To quote the late, great Tom Petty -or was it Bob Dylan-the saturation in modern society can “jam” you. Money: jam. Family : jam. Friends: jam. Internet: jam. When it all gets too much, one thing which works for us is a good spin of (self promotion alert) The Co-Op. We created this album to be a lasting artistic beacon. A way to force us to immerse ourselves in something other that clicks of a finger or disappointment at inevitable human failures, our own and others’. Although it’s widely available online-which we promise has not earned us a penny-we prefer you do what the great DJ Bob McWilliams does: savor and spin. Repeat. Let us know how it goes for you. We’re sincerely interested.
By now anyone paying even the remotest attention here and elsewhere in the Brown Brothers universe knows our predilection for physical over virtual media. Here’s another entry in that swimming-upstream effort. Back in 2008 Elvis Costello released a solid-if-unspectacular album called Momofuku. One gorgeous highlight is the song Flutter and Wow, one of his most earnest love songs. The album came with a dowload card because the appearance of offering convenience and being technologically current seems to matter to some folks. The card was only valid for part of 2008.
We’re still listening, enjoying and learning from the beautiful lp. How many people can say the same about digital copies of the record?
Some want to be a king or a queen,
some wish for fortune and fame.
but to be truly, truly, truly loved
is more than all of these things
We come now to compare the joys of owning and listening to records versus attending a live concert. Apples and oranges for sure but there must be some basis for comparison. Here goes: a record is a virtually permanent artifact which you can study, replay and learn from for as long as you can hear and see. Indeed the best records are layered in a way which reveal more with virtually each listen, no matter how many times you’ve heard them before. Their art and text can burrow deep in your mind and you can share them with friends and family virtually at will. Concerts, while they have the undeniable uniqueness of offering the possibility of once in a lifetime experience, also have the great potential to subject the concertgoer to the wretched masses, the loud talkers, cold weather and just plain impermanence.
For those of you working with budgets which require you to choose very efficiently how to allocate your music spending dollars, think of these considerations. Now click the “shop” tab above and pick up an album. It will be with you forever.
Turn it UP!
“Community Theme Song” – titled “The Theme” on The CO-OP LP (2017) exclusively on Brown Brothers Recordings, is a late 60’s sounding (but wholly original) soul-jazz burner written by the great Wycliffe Gordon.
This song is featured on Side A (track #2) of the LP, and with beautiful communal backing by Derrick Hodge on bass, Warren Wolf on Vibraphones, Kendrick Scott on drums, and the soulful stylings of Mr. Jeremy Pelt on Trumpet.
This song was performed live and during both sets (to our knowledge the only “live in front of an audience” performances ever) on 1/22/18 @ The Blue Note in NYC during the flagship Jazz-Ageddon engagement (wait a second, did he just say Jazz-Ageddon?). This live performance was backed by Ray Angry on Keys, Warren Wolf on Vibes, Ben Williams on bass, Jeremy Pelt on trumpet, James Carter and Tia Fuller on saxophones and Marcus Gilmore on drums (or was it Ali Jackson on drums)….
We hope you enjoy this one and check out the other music we’re sharing on this site and elsewhere. If the music moves you, please share liberally with yer friends and loved ones. This is music that makes the heart and soul stronger, performed by a cast of elite gentlemen and artists.
the brown bros. ’18
Jazz-Ageddon started out as a hazy idea in Steve Mandel’s apartment in Summer, 2017. It evolved into one of the most bitterly disputed executions in label history. But over 3 nights in January 2018 it took on a life of its own. Thanks to the glue of modern day BBR, the world class vibraphonist Warren Wolf, and many, many others this wily live beast refused to die. The New York Times highlighted its first-day, first set as one of its monthly selections of standout shows. Jazz writer extraordinaire Gio Russonnello also singled out My First Mine from our Gold Sounds cd and The Theme (whose title underwent a name-ectomy to The Community Theme Song) from our vinyl lp and digital stream and download The Co-Op as noteworthy.
As heard live most recently in duet with Cyrus Chestnut @ An Die Musik in Baltimore on 1/12 & 1/13/18, and then with a bigger band (Warren, Ray Angry, Ben Williams, Willie Jones 3, Myron Walden and Mr. Sean Jones) on the final nite (both sets – 1/24) with the Jazz-Ageddon crew @ the Blue Note NYC – this is a Warren Wolf composition entitled “Katrina” – a riveting story song that the creator has described as “protest jazz”.
