Clubertson - Come On Up
multitalented keyboardist/trombonist and producer extraordinaire Brian
Culbertson from Chicago is about to turn up the heat a few notches
with his 7th and possibly most appealing release titled “Come
On Up” on Warner Bros. Records. No, Brian is not
necessarily doing anything that different musically however, he’s
just sweeting up the stew a bit with some of the top players in
contemporary jazz with 12 memorable tracks that’s bound to make
it’s mark high on the charts as the summer season begins.
players: Steve Cole ~ Tenor Saxophone & Additional Flute, Rickey
Peterson ~ Keyboards, Hammond B3 Organ, Marcus Miller & Alex Al ~
Bass, Glenn McKinney ~ Guitar, Todd Sucherman ~ Hit Hat and Cymbals,
Lenny Castro ~ Timbales and Congas, Jerry Hey & Gary Grant ~
Trumpet, Bill Reichenbach ~ Tenor and Bass Trombones, Brian Ripp ~
Baritone Saxophone, Tony Maiden ~ Wah Guitar, Stephen Lu ~ Additional
Keyboards and Drum Programming, Paul Jackson Jr. ~ Pad and FX Guitars,
Oscar Seaton Jr. ~ Hi-Hat and Cymbals, Kenneth Crouch ~ Fender Rhodes
and Wah Clavinet, Gerey Johnson & Jorge Evans ~ Guitar, Rahsaan
Peterson ~ Vocals, Monty Neuble ~ Talk Box, Rick Braun ~ Muted
Trumpet, Norman Brown ~ Guitar, Carly Bauer ~ Flute (Low Filtered),
Michael Thompson ~ Electric and E-Bow Guitars, Steve Rodby ~ Acoustic
Bass, Justin Hori ~ Scratches and Beat Box and of course Brian
Culbertson ~ Piano, Keyboards, Drum Programming, Trombone, Trumpet,
and Synth Bass.
opener titled “Intro” could be a waste however; it leaves
the door of opportunity open for many possibilities.
the second position “Say What” resembles a pattern
musically that’s graced many of Culbertson’s cd’s before
therefore, making this mid-tempo song a track that smoothjazz radio
will cherish from the word go featuring his homey Steve Cole on
at the 3rd spot Marcus Miller pays a visit with a
rapacious funky groove called “Midnight”, this is yet
another mid-tempo groove that will immediately have your head bopping
with Chicagoian Steve Cole adding some rampant horn chops that
makes this track well worth another listen.
next two tracks will remind you that Brian’s focus is still in tact
and very much on his fan-base with another mid-tempo gem called “Playin’”
and melodic piece titled “Days Gone By” which only
compliments his abilities as a songwriter and pianist.
Brian! “What’s Up B” at the 6th position? This
is one of the funkiest tunes on the cd featuring Brian playing
the trombone masterfully yet somehow you’ve managed to shortchanged
the listener with only a 1:50sec track come on now!
Fire” is a classic Earth, Wind & Fire that just happens one
of my personal favorites that features Monty Neuble playing the
“Talk Box” giving us a taste of Roger Trautman flavor.
in at the 8th spot is a cut called “Fly High”
featuring the co-writing skills and vocals of Rahassan Patterson
along with Glenn McKinney choppin guitar licks and Monty
Neuble returns with his services jammin’ the “Talk Box and Wah
Synth” this time around. This tune is filled with the near perfect
hooks and textures keeping you in stride with the “Culbertsized”
Night” features Brian’s friend Rick Braun on the
muted trumpet recapturing the essence and tonality of friendship via
trumpet and chording keyboard melodies that Brian expresses
and Grammy winner Norman Brown lens his scat-vocals and guitar
talents to the mid-tempo title track “Come On Up” at the
ten position as Justin Hori clearly accents this catchy number
with “scratches and beat box”.
Love” is a rebirth of melodic renderings featuring the artistry
of bassist Steve Rodby, the Hammond B3 magic of Ricky Peterson and of
course, Brian’s beautifully constructed piano stylings.
you’ve done again Brian, you’ve served up another funky jam
playing the trombone (this would make Wayne Henderson smile) on the
second funkiest track “Funky-B” on the cd for only 1:45sec,
come on now, What up B? Are you trying to tell us something
here? Please, if you will play the trombone more your ability speaks
n all “Come On Up” is a rarity these days in the smoothjazz
world, meanwhile this disc surpasses most in this genre by a long
shot. Kudos for this fabulous effort, the songwriting and playing
various instruments by the multitalented Brian Culbertson speaks