I won't even pretend to know Max, but was first exposed to the him thru the LA Express when they were on Joni's Miles of Aisles album. Listened to him ply his craft in other Joni albums along the way. All I can say is the man was a master at his art and lived a life many would have envied to live. Talent carries one far in life and it sure did with Max. My best to his family and friends.
I was so sorry to learn of Max's passing. I had the pleasure of taking bass lessons from Max in the 90s. The lessons were very challenging, but always very musical and not the typical boring exercises. Max almost always took some extra time to show me what he was working on, and to talk about music history. The depth of Max's experience in the industry was astounding, and while the lessons were amazing, the talks that we had were priceless. I feel so fortunate to have had the experience of spending those times with Max. He is greatly missed. His passion for music and overall lust for life was inspiring. He always had that infectious smile and sparkle in his eye when he talked about the latest music he was working on. That is how I will always remember Max.
We enjoyed listening to Max and the band play in the bar area of the Salt Creek Grille in Dana Point. Max was so gracious, he always made it a point to find us and cath up during his breaks. We got to know him through that venue. Max would spot us as we walked in, and give us a wave. He always offered us a seat at his guest booth or table if we couldn’t find an open seat. Grant Geissman often played with the band. Max would always apologize about Grant wearing a flannel shirt. I would just laugh and tell Max it’s all about the guitar sound, and not how the player’s dressed. Max would kind of agree, but restate he needs to wear a better shirt. One night my wife brought him a CD to sign. The first thing Max said was he hated the shirt he was wearing on the cover. Told us “They made me wear it!” He asked if he could black it out on the cover. We agreed, and he drew a little doodle over the shirt, then signed it below. So fun, great memories. Max was the master of finding new talent. I don’t recall the artists name, but one the sax players Max brought to the venue for a few gigs was absolutely fantastic! That was years ago – yet I can still hear the song in my mind. Thank you for the memories Max! You are missed.
I had no idea that he had such a prolific career and played with so many artists!! Ventura, Gibbs and Kenton to name a few?? When I was listening to Frank Zappa' "Hot Rats" and "Chungas Revenge" many many years ago I did not realize that he was playing bass on so many of the tunes on both those albums! Just last night I revisited the tune, Lemme Take You To The Beach from FZ, Studio Tan. I was listening and thinking...WOW, that bass player is smokin'!! So I look it up online and who do I find? None other than Max Bennett??!! I'm a late bloomer on Max but have been hearing him all these years. So, thank you Max, for all your many years of wonderful music!
I never met Mr Bennett but his music influenced my bass playing. A fine musician.
I’ll miss those times on the boat in Dana Point and over at Ron’s and touring around in your Jenson. I tell every bass player I’ve ever played with about the three words you once told me. “Bass means low” -that really resonated with me. Goodbye Max, you will be missed
It was a great privilege and honor to bring together The Alley House Band for Max' return home celebration in Oskaloosa, Iowa. Max and I had spoken over the phone many times and I finally had the opportunity to speak with him in person. Not only that, but he then joined our band and we were humbled to perform Fever, with Ann Brouwer on vocals. Max, I will miss our phone conversations. The musical history you left behind will never be matched. May God bless you with eternal joy. And may God bless Teri and family as well.
Hey Adam and or Teri, I just read in the union mag about Max. I lost my dad this year too. I guess that's two dads, in a way. Max was my greatest teacher and mentor. He went out of his way to try and meet up with me when he was in my area. He was a good friend. I really loved him, and I am very sorry for your loss. Feel free to contact me any time to catch up, if you read this. All my best, Larry Seymour
I've lost a dear friend, brother and mentor since 1974.One of God's most gifted creations has returned home.He's truly inspired me since 1974 when I first heard The LA Express then later Private Reserve and all his session work on other artists in between.I managed a Resort in Cambria,playing in local clubs on the weekend. Occasionally we would talk on the phone about Jazz Fusion or as Max put it, "Cool Whip Jazz." When my wife, passed away suddenly in 2013, he called to express his condolences. Max has been my greatest musical influence. All that I am as a musician I attribute to his mega talent and genuine selfless Spirit. Max's gift to us is so much bigger than life. His memory remains in our hearts. Thank you Max for your music and presence in our lives. If God has a Private Reserve of his best work and favorite creations, Max Bennett is certainly there! G
So sorry to hear of Max's passing. I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with him in Oskaloosa. One cool dude!