Brandon Sanders - Compton’s Finest

Album of the Week, 12-26-23

Adam Schulman – We Wish You a Funky Christmas
Cellar Music Group

Released November 17, 2023

Christmas is a wonderful time for music. There are so many songs in this season that are part of a shared history. We grew up listening to Christmas songs and can sing them word for word. Even if one doesn’t celebrate Christmas, the songs are a part of our culture and can be a part of who we are.

I wanted to create an album that uses these well-loved melodies as a jumping off point to explore how they would sound if they were heard through the lens of a 70s funk/fusion group. Jason Muscat, Jeff Marrs and I have played a ton through the years and I knew they would be perfect for this project. Jason and Jeff are musical brothers and create a feeling that is solid and grooving but also open and not risk-averse. Jesse Levit fit right in with his passionate and adventurous playing and deep groove. I am very grateful to Jason, Jeff and Jesse for their inspired and supportive playing on this record.

I was very lucky to get to record this album at Hyde Street Studios in SF in the same room as Herbie Hancock’s seminal album “Headhunters”. Joe Bagale is the engineer for the room and keeps it faithful to its history. We could feel the energy as soon as we walked in and hopefully some of that vibe rubbed off on us.

-Adam Shulman


Jesse Levit – alto saxophone and EWI

Jason Muscat – bass

Jeff Marrs – drums

Adam Shulman – Rhodes, Wurlitzer, organ and synths

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Each week, WDNA music director, Michael Valentine shares his album of the week. Michael’s picks often focus on new jazz releases, but sometimes dip into history with notable and classic releases worth revisiting.

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