Personnel: Christian McBride (keyboards, synthesizer, acoustic & electric basses, fretless bass); Will Downing, Vesta (vocals); Russell Malone (acoustic & electric guitars); Tim Warfield (tenor saxophone); Charles Craig (piano, electric piano, Fender Rhodes, Mini-Moog synthesizer); Gregory Hutchinson (drums); Munyungo Jackson (percussion, tambourine).
Recorded at O'Henry Studios, North Hollywood, California on January 27-29, 1998 and LeGonks, Hollywood, California on January 30-31, 1998. Includes liner notes by Christian McBride.
One of the most technically adept and commercially successful jazz bassists to emerge in the '90s, Christian McBride parlayed a solid sense of time and an adventurous compositional flair into a solid solo career. On A FAMILY AFFAIR, he wanders a bit from his jazz roots, but it's to his credit that he's not mired in tradition. The opening tune "I'm Coming Home" recalls the funky sounds of Lee Morgan and Cannonball Adderly as it serves up an R&B-spiced sonic stew that continually simmers, with only McBride's good taste keeping things from bubbling over. Elsewhere, he explores fusion, R&B and straight-ahead jazz balladry to various extents, but the element tying it all together is McBride's fluid bass work, and his solos on both electric and acoustic bass are high points on A FAMILY AFFAIR.