||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2012)|
|Birth name||Randal Edward Brecker|
November 27, 1945 |
|Genres||Jazz, fusion, funk, R&B, rock|
|Labels||Blue Note, Arista, GNP Crescendo Record Co., MCA, GRP, Naxos, Telarc, MAMA, Denon|
|Associated acts||Brecker Brothers, Stanley Turrentine, Billy Cobham, Bruce Springsteen, Lou Reed, Sandip Burman, Charles Mingus, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Horace Silver, Frank Zappa, Parliament-Funkadelic, Gary Husband's Force Majeure, Chris Parker, Jaco Pastorius, Dire Straits|
Randal "Randy" Brecker (b. Cheltenham, Pennsylvania, November 27, 1945) is an American trumpeter and flugelhornist. Brecker studied at Indiana University, where he studied with the legendary trumpet teacher William Adam. As a performer and composer, Randy Brecker has helped shape the sound of jazz, R&B and rock for more than four decades. His trumpet and flugelhorn performances have graced many albums by a wide range of artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen and Parliament/Funkadelic to Frank Sinatra, Steely Dan, Jaco Pastorius and Frank Zappa.
Born in 1945 in Philadelphia to a musical family, he attended Indiana University from 1963-66 studying with Bill Adam, David Baker and Jerry Coker and later moved to New York and performed with Clark Terry’s Big Bad Band, the Duke Pearson Big Band and the Thad Jones Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra.
After Horace Silver, Randy joined Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers before teaming up with brother Michael, Barry Rogers, Billy Cobham, and John Abercrombie to form the fusion group ‘Dreams’. The group recorded two albums: ‘Dreams’ and ‘Imagine My Surprise’ for Columbia Records before they disbanded in 1971.
In the early 1970s, Randy performed live with many artists including Larry Coryell’s Eleventh House, Stevie Wonder and Billy Cobham. He also recorded several albums with his brother under pianist/composer Hal Galper.
He played on the first Blood Sweat & Tears album, Child Is Father to the Man, but left the band when founder Al Kooper and trumpeter Jerry Weiss left. Lew Soloff replaced him for the second and subsequent albums. He was a charter member of Larry Coryell's seminal jazz fusion band The Eleventh House in 1973.
By 1975, Randy and Michael formed the Brecker Brothers Band. They released six albums on Arista and garnered seven Grammy nominations between 1975 and 1981. Their first record featured Randy’s composition “Some Skunk Funk.”
The Brecker Brothers also led Dreams and the Brecker Brothers, a popular funk and fusion band which recorded several albums from the 1970s through the 1990s. After the Brecker Brothers disbanded in 1982, Randy recorded and toured as a member of Jaco Pastorius' Word of Mouth big band. It was soon thereafter that he met and later married Brazilian jazz pianist Eliane Elias. Eliane and Randy formed their own band, touring the world several times and recording one album together, Amanda on Passport Records.
In 1992 Randy and Michael reunited for a world tour and the triple-Grammy nominated GRP recording, ‘The Return of the Brecker Brothers’. The follow-up, 1994’s ‘Out of the Loop,’ was a double-Grammy winner.
In 2001, Randy released ‘Hangin’ in the City’ (ESC), a solo project which introduced his alter-ego Randroid with lyrics and vocals by Randroid himself. This CD released in Europe, where Randy toured extensively with his own line-up.
2004 saw Randy touring Europe as co-leader (with Bill Evans) of the band Soulbop. The WDR Big Band also invited Randy to a perform at the Leverkusen Jazz Fest. The date was of significance to Randy as it was the last time he played with his brother, who took ill shortly thereafter with a rare form of leukemia known as MDS.
In 2005, Randy’s wife Ada sat in for the first time. Randy’s schedule continued with the Randy Brecker Band performing throughout Eastern Europe.
In 2007, Randy was awarded his fourth Grammy for “Randy Brecker Live with the WDR Big Band” (Telarc/BHM), the live recording (also available in DVD format) of his performance with Michael at the Leverkusen Jazz Fest in 2004.
Tragically, Michael passed away that same year on Jan 13th.
Randy returned to Brazilian music in 2008 for the album ‘Randy in Brazil,’ which was recorded in Sao Paulo with Brazilian musicians and released on Summit Records. Chosen one of the top 10 CDs of 2008 by AllAboutJazz.com, the CD won the Grammy for “Best Contemporary Jazz Album,” bringing his Grammy total to five.
A “Tribute to the Brecker Brothers” featuring Randy and recorded live at the Hamamatsu Jazz Festival in Japan with Yoichi Murata’s Solid Brass & Big Band was released by JVC Victor in Japan in late 2008.
And in 2009, Randy released ‘Jazz Suite Tykocin,’ a project initiated and conceived by the Polish pianist and composer Wlodek Pawlik, featuring Randy as a soloist with members of the Bialystok Philharmonic. Tykocin is the area in Poland where Randy’s ancestors (mother’s maiden name: Tecosky) hail from, a fact that Pawlik discovered.
