Christian McBride

Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Critic Bob Blumenthal and bassist Christian McBride, right, engage in some friendly sparring during a wide-ranging discussion about jazz.
By Andrew Lepley
James Brown and Christian McBride
By Nick Ruechel
Christian McBride interviews ultra-hip Roy Haynes
By Andrew Lepley
Clint Eastwood and Christian McBride
By Timothy Orr
Christian McBride with Roy Haynes
By John Abbott
Christian dropped to the floor and said, "I'm doing a hip-hop pose." Sonny and Roy loved it.
By John Abbott
Sonny and Christian during the concert performance of "Sonnymoon for Two"
By John Abbott
This was the sound check of a lifetime, and I was thrilled to be there.
By John Abbott
I witnessed a 20-minute musical conversation between Sonny and Christian during a rehearsal three days before the concert.
By John Abbott
Running through "Mack the Knife"
By John Abbott
"Bright Moments," said Christian, when Roy asked him how a particular cymbal sounded.
By John Abbott
After jamming together for the first time as a trio, the three musicians swapped stories about songs, composers and old friends.
By John Abbott
Every jazz musician looks up to Sonny Rollins, including the brilliant young bassist, Christian McBride.
By John Abbott
Pat Metheny Trio
By Michael Wilson
Christian McBride
By Deborah Feingold
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By John Abbott
Christian McBride
By Jimmy Katz
Philadelphia Experiment: Uri Caine, Ahmir Thompson, Christian McBride
By Candice DiCarlo
(L-R): Christian McBride, Joe Lovano, Roy Haynes and Roy Hargrove
By Enid Farber
Christian McBride performing with Chick Corea's Freedom Band at CareFusion Newport Jazz Festival 2010
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride performing with Chick Corea's Freedom Band at CareFusion Newport Jazz Festival 2010
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride performing with Chick Corea's Freedom Band at CareFusion Newport Jazz Festival 2010
By Melissa Mergner
Kenny Garrett & Christian McBride with Chick Corea's Freedom Band at CareFusion Newport Jazz Festival 2010
By Melissa Mergner
Performance by Chick Corea, Kenny Garrett, Christian McBride and Roy Haynes at 2010 Monterey Jazz Festival
By Stuart Brinin
(l-r) Brian Blade, Christian McBride, BNY Mellon Jazz 2010 Living Legacy Award Recipient Roy Haynes, and Chick Corea. Photo by Valerie Russell
Christian McBride, Pat Metheny and Antonio Sanchez
Christian McBride, Roy Haynes, Bret Primack and Sonny Rollins
By John Abbott
Christian McBride leads big band at 2011 Detroit Jazz Festival
By Russ Davis
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride, backstage at the 2012 Newport Jazz Festival
By Melissa Mergner
Christian McBride at Umbria Jazz 2014
By Tim Dickeson
Christian Sands, Christian McBride and Rodney Green (from left) at Umbria Jazz 2014
By Tim Dickeson
Randall Kline, Jeff Levenson, Christian McBride and Jason Olaine on panel on branding at the 2015 Jazz Connect Conference
By Bill Doggett II
Anya Grundmann of NPR Music and Christian McBride introducing the new show Jazz Night In America at the 2015 Jazz Connect Conference
By Bill Doggett II
Peter Gordon, Christian McBride and Lee Mergner at the 2015 Jazz Connect Conference in New York City
By Bill Doggett II
Russ Davis with the judges and hosts at the American Pianists Association Jazz Fellowship competition L to R: Amina Figarova, Bill Charlap, Russ Davis, Billy Childs, Dianne Reeves, Christian McBride and Ed Simon
Dianne Reeves and Christian McBride, hosts at the 2015 American Pianists Association Jazz Fellowship competition
By Russ Davis

1 of 49      Next

Bassist extraodinaire, composer, arranger, educator, curator and administrator, Christian McBride, has been one of the most important and most omnipresent figures in the jazz world for over 20 years.

Beginning in 1989, this Philadelphia-born bassist moved to New York City to further his classical studies at the Juilliard School, only to be snatched up by alto saxophonist, Bobby Watson. Since then, McBride's list of accomplishments have been nothing short of staggering. As a sideman in the jazz world alone, he's worked with the best of the very best - Freddie Hubbard, Sonny Rollins, J.J. Johnson, Ray Brown, Milt Jackson, McCoy Tyner, Roy Haynes, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Pat Metheny. In the R&B world, he's not only played with, but also arranged for Isaac Hayes, Chaka Khan, Natalie Cole, Lalah Hathaway, and the one and only Godfather of Soul himself, James Brown. In the pop/rock world, he's extensively collaborated with Sting, Carly Simon, Don Henley, and Bruce Hornsby. In the hip-hop/neo-soul world, he's collaborated with the Roots, D'Angelo, and Queen Latifah. In many other specialty projects, he's worked closely with opera legend Kathleen Battle, bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer, the Shanghai Quartet and the Sonus Quartet.

