordon Martin

We’re looking forward to videos and photos of Van’s upcoming tour! Best of luck on the tour, Van!!

Follow Van here:

https://www.facebook.com/VanGordonMartin/

http://www.mightymystic.com/admin/  Summer Tour info

@vgmb13

Bergantino Artist Fred Koogler -Two time inductee to Iowa Rock ‘n Roll Music Association’s Hall of Fame

“ When I heard about Jim’s design for the HG 410, the concept made perfect sense to me. I knew I had to have one. The HG 410 and the Forte paired are the best amplification setup I have ever played through. Period. Thanks, Jim and Holly for great products and service.”

Location: Pella, Iowa

Bergantino Gear: HG410, Bergantino forte’

Band:

Jam Band, The Bluesdawgs

https://www.facebook.com/The-Bluesdawgs-1848515955413308/

Social Links:

https://www.facebook.com/fred.koogler

Bergantino Artist Adrian Leppard

“Ampeg, Fender, Markbass, Aguilar, all make great gear, but since I have been using Bergantino the rest are all in the rear view mirror. The B-Amp/HD210/HD112 combination is a thing of beauty. Clean highs, tight bottom end and great with pedals. The Berg cabs also make my Aguilar heads sound great, it’s all good.”

Location: Sydney, Australia

Bergantino Gear: The B-Amp/HD210/HD112

Bands:

https://www.facebook.com/Zerox-170151026864996/?view_public_for=170151026864996

https://www.facebook.com/SamsCommune/?view_public_for=243891796349335

https://www.bandmix.com.au/tigger/

Social Links: https://www.facebook.com/adrian.leppard

Jerrell Baker: Bergantino Artist

“The forte’ – Powerful, Endless tone control w/variable ratio compressor, portability at 6 lbs., 700 watts at 4 ohms, 800 watts at 2 ohms, with a beautiful rugged casing. By far the best amp i have ever owned. Paired with my Bergantino HDN 212  cabinets – this rig is hands down unstoppable!”

Location: Tampa, Florida

Bergantino Gear: forte head, HDN212’s

Bands:

www.jerikoturnpike.com

Social Links:

www.jerrellbaker.com
https://www.facebook.com/JerrellBakerbassguitarist/
https://www.instagram.com/ejbbassman/?hl=en

Darien Pridham: Bergantino Artist

“My favorite features of the B|amp would have to be the adjustable Hz, Overdrive and distortion settings! The adjustable Hz really gives me the capability to dial in my tone in a whole different realm! Being able to control your frequency is huge and mixing that with just a bit of distortion or overdrive to give you a little bit of dirt on top really helps mitigate any frequencies you may not like! In my opinion it’s a home run combination!”

“The cabs are hands down the best cabs I’ve ever played thru! The clarity is so far above anything else on the market it’s mind boggling! You know right away if something your doing isn’t quite right, I guess you could say it’s like being under the studio microscope every time you plug in and I love that! These cabs also fill up a room with ease, I’ve never heard a cab that can sound so large and so beefy all while still being quiet! Again they’ve hit a home run with this product!”

Location: Crofton, British Columbia

Bergantino Gear Used: B|AMP & HDN212

Bands: Arbutus Roots, Raised Fourth and Chase Spencer band

Social Links:

Image may contain: one or more people, people playing musical instruments, people on stage, night and guitar

Bobby McCauley: Bergantino Artist

“I looked a long time for gear that was flexible, well built, loud but also portable, I finally found it with Bergantino Audio Systems. The B|Amp is the best amp I have ever used, ever. It is packed full of power and effects and everything you will ever need in only 6.5 pounds. I have the CN 112 Cabinets and they are punchy with extreme volumes and so light they are easy to move.”

Location: Amarillo, Texas

Equipment Used: Bergantino B|AMP,  CN 112 Cabinets

Bands:

https://www.facebook.com/electricgypsies/?fref=mentions

https://www.facebook.com/thecassettesband/?fref=mentions

https://www.facebook.com/theflyingelbows/?fref=mentions

Social Links:

https://www.facebook.com/bobby.mccauley1

@kubickibob Instagram

Lee Presgrave: Bergantino Artist

I have been steadily gigging with the B|AMP through either my NV212T or NV412 and absolutely I love it…probably the best bass tone I’ve ever had. I like the Bergantino cabs for their overall sound quality and tight low end. The NV series has a rich, organic mid-range and highs that stay sweet and musical no matter what you feed it.”

“The B|AMP for me is the ultimate amp for a gigging bassist. It has all I need inside that little, miraculous box of love. It is articulate, responsive, loud, powerful and fits right into my gig bag with plenty of tools- including parallel compressor, chocolate cake, bright switch, tuner, adjustable high pass filter, semi-parametric EQ, multiple drive circuits, etc. It is super reliable- never a hiccup and feels like it’s still brand new. I can literally get just about any bass tone I’d ever need out of it.”

Location: Leesburg, Virginia

Equipment Used: B|AMP, NV212T, NV412

Bands: “Half Step Down”, “The Shallowz” & “Big Al’s Truck”

Social Links:

https://www.facebook.com/lee.presgrave

https://www.facebook.com/bigalstruck/

https://www.facebook.com/HalfStepDownBand/

https://www.facebook.com/TheShallowz/

Patrick Durrett: Bergantino Artist

“I’ve played through a lot of different gear over the years. The first time I heard an HT-322 it hit me right near the heart so I had to have one. Needless to say, it was a huge upgrade to the cabs I’ve played in the past. Then I was sitting in Bass emporium farting around one day and happened across the NV412.. jolly cow what a beast! I didn’t even know I needed or wanted anything other than the 322.. take all my money!! So 2 weeks later I had probably the coolest bass cab ever. Years later I was toying with neos , because, you know.. back problems seem to be Synonymous with bass players from the all ceramic days.. haha! After a markbass combo stint I went full HDN with you guessed it, the old 322 combo, the HDN112 and HDN210. The rest of history, for now..”

Location: Austin, Texas

Bergantino Equipment Used: HT322, NV412, HDN112, & HDN210

Associated Bands: TrickShotatx

Links to sites: https://www.trickshotatx.com/ https://www.facebook.com/rockboxrehearsal

Bergantino Artist James Barthalow

“I have always been a die-hard Ampeg fan and user up until I found The Bergantino forté bass amp. It is the most clear sounding amp I have ever purchased. The main three basses I use are my Pedulla Bass Guitars Rapture Bass (single Active Bartolini pickup), American Precision Bass (Passive Geezer Butler EMGs) and my all time favorite my 90’s Warwick basses Fortress Bass (Active EMG PJ Pickups). Every bass has it’s own sound. With the Bergantino forté I can dial in a great tone fast and easily for any of my basses. Seems my old amps had just one sound but not the Forte. It let’s every bass sing with it’s own voice. Using different cabs proves just as easy to dial in a fantastic tone. I love my new Bergantino Amp forté . Looking forward to checking out the rest of The Bergantino products.”

Location: Deltona, Florida

Bergantino Equipment Used: The Bergantino forté

Associated Band: Plum Crazy

Website: https://www.facebook.com/ThePlumCrazyBand/