It says a lot about the caliber of American roots band The Brothers Brown that its co-founders first met at the Grammy Awards.
Both named Paul Brown and both accomplished solo musicians and producers, they bonded fast.
“We were both nominated for a Grammy, and we were making fun of each other,” remembers one of the Browns, who is now a two-time Grammy-winning producer, vocalist and guitarist. “We joked, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to put together a band with two Paul Browns?’”
They quickly realized that could be more than a joke.
They soon invited two more industry veterans to join, drummer Peter Young and bassist David Santos — impeccable artists who “play with everybody on the planet,” Brown says — and found they had a solid group.
Now performing at Myron’s Cabaret Jazz on October 19 and 20, The Brothers Brown will perform a complex array of original blues, jazz and roots tunes that only the group’s consummate artists could pull off.
“It feels like back in the day when you would just get together and play music for fun,” says Brown, who performs on lead vocals and guitar. “This symbiotic thing happens between all of us that’s really based on fun and our roots in music, and how they overlap.”
Titans of the Music Industry
To say The Brothers Brown members hail from impressive music careers is an understatement.
All seasoned songwriters, producers and performers, “we’re all bringing our own thing and we’re all influencing each other, as well,” Brown says.
His own career spans recording numerous solo contemporary jazz records and producing for Vandross for 15 years. He also produced for Jarreau, George Benson and multi-Grammy nominee Boney James.
“Producing for these artists, you learn so much all the time,” Brown says.
The other Paul Brown on keyboards – who goes by Brother Brown, to avoid confusion – has toured around the world and produced for Bobby Rush and Ann Peebles.
Young has played for many years with the Creedence Clearwater Revival and toured with Loretta Lynn.
“They’re incredible musicians,” Brown says.
Compared to Creedence Clearwater Revival and The Band
Brown isn’t surprised The Brothers Brown is often compared to Creedence Clearwater Revival – since Young performed with the band – but he feels the group is more akin to roots rock group The Band.
“We based ourselves off the Grateful Dead and jam bands, and folk Americana and blues and jazz,” he says. “It’s a real combination of elements.”
As all four are also longtime producers, they lend an innate understanding of collaboration, he says.
They didn’t even need to record their first album in the same room, with each member instead submitting his individual recording separately for Brown to mix.
“As producers, we’re accustomed to be respectful of each other and play off each other,” Brown explains.
The group will bring this seamless artistry to its live shows at The Smith Center, he says.
“The inner play between all of us, we get this jam-band thing going and just rock out,” Brown says.
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