Away from the bass, Christian has become quite an astute and respected spokesperson for the music. In 1997, he spoke on former President Bill Clinton's town hall meeting "Racism in the Performing Arts". In 2000, he was named Artistic Director of the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Summer Sessions. In 2005, he was officially named the co-director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Also in 2005, he was named the second Creative Chair for Jazz of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association.

In 1998, McBride composed, "The Movement, Revisited", a four-movement suite dedicated to four of the major figures of the civil rights movement - Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The piece was commissioned by the Portland (ME) Arts Society and the National Endowment for the Arts. The piece was performed throughout the New England states in the fall of 1998 with McBride's quartet and a 30-piece gospel choir led by J.D. Steele.

Ten years later in 2008, "The Movement, Revisited" was expanded, re-written, re-vamped and performed again in Los Angeles at Walt Disney Concert Hall. The updated version now featured the gospel choir, an 18-piece big-band and four actors/speakers. The Los Angeles Times claimed the "Movement" as, "a work that was admirable -- to paraphrase Dr. King -- for both the content of its music and the character of its message."

Since 2000, McBride has blazed a trail as a bandleader with the Christian McBride Band. McBride's fellow bandmates - saxophonist Ron Blake, keyboardist Geoffrey Keezer and drummer Terreon Gully - have sympathetically shared McBride's all-inclusive, forward-thinking outlook on music. Releasing two CD's - 2002's "Vertical Vision", and 2006's "Live at Tonic", writer Alan Leeds called McBride's band (affectionately known as the "CMB") "one of the most intoxicating, least predictable bands on the scene today." It is a group that has mesmerizingly walked an electro-acoustic fault line with amazing results.

In 2009, Christian released his quintet CD "Christian McBride & Inside Straight" on the Detroit-based Mack Avenue Records. the CD was a return to his undiluted "straight-ahead" roots featuring alto/soprano saxophonist, Steve Wilson; vibraphonist, Warren Wolf; pianist, Eric Reed and drummer, Carl Allen.

His second release on the label was "Conversations with Christian" a recording of duets with McBride and some of his best friends and mentors - George Duke, Angelique Kidjo, Dr. Billy Taylor, Hank Jones, Chick Corea, Eddie Palmieri, Regina Carter, Ron Blake, Roy Hargrove and Russell Malone among many others.

In a stellar career that continues to showcase his remarkable talents as a consummate musician, bassist Christian reaches another milestone with the 2011 release of The Good Feeling, his first big band recording as a leader and newest release for Mack Avenue Records.

For over 20 years, McBride has appeared in numerous musical settings with just about any musician imaginable in the jazz as well as R&B and pop worlds. From playing with the likes of Milt Jackson, Roy Haynes, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Pat Metheny; to playing with and/or arranging for the likes of Isaac Hayes, Chaka Khan, Lalah Hathaway, Sting and the legendary James Brown—what has always been unique about McBride is his versatility.

In addition to his work in the neo-soul arena with The Roots, D’Angelo, Queen Latifah and others, the Philadelphia native has also led his own ensembles: The Christian McBride Band, A Christian McBride Situation and his most recent group, Inside Straight (fresh off their critically acclaimed 2009 effort, Kind of Brown). There are many sides to the musical persona of Christian McBride, and The Good Feeling has him realizing another one: as the leader, arranger and conductor of his big band.

McBride’s first foray into the world of big band composing and arranging dates back to 1995, when he was commissioned by Jazz At Lincoln Center to write Bluesin' in Alphabet City, featured on The Good Feeling and originally debuted by Wynton Marsalis & The Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra. Since that time he has composed a number of pieces for larger ensembles including The Movement Revisited, a four movement suite dedicated to four of the major figures of the civil rights movement: Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. At McBride’s core is The Good Feeling, his first full-fledged big band recording, and it’s presented in a truly impressive fashion.

A hallmark of this recording is its consistent energy, present from the opening track Shake ‘n Blake. With its powerful trumpet section pronouncement, the band is telling the listener, “Here we are, ready to have some fun, and we’re taking you along for the ride.” But just as important is the band’s understanding of nuance; it’s McBride’s arranging touch bringing out the best in its members, helping to create the tightly knit sound you hear throughout this recording.

