Brian Bromberg: Full Speed Ahead

When it comes to bass heroes, we can argue about who’s the funkiest or the most fleet-fingered, but what about the most misunderstood? That might be Brian Bromberg. Brian is a favorite topic in online bass chat rooms, whether the discussion concerns his tricky-to-follow solo career—with albums in different idioms, played on everything from upright to piccolo electric bass—or the controversial cover of his Jaco CD, for which he recreated the black-and-white cover of Jaco Pastorius’s debut with a portrait of himself. But while thumpers have long debated the merits and miscues of one of bassdom’s most versatile virtuosos, Bromberg has been busy growing laterally. He’s one of the best-selling smooth jazz bass artists to date, with a hefty chunk of sales to people who don’t even know he’s a bassist. He has also become an in-demand producer, writer, and arranger for a wide range of artists, including Jeff Kashiwa, Orna, and Alan Broadbent, and he contributed to Chris Botti’s Grammy-winnin
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