Phil Jones Bass and Labella Strings first annual West Coast Solo Bass Contest was held on Thursday night at NAMM at the Clarion Hotel in front of a capacity crowd. The pre-selected finalists performed for a celebrity panel of judges that included bass legends Lee Sklar, Bakithi Kumalo, Bob Glaub, Oskar Cartaya, Jerry Watts, and producer Jeff Weber. The winners of the contest included Josh Cohen 1st place, Kirby Barber 2nd place, and Samual Smith 3rd place.

The evening began with a total of ten finalists that competed for prizes from sponsors that included PJB, Labella, NS Design, Warwick, Gizmotron, Bass Magazine, Marleux basses, Sandberg, Brubaker, and Lathon Basswear. Michael Albronda of Phil Jones Bass hosted the event along with assistance from Eric Labella.


The Solo Bass Contest is a popular annual event that takes place each October at the LaBella showroom in New York City. As a result of the success of the NAMM event plans are already underway to book a larger venue for the January 2021 contest as many interested attendees were turned away due to the capacity crowd.

Established in 2002, PJB and AIRPULSE Guitar Amps are divisions of Phil Jones American Acoustic Development. PJB is dedicated to using the latest technology in the design of compact bass amps and loudspeakers that achieve highest in fidelity and volume. Phil Jones owns several patents for loudspeaker technology.



(1) Judges left to right: standing Rick Carlson and Phil Jones of PJB

Sitting: Jeff Weber, Lee Sklar, Oskar Cartaya, Bob Glaub, Bakithi Kumalo, Jerry Watts

(2) Contest Winners

Left to right Kirby Barber, Josh Cohen, Samual Smith