AMERICAN JAZZ BASSIST, COMPOSER, BAND LEADER
Christian McBride was born on May the 31st, 1972, in Philadelphia, PA. He showed an affinity for music from early on in his life and was exposed to many of the great Jazz musicians of the time. McBride initially picked up the bass guitar but later chose to go with the double bass instead. He attended Juilliard School in New York in 1989, where he pursued classical studies.
McBride married his bride Melissa Walker, a jazz singer and educator, and they live together in Montclair, New Jersey. Outside of music, Christian McBride has been outspoken about combating racism in performing arts and hosts a weekly radio show on SiriusXM, titled “The Lowdown: Conversations With Christian.”
The saxophonist Bobby Watson took young McBride under his wing after his Juilliard School tenure, where McBride began to learn the ins and outs of the music industry first hand. A plethora of recording sessions and live shows alongside a large mix of other musicians gave Christian the opportunity to absorb as much as possible about life as a jazz artist, such that he could form his own band.
The Christian McBride band was formed in 2000 with a lineup of keyboardist Geoffrey Keezer, drummer Terreon Gully and saxophonist Ron Blake. They met critical acclaim for their live jazz performances throughout the 2000s, releasing a multitude of albums on various record labels.
McBride’s résumé boasts collaborations with a number of hugely influential musicians, some of whom outside the jazz circles, as he has remained a prolific sideman since the year 1990. Such names include Sonny Rollins, Herbie Hancock, Isaac Hayes, James Brown, Paul McCartney and more recently, Joshua Redman.
McBride’s “The Good Feeling” project was bestowed with a GRAMMY Award for Best Large Ensemble Jazz Album in 2012 as he continued to refine his style. He sought to give back to the jazz community when his wife founded Jazz House Kids, an organisation that encourages children to learn the ways of jazz music with professional performers teaching them.
Did You Know?
Christian McBride has won a total of seven GRAMMY Awards in his lifetime thus yet, and shows no signs of slowing down!
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