Big Neighborhood

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jonathan Widran
Like all the legends he ever worked for or with, from Miles Davis to Jaco Pastorius, Billy Cobham to the Brecker Brothers, the five-time Grammy nominee has learned over the course of his 26-year recording career -- 33 since he got his breakthrough gig with Blood, Sweat & Tears -- something about the nuanced art of collaboration. Not only does it take a village to make a great, boundary-stretching jazz recording, the wild excursions on his second Heads Up date seem to be shouting, as it actually involves a whole Big Neighborhood. On this diverse 12-track set, whose styles range from blazing jazz fusion to African-tinged exotica and trippy Middle Eastern journeys, ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jonathan Widran
Like all the legends he ever worked for or with, from Miles Davis to Jaco Pastorius, Billy Cobham to the Brecker Brothers, the five-time Grammy nominee has learned over the course of his 26-year recording career -- 33 since he got his breakthrough gig with Blood, Sweat & Tears -- something about the nuanced art of collaboration. Not only does it take a village to make a great, boundary-stretching jazz recording, the wild excursions on his second Heads Up date seem to be shouting, as it actually involves a whole Big Neighborhood. On this diverse 12-track set, whose styles range from blazing jazz fusion to African-tinged exotica and trippy Middle Eastern journeys, Mike Stern invites a few of his pals back who populated his similarly eclectic 2006 label debut Who Let the Cats Out? Especially significant is the renewed invitation extended to Richard Bona, whose rumbling bass and spirited vocalese bring authenticity to the highly spiritual African vibes of "Reach." Looks like Stern's got a little crush on the brilliant young bassist/vocalist Esperanza Spalding, whose voice, he says, knocks him out. Pairing her with drum great Terri Lyne Carrington isn't just a cool, girl-power endeavor. The two have genuine chemistry with the guitarist; "Song for Pepper" drifts dreamily with Spalding's endearing vocalizations, and "Coupe de Ville" darts and swings playfully as Bob Malach's sax and Stern's strings weave through the rhythmic foundation forged by Spalding and Carrington. Finally, Stern swings the door open to a lot of fresh melodic and improvisational ideas via his jazz-rock cohorts Eric Johnson (playing it cool on the moody, soulful "6th Street") and Steve Vai (wailing like crazy on the searing title track). He goes artsier with "jam band godfathers" Medeski, Martin & Wood, who help spin a wild blues-rock web on "Check One" and cool to a simmer on the more pop
ock-oriented "Check One." There's also an appearance by Stern's old friend, Randy Brecker. This is one block party jazz fusion fans won't want to miss in 2009!
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/11/2009
  • Label: Heads Up
  • UPC: 053361315726
  • Catalog Number: 3157
  • Sales rank: 37,281

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Big Neighborhood (7:40)
  2. 2 6th Street (7:49)
  3. 3 Reach (5:30)
  4. 4 Song For Pepper (5:43)
  5. 5 Coupe De Ville (4:36)
  6. 6 Bird Blue (5:44)
  7. 7 Moroccan Roll (7:06)
  8. 8 Long Time Gone (7:52)
  9. 9 Check One (7:39)
  10. 10 That's All It Is (4:52)
  11. 11 Hope You Don't Mind (5:18)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Mike Stern Primary Artist, Guitar
Eric Johnson Guitar, Guest Appearance
Steve Vai Guitar, Guest Appearance
Jim Beard Piano, Keyboards, Guest Appearance, Hammond B3
Terri Lyne Carrington Drums, Guest Appearance
Bob Malach Saxophone, Guest Appearance
John Scofield Guest Appearance
Cindy Blackman Drums, Guest Appearance
Chris Minh Doky Bass, Bass Guitar, Guest Appearance
Randy Brecker Trumpet, Guest Appearance
Lionel Cordew Drums, Guest Appearance
Bob Franceschini Saxophone, Guest Appearance
Lincoln Goines Bass, Bass Guitar, Guest Appearance
John Medeski Clavinet, Hammond B3
Dave Weckl Drums, Guest Appearance
Victor Wooten Guest Appearance
Medeski, Martin & Wood Guest Appearance
Billy Martin Drums
Chris Wood Electric Bass, Acoustic Bass
Richard Bona Bass, Bass Guitar, Vocals, Guest Appearance
Esperanza Spalding Bass, Bass Guitar, Vocals, Guest Appearance
Eric Johnson Guitar
Technical Credits
Jim Beard Producer
Mike Stern Composer
David Boyle Engineer
Roy Hendrickson Engineer
Phil Magnotti Engineer
Bill Milkowski Liner Notes
Craig Brock Engineer
Helix Hadar Engineer
John Shyloski Engineer
Philip Magnotti Engineer
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