The version that you’re listening to (or will be if you hit play) is from The CO-OP LP, recorded back in 2007, but only recently released by Brown Brothers Recordings (and available to purchase on this site on beautifully pressed 180 gram Germanic vinyl). The CO-OP is Warren Wolf, Wycliffe Gordon, Jeremy Pelt, Derrick Hodge and Kendrick Scott.
We hope you enjoy, and please spread the word…
A Big, Brawny and truly Power-house horn section : James Carter, Wycliffe Gordon, Jeremy Pelt and Tia Fuller!
It’s been a year of seismic change on planet Brown Brothers. The Co-Op lp earned us our second consecutive group of rave reviews after label debut and critically lauded Gold Sounds, live shows were booked, cancelled and viciously fought over and my brother Arvin Suback came on board as my writing colleague for BBR missives. Through it all the label continues to propagate passion like two nymphomaniacs on an ecstasy binge. We saw some great live music this year, with standout sets being a duo perf by BBR fave Aaron Diehl and the Co-Op’s Warren Wolf 1/4/17 at Mezzrow, Gold Sounds’ Cyrus Chestnut with legends Buster Williams and Lenny White on 2/25/17 at Birdland, Roy Hargrove at the Blue Note on 3/23/17, Co-Op drummer Kendrick Scott at the Jazz Standard on 8/30/17 and Co-Op producer/trumpeter Jeremy Pelt at Smoke 12/30/17.
Those brawling Brown Brothers hit the road for a tandem whirlwind trip to Baltimore in July and separate voyages through the US and Europe.
2018 promises to be a special year where we gather momentum, plan our next project and no doubt hurl some invective along with the great music.
From Arvin, Big Daddy, Jake and all of us at Brown Brothers we want to thank you for riding with us and look forward to picking up new passengers on our musical journey.
–Alan Suback, somewhere over North Carolina. 1/3/18.
We don’t make music with an expiration date. Release dates, promotion and sales are all concepts which are traditionally temporal in the music business but we want to establish a new paradigm: forever music. We’re just as excited about Gold Sounds today as the day we went into the studio or got the first boxes of cds from the manufacturer. The Co-Op took us ten years between recording and release but it doesn’t matter. Spin that righteous record today and by the end of side two you won’t know whether it’s 2008, 2018 or 2118. There may be nothing new except the history you don’t know but there are still events happening all the time. We want our events to be forever. Forever music, forever Brown Brothers. Happy new year y’all.
In the early Spring of ’17, the Brown Brothers, in association with their visual artist extraordinaire, Mr. Michael Anderson, created an art-stunt in celebration of the release of the label’s 2nd project – The CO-OP.
The project was spurred by Anderson, when on a creative sojourn to Brooklyn with the Brown Bros., they discovered the empty shell of a building just at the BK side of the Williamsburg Bridge. Anderson mused that they should cover the windows with art from the CO-OP LP….
Fast forward a few months, and the project came to fruition after the team hunted down the building owner and struck a deal for this installation. The work was arduous (all done by Anderson, save some comic relief and the purchase of copious amounts of cold beer) as the early July heat was intense. After several hours, the building was encrusted in shades of CO-OP, and the team retired to Peter Lugers (just 20 or so yards away) for a celebratory dinner consisting of Shrimp, Tomato and Onion, well-done Slab Bacon, heady plates of medium-rare Porterhouse, Spinach (both creamed and sauteed) and some well-done germanic Home Fries.
Thanks for tuning in to this story – the 1st in what promises to be some serious, serious fun for you all as we head towards the end of ’17.
Wishing you Glad Tidings from NYC,
Arvin Suback (of the battling Suback brothers)
Outcome determinative. It’s one of the most deadly phrases in the English language. It started in the legal profession as a way for federal courts to decide whether they should show deference to state law in federal cases where state law should control. But, it has morphed into a way of thinking so pervasive that it has eaten U.S. culture like a plague. Basically outcome deteminative thinking holds that if something-a product, a politician a life– is not successful it has no worth. And today’s undisputed cultural metric for success is money. The notion is so ingrained in our collective American mindset that it’s afficted even the goodly hearted. As Lou Reed intoned though, “the goodly-hearted made lampshades and soap” so maybe the idea is not so new. Nevertheless, at least one faction of the Brown Brothers heirarchy is dedicated to starting a movement to defeat outcome-determinism. By zealously emphasizing process over results we hope to plant and cultivate a grassroots revolution. It won’t be easy and it may never end, but the fight is self-validating. Make America Great Again? Absolutely. By tiny increments of separating good from money.