Chris Robinson Brotherhood is an American blues rock band formed in 2011 by Black Crowes singer Chris Robinson while The Black Crowes were on hiatus. The band has released three albums: Big Moon Ritual, The Magic Door, and Phosphorescent Harvest. The band consists of Robinson, guitarist Neal Casal, keyboardist Adam MacDougall, bassist Jeff Hill (who replaced original bassist Mark Dutton in 2016), and drummer Tony Leone (who replaced original drummer George Sluppick in January 2015).
Formation and Big Moon Ritual
Chris Robinson Brotherhood began as an experiment but became a 'band' throughout their California residency tour. The original intention, according to Robinson, was to "have a local L.A. band, just play in California, see where the music takes us and have a good time." They then embarked on an 118 date North American tour in 2011. Robinson names Grateful Dead members Phil Lesh and Bob Weir, who sat in with the band throughout CRB's run at the Great American Music Hall, as both musical inspirations and friends. As well as Robinson, the band features fellow Black Crowes member Adam MacDougall, Ryan Adams collaborator Neal Casal, bassist Mark Dutton, and drummer George Sluppick. Robinson describes the Brotherhood as a "farm-to-table psychedelic band".
Chris Robinson Brotherhood released a version of "Blue Suede Shoes" (written by Carl Perkins) b/w a live version "Girl, I Love You" (written by Al Bell and Eddie Floyd) for Record Store Day on April 21, 2012. The CD version additionally features a cover of the Jimmy Reed song, "Bright Lights Big City".
The band's debut album, Big Moon Ritual, was recorded at Sunset Sound Studios, Los Angeles, and was released on June 5, 2012. Chris Robinson suggests that Big Moon Ritual is "not a concept album, but it's quite conceptual sonically." He additionally notes that CRB "isn't the type of band that's going to make a concise four-minute song record" and that they prefer instead to make lengthier compositions.
The Magic Door
Just three months after its predecessor, on September 11, 2012, Chris Robinson Brotherhood's second studio album, The Magic Door, was released. It was recorded at the same time as Big Moon Ritual and features a cover of the Hank Ballard song "Let's Go, Let's Go, Let's Go," which the band has most often played live.
"Betty's S.F. Blends, Volume One"
In September 2013, CRB (Chris Robinson Brotherhood) released an album that featured songs picked by the Grateful Dead's record producer, Betty Cantor-Jackson, which were recorded over five nights in San Francisco. The band played 96 songs altogether and Cantor-Jackson picked the best ones for the album. The album has only been released on vinyl record format, which results in it not being available on CD. The album was called "Betty's S.F. Blends, Volume One". The 5 full shows are additionally available as separate downloads.
- Current members
- Chris Robinson — lead vocals, guitars (2011–present)
- Neal Casal — guitars, vocals (2011–present)
- Adam MacDougall — keyboards, vocals (2011–present)
- Tony Leone — drums (2015–present)
- Jeff Hill - bassist (2016–present)
- Past members
- George Sluppick — drums (2011–2015)
- Mark Dutton — bass, vocals (2011–2016)
|Year||Album details||Peak chart position|
|2012||Big Moon Ritual||63|
|The Magic Door||98|
|2013||Betty's Blends Volume 1|
|2015||Betty's Blends Volume 2|
|2012||Blue Suede Shoes / Girl I Love You|
|2013||Older Guys / That's How Strong My Love Is'|