Music Reviews
Christian Fabian Trio

Christian Fabian Trio

Hip to the Skip

Spice Rack

Christian Fabian was born in Sweden but moved to Germany as a youth. He decided to pursue a career in jazz after meeting Dizzy Gillespie after a concert at age 12. He studied and worked all over Europe before moving to Boston to attend Berklee School of Music. Since graduating, Fabian has been a fixture on the New York jazz scene, leading groups including the New Lionel Hampton Band and the Native Jazz Quartet.

For Hip to the Skip, Fabian enlisted frequent collaborator Jason Marsalis on drums and keyboardist Matt King. The album is a collection of new tunes and standards, all done in a jazz-funk fusion style. They do a fairly reverent take on Cannonball Adderly’s classic, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy.” Their take on the New Orleans standard “When the Saints Go Marching In” is taken at a decidedly downtempo pace with a lot of room for soloing. It’s refreshing to hear a really different take on this chestnut.

The originals are a lot of fun, too. Jason Marsalis’s tune “In the Name of Feminism” is a nice midtempo jam. Matt King’s “Sidekick” is a fine funk workout. Christian Fabian’s title track, “Hip to the Skip” showcases all three musicians, as well as the fretless bass.

About Hip to the Skip, Jason Marsalis says “This is the first album I’ve ever done where I’m playing in the funk/fusion vein the whole session. This was a lot of fun.” I think you can hear that fun in the playing. These are guys who often play in a rather straight laced version of jazz, and Hip to the Skip gives them a chance to cut loose and just have fun.

Christian Fabian


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