By ERIN ROLL
Montclair-based musician and teacher Christian McBride won his seventh Grammy award Sunday night.
McBride was honored, along with Brian Blade and the late Chick Corea, for the album “Trilogy II.” Together, they won the Best Instrumental Jazz Album Grammy.
McBride and Blade were also nominated in the same category for their work on another album, “RoundAgain,” with Joshua Redman and Brad Mehldau.
Following the ceremony, McBride paid tribute to Corea, who died on Feb. 9 at the age of 79.
McBride posted a statement on Facebook and Instagram paying tribute to Corea and thanking the Academy for the award.
“I could say something like ‘we’ won this Grammy, and considering this album was officially released as a cooperative and not a ‘Chick Corea Trio’ album, using ‘we’ would technically be correct. But the real truth is what Brian Blade and I ‘won’ was the opportunity to play with Chick Corea in this trio for over 10 years, McBride wrote. “Chick tried so hard to convince me and Brian that this was NOT the ‘Chick Corea Trio,’ but a cooperative group of equals. Brian and I will forever love him for that, but we knew better. He was too much of a giant to us. A friend, but still a giant.
“With hundreds of thousands of miles logged on the road together, our lives were enriched and enhanced being in Chick’s universe — and that doesn’t just go for Brian and myself, that goes for any of us who were fortunate enough to know, play and/or record with Chick. With that, while I’m very proud of our Grammy, the real award was getting to call Chick Corea a friend and cohort.”
Corea’s widow, Gayle, appeared on video at the awards ceremony to pay tribute to her husband and to thank McBride and Bland for all of their work with Corea over the years.
“Christian and Brian, this is your Grammy too,” she said.
In Montclair, McBride is the artistic director of Jazz House Kids. His wife, singer Melissa Walker, is Jazz House’s founder and president. Jazz House Kids came into being in 2002, and opened its first Montclair studio in 2009, before moving to its current home on Bloomfield Avenue in 2013.
Corea was also a visiting instructor at Jazz House Kids, conducting master classes with the students. The organization congratulated him for the honor on Facebook Sunday night.
“Lucky number 7!” it wrote.