Monday, January 25, 2016

USA : AVAILABLE NOW: Mack Avenue SuperBand - "Live From The Detroit Jazz Festival - 2015"

AVAILABLE NOW on Mack Avenue Records:
Mack Avenue SuperBand Thrills Motor City Audiences
in Fourth Incarnation of All-Star Band Led by
Musical Director/Bassist Christian McBride on
Live From the Detroit Jazz Festival - 2015

Since its rollicking debut at the 2012 Detroit Jazz Festival, the Mack Avenue SuperBand has become a tradition at the annual event, a gathering of label superstars that the Motor City can look forward to every Labor Day weekend. Live From the Detroit Jazz Festival - 2015 captures the fourth incarnation of the all-star ensemble, for the first time under the leadership of Christian McBride. This year, McBride takes over as musical director (a role previously held by fellow bassist Rodney Whitaker), leading a knockout conglomeration of Mack Avenue artists through a set as sweltering as that late-summer day in the concrete outdoor arena of Hart Plaza.

"I've been a Mack Avenue artist for quite some time now," says McBride, who made his label debut in 2009 with Kind of Brown, the first release from his Inside Straight quintet. He's since released five more albums by that band, his trio, and his big band. "My catalogue with Mack Avenue is bigger than it has been for any other label I've been affiliated with, so I feel like an important member of the Mack Avenue family. It would have been good just to be on the gig, period, but when they asked me to be the musical director it seemed like a simple call to make."

Joining McBride as first-time members of the SuperBand are pianist Christian Sands and trumpeter Freddie Hendrix. While neither has recorded as a leader for Mack Avenue, both have recorded for the label under McBride's leadership: Hendrix in the bassist's Big Band and Sands as a member of both Inside Straight and the Christian McBride Trio. The rest of the seven-piece group all are returning veterans: drummer Carl Allen has anchored the band since the beginning, while saxophonists Tia Fuller and Kirk Whalum and vibraphonist Gary Burton are all three-time members.

The members of the SuperBand represent a diverse range of generations and styles. It offers a rare opportunity, for instance, to hear NEA Jazz Master Gary Burton engage with a group of younger players with more of a hard-bop focus than he usually encounters in his own more modern-leaning bands. "This is definitely not my normal zone," he admits with a chuckle. "But this is the music I grew up playing. I was a bebop guy in my teens and twenties - that was the standard jazz of the day. Playing straight-ahead is something I hadn't done much for a while, so I was looking forward to a relaxing, fun, jam session kind of setting where I didn't have to read a million notes and play a lot of complex music. In spite of that, some of the music ended up being fairly complicated and challenging."

Burton will be able to further enjoy that opportunity in early 2016, as the Mack Avenue SuperBand heads out on tour, affording audiences outside Detroit the opportunity to share the invigorating experience of witnessing the ensemble live on tour for the first time in its history. The line-up will be a slight variation on the one recorded at the 2015 festival, with Sean Jones returning to the trumpet and flugelhorn chair. Whalum will join the band for select West Coast performances.

"I'm looking forward to playing some of the music that we played in Detroit and a lot more and seeing where it goes," McBride says. "These bands change a little bit every year and we already know that this is not going to be a permanent group, so we just want to have as much fun as we can while we're together."

Upcoming Mack Avenue SuperBand Performances:
January 26-30 / Birdland / New York, NY
January 31 / University of Pennsylvania / Philadelphia, PA
February 4 / Berklee Performance Center / Boston, MA
February 5 / Kennedy Center / Washington, DC
February 6 / Modlin Center for the Arts / Richmond, VA
February 8 / The Carolina Theater / Durham, NC
February 10-11 / Dakota Bar and Grill / Minneapolis, MN
February 12 / Fox Cities Performing Arts Center / Appleton, WI
February 13 / Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts / Brookfield, WI
February 18 / Motor City Casino / Detroit, MI
February 19 / Chicago Symphony Center Orchestra Hall / Chicago, IL
February 20 / Manchester Craftsmens Guild / Pittsburgh, PA
March 29 / Wharton Center for Performing Arts Cobb Great Hall / East Lansing, MI
March 31 / Lobero Theatre / Santa Barbara, CA
April 1 / Walt Disney Concert Hall / Los Angeles, CA
April 2-3 / Yoshi's / Oakland, CA
April 4 / Kuumbwa Jazz Center / Santa Cruz, CA
April 5 / The Triple Door / Seattle, WA

Mack Avenue SuperBand · Live From The Detroit Jazz Festival - 2015
Mack Avenue Records · Release Date: January 15, 2016

For media information, please contact:
DL Media · 610-667-0501
Greg Angiolillo ·
Maureen McFadden ·
Don Lucoff ·

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