Jahmal Nichols Doubles on Gregory Porter’s “All Rise”

Gregory Porter: All RiseAfter spending the last several years paying tribute to the great Nat King Cole, jazz vocalist Gregory Porter is back to focusing on his original music. His new album, All Rise, balances songs about love and conflict with the baritone’s silky voice among a wall of sound. Porter utilized his longtime bandmates, a horn section, a 10-member choir, and the London Symphony Orchestra Strings to fill out his tunes.

“Yes, you could say that I went big,” he admits. “But, quite frankly, the way I write in my head, it all happens with just voice and piano first, and it’s built up from there. It feels good to get back to the rhythms and the styles and the feelings and the way that I like to lay down my own music from start to finish.”

The record is the first in his discography to branch out in new sounds, as well. Bassist Jahmal Nichols plays both double bass and electric, where all of the singer’s previous catalog had only the double bass. The shift started when Nichols started playing electric during live shows.

“All the previous records with [bassist] Aaron James on them, plus the live album I did, it was only upright,” Nichols told us in an interview earlier this year. “When I started with the band six years ago, I was strictly playing upright. After a year, I started incorporating the electric bass on just one song, called ‘Free.’ He normally uses that song as an encore or the last song. At the end of the song when everyone else walks away, the drummer and I keep playing and just go crazy. I do a little slap thing and then we go into ‘Come Together’. We would play off of each other, then I’d do a little thing, then Emmanuel would finish off the show.”

Hear some of the electric bass behind Porter on “Mr. Holland”:

All Rise is available now on CD, vinyl and as a digital download (iTunes and Amazon MP3).

All Rise Track List:

  1. Concorde
  2. Dad Gone Thing
  3. Revival Song
  4. If Love Is Overrated
  5. Faith In Love
  6. Merchants of Paradise
  7. Long List of Troubles
  8. Mister Holland
  9. Modern Day Apprentice
  10. Everything You Touch is Gold
  11. Phoenix
  12. Merry Go Round
  13. Thank You
  14. Revival

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