Home » Jazz Articles » Christian McBride & Inside Straight: Live at the Village Vanguard

14

Album Review

Christian McBride & Inside Straight: Live at the Village Vanguard

By

Sign in to view read count
Christian McBride & Inside Straight: Live at the Village Vanguard
You may feel a whole lot better about things after checking out Live at the Village Vanguard. Now, without argument or scholarly discourse, that can be said for any of the time honored performances captured under that heady title, but here it's Christian McBride and Inside Straight and seriously, this one has fun written all over it. An instant Top Tenner for 2021.

Bassist/educator/advocate, McBride needs no further introduction save to say he has heightened fun into an art form. His playing, even at its most pensive and persuasive, proclaims that better times are here even if just for the immediate moment. The immediate gig. This immediate assemblage of keen minded, high flying musicians. And this is their last set of the three-night stand so they'd like to play for you now.

Vibraphonist Warren Wolf's infectiously soulful "Sweet Bread" sets a very high bar straight from the gate. But it's a bar that Inside Straight hurtles high over with each successive track. Moving like Muhammed Ali, "Sweet Bread" swings for the fences and the fences swing back on McBride's own swing-crazy "Fair Hope Theme." Pianist Peter Martin ranges all over the landscape, a singular acrobat among equals. His joyful, sinewy run on saxophonist Steve Wilson's "Ms.Angelou" is worth the price of admission and the two drink minimum. Carl AllenconjuresArt Blakey and this set never stops. The energy and vibe is so tangible on "Shade of the Cedar Tree" that it's impossible not to imagine yourself in one of the 123 or so seats that make for max capacity in the Vanguard. Elbow to elbow, head bopping, feet tapping, a smile on your face everyone sees in the walk down dark. You're on your second drink when "Gang Gang" high octanes to life: Darting, sparring, powering on.

By the time "Stick and Move" steam rolls over you, and McBride and Allen take your breath away in a serious of groove statements that leave you amazed, you can envision yourself one of the jubilant patrons, standing, cheering, applauding. It's the power of music Mach Ten. It's Live at the Village Vanguard.

Track Listing

Sweet Bread; Fair Hope Theme; Ms. Angelou; The Shade of the Cedar Tree; Gang Gang; Uncle james; Stick and Move.

Personnel

Christian McBride: bass; Steve Wilson: saxophone, alto; Warren Wolf: vibraphone; Peter Martin: piano; Carl Allen: drums.

Album information

Title: Live at the Village Vanguard | Year Released: 2021 | Record Label: Mack Avenue Records

Post a comment about this album


FOR THE LOVE OF JAZZ
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

WE NEED YOUR HELP
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

Tags

More

Wave In Gravity
Simona Premazzi
Songs from the Garret
Adam Berenson
When Winter Turns to Spring
Jo Harrop & Paul Edis

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and includes upcoming jazz events near you.