MP3 Dean Brown - DBIII
Recorded in the heart of the Japanese metropolis at The Cotton Club, this vibrant live recording captures the earth-shaking energy and fiery licks streaming off the bandstand in this intimate Tokyo night spot. With Dean Brown, Dennis Chambers & Will Lee
10 MP3 Songs in this album (68:56) !
Related styles: Jazz: Jazz Fusion, Jazz: Jazz-Funk, Instrumental
People who are interested in Jeff Beck John Mclaughlin John Scofield should consider this download.
with Dennis Chambers & Will Lee
Live in Tokyo
For his third outing as a leader, guitarist Dean Brown called on two longtime friends to complete a potent power trio. And in bassist Will Lee and drummer Dennnis Chambers, he wound up with the ultimate rhythm section. Together this dream team lays down some seriously funky grooves while interacting in the moment with jazzy abandon on DBIII: Live in Tokyo. Recorded in the heart of the Japanese metropolis at The Cotton Club, this vibrant live recording captures the earth-shaking energy and fiery licks streaming off the bandstand on three consecutive nights in this intimate Tokyo night spot. From finely-crafted Brown originals like the edgy “Take This,” the slamming “Solid” and the epic “The Battle’s Over (For Jaco)” to faithful covers of Jimi Hendrix’s “Up from the Skies” and The Beatles’ “All You Need Is Love,” DBIII: Live in Tokyo easily straddles genres while remaining organically in the moment. And the guitarist, a bona fide road warrior who has toured with the likes of David Sanborn, Billy Cobham, Marcus Miller and the Brecker Brothers, delivers some jaw-dropping fretboard fireworks from track to track.
Throughout this power trio project, nods to Brown’s youthful heroes – Hendrix, The Beatles, Jeff Beck, John McLaughlin – are apparent. “It’s not like I’m trying to relive my childhood,” says the veteran guitarist, “but I try to stay connected to what it is that made me want to be a musician in the first place.”
He adds that the eclectism heard on DBIII, which travels from slamming P-Funk-ish “Break Song” and “Camel Hump” to the Latin flavored “Clave Groove” and a jazzy solo guitar reading of “Soul Eyes,” also comes easy to him. “Back in day, there was no particular demographics for concerts. It didn’t have anything to do with ‘This is a jazz show’ or ‘This is a psychedelic rock show.’ Instead, you’d have shows at the Fillmore, for instance, where people could see Miles Davis and then the Grateful Dead and maybe Johnny Winter, or maybe Steve Miller, Cannonball Adderley and the Mahavishnu Orchestra…on the same night! That’s the kind of environment I came up in and that’s what I always try to represent on my recordings. It’s all about being musical but also being fearless. And that’s a rare gift, to be able to let it all hang out and being so tuned into the energy flow, yet still be playing music.”
While Will Lee holds things together with his deeply-rooted basslines and Dennis Chambers traverses the kit with all-world aplomb, Brown is liberated to wail with cathartic abandon on this scorching trio affair. And he hits some incendiary peaks in the course of this exhilarating live set. “The idea for this trio was to make it sound big and full and sort of orchestral,” says Brown. “And these guys were down with the concept and made it work. They both played so freely but also musically. They have fantastic ears and they’re both very thoughtful players.”
While the live trio recording at The Cotton Club could have stood as is, Brown did some minimal augmenting in the studio after the fact. As he explains, “That was just the producer in me. I wanted to fill out certain sections so I threw a couple of rhythm guitar parts underneath, and on ‘Solid’ I put some acoustic guitar in there. But I tried not to overdo it. I tried to really keep the integrity of the basic performance. Of course, all the solos are live. And as far as Will and Dennis, what you hear on the record is what they did on those three nights (Dec. 5, 6, 7, 2008).”
DBIII actually marks the second time that the three musicians have played together. They had previously played on a few tracks from Chambers’ 2006 studio recording on BHM, Planet Earth. “But we’ve never done any live gigs together,” says Brown. “I’ve done a couple of tours with Dennis in David Sanborn’s band. Suffice it to say, we’ve been waiting to play with each other for a really long time, especially in a situation like this where there was a little bit more freedom.”
They kick off the collection with the raucous, wah-wah-fueled “Take This” (from Brown’s 2001 recording, Here). “Solid” (from the same record) is a 12/8 groover that covers a wide spectrum of dynamics. “Break Song” (from 2004’s Groove Warrior) opens with a slick Will Lee bass lick before the piece settles into that loose-tight funk vibe exemplified by such celebrated funkateers as The Meters and P-Funk. Brown demonstrates a virtuosic use of effects and tones on this slamming track. “There’s a very nice interaction between the three of us on that,” says Brown. “In that setting you can really converse with one another without it getting too cluttered. Whereas, if you have one or two more guys, you have to pick and choose where you’re going to throw your two cents in. But this kind of interactive, conversational playing just comes so natural to us three.”
