7:30 & 9:30p | $15
Not even blindness can stop vocalist/keyboardist Joe McBride. His status as one of today’s most popular contemporary jazz musicians is rooted in a solid foundation of talent. Born in 1963 in Fulton, Missouri, he began playing piano at age four and started singing in high school. As a teenager, McBride contracted a degenerative eye disease and eventually lost his eyesight, but his passion for music was never impaired. He continued his studies at the Missouri School for the Blind and at Webster University in suburban St. Louis. McBride trekked to the sunny shores of San Diego for a while before enrolling at North Texas State University to study jazz and performance.
When McBride finally stepped out as a leader in 1992 with “Grace”, his first CD for Heads Up International, a division of Concord Music Group, he quickly became a favorite in the contemporary jazz genre. His next recordings – “A Gift for Tomorrow” (1994), “Keys to Your Heart” (1996) and “Double Take” (1998) – featured some of the giants of contemporary jazz, including Grover Washington Jr., Peter White, Dave Koz, Rick Braun, Larry Carlton, and others.
Among McBride’s many credits in 2000 Joe enjoyed a major supporting role in “The Riff”, a feature film about the New Orleans jazz scene (directed by Mark Allen and produced by Bernie Pollack).
With the help of his new acoustic trio, McBride adds another significant title to his impressive discography with the July 2009 release of “Lookin’ for a Change”. On his latest Head Up recording he features songs originally written and recorded by a range of pop luminaries, including Gnarls Barkley, Coldplay, John Mayer, Seal and Jill Scott, and reinterprets them via
straightahead jazz arrangements.
“To be honest, I really wanted to try to reach a different audience with my new album,” McBride says. “I’m all about growth. It’s all about making the old things new. It’s okay to look back for just a moment, but the more important idea is to keep our eyes on the future.”