Thursday, June 9, 2016

Home P-funkin' and goin' to Chicago!

Dr. Funkenstein is back in the lab working up a next Parliament album, and Fred is once again part of the party! The doctor, aka musical genius and icon George Clinton, welcomed Fred and New JBs trumpeter Gary Winters to his Tallahassee, Florida, studio this week, where they and local student players recorded the horn parts Fred wrote.

Next up: the Chicago Blues Festival! Fred is honored to be a part of the world's largest free blues festival, attended by 500,000 fans. This year is the 33rd annual edition and also features Shemekia Copeland and a tribute to Otis Rush

Fred and the New JBs play at 8:05pm Saturday night as part of the festival's Soul/R&B Night, after soul queen Irma Thomas, in the Petrillo Music Shell in Grant Park, at the corner of Jackson and Columbus streets. Chicago bluesman Fernando Jones will host at Meet and Greet with Fred from 6-7pm at his Blues Kids Pavilion, located at Monroe & Columbus Drive, behind the Art Institute.

Fred arrives in Chicago on Friday and will talk about his career and his own blues project at 9pm on WGN Radio's show The Download with Justin Kauffman, airing on 720 AM and online.

Fred, Gary and George Clinton.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

In Switzerland with Mister PC

Fred is a special guest for a weekend tour with bassist Pierangelo Crescenzio, aka Mister PC. Gigs tonight at the Guggenheim Kulturhotel in Liestal, tomorrow at Le Chorus in Lausanne and Saturday in Fribourg feature music from the new CD also featuring Fred, "Mister PC."

Going over the music with Pierangelo.
Rehearsing with the band.
It's lovely in Liestal. Note Fred on the poster at the door.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Home safe; set for Switzerland

Fred and his New JBs bid farewell to France at the La Ferte Jazz Festival, where painter Pascal Martos memorialized Fred on canvas.

He's got a short break before heading back to Europe to play in Switzerland with bassist Mr. PC, aka Pierangelo Crescenzio.

Enjoy these photos.
Leaving La Ferte.

Fred with Pascal Martos and his work.

Celebrating New JBs bassist Dwayne Dolphin in Bologna.

Bologna from the air.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Back in Paris, back with the New JBs

Fred and his New JBs closed out this year's jazz festival Sunday in Dudelange. The first night of the New JBs tour marked the 12th night in a row for Fred, who finished up his Generations trio tour with a hot Sabado noche in Barcelona. 

After a much-needed night off, the band continues its tour starting tonight at Le Sax in Acheres, where Fred posed for the photo below with artist Renald Zapata, who immortalized Fred on the venue's wall. 

Next up: Le Blanc Mesnil on Wednesday: the New Morning in Paris on Thursday: Bologna on Friday, Massa Carrara Saturday and the La Ferte Festival on Sunday.

Gracias to photographer Adrien Tillmann for the other photo, from Saturday.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Rochester to Spain to Paris

The singular sound that comes through Fred's trombone is reverberating through Spain right now. He's touring with Love Supreme Musica and the Generations trio with 24-year-old Leonardo Corradi on organ and Parisian drummer Tony Match. Fred´s grooving with the Jimmy Smith-inspired repetoir and he and audiences are loving it, but he still feels a little like he´s cheating on his New JBs.

Luckily, there's enough Fred to go around. The 11-city Spanish tour wrap up with shows tonight in Santiago, Friday in Irun and Saturday in Barcelona.

On Sunday he starts a New JBs tour that will include shows near Paris rescheduled after the bombings last November. That tour, courtesy of Musikburo Pfankuch and partners begins Sunday in Dudelange, then continues through AcheresLe Blanc MesnilParisBolognaMassa Carrara and
La Ferte.

Enjoy these photos from the Spain tour, and from the weekend before when he joined Christian McBride and Maceo Parker to celebrate Pee Wee Ellis´induction into the Rochester Music Hall of Fame.

Hell Dorado
Sitting in with the Gastiez Big Band.


Sala Ego LiveAlcalá de Henares

Sala Clamores, Madrid

Sala Cochera, Malaga

Rochester, New York

With second'-generation WDKX station owner Andre Langston
Pee Wee with Cecelia Calloway, whose father Cab Calloway also is an inductee.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Back from an amazin' Arabian funk experience!

With the help of Bill Bragin et al, Pee Wee Ellis and other visionaries, with some of his fellow world's funkiest musicians, Fred spread his magic through Arabia earlier this month as part of the development and premiere of FUNK: Evolution of the Revolution. The show was an electrifying funk immersion experience and celebration that succeeded in demonstrating the music's boundary-busting power.

In addition to providing the space and resources to develop the show that now will begin touring the world, Fred's two-week residency at NYU Abu Dhabi included workshops, panel discussions and delicious other opportunities for cultural exchange. Many thanks and much respect to all who were involved, including:

Pee Wee Ellis, co-music director
Brian Hardgroove, bassist and artistic director
Fred Ross, main vocalist
Carleen Anderson, guest vocalist
Chad Bernstein, trombonist and arranger
Gary Winters, trumpeter and arranger
Ernie Fields Jr., saxophonist and arranger
John Mader, drummer
Tony Remy, guitarist
Dan Moore, keyboardist
Add-2, rapper
Nicodemus, DJ
Hamdan Al-Abri, guest vocalist
Zain Awad (and family!), guest vocalist
Dr. Amir Al-Islam (and family!), host

Enjoy these photos.

Carleen Anderson onstage. (Photo by Waleed Shah)
Fred with sound(wo)man Estelle Galloway
Fred with Dr. Amir Al-Islam.
Pee Wee and Fred with guest vocalist Hamdan Al-Abri.
Pee Wee and Fred with New JBs trumpeter Gary Winters
Pee Wee and Fred with intern Sale
Fred with drummer John Mader.
Fred and bassist/artistic director Brian Hardgroove.
Fred with NYU producer Alana Barraj and New JBs saxophonist Ernie Fields Jr.
Fred with guest local drummers Ibrahim and Hamdan.
Fred speaks at the Dr. Al-Islam-hosted pre-screening discussion for "The Night James Brown Saved Boston."
Fred with Chad Bernstein.
Add-2 onstage during the show/ (Photo by Chad Bernstein)
Gary Winters' Funk 101 master classs.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Ready to get down in Abu Dhabi!

The two-week residency at NYU Abu Dhabi to create the show FUNK: Evolution of the Revolution is coming to a close: the world premiere is tonight.
The show is free and open to the public in the campus' outdoor plaza. Funkateers anywhere in the area will be sad if they miss it.