Christian McBride is an eight-time GRAMMY-winning bassist, composer, and bandleader. He is the Artistic Director of the historic Newport Jazz Festival, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), the TD James Moody Jazz Festival, and the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. McBride is also a respected educator and advocate for youth, and serves as Artistic Director of Jazz House KiDS and the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Summer Sessions. In addition to artistic directing and consistent touring with his ensembles, he hosts NPR’s “Jazz Night in America” and “The Lowdown: Conversations With Christian” on SiriusXM. Whether behind the bass or away from it, Christian McBride is always part of the music. From jazz to R&B, and pop/rock and hip-hop/neo-soul to classical, he is a luminary with one hand ever reaching for new heights, and the other extended in fellowship—and perhaps the hint of a challenge—inviting us to join him.
For his latest project, McBride turned to one of the city’s most beloved colloquialisms to christen Christian McBride’s New Jawn as the acclaimed bassist knows, when it comes to grit there’s no better resource to draw from than his own hometown, Philadelphia. On the band’s eponymous debut, these four stellar musicians ably walk the razor’s edge between thrilling virtuosity and gut-punch instinctiveness. The album was the debut release on Brother Mister Productions, McBride’s own imprint through his longtime label, Mack Avenue Records.
In April of 2024, 7-time Grammy Award-winner Christian McBride will introduce his new, versatile, and young quintet to Europe. This new group straddles McBride’s acoustic jazz and his singular funk-filled fusion with Ely Perlman on guitar, Mike King on keys, Savannah Harris on drums, and Nicole Glover on sax. They will return in the Summer.
In 2007, Christian McBride put together the first all-acoustic unit he’d led since the late 1990s. That band, which eventually became known as Inside Straight, featured saxophonist Steve Wilson, vibist Warren Wolf, pianist Eric Reed, and drummer Carl Allen, with McBride himself on bass. Reed was eventually replaced by Peter Martin, but the rest of the lineup has remained intact. They released their debut, Kind of Brown, on Mack Avenue in 2009. Their long-awaited follow-up was recorded at the Village Vanguard in New York five years later and released just this year. This ensemble has been called “bop-tinged and richly melodic” with “playful hipster irony” and “a paradigm of unforced, unselfconscious virtuosity.”