A Brian Blade Fellowship concert feels a bit like a family reunion. Its core — drummer Blade, pianist Jon Cowherd and bassist Chris Thomas — has played together for more than 20 years, and its horn players have stayed loyal to the operation, too. Its repertoire feels rooted in a deep emotional well where sacred abuts secular and jazz meets its Southern folk cousins. Sparks always seem to fly when it gathers for an infrequent recording or string of tour dates. (It helps that it's led by one of the world's great drummers; Blade is prone to violent, furious punctuation and gentle time management alike.)
With a new album, Landmarks, in the works, the band reunites for a week in New York. WBGO and NPR Music will broadcast and video webcast the Brian Blade Fellowship live at the Village Vanguard on Tuesday, Dec. 10 at 8:30 p.m. ET.
- "Landmarks" (Cowherd)
- Mercy Suite: Part 1 (Cowherd)
- Mercy Suite: Part 2 [Grace] (Cowherd)
- Mercy Suite: Part 3 [Mercy Wind] (Cowherd)
- "Shenandoah" (Traditional)
- "Farewell Bluebird" (Blade)
- Brian Blade, drums
- Melvin Butler, alto saxophone
- Myron Walden, tenor saxophone
- Steve Cardenas, guitar
- Jon Cowherd, piano
- Chris Thomas, bass
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