Abraham (or Abe) Laboriel (born 1947 in Mexico) is one of the masters on electrical bass. Originally a classically trained guitarist, he switched to bass guitar while studying at the Berklee School of Music. Henry Mancini encouraged Laboriel to move to Los Angeles, California and pursue a recording career. Abe started to play on records in the early 70´s (he played bass with Gary Burton on his album “The New Quartet”, recorded 1973 on the label ECM). Since then, Laboriel has played on over 4,000 recordings and soundstracks.
Guitar Player Magazine described him as “the most widely used session bassist of our time”. Laboriel is the father of drummer Abe Laboriel Jr. and of producer, songwriter, and film composer Mateo Laboriel.
Abraham Laboriel have perfect timing, and he plays bass from the heart. I have being a fan to him since the 70´s. One very special concert was when he played with the group Koinonia in Stockholm 1984, in a club called Studion located at S:t Eriksplan. I will never forget the energy, love and joy that Abe and the rest of the band gave that special evening.
Below you have some examples of the energy Laboriel gives to his fellow musicians and audiences.
Koinonia Live at Montreux 1984 playing “Sno Cone”. Musicians are Abraham Laboriel (Bass), Hadley Hockensmith (guitar), Bill Maxwell (drums), Alex Acuna (percussion), Justo Almario (Woodwinds) and Harlan Rogers (Keys)
Koinonia playing “Cuando” live From Montreux (1984)
Koinonia playing “Schoolbus” live from Montreux (1984)
Abraham Laboriel playing the song “Anthropology” (Justo Almario on sax, Bill Maxwell on drums and Lou Pardini on keys)
Abraham Laboriel plays Laura by Johnny Mercer (from an old instructions video)
Abraham Laboriel Sr, Abraham Laboriel Jr, Justo Almario and Greg Mathieson playing “Goyo” (1994)
Abraham Laboriel Sr, Abraham Laboriel Jr, Justo Almario and Greg Mathieson playing “Quote, unquote” (1994)
Vinnie Colaiuta (dr), Greg Mathieson (keyb), Abraham Laboriel (b) and Michael Landau (g) performing “LMNOP” at The Baked Potato (March 3, 2000)
Vinnie Colaiuta (dr), Greg Mathieson (keyb), Abraham Laboriel (b) and Michael Landau (g) performing “Slowglide” at The Baked Potato (March 3, 2000)
Abe Laboriel with Alvaro Lopez & ResQ Band, “Improvisación Gabe Terrado” (2008)
Abe Laboriel with Alvaro Lopez & ResQ Band (2008), “Waterwings” (originally from the album “Friendship”)
Here is the original of “Waterwings” with Friendship (1979)
This video shows Abraham Laboriel, Otmaro Ruiz, Allen Hinds and Jimmy Branly in a masterclass performing Butterfly by Herbie Hancock for students (2011)
Hadley Hockensmith on guitar with Abraham Laboriel on bass, playing a classic Koinonia tune. The other musicians are Jeff Babko on the keys, Bill Maxwell on drums and Tony Maiden on guitar (2011)
Abraham Laboriel bass solo with Maxwell’s Allstars at The Baked Potato in Los Angeles (September 30, 2011)
Abraham Laboriel spent two days with graduate and undergraduate students sharing his wisdom and knowledge on music and on life. Abraham is an inspirational force to the students at Berklee that you can see on this short video from 2012.
Jazz Minestry with Scott Kinsey plays the tune “Cocktail” at The Baked Potato (2013)