El Condado de La Salsa y Jazz Latino



Por. Nelson Rodríguez

Junio-septiembre del 2018

Many music fans who buy records (today CD’s or MP3) never get to know what happens behind the scenes of the making of a record. Many times, when it comes to recordings, the artist or label has a plan to do one thing and another thing happens. The perfect example that just happened recently is the story behind the new release by the legend Eddie Palmieri and his new CD “Full Circle”. This time the master has new powerful versions of his classics “Vamonos Pal Monte”, “Muñeca”, “Azucar”, “Lindo Yambu”, “Palo Pa’ Rumba”, “Pa’La Ocha” and “Oyelo Que Te Conviene” with Herman Olivera on vocals and an all-star line-up that includes Nelson Gonzalez, Nicky Marrero. Anthony Carrillo, Conrad Herwig, Doug Beavers, Chris Washburne, Pete Nater, Ronnie Cuber, Ivan Renta, Yosvany Terry, John Walsh, Jimmy Bosch, Little Johnny Rivero, Joe Fielder, Luques Curtis, Jeremy Bosch, and Louis Fouche’ who is co-producer along with the Curtis Brothers (Luques & Zaccai).

The production that has been on hold for some time now was the Salsa release Gilberto Santa Rosa participated on that has him singing five tracks, Herman does five tracks and includes a rock track with guitarist Carlos Santana delayed because of unresolved conflicts with a label. The name of this CD will be “La Luz Mayor” (in honor to Eddie’s late wife Aida), that we mentioned over a year ago, and the pre-release will be in September and officially out in early November. It will be part of the new record label, Uprising Music, headed by Edward Palmieri II that will also include the first label release by pianist Alex Conde titled “Origins”.

Also slated for new releases on Uprising Music are Little Johnny Rivero and Doug Beavers. The label also has the Uprising All Stars with the legends Eddie Palmieri, Bernard ‘Pretty’ Purdie, Herman Olivera, Jimmy Bosch, Arturo Ortiz, Jose Clausell, Little Johnny Rivero and many others that includes future stars like Alex Conde, the Curtis Brothers, Jonathan Powell, Carlos Molina, and others.

One young lady Kelli Sae has a big future ahead of her as she can do just about any genre you put in front of her. A native New Yorker from my hood, Da’ Bronx, this Puerto Rican African is extremely impressive with a wealth of talent and the recording she did with the dance band Count Basic, “Sweet Spot”.

Finally, a new label with huge potential will be showcasing the Uprising All Stars on November 10, 2018 at the Lehman College in a Tribute to Charlie Palmieri featuring Herman Olivera & Jimmy Bosch. That night you will also see Eddie unite with Lalo Rodriguez in celebration of the 1st Latin Grammy winner “Sun of Latin Music” back in 1974-75.

In this music industry, you see innovative and/or interesting things, and Los Angeles is no exception as I just witnessed for the first time with the CD release of The Echo Park Project’s of an EP titled “Big Band Latin Jazz” which gives us a taste of what Latin Jazz was back in the 70’s. The opening tracks “Jazz in The Park” (in tribute to the old days of the travelling Jazz Mobile that we grew up with) that had a great influence on bandleader Carlo Lopez and “No Limits” (a clean indication of the freedom the band had in recording this CD) are pure swing mambo style. The tracks of “Smooth Cha Cha”, “Thinking of You” and “The Only” slow things down a bit, but does not lose any of the flavor the band brings to the table.

Working with names like Serafin Aguilar, Eddie Resto, Jonathan Montes, Joey de Leon, John Belzaguy, Humberto Ruiz Jr., Tomas M. Lopez (Carlo Lopez’ brother), Frank Fontaine and special guests Francisco Torres and Ron Frances Blake also helps…these guys have a great chemistry that makes this work.

