Cheerin' Up the Universe
John Medeski - Drew Zingg - Nikki Parrott
George Schuller - Russ Gershon
Vicente Lebron - Matthew Fries
Roswell Rudd - Gabrielle Agachiko
Harry Allen - John van Epps
Trumpeter/vocalist Merrill assembles stellar cast of musicians he has worked with in one setting or another since his teen years to play songs that have meant a lot to him over his decades in jazz. John Medeski brings his unique juju to the keyboards, Drew Zingg (w Boz Skaggs, Steely Dan) plays guitar, Nicki Parrott and George Schuller contribute bass and drums. Also Accurate Records honcho Russ Gershon appears on saxes and his Either/Orchestra bandmate Vicente Lebron mans the percussion. The incomparable Roswell Rudd adds his trombone on one track and Matthew Fries plays piano on several tracks.
The wide-rangeing program takes us from Bachrach to Pharoah Sanders, with stops for Randy Newman, Donald Fagen, Stevie Wonder, Pherell Williams and more.