2011 saw the release of ‘The Jazz Ballad Song Book: Randy Brecker with the Danish Radio Big Band and The Danish National Chamber Orchestra,’ which garnered 4 Grammy nominations and enjoyed critical acclaim. And in 2012, Sony Legacy released the boxed set, “The Brecker Brothers – The Complete Arista Albums Collection.”
A Brecker Brothers Band Reunion tour of European festivals in the summer of 2013 supported Randy’s newest project, Randy Brecker’s “Brecker Brothers Band Reunion.”
A dual-disc release, Randy’s newest project was released on September 25th, 2013 on Piloo Records. Randy Brecker’s “Brecker Brothers Band Reunion” features a live DVD recorded at the Blue Note in NYC with a new 11-song studio recording featuring members of the Brecker Brothers bands from throughout the years including Dave Sanborn, Mike Stern, Will Lee, and Dave Weckl. George Whitty is back in the production and keyboard chair, and Randy’s wife Ada Rovatti. The dual-disc recording was released in North America by Magenta/E-One, in Europe by Moosicus Records in November and in Japan by JVC/Victor.
It is dedicated to his brother, Michael, and other departed Brecker Brothers Band members.
- Score (1969) Solid State
- The Brecker Brothers (1975) Arista
- Back to Back – The Brecker Brothers (1976) Arista
- Don't Stop the Music – The Brecker Brothers (1977) Arista
- The Atlantic Family Live in Montreaux (1977)
- Heavy Metal Bebop – The Brecker Brothers (1978) Arista
- Detente – The Brecker Brothers (1980) Arista
- Straphangin' – The Brecker Brothers (1981) Arista
- Amanda(1985) Passport
- In the Idiom (1986) Denon
- Live at Sweet Basil (1988) GNP Crescendo Record Co.
- Toe to Toe (1990) MCA
- Return of the Brecker Brothers – The Brecker Brothers (1992) GRP
- Out of the Loop – The Brecker Brothers (1994) GRP
- Into the Sun (1995) Concord Jazz
- Katewalk – Lew Del Gatto (1997) Naxos
- Hangin' in the City (2001) ESC
- 34th N Lex (2003) ESC
- Some Skunk Funk" (2006) BHM
- Some Skunk Funk – with Michael Brecker (2005) Telarc
- Box of Photographs (2005) – Johnny Rodgers & The Johnny Rodgers Band
- Unprecedented Clarity – Pitch Pine Project with Randy Brecker (2007) Challenge Records[which?]
- Randy in Brasil (2008) Summit Records/MAMA Records
With Arkadia Jazz All Stars
- Thank You, Joe!
- Get Your Wings – (1974)
With Patti Austin
- End of a Rainbow (CTI, 1976)
With Idris Muhammad
- Could Heaven Ever Be Like This (Kudu, 1977)
- Camby Bolongo (Kudu, 1977)
With Gato Barbieri
- Chapter Three: Viva Emiliano Zapata (Impulse!, 1974)
With George Benson
- Good King Bad (CTI, 1975)
With Carla Bley
- Night-Glo (Watt)
With Blood Sweat & Tears
- Child Is Father to the Man – (1968) Columbia
With Ron Carter
- Anything Goes (Kudu, 1975)
With Billy Cobham
- A Funky Thide of Sings ( 1975)
With Mark Dimond & Frankie Dante
- Beethoven's V (Cotique, 1975)
With Hubert Laws
- The Chicago Theme (CTI, 1974)
With Yusef Lateef
- In a Temple Garden (CTI, 1979)
With Arif Mardin
- Journey (Atlantic, 1974)
With Brother Jack McDuff
- Who Knows What Tomorrow's Gonna Bring? – (1970) Blue Note
With Alphonse Mouzon
- Funky Snakefoot – (1973) Blue Note
With Jaco Pastorius
- Jaco Pastorius – (1976)
- Invitation – (1983)
With Duke Pearson
With Lou Reed
- Berlin – (1973) RCA
With Todd Rundgren
- Something/Anything? (1972) Bearsville
- A Wizard, a True Star (1973) Bearsville
- Todd (1973) Bearsville
With Don Sebesky
With Horace Silver
With Miroslav Vitous
- Universal Syncopations II (1995) ECM
- A New Kind of Blue – (2004)
- Davison, Michael Allyn (1987). A motivic study of twenty improvised solos of Randy Brecker between the years of 1970–1980. University of Wisconsin—Madison. Retrieved July 11, 2012.
- Official Facebook Page
- Official Twitter
- Randy Brecker interview by Mike Brannon
- Interview with Randy Brecker (audio)
- Randy Brecker's recording of 'Ballad of John Henry' for Pioneers for a Cure