Red Light Management

Christian McBride

Artist Bio

Raised in Philadelphia, a city steeped in sould, Christian McBride moved to New York in 1989 to pursue classical studies at the Juilliard School. There he was promptly recruited to the road by saxophonist Bobby Watson. Call it a change in curriculum: a decade’s worth of study through hundreds of recording sessions and countless gigs with an ever-expanding circle of musicians. He was finding his voice, and others were learning to listen for it.

In 2000 the lessons of the road came together in the formation of what would become his longest-running project, the Christian McBride Band. Praised by writer Alan Leeds as “one of the most intoxicating, least predictable bands on the scene today,” the CMB—saxophonist Ron Blake, keyboardist Geoffrey Keezer, and drummer Terreon Gully—have been collectively evolving McBride’s all-inclusive, forward-thinking outlook on music through their incendiary live shows, as chronicled on 2006’s Live at Tonic. Part excursion, part education, the CMB is a vehicle built on a framework of experience and powered by unfettered creativity: a mesmerizing dance on the edge of an electro-acoustic fault line.

In 2009 McBride began focusing this same energy through a more traditional lens with the debut of his critically-acclaimed Inside Straight quintet, and again with the Christian McBride Big Band, whose 2012 release The Good Feeling won the GRAMMY for Best Large Ensemble Jazz Album. As his career entered its third decade, McBride added the role of mentor, tapping rising stars pianist Christian Sands and drummer Ulysses Owens, Jr. for the Christian McBride Trio’s GRAMMY-nominated album  Out Here.

He is also a respected educator and advocate, first noted in 1997 when he spoke on former 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).

In 1998 he combined roles, composing “The Movement, Revisited,” a four-movement suite dedicated to four of the major figures of the civil rights movement: Rosa Parks, Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The piece was commissioned by the Portland (ME) Arts Society and the National Endowment for the Arts, and performed throughout New England in the fall of 1998 with McBride’s quartet and a 30-piece gospel choir. For its tenth anniversary, “The Movement, Revisited” was expanded, rewritten, and revamped to feature an 18-piece big band and four actors/speakers in addition to the gospel choir. It was performed in Los Angeles at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and praised by the Los Angeles Times as “a work that was admirable—to paraphrase Dr. King—for both the content of its music and the character of its message.”

Currently he 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. He brings that same breadth of experience to bear as Artistic Advisor for Jazz Programming at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC).

Completing the circle is his work with Jazz House Kids, the nationally recognized community arts organization founded by his wife, vocalist Melissa Walker.  Exclusively dedicated to educating children through jazz, the “Jazz House” concept brings internationally renowned jazz performers to teach alongside a professional staff, offering students a wide range of creative programming that develops musical potential, enhances leadership skills, and strengthens academic performance. This shared celebration of America’s original musical art form cultivates tomorrow’s community leaders and global citizens while preserving its rich legacy for future generations.

Whether behind the bass or away from it, Christian McBride is always of the music. From jazz (Freddie Hubbard, Sonny Rollins, J.J. Johnson, Ray Brown, Milt Jackson, McCoy Tyner, Roy Haynes, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Pat Metheny, to R&B (Isaac Hayes, Chaka Khan, Natalie Cole, Lalah Hathaway, and the one and only Godfather of Soul himself, James Brown) to pop/rock (Sting, Paul McCartney, Carly Simon, Don Henley, Bruce Hornsby) to hip-hop/neo-soul (The Roots, D’Angelo, Queen Latifah) to classical  (Kathleen Battle, Edgar Meyer, Shanghai Quartet, Sonus Quartet), he is a luminary with one hand ever reaching for new heights, and the other extended in fellowship—and perhaps the hint of a challenge—inviting us to join him.

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Tour Dates

Feb 23 2024
Christian McBride's The Movement Revisited
Charlotte, NC
Feb 28 2024
Ralph Pucci International
New York, NY
Mar 06 2024
Community Concert Hall @ Fort Lewis College
Durango, CO
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Mar 09 2024
Lone Tree Arts Center
Lone Tree, CO
Mar 21 2024
Big Ears Festival
Knoxville, TN
Mar 26 2024
Ryerson University
Toronto, Canada
Mar 29 2024
The Nash
Phoenix, AZ
Mar 29 2024
Jazz Aspen Snowmass 2024
Aspen, CO
Apr 04 2024
SCU Community Theatre
Fairfield, CT
Apr 05 2024
Miller Center for the Arts
Reading, PA
Apr 06 2024
Center for the Arts of Homer
Homer, NY
Apr 07 2024
Arlington Jazz Festival
Arlington, MA
Apr 09 2024
August Wilson African American Cultural Center
Pittsburgh, PA
Apr 10 2024
Keystone Korner Baltimore
Baltimore, MD
Apr 11 2024
Keystone Korner Baltimore
Baltimore, MD
Apr 13 2024
Germantown Performing Arts Center
Germantown, TN
Apr 19 2024
Jassmine bar
Warszawa, Poland
Apr 21 2024
Club Porgy & Bess
Vienna, Austria
Apr 24 2024
Jazz Festival Basel
Basel, Switzerland
Apr 26 2024
Stockholm Konserthuset
Stockholm, Sweden
Apr 27 2024
April Jazz Club
Espoo, Finland
Apr 28 2024
MTÜ Jazzkaare Sõprade Ühing
Tallinn, Estonia
May 03 2024
Christian McBride and Inside Straight
Durham, NH
May 07 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 08 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 09 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 10 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 11 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 12 2024
Blue Note Jazz Club
New York, NY
May 22 2024
Christian McBride and Inside Straight
Roanoke, VA
May 24 2024
The Sheldon Concert Hall and Art Galleries
St. Louis, MO
May 25 2024
Caffè Vivace | Coffee House, Jazz Lounge
Cincinnati, OH
Jun 15 2024
Hollywood Bowl Jazz Festival 2024
Los Angeles, CA
Jun 20 2024
Downtown Aspen
Aspen, CO
Jun 21 2024
Downtown Aspen
Aspen, CO
Jun 22 2024
Downtown Aspen
Aspen, CO
Jul 05 2024
Love Supreme Jazz Festival 2024
Glynde, United Kingdom
Aug 09 2024
Telluride Town Park
Telluride, CO



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