The trio’s soulful rendition of Hendrix’ “Up from the Skies” is underscored by Chambers’ supple brushwork and Brown’s subtle wah-wah rhythm playing. The playful back-and-forth vocal trading between Brown and Lee here simulates the tricky left-right panning effect of Jimi’s original (from the 1967 landmark Axis: Bold As Love). Brown’s funk-fusion flavored “Two Numbers” is the only new, previously unrecorded original here and features some accomplished chordal melody work by Dean on his Parker Fly electric guitar. “That was an interesting challenge to try and play this chord melody, which is more of an almost traditional jazz guitar approach, but then have this fusion groove going on under it. And it had to be done in a sort of a very elegant, sensitive way in order to make it work. Because if you bashed it too much it would just be too overbearing. And if you played it too much like a waltz, then it could sound just a little bit corny. So it was a nice challenge and it came out really well.”
“Camel Hump” is an odd-metered Brown original which originally appeared on Chamber’s Planet Earth. Brown unleashes some aggressive distortion-laced licks on this monstrously funky number while Chambers turns in a stellar solo at the tag. “I wanted to revive that tune because of the connection that Dennis and I have on it. And I originally wrote that as a vehicle for both Dennis and myself to show that 4/4 isn’t everything in terms of being able to play some groove-oriented stuff. And Dennis’ solo here is a real tour-de-force. I listen to it and get goosebumps.”
For a change of pace, Brown offers a tender unaccompanied reading of Mal Waldron’s hauntingly beautiful “Soul Eyes,” which has the guitarist channeling his inner Lenny Breau. ”I’ve been knowing that song and loving it since I was 16,” says Brown. “The first time I heard it was on a John Coltrane record called Coltrane, which also had ‘Miles Mode’ and ‘Inch Worm’ and ‘Out of this World’ on it. That’s my favorite Coltrane record. It’s the first record I listened to that made me love jazz and want to know more about it. So I just wanted to pay homage to that by playing a song that just meant so much to me in terms of revelation. And if you like my version, I suggest you go and listen to the Coltrane version because it’s just ambrosia.”
“Clave Groove” (from Here) is a piece that Brown originally wrote with drummer Billy Cobham in mind. “I’ve worked a lot with Billy over the years and still play with him from time to time. And for me, he’s mythical. It’s like playing with some kind of Marvel Comics superhero. So I wanted to write something that addressed Billy’s sort of south of the border sensibility (he’s from Panama). Billy played on the original recording of this tune and Dennis really captured the right spirit and plays an amazing drum solo on this version, which really captures the kind of cross-pollination between jazz and Latin music that goes on in New York.”
Brown’s dramatic “The Battle’s Over (For Jaco),” a moving homage to the late, great bassist-composer Jaco Pastorius, carries special meaning for the three Jaco colleagues. “There was something about the way Dennis decided to play it, so understated, that left all this space for us the notes to kind of hang in the air and linger a big longer. And Will, who was close to Jaco, obviously put some real heart into that one. And for me, it was just fun to sort of steer this ship and kind of see where the winds took us.”
They close the set in buoyant fashion with a soulful Stax/Volt rendition of the Beatles anthem, “All You Need Is Love.” As Brown explains, “I had originally arranged that for Roberta Flack for a Beatles project which is still pending. She asked a bunch of people to produce songs for this project and I did two – this one and ‘Blackbird.’ I especially liked the arrangement for ‘All You Need Is Love’, so I decided to include it on this record, and Will really embraced this sort of Al Greenish approach we took. Dennis also said it was his favorite song to do. And I like playing it too because I’m very comfortable in that whole R&B environment in terms of the comping and the whole feel of the track. I think it came out great.”
His most explosive recording to date, DBIII: Live in Tokyo shows Brown in a particularly revealing setting. And he rises to the occasion with his all-world bandmates. “I’m just thrilled that Will and Dennis wanted to be a part of this project,” says Brown. “They were both so giving in terms of realizing my vision of how to play these songs, which I’ve obviously crafted in a real personal way. And for us, it was a cool challenge to sort of walk this tight rope between funk rock and jazz. We touched a lot of bases on this record, though I tried not to do it in a contrived way. It all felt natural to me. I’m very happy about it and hopefully it’ll stand the test of time.”
Author: Bill Milkowski
For close to 30 years Guitarist, composer, Dean Brown has been an integral part of the global fusion and contemporary jazz scene, recording and/or touring with jazz greats such as Marcus Miller, The Brecker Brothers, David Sanborn, Bob James, Joe Zawinul, Billy Cobham, George Duke, Roberta Flack, Lenny White, Vital Information, and his own groups. Brown''s guitar work can be heard on well over 100 albums and four Grammy® Award winners. Records such as The Brecker Brothers'' “ Return of the Brecker Brothers” and “Out Of The Loop”, Marcus Millers “The Sun Don''t Lie”, Billy Cobhams “Warning”, and Joe Zawinuls “Faces and Places” are just a few out of the long list. His performances include Live DVD''s with Marcus Miller, Billy Cobham, Gil Evans, David Sanborn and Friends, Louie Belson, Bob James, and Steve Smith''s Vital Information . Dean has produced three solo CD''s titled “Here”(2001) “Groove Warrior”(2004) “DBIII” (2009) and an instructional/live DVD “Modern Techniques for the Electric Guitarist”(2008) for publishing giant Hal Leonard.