I had a night booked at The Blue Whale—a killer jazz club in Los Angeles—but hadn’t yet selected a band. While touring with Snarky Puppy, I got talking with Mark and Sput about NAMM (a music convention held each January, south of Los Angeles). They were both going to be in town for it so I asked them to join me at the Whale. Then I asked Kaveh (bassist in Kneebody, among other bands). We'd performed together recently and I was looking for an excuse to play again. Then I found out Nir (who I'd been playing with for awhile) was going to be in town from New York. Perfect! This was my chance to experiment with a two-guitar band.
Ever since playing in John Mayer’s band, I’d wanted to lead a guitar-based group. John had three guitarists (including himself) in his touring band. This meant a lush cushion of guitar-y goodness enveloped every solo I played. Imagine the best mattress and pillow combination you’ve ever experienced. It feels like that. But of course, it’s not just the guitar. It’s the player.
Excited by the idea of this group, I decided to borrow a page from the Snarky Puppy playbook and film it. There was one catch: we had no time to rehearse, and barely a sound check. I’d played with each of these guys in different scenarios, but never as a unit. So we set up in a circle, surrounded by an audience and five cameras, and played these tunes together for the first time. No pressure! I thought we might get two or three good videos out of it. We got more. Alex Chaloff and his team captured not only gorgeous video but stunning audio. When I heard the result I realized this needed to be its own album. So here it is. Live. Raw. Filled with an energy that comes only from tight-rope walking in front of an audience. My younger self would hear only the “mistakes.” My current-age-self hears the magic. I hope you hear it, too.
2.Blues For Charlie
6.Can't Wait For Perfect
Nir Felder — electric guitar
Mark Lettieri — electric guitar
Kaveh Rastegar — electric bass guitar
Robert “Sput” Searight — drums
Recorded live at The Blue Whale, Los Angeles, CA, on January 21, 2016.
Recorded and mixed by Alex Chaloff & Bucket’s Moving Company.
Mastered by Scott Kinsey.
All songs by Bob Reynolds, Mufala Music, ASCAP.
Special thanks to Nir, Mark, Kaveh, and Sput for their brilliant musicianship (and willingness to cliff dive with me in front of an audience, cameras, and microphones). Thanks to Joon Lee for the incredible music club you’ve built and sustained in LA. Thanks to Alex & team for the phenomenal job capturing it all in such high definition.