"the tastiest thing to emerge from Philadelphia since the cheese steak sandwich"
Bassist Christian McBride, who is at Dazzle with his trio on Friday and Saturday, just might be the tastiest thing to emerge from Philadelphia since the cheese steak sandwich. Before he even traveled to New York and Julliard in 1989, the young bass master had lots of exposure to the music in his native Philadelphia. Over the years, McBride worked with a host of players starting with Bobby Watson and continuing with Benny Golson, Freddie Hubbard, Roy Hargrove and Benny Green, as well as recording for Verve starting in the mid-1990s.
His recent trio with pianist Christian Sands and drummer Ulysses Owens Jr. has been together for some three years and has recently released the CD Out Here on Mack Avenue – his fifth disc for that label. The in-demand McBride has also appeared as a sideman on more than 300 recordings that cover the waterfront of music since 1990.
Not too surprisingly, the sets by McBride’s trio on Friday and Saturday at 7 and 9 p.m. are listed as sold out. But it might be worth swinging by Dazzle, 930 Lincoln, to see if something might open up ($28 at 7 p.m./$22 at 9 p.m., 303-839-5100).
Friday night also features another major figure in jazz, guitarist Pat Metheny, who is at the Paramount Theater, 1621 Glenarm, at 8 p.m. with his potent Unity Band. That quintet is a collection of some monster players such as saxophonist Chris Potter, drummer Antonio Sanchez and bassist Ben Williams. The four are joined by an Italian player Giulio Carmassi on piano and assorted other things ($39.50 and up, 303-623-0106). On Thursday, before hitting Denver, Metheny’s Unity Band is at the Lincoln Center Performance Hall in Fort Collins at 7:30 p.m. ($42 and up, 970-221-6735). The group’s new CD is Kin (<--- --->).
Also on Saturday, pianist Purnell Steen brings his Le Jazz Machine to the Crossroads Theater, 2590 Washington, off of Welton in Five Points to provide a taste of Jazz at Five Points at 7 p.m. Steen’s machine features the outstanding trumpeter Hugh Ragin, saxophonist Max Wagner, bassist Fred Fuller, drummer Todd Reid and singer Myra Warren. The evening benefits the Jazz Youth Workshop (420, 303-909-9754).
On Sunday, trombonist Mark Patterson, guitarist Dale Bruning, trumpeter Ron Miles, bassist Mark Simon and drummer Paul Romaine join forces as Group Stories at Dazzle at 7 p.m. ($15). Patterson, going back in time, was a student of Bruning’s, as was Bill Frisell. For his part, the mighty trumpeter Miles received great lessons on the songbook of jazz standards while working with Bruning in a trio that had Paul Warburton on bass.
Monday a Dazzle is the regular night for the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra and its joint efforts with high school bands. This time around it’s the group from Poudre High School. The music is at 7 p.m. ($15). Then, on Tuesday, a guitarist out of Boston, Aaron Largent-Caplan, brings his instrument to Dazzle for a night of sounds drawn from Spain, Japan and the U.S. Largent-Caplan has played to strong reviews around the country. He is on stage at 7 p.m. ($15/$10 students).
The musical week ends on Wednesday when a group of alumni from the Colorado Conservatory for the Jazz Arts hits at 7 p.m. ($10/$5 students).