Putting a big band together is no easy task, but in this particular band McBride feels fortunate to work with some of the most talented musicians in the jazz world. For his part, McBride feels that this process turned out the way he had hoped, with many musicians involved with whose work he is particularly familiar.

“[Trumpeter] Freddie Hendrix is one of the flagship guys in the big band, as is Frank Greene, along with trombonists Michael Dease and Steve Davis. (Steve and I go way back. He was one of my first calls). And the saxophone section was kind of a no brainer—Steve Wilson and Ron Blake, who have been the saxophonists in my last two working bands. I had to have those guys,” McBride says. “Now, one thing that seems to be my ‘Achilles heel’ with any band that I’ve had during my career is the piano chair, simply because everyone’s working all the time. But the X-Man, Xavier Davis, came in and did such a fantastic job.”

The repertoire on The Good Feeling features classic, “staple” tunes along with original McBride compositions—the perfect balance and platform on which to showcase the band. The selections range from easier, in-the-pocket swing—showcased on Broadway and I Should Care—to McBride's originals, many of which have been featured on the bassist's earlier recordings, now rearranged for big band. These tracks include: Brother Mister (the opening track of Kind of Brown); The Shade Of The Cedar Tree and In A Hurry (both featured on the 1995 classic Gettin’ to It); and Science Fiction (the nucleus for McBride’s 2000 effort Sci-Fi). Additionally the disc features tasteful renditions of When I Fall In Love, The More I See You and A Taste of Honey—all featuring exceptional performances by vocalist Melissa Walker.


Artist’s website

Articles on Christian McBride

11/24/15    Albums    By Colin Fleming

Christian McBride Trio
Live at the Village Vanguard

08/06/15    News    By JazzTimes

Christian McBride Trio to Release “Live at the Village Vanguard”

07/09/15    Features    By Christian McBride

Back in Them Days: The Lou Donaldson Interview

05/14/15    News    By JazzTimes

Sheila E and Christian McBride: Live Stream of Concert & Conversation

05/12/15    News    By JazzTimes

Philadelphia’s CAPA to Hold Benefit May 19

04/23/15    Artist's Choice    By Christian McBride

Artist's Choice: Christian McBride on Classic Funk/R&B Bass

04/15/15    News    By JazzTimes

Jazz House Kids Annual Benefit Set for May 14

12/03/14    News    By JazzTimes

Christian McBride to Keynote Jazz Connect Conference

02/10/14    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

“Jazz Meets Sports” Event Set for N.J. March 2

08/11/13    Albums    By Jeff Tamarkin

People Music
Christian McBride & Inside Straight

04/03/13    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

Christian McBride Named Jazz Advisor of NJPAC

11/08/12    Concerts    By Philip Booth

Concert Review: Christian McBride Trio, St. Petersburg, Florida

09/09/12    In Person    By Lee Mergner

Christian McBride on Mentoring, Big Bands and Miles on TV

04/02/12    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

James Moody Democracy of Jazz Festival Announced for New Jersey

01/15/12    The Gig    By Nate Chinen

2011: The Year in Gigs

12/30/11    Albums    By Philip Booth

The Good Feeling
Christian McBride Big Band

October 2011    Education    By Laurel Gross

Teacher, Teacher: Life Lessons Learned

09/07/11    Albums    By Thomas Conrad

Sonny Rollins' Road Shows, Vol. 2

09/05/11    On the Scene with MOJA    By Russ Davis

Detroit Jazz Festival, Day Two: Dave Holland, Jason Moran, Christian McBride & … Mother Nature!

