Right from the opening track of Late Night With Conan O'Brien trumpeter Mark Pender's debut disc, there's little doubt you're in for a funky ride. I'm excessive, it's just the way I feel/Excessive, you know the deal,Pender belts. Though excessive might not be the right word to describe the buoyant brassman and Kansas City native -- effusive is more like it -- Pender wears both badges with honor. After cutting his teeth with the Inner City Orchestra in the late '70s, Pender headed to the East Coast and spent more than a decade as a sideman with Diana Ross, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie and Robert Cray before landing his place in the Max Weinberg Seven in 1993. On this album, Pender showcases both his instrumental and vocal talents while fronting a sextet of solid funksters. Using more than the standard thumping bass line and liberal wah-wah guitar, Pender pays his respects with cuts such as the Marvin Gaye-inspired "Let's Get It Together"; the Earth, Wind and Fire drive of "You're the Only One"; and the Tower of Power horn lines of "Oh Baby Please." Unafraid to step up to the mic for a ballad or two ("Hypnotize," "We Are Meant to Be Together"), Pender lays out his amorous intentions with honest appeal that would put Tim Meadows' Lady's Man to shame. Pender isn't trying to reinvent the wheel with all this throwback funkadelicism, but it's no less entertaining to give it another spin.