• Check out this great article on Madeleine Albright's drumming debut with the Botti band, featured on the homepage of CNN Entertainment!

    Madeleine Albright channels Bon Jovi

    How did former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright spend Valentine's Day? Behaving like a rock star, that's how.

    Albright was at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday night, attending Grammy-winning trumpeter Chris Botti's concert. When Botti invited her to sit in as drummer during the band's performance of "Nessun Dorma," she jumped at the chance.

    I'm sure this is one thing she has not accomplished in her career," Botti said as Albright, 73, took the stage.

    Sure, she might not have Ringo's skills or a rocker attitude, but she certainly dressed the part "Albright was wearing a leather skirt. A member of the audience even wolf-whistled." Albright had big shoes to fill. Botti's regular drummer, Billy Kilson, won a Grammy on Sunday in the best pop instrumental album category (as the drummer on Larry Carlton and Tak Matsumoto's album, "Take Your Pick".

    But as Botti's trumpet angled skyward for Nessun Dorma's famously rousing crescendo, Albright cut loose; Botti, who met Albright at the White House last month where he performed during the China state dinner, said she was a natural.

    "At the end of the song, she raised her sticks in the air as if she were Bon Jovi's drummer," he said. And judging by the enthusiastic applause, Albright didn't give drumming a bad name.

    Check out the article here:

  • Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright joined the Chris Botti band last night at the Kennedy Center to the surprise and enjoyment of the audience. Poised behind the drumset, Ms. Albright showed her skills during a special performance of Nessum Dorma - check out the video below!

    Washington Post

    Washington Examiner

  • "On Wednesday night I had the privilege of performing for a distinguished audience at the White House State dinner honoring Hu Jintao, President of the People's Republic of China.  In attendance were Presidents Obama, Clinton and Carter as well as former Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright, Henry Kissinger, George Shultz, and current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  Other distinguished guests included Barbra Streisand, Yo-Yo Ma, Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, Christiane Amanpour and Jamie Rubin among others. I am truly honored to have been asked to perform and It was great to be on stage again with friends Herbie Hancock, Lang Lang, Randy Brecker and James Genus. The evening was truly magical and an experience I will never forget" - Chris

    In the United States, a state dinner is a formal dinner, more often black tie, which is held in honor of a foreign head of state, such as a king, queen, president, or any head of government. A state dinner is hosted by the President of the United States and held in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington D.C.

    Chris w/ Lang Lang

  • Earlier this year we told you about Simon, a young trumpeter in Poland who was in a severe car accident. We're happy let you know he is well on his way to making a full recovery. Simon was able to attend the concert in Warsaw and had a chance to meet with Chris as well!

    Here's an absolutely adorable photo from Warsaw we thought we'd share with everyone!

  • Here's a great picture from Chris' sold out show at the Chicago Theater last Saturday!

  • Chris Performs With Juan Luis Guerra At 2010 Latin Grammy Awards!  

    On Thursday, November 11th, Chris performed alongside multiple Grammy-recipient Juan Luis Guerra at the 2010 Latin Grammy Awards!  It was a vibrant night with stunning performances and recognition of some of today's top artists. 

    Check out this photo of Chris and Juan Luis Guerra's performance and more on the official Grammy website:

  • Check out these pictures from Odessa, Ukraine! Special thanks go out to Duke, Alexey and Svetlana for making our first trip to Odessa memorable!

  • Check out Chris' duet with Katharine McPhee on "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" featured on Katharine's new Christmas album!

    Windows Media stream

  • Due to an unforeseen scheduling conflict, the Paris, France show on October 5 will not take place. Refunds are being given to ticket holders.

  • by John Shand

    Blowing the trumpet on a scintillating act

    The Basement, August 23 FORGET the pretty-boy image, the Sting-derived celebrity and the lapses of taste. Chris Botti is a brilliant trumpeter accompanied by one of the great bands to visit Sydney in recent years.

    He is the biggest-selling jazz instrumentalist, partly because he is also the ultimate cross-over artist, embracing funk, classical, rock and cocktail music.

    Performing live the truth will out, especially in a crucible like the Basement. After opening with Ave Maria - showing off his tonal purity and breath control - Botti eased into When I Fall In Love. This was not exactly reassuring, as Andy Ezrin's synthesiser washes seemed designed to allay any threat of real jazz.

    But suddenly the ballad erupted into lava-hot funk, then became even more explosively free, with thrilling interaction between Botti and the drummer Billy Kilson.

    This was highest-calibre jazz, which Billy Childs sustained with one of the most gripping and multi-faceted piano solos I have heard in years.

    Just when it seemed we were safe, the willow-limbed violinist Caroline Campbell joined Botti in tossing us a light classical lolly for no discernible reason.

    However, he redeemed himself with an unforgettable Flamenco Sketches. The plaintiveness of Miles Davis's original was soon forged into platinum trumpet blasts over a scorching band (completed by the guitarist Mark Whitfield and the bassist Tim Lefebvre): wondrous jazz to restore faith and convert sceptics.

    The wonder lingered when Botti gave a beautiful reading of Cohen's Hallelujah against the guitar, although creeping synth washes undermined the intimacy.

    The singer Lisa Fischer, of Rolling Stones fame, only strengthened the show. On a rabidly funky The Look of Love, she slid between a sumptuous contralto and a dazzling top end, while Whitfield gave a master-class in rhythm guitar.

    As she enthralled us for four songs, the band became ever more dangerous.

    If further overblown silliness occasionally punctuated the magic, Botti was as charming between songs as he was scintillating during them. Do not miss this band.

  • The National Theatre, St Kilda,
    Reviewer: Siimon Plant

    Back arched and blowing hard, Chris Botti creates sounds of almost Alpine purity.  But this American jazz trumpeter can swing low as well, coaxing achingly beautiful blue notes from his gleaming instrument.

    No wonder Botti earned standing ovations for his single Melbourne show.

    Right from the start, Botti's band (pianist Billy Childs, drummer Billy Kilson, guitarist Mark Whitfield, bassman Tim Lefebvre, Andrew Ezrin on keyboards) demonstrated awesome power and precision.  Childs was a demon on the grand piano.  Kilson's percussive drive was simply astouonding.

    Two guest artists - violinist Caroline Campbell and singer Lisa Fischer - combined magnificently on Italia...the night's big closer.  But Botti had the last word.  Wading into the audience, he reeled off an unplugged version of Frank Sinatra's One For My Baby and had everyone baying for more.

  • Christiane Amanpour, CNN veteran and brand-new anchor of ABC's This Week, reports on the contents of her purse. Marie Claire, September 2010

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