Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

5

Brian Bromberg: Thicker Than Water

Chris Mosey By

Sign in to view read count
Brian Bromberg specializes in smooth jazz. That's music with rough edges removed. He plays it on basses, upright and electric, and on piccolo basses which are tuned to sound like guitars.

It's all fiendishly clever but Bromberg remains modest. He uses a whole side of the album's cover to thank everyone, including God, "for trusting me with the gifts that you have given me."

He's had his ups and downs. In 1979, when he was just 19, Bromberg toured with Stan Getz, then went on to release a series of solo albums used all over the world to demonstrate high quality stereo equipment, and was nominated for a Grammy.

Then two years ago an accident resulted in him breaking his back in two places with severe trauma. He made an amazing recovery, celebrated here with what he describes as "high energy, funky, in-your-face, original music ensconced in memorable melodies, infectious grooves, and deep pocket." George Duke, Randy Brecker, Brandon Fields, and Gary Meek helped in its creation.

There's actually a reflective, almost melancholy feel to many of the tracks, with Bromberg paying homage to the blue-eyed soul sounds of his youth. Most are based on funky, repetitive bass riffs, kicking off with "Is That The Best You Can Do?" and "Minneapolis 1987." The title track is looser, more jazzy.

"Coupe De Ville" builds slowly before settling on a bass riff, followed by a tenor solo from Najee, which keeps the proceedings very much on the smooth side of soul.

"Trials and Tribulations" sees Bromberg in thoughtful mood but with some very fast piccolo bass work (sounding like guitar). "Uh-Huh" shows off his orchestrating skills with a cast that includes George Duke playing one of his last gigs.

"Your Eyes" is a lovely, relaxed ballad and is followed by "Land Of The Rising Sun," Bromberg's take on Japan. This comes as a welcome surprise after all the bass riffing, featuring Mark Hollingsworth on bamboo flutes and June Kuramoto, from the band Hiroshima, on koto.

To close, Bromberg reverts to upright bass for "A Familia," keeping it short and sweet, which is how upright bass solos should be.

Track Listing: Is That The Best You Can Do?; Minneapolis, 1987; Thicker Than Water; Coupe De Ville (Intro); Coupe De Ville; Changes; Trials And Tribulations; It’s Called Life (Intro); It’s Called Life (For Mom); Uh-Huh; Your Eyes; Land Of The Rising Sun; A Familia.

Personnel: Brian Bromberg: upright, electric and piccolo bass; Everette Harp, Najee, Doug Webb, Brandon Fields, Gary Meek, Mark Visher, Vince Trombetta, Marion Meadows: saxophone; Lee Thornburg, Randy Brecker, Willy Murillo, Tony Guererro: trumpet; Nick Lane, Jason Thor: trombone; Tom Zink, Brian Simpson, George Duke: keyboards; Gannin Arnold, Paul Jackson Jr.: guitar; June Kuramoto: koto; Franklin Richardson III: drums; Lenny Castro, Alex Acuna: percussion; Mark Hollingsworth: bamboo flutes; Zack Bromberg: loops.

Title: Thicker Than Water | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Mack Avenue Records

Tags

Watch

comments powered by Disqus

Album Reviews
Read more articles
Thicker Than Water

Thicker Than Water

Mack Avenue Records
2018

buy
Brian Bromberg

Brian Bromberg

Mack Avenue Records
2016

buy
Compared to That

Compared to That

Mack Avenue Records
2012

buy
 

Plays Jimi Hendrix

Zebra Records
2010

buy
Downright Upright

Downright Upright

Artistry Music
2007

buy

Upcoming Shows

Date Detail Price
Apr11Thu
Nick Colionne, Rick Braun, Peter White, Randy Brecker,...
Berks Jazz Fest
Reading, PA
Apr14Sun
Brian Bromberg
Berks Jazz Fest
Reading, PA

Shop

Start your shopping here and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read The Martian's Playground Album Reviews
The Martian's Playground
By Geno Thackara
January 24, 2019
Read Ex Nihilo Album Reviews
Ex Nihilo
By Chris May
January 24, 2019
Read Path Of Totality Album Reviews
Path Of Totality
By Roger Farbey
January 24, 2019
Read Time Like This Album Reviews
Time Like This
By John Sharpe
January 24, 2019
Read Bulería Brooklyniana Album Reviews
Bulería Brooklyniana
By Dan Bilawsky
January 23, 2019
Read At The Hill Of James Magee Album Reviews
At The Hill Of James Magee
By Mark Corroto
January 23, 2019
Read Stomping Off From Greenwood Album Reviews
Stomping Off From Greenwood
By Mike Jurkovic
January 23, 2019