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Event Pick: Mack Avenue SuperBand at Modlin Center, Feb.6 

click to enlarge Modern jazz great, Christian McBride.
  • Modern jazz great, Christian McBride.

It’s the charismatic personality shining through incredible virtuosity that makes bassist Christian McBride one of the great voices in modern jazz. Not that his elegantly-defined sound, nimble finger-work and engaging musical imagination aren’t indispensable assets. But his generous, down-to-earth, highly-informed love of the music has won him a second career as the host of “The Lowdown” on Sirius Radio and “Jazz Night in America” on NPR.

Such cross-channel success is no surprise to anyone who remembers his half-decade stint as Music Director for the Modlin Center’s early summer Jazz Festival in the early 2000s. Since then, it has always been a bit of a homecoming when he returns, whether playing in the Pat Metheny’s Trio or leading one of his own bands at the Richmond Jazz Festival.

This Saturday he returns with the Mack Avenue SuperBand, all-star group that promises to live up to its hyperbolic billing. On vibraphones is Gary Burton, a seminal player whose 70s band launched Metheny’s career. legendary vibraphonist. Saxophonist/composer Tia Fuller complemented her successful jazz career with a high-visibility role in Beyonce’s all-female touring band. Drummer Carl Allen seems to have played with almost everyone at one time or another. The least-known player is relative newcomer trumpeter Dominick Farinacci. A substitute for the band’s usual Sean Jones., he’s built a strong resume since graduating from Julliard in 2005.

It’s an impressive band. But based on past experience, knowing that McBride will be there is enough.

Show will be held Saturday, February 6, 2016 at 7:30 p.m. Camp Concert Hall, Booker Hall of Music. Tickets $40/$10 UR Students

A free, pre-performance creative conversation with musical director and bassist Christian McBride moderated by Peter Solomon, Jazz Host of WCVE Public Radio will take place at 6:30. Location: Choral Room 127, Booker Hall of Music, Modlin Center for the Arts. Seating is limited and available on a first-arrival basis.

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