Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for readers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

467

Christian McBride: A Family Affair

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
At 26, bassist Christian McBride qualifies for the "young lion" tag. His visibility has been enhanced by appearances on Robert Altman's film Kansas City, Clint Eastwood's Eastwood After Hours, Diana Krall's Love Scenes, the compilation Upstairs at Melrose Place, John Pizzarelli's Dear Mr. Cole, and Joshua Redman's MoodSwing. Moreover, his experience with Randy Weston, Freddie Hubbard, T.S. Monk, Chick Corea, McCoy Tyner, and organist Jimmy Smith has demonstrated McBride's mainstream roots to the jazz-listening public.

The bassist wrote half the selections on this album, including the lyrics to "A Dream of You" and "...Or So You Thought." Most tracks feature the quartet of tenor saxophonist Tim Warfield, pianist Charles Craig, bassist McBride, and drummer Gregory Hutchinson.

Like the music at a family get-together, McBride splits the session between R&B "fun music" and his straight-ahead acoustic ensemble. The leader begins Stevie Wonder's "Summer Soft" with the bowed acoustic bass but soon switches to the electric model and offers the pop tune with back beat and quiet repetition. Sly Stone's "Family Affair" places the acoustic quartet in the spotlight as the ensemble marches deliberately and takes turns at the solo mic.

The toe-tapping music swings deliciously and is presented in a variety of different formats. Earth, Wind & Fire's "I'll Write a Song for You" is performed by the duo of Russell Malone on acoustic guitar and McBride on bowed bass. Together, they offer a lovely ballad with attention paid to the lyrical nature of the tune. Kool and the Gang's "Open Sesame" is performed as an arrangement that allows the dramatic intensity to leap out. Hutchinson and Craig, particularly, stretch out freely. McBride's composition "Wayne's World" follows with more drama. Together, these two tracks achieve what the leader intended when he put this session together: he's combined daring straight-ahead ideas with enjoyable and familiar R&B.


Track Listing: I'm Coming Home; A Dream of You; Family Affair; Theme from Our Fairytale; ? Or So You Thought; Summer Soft; Brown Funk; Open Sesame; Wayne's World; I?ll Write a Song for You.

Personnel: Christian McBride: acoustic bass, electric bass; Charles Craig: piano, electric piano, synth; Tim Warfield: tenor saxophone; Gregory Hutchinson: drums; Russell Malone: acoustic guitar, electric guitar; Munyungo Jackson: percussion; Vintage Keys: synths; Will Downing, Vesta: vocals.

Title: A Family Affair | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: Verve Music Group

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read OR CD/LP/Track Review OR
by Geno Thackara
Published: January 18, 2018
Read Reaching Out CD/LP/Track Review Reaching Out
by Mark Corroto
Published: January 18, 2018
Read The Songbook Project CD/LP/Track Review The Songbook Project
by Don Phipps
Published: January 18, 2018
Read Solo a Genova CD/LP/Track Review Solo a Genova
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 18, 2018
Read Satoko Fujii Solo CD/LP/Track Review Satoko Fujii Solo
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 17, 2018
Read when the shade is stretched CD/LP/Track Review when the shade is stretched
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 17, 2018
Read "Happy Orchestra: Baba" CD/LP/Track Review Happy Orchestra: Baba
by Paul Rauch
Published: September 14, 2017
Read "The Return of Art Pepper" CD/LP/Track Review The Return of Art Pepper
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 8, 2017
Read "Morphogenesis" CD/LP/Track Review Morphogenesis
by Troy Dostert
Published: June 12, 2017
Read "Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk" CD/LP/Track Review Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk
by Mark Corroto
Published: November 29, 2017
Read "The Danish Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Danish Sessions
by Chris Mosey
Published: August 2, 2017
Read "The Chicago Blues Box 2" CD/LP/Track Review The Chicago Blues Box 2
by Chris Mosey
Published: December 9, 2017