Mar 252016

Christian Sands (L) with the Christian McBride Trio

Christian Sands (L) with the Christian McBride Trio

It’s been a while since I spoke to Orange resident, Amity grad and jazz piano phenomenon Christian Sands. If you miss him as much as I do, you have an opportunity to see him play in Ridgefield in two weeks as part of a trio.

Press Release from the Playhouse: 

2016 Grammy Award Winner for Best Improvised Jazz Solo “Cherokee” – bassist extraodinaire, composer, arranger, educator, curator and administrator, Christian McBride,brings his Trio to The Ridgefield Playhouse on Sunday, April 10 for a 109 Cheese & Wine Evening of Art, Wine and Jazz at 8 p.m.

With pianist Christian Sands and drummer Jerome Jennings, McBride has created an energized unit that is “powered from the ground up!” McBride has been one of the most important and most ubiquitous figures in the jazz world for more than 20 years. In 1989, this Philadelphia-born bassist moved to New York City to study at the Juilliard School, only to be snatched up by alto saxophonist, Bobby Watson.

Since then, McBride has amassed a mind-blowing list of accomplishments. He has worked with the very best Jazz artists – Freddie Hubbard, Sonny Rollins, J.J. Johnson, Ray Brown, Milt Jackson, McCoy Tyner, Roy Haynes, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock and Pat Metheny.

He’s also made contributions 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, James Brown.

In the pop/rock world, he’s 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.

His talents have also reached into the world of opera, where he’s worked closely with the legendary Kathleen Battle, bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer, the Shanghai Quartet and the Sonus Quartet.

The evening kicks off in the lobby at 7:15 p.m. with a complimentary wine tasting and an art exhibit by Roy Weinstein, Ridgefield Guild of Artists member. You can also make it a great night out of dinner and a show – visit Toozy Patza Pizza Jazzeria and enjoy a free glass of house wine with your entrée when tickets are presented.

Christian McBride currently hosts and produces “The Lowdown: Conversations With Christian” on SiriusXM satellite radio and National Public Radio’s “Jazz Night in America,” a weekly radio show and multimedia collaboration between WBGO, NPR and Jazz at Lincoln Center, showcasing outstanding live jazz from across the country.

With his staggering body of work, McBride is the ideal host, drawing on history, experience, and a gift for storytelling to bridge the gap between artist, music, and audience. As a respected educator and advocate, in 1997 McBride spoke on President Bill Clinton’s town hall meeting “Racism in the Performing Arts.”

He has since been named Artistic Director of the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Summer Sessions (2000), co-director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem (2005), and the Second Creative Chair for Jazz of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association (2005).

For tickets ($42.50), call the box office at 203-438-5795, or visit ridgefieldplayhouse.org.

The Ridgefield Playhouse is a non-profit performing arts center located at 80 East Ridge, parallel to Main Street, Ridgefield, CT.

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