When jazz titans Joshua Redman, Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride, and Brian Blade released the landmark MoodSwing album during their mid-20s, each band member was widely considered a “future star” of jazz. They have met those lofty expectations and then some, each of them now a worldwide star with remarkably diverse trajectories as players, composers, and bandleaders. Now, nearly three decades later, they’re reuniting as a supergroup quartet to explore the evocative compositions and relatable musical approach that made MoodSwing a rare, instant hit with both hardcore jazz fans and casual listeners.
In the liner notes for the MoodSwing album, bandleader Redman explains the record’s concept: “Jazz is about feeling, communication, honesty, and soul. Jazz is not supposed to boggle the mind. Jazz is meant to enrich the spirit… Jazz is for your heart. Jazz moves you… I just want one thing to be known: Every composition on this recording exists to evoke a mood.” Indeed, for all of the impressive group interplay and individual spotlights, each piece is guided by a strong, recognizable sense of feeling.
Whether you’re already a fan of these musicians or perhaps looking for a convincing entry point to jazz, it’s an exciting chance to hear four of today’s best players revisit this significant repertoire after decades of growth and musical exploration.
Joshua Redman tenor saxophone
Brad Mehldau piano
Christian McBride bass
Brian Blade drums
“For all his technique and improvisational gifts, [Redman] has taken pains to make a recording that speaks eloquently to the connoisseur and the casual listener alike.”Chicago Tribune
“Redman finds ingenious ways of creating a mode of acoustic jazz that is both entertaining and enlightening. ”Entertainment Weekly