08/04/11    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

George Duke to Premiere New Work Written for Christian McBride

07/10/11    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

Caramoor International Music Festival Planned for Aug. 5-7

07/07/11    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

Jazz Photo Exhibit Opens Today in NYC

08/18/10    Before & After    By Bill Milkowski

Christian McBride: Before and After

08/13/10    Concerts    By Bill Milkowski

Caramoor Jazz Festival

04/28/10    News    By Lee Mergner

Detroit International Jazz Festival Announces 2010 Lineup

04/02/10    News    By Lee Mergner

Monterey Jazz Festival Announces Lineup for 2010 Event

03/24/10    News    By Lee Mergner

Kennedy Center Announces 2010-2011 Season of Jazz Concerts & Events

09/24/09    News    By Lee Mergner

The Kennedy Center Announces 2009-2010 Jazz Season

03/23/09    Concerts    By Don Heckman

Corea-McLaughlin’s Five Peace Band at UCLA

03/17/09    News    By Jeff Tamarkin

Herbie Hancock Named Creative Chair for Jazz for L.A. Philharmonic


01/14/09    Concerts    By Bill Milkowski

"Conversations With Christian" Featuring Christian McBride & Chick Corea

January/February 2009    Critics Picks    By JazzTimes

2008 Year in Review: Top 50 CDs

January/February 2009    The Gig    By Nate Chinen

Back to the Future: 2008 in Gigs

January/February 2009    Features    By JazzTimes

2008 Year in Review: Highs & Lows

December 2008    News    By George Varga

Jazz for Obama: Democratic Jazz Party

10/29/08    Concerts    By Evan Haga

Duke Ellington Jazz Festival: Jazz on the Mall

09/25/08    Concerts    By Thomas Conrad

Tudo É Jazz Festival

09/09/08    Concerts    By George Kanzler

Detroit International Jazz Festival

03/31/08    Concerts    By Philip Booth

Pat Metheny Trio in Tampa

March 2008    Albums    By David R. Adler

Day Trip
Pat Metheny w/ Christian Mcbride & Antonio Sanchez

October 2007    Features    By Marc Hopkins

Digital Rhythms: Embracing Online Music Distribution

September 2007    News    By Mark Guarino

Bonnaroo Music Festival: Hippie Jazz

June 2007    JT Notes    By Evan Haga

Paying Homage to Honoring the Tributes

05/02/07    Concerts    By David French

Freddie Hubbard and Friends

May 2007    News    By Willard Jenkins

Living History: Jazz Legends Celebrate at D.C.’s Kennedy Center

April 2007    News    By Evan Haga


March 2007    Features    By

Farewells: Musicians Remember Their Peers Who Passed in 2006

March 2007    Farewells    By Christian McBride

James Brown

March 2007    Eighty-Eights    By Thomas Conrad

West of 5th
Hank Jones/Christian Mcbride/Jimmy Cobb

02/26/07    Concerts    By Doug Ramsey

Lionel Hampton International Jazz Festival

08/11/06    Concerts    By Josef Woodard

Hancock, McBride and Redman at the Hollywood Bowl

June 2006    Albums    By Nate Chinen

Live at Tonic
Christian McBride

June 2006    Albums    By Nate Chinen

Live at Tonic
Christian McBride

May 2006    News    By Tad Hendrickson

In Name Only? Jazz Labels Venture Outside the Genre

04/07/06    Concerts    By Bill Milkowski

Ropeadope Records Presents What Is Jazz?

November 2005    Fused    By Ron Wynn

Mysterious Voyages: A Tribute to Weather Report
Various Artists

November 2005    Fused    By Ron Wynn

Mysterious Voyages: A Tribute to Weather Report
Various Artists

07/08/03    Concerts    By Josef Woodard

Jazz A Vienne 2003

April 2003    JT Notes    By Christopher Porter

The Bad Plus,One Bad McBride and Bad Taste

April 2003    Features    By Geoffrey Himes

Christian McBride: Or So You Thought You Knew

March 2003    Features    By Stuart Nicholson

Jazztronica: A Brief History of the Future of Jazz

April 2002    At Home    By Russell Carlson

Christian McBride

January/February 2002    Albums    By Harvey Siders

SuperBass 2
Ray Brown/John Clayton/Christian McBride

12/07/01    Concerts    By Bill Milkowski

"Made In America": An All-Star Jazz Benefit

07/09/01    Concerts    By Willard Jenkins

Roy Hargrove and Enrico Rava at the 2001 Montreal Jazz Festival

July/August 2001    News    By Michael J. Renner

Swinging for the Fences

05/18/01    Concerts    By Bill Bennett

Julian Priester Benefit

October 2000    Albums    By John Murph

Christian McBride Band

October 1998    Albums    By Bill Milkowski

A Family Affair
Christian McBride

December 1997    Albums    By Jim Ferguson

Super Bass
Ray Brown, John Clayton, Christian McBride

Events featuring Christian McBride



A Family Affair






Vertical Vision

Warner Brothers

Live at Tonic


Live at Tonic


Mysterious Voyages: A Tribute to Weather Report

Tone Center

SuperBass 2


Day Trip

Nonesuch Records

West of 5th

Chesky Records

Super Bass

  • Email E-mail
  • Share Share
  • Rss RSS
  • Report Report

Next Artist

Christian Munchinger