Brother Jack McDuff

Who Knows What Tomorrow's Gonna Bring?

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Who Knows What Tomorrow's Gonna Bring? is one of Brother Jack's more adventurous dates, and incorporates all sorts of strange pop elements in the mix. The lineup of players is enough to raise one's eyebrows. Along with a young generation of jazzers like Mike Mainieri and Joe Beck, McDuff (via his bandleader, Ray Draper) also enlisted the youthful bassist Tony Levin, pianist Paul Griffin, trombonist Dick Griffin, and trumpeters Randy Brecker and Olu Dara. The sonic mix is strange, otherworldly, and unbalanced, with instruments floating through it. The track selection is deeply laid-back and funky soul-jazz, with a psychedelic frame all around it. Most of the cuts were written by Draper -- who did the session arrangements -- with McDuff contributing a pair. The quark strangeness of this set is its appeal. It feels like a party record for after the party, where a few revelers get out their instruments and set up without worrying about what will happen. Think of Dr. John's Gris-Gris crossed with Jim Dickinson's Dixie Fried with a jazz band. The sheer spaced-out vibe is an overwhelming attraction to Who Knows What Tomorrow's Gonna Bring?, because it is unlike any other record in McDuff's massive catalog -- even stranger than Moon Rappin'.

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