When Robin Eubanks took the stage at Chris’ Jazz Cafe at the end of June, it was certainly a homecoming for the trombonist. He was back in his native Philadelphia, direct from a visit to his parents’ house just outside the city, and co-leading a one-off quintet with his younger brother, trumpeter Duane Eubanks.
Robin Eubanks’ new CD, Klassik Rock, Vol. 1, is a homecoming of a different kind, a return not to the place but to the sound of his youth. Electrifying his trombone, Eubanks reinterprets some of his favorite rock and funk tunes by the likes of Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and Sly and the Family Stone. “I started playing funk and rock and R&B back when I was coming up in high school,” Eubanks, 58, said prior to the Philly performance. “I grew up hearing all those horn bands back in the day. The reason I started getting into jazz was basically to learn how to play better solos in my funk bands.”