Celebrating Chet Atkins and Barney Kessel: A Musical Tribute in Nashville

February 1, 2024 5:27 pm Published by

On the evenings of Friday, February 2, and Saturday, February 3, 2024, the Jazz Cave in Nashville will come alive with the timeless melodies and legendary guitars of American music icons Chet Atkins and Barney Kessel. Renowned musicians Bruce Forman and Pat Bergeson will grace the stage, honoring the legacies of Atkins and Kessel as they mark what would have been their 100th and 101st birthdays, respectively.

Forman and Bergeson, both acclaimed in their own right, will perform on guitars once owned by the very artists they commemorate. This unique opportunity not only pays homage to Atkins and Kessel but also celebrates the rich history of guitar making in Nashville, a city synonymous with musical innovation and craftsmanship.

The story of Nashville’s contribution to guitar making is deeply intertwined with the narratives of Atkins and Kessel. Nashville-based Gibson guitars crafted a model inspired by Kessel from 1961 to 1973, a testament to the enduring impact of his work. Kessel, whose career blossomed in the 1940s, left an indelible mark on the music scene, collaborating with artists ranging from the Monkees to Elvis Presley.

Bruce Forman, with 17 albums to his credit, emerges as a torchbearer of Kessel’s legacy. Described by Kessel himself as “one of the great lights of our age,” Forman’s association with Kessel runs deep, making him a fitting steward of Kessel’s cherished Gibson guitar. Pat Bergeson, whose musical palette spans jazz, blues, and rock, shares a similar bond with Atkins, having collaborated closely with the maestro on various projects.

Their upcoming performances promise to be a tribute in the truest sense, a convergence of talent and reverence for two giants of American music. Forman’s intricate guitar work and Bergeson’s genre-defying style will undoubtedly transport audiences through the annals of jazz, blues, and beyond.

Event Details:

What: Chet Atkins and Barney Kessel Celebrate 100 with Bruce Forman and Pat Bergeson


  • Friday, February 2, 2024, 7:30pm CST (Doors open at 7)
  • Saturday, February 3, 2024, 7:30pm CST

Where: Nashville Jazz Workshop | 1012 Buchanan Street Nashville, TN 37208

Tickets: Purchase Here

Join us as we celebrate the enduring legacy of Chet Atkins and Barney Kessel, a testament to the power of music to transcend time and unite generations.

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This post was written by NJW Editors

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