A screening of the documentary film "Jason Becker: Not Dead Yet" about Jason Becker, the guitarist/composer who has had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, a.k.a. Lou Gehrig's Disease) for 30 years, will take place at the Granite Bay High School in Granite Bay, California on Saturday, February 8 between 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. PST.
Depending upon his health, Jason may answer questions via FaceTime. Members of the Becker family will be there for a question-and-answer session, and friends featured in the documentary will be there for a meet-and-greet. Some of Jason's personal guitar collection will be on display. Gary Becker will have an art show. Official merchandise and art will be available to purchase with all profits going to EBSO, the non-profit organization that supports the Emerald Brigade Music Program at Granite Bay High School. Suggested age limit: 10 and older.
Becker's story is one of brilliance, talent, determination, adversity, and, ultimately, triumph. A child prodigy on guitar, Jason rose to prominence as a teenager when he was one half of the technical guitar duo CACOPHONY, with his great friend Marty Friedman. In 1989, at only 19 years old and after wowing audiences all over the world, the young virtuoso became the guitarist for David Lee Roth, following in the huge footsteps of Eddie Van Halen and Steve Vai. He wrote and recorded on Roth's third solo album, "A Little Ain't Enough", and was poised for superstardom when a nagging pain in his leg was diagnosed as Motor Neurone Disease (MND), also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig's Disease, the same condition Stephen Hawking lived with for over five decades. It is a fatal condition with a life expectancy of maybe five years. Maybe.
That was 30 years ago. He lost the ability to play guitar, walk, talk, and breathe on his own. But never lost his will to live or his desire to create music. Communicating through a series of eye movements with a system developed by his father, Jason spells out words as well as musical notes and chords. He imparts his musical vision to his team who then can input the notes into a computer, edit the parts to his exacting standards, and then generate charts for session musicians. His inspiring music and life story have been the subject of countless news articles and magazine cover stories.
Becker's latest album, "Triumphant Hearts", was released in December 2018 via Music Theories Recordings/Mascot Label Group. The disc features guest appearances by a who's who of six-string gods, including Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Neal Schon, Steve Morse, Paul Gilbert and Joe Bonamassa.
"Jason Becker: Not Dead Yet" follows Jason through his life and creative career with ALS. It is a truly inspirational tale of overcoming the odds and creating music no matter what curveballs life throws your way.