Within a month, The Echo Park Project also released a Salsa CD, “El Pin Pin Pon” with the usual suspects, Jorge Maldonado on lead vocal on six tracks along with Freddy Crespo and Daniel Castilllo. Some of these great arrangements were put together by Joe Mannozzi, three tracks to be exact (ex-Tipica 73), and another four arranged by Oscar Hernandez too. The guests include bongocero Johnny ‘Dandy’ Rodriguez and conguero George Delgado on the title track “El Pin Pin Pon”, “Zabaramba Kiri Kir Bon”, Pa’Los Rumberos”, “Echo Park Cha Cha”, “Pruebalo Y Veras” and the hit dedicated to the island of Puerto Rico, the beautiful “Borinquen La Flor”. Proceeds of the sale of the CD are being sent to Puerto Rico…contact Carlo Lopez for more information, or to purchase the CD, visit their website www.theechoparkproject.com

Another buddy who is also a conguero in the world of Latin Jazz is a renown doctor during the day and musician at night. Former radio DJ Alberto Nacif, whom I met many decades ago when I worked for both record labels, TH Records and RMM/Tropijazz Records during the 80’s and 90’s for his radio show at WEMU “Cuban Fantasy”. He also spent some time with the band Tumbao Bravo that he co-led for 10 years, and then formed his own band Aguanko in 2013 with their first CD “Elemental”, and “Invisible” in 2015. In that same year, a December 2015 CD release of the rare “Latin Jazz Christmas In Havana”. Like a true musician and as a band, they continued to get better with each release. Their latest, “Pattern Recognition” will be one 2018’s top Latin Jazz CD’s of the year. Just listen to “Señor Smoke”, “Pattern Recognition”, “Re-Vision”, “Late Night Religion”, “Metaphorically Speaking”, and “Doctor’s Orders” to see how good this band is from Brighton, Michigan. They excels and can compete with bands from all over the world.

From New York comes another Salsa gem by percussionist Ed Martinez y su Conjunto, “Que No Se Acaben Los Cueros”, with beautiful artwork on the cover and, the best part is their music of course. The CD has wonderful historical liners notes by my good friend, radio host and musician/vocalist Chico Alvarez who also participates in the recording. This CD opens up with “Dedícame Un Son” sung by Moncho Rivera whom also sings “Yo Fui Testigo”. Rafu Warner sings two awesome tracks “Historia de Brooklyn” and “Suegra Salsera” while Camilo Azuquita and Chico Alvarez do the track “Reina De Mis Amores”. One of my favorite tracks is sung by Chico Alvarez “Tres Rodriguez” featuring tresista Charlie Rodriguez and pianist Edwin Rodriguez. I must tell you, the CD finishes with the jam “Que No Se Acabe El Bongo” with Dandy Rodriguez as guest, another great song. The musicians read like a who’s who with the ‘Hall of Fame’s as Pete Nater, Ricardo Pons, Ruben Rodriguez, Eddie Montalvo, John Walsh, Luis Mangual Jr., Manuel ‘Maneco’ Ruiz, Carly Maldonado, Luis Aquino, Pedro Perez, Maximo Rodriguez and the coros of Henry Santiago & Darvel Garcia. Many of these veteran names we do not hear enough of these days.

Veteran drummer Dafnis Prieto Big Band is skilled at Jazz music, as he is in the Latin Jazz world. What I love about his music is that he stretches himself to new heights and he does it again on his new CD, “Back to The Sunset”. I truly enjoyed the Jazz number “Two for One”, “Una Vez Mas” featuring trumpeter Brian Lynch and “Song For Chico” featuring alto saxophonist Steve Coleman, both guests.

If you want to hear music that will blow your mind, check out folks playing Funk with Afro Caribbean bands like The Motet, The Funk Ark and the Mambo Zombies in YouTube.

Si tiene alguna pregunta o sugerencia, por favor contácteme al siguiente correo electrónico: nelmelpat21@gmail.com


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Herencia Latina

Edición junio-septiembre de 2018