Posts Tagged ‘ Latin Jazz ’

Kenny Polson – Colors Of Brazil

Kenney Polson has developed a strong relationship with Brazil. After all, he lived in Rio de Janeiro for several years. Colors Of Brazil is accordingly a kind of retrospective of this period of his life and the result of the musical influences from that time. The circumstance that the relationship has not yet broken off is evident, four of the recordings on this album were made in Brazil.

Diverse as his music is also the nature of the international musical cast. With the exception of harpist Mariea Antoinette, the musicians listed are not household names from the smooth jazz scene. Please refer to the credits for more details.

The album opens with Aquarela Do Brazil (Colors of Brazil) written by Ary Barroso in 1939 which commonly became a global hit in the Western world under the title Brazil. Kenny takes the tempo out of the samba piece and lets the whole thing go very relaxed. Perhaps this is more the reflection of today’s serene lifestyle.

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Al Daniels – Brasiliana

Brasiliana – of or pertaining to mostly all things Brazilian. The music contained on this disk is not exclusively Brazilian in style and rhythms. There are selections that have variations of Brazilian styles and borrowed elements from other Latin American tempos and rhythms, as well as Jazz. But as the title suggests this album is about ‘mostly all things Brazilian.’ You will most definitely hear Sambas and Bossa Nova!

Ever since his early piano days of learning the requisite Jazz tunes, Al Daniels have been drawn to the music of Brazil, in all forms. But especially Sambas and Bossa Nova. The lilting rhythms and gentle guitar backgrounds were irresistible foundations for the melodies of Jobim, BolaSete, and Sergio Mendez. They were the models for the musical expressions you hear in these tunes. And, it is his hope that the listener will find in these tracks a unique approach to this category of Latin Jazz. This project began in January 2017 at Dennis Moody’s Studio, Los Angeles, California with the help of musicians and technical assistants to whom Al owe his sincerest gratitude.

Buy the album at Al Daniels’ website.

DiCosimo / Pagán – Con Moto

When bassist Jimmy Haslip produces an album, you know what’s going to come out: a jazz fusion album. The initiators of the same are organist Bill DiCosimo and bassist Edgar Pagán, who have been working together for more than twenty years. The album, which will be released in January 2021, is called Con Moto, which means “with movement”.

Contributors to the album are, who would be surprised, Jeff Lorber, Gary Novak, Jeff Richman, Jose Varona, Paulie Cerra and more. People know each other. For example, Edgar has already worked on Jeff Lorber’s joint album Eleven with Mike Stern or Jeff and Jimmy have played on Edgar’s album What A Feeling.

The album starts with the aptly titled So It Begins. A piece that flows along with a continuous rhythm like mercury. The piece is structured comparable a mathematical challenge and bass, rhythm guitar and keyboard complement each other seamlessly like a laying puzzle.

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Eddie Daniels – Night Kisses: A Tribute to Ivan Lins

Six-time GRAMMY nominated jazz clarinetist-saxophonist-flutist Eddie Daniels is in love all over again and he describes his new album, “Night Kisses: A Tribute to Ivan Lins,” as “A concert of love.” The romantic collection of acoustic jazz, pop and Brazilian music that dropped Friday on Resonance Records and has critics proclaiming their affection for the album derived inspiration from a couple of unlikely events: oral surgery and a random kiss. The follow-up to Daniels’ 2018 GRAMMY-nominated Heart of Brazil: A Tribute to Egberto Gismonti” and the second chapter in a trilogy conceived by the albums’ producer George Klabin saluting seminal Brazilian composers reignited Daniels love affair with the flute, an instrument he had not recorded with in 30 years. And that happened as a result of ill-timed – or divine-timed – dental work. A dentist put in a bone graft a month before Daniels was to head to Los Angeles to record the album, ordering Daniels not to play the clarinet or saxophone for fear that it would blow out the bone graft. Daniels picked up the flute and played it exclusively in advance of the recording date, rekindling his ardor for the instrument. Much to the surprise and delight of listeners, he is featured playing flute on four tracks on “Night Kisses.”

“I fell in love with the flute again. Going in, I was afraid that I wasn’t going to be able to do justice to the romance and beauty that Ivan Lins brings to his music. The flute added that magic, taking the album somewhere special. It turns out that the album is more romantic than I ever could have imagined. I’m in love with this album,” said Daniels, a self-professed “romantic guy.” A major coup for Daniels is that “Night Kisses” includes the first-ever recording featuring GRAMMY and Emmy winner Bob James and GRAMMY and Academy Awards winner Dave Grusin. Daniels has a long history with both artists having played on many of their records dating back to the 1970s. While “Night Kisses” celebrates songs written by Lins, the three jazz illuminati team up on the album closer “Ivante,” a new composition penned by James in honor of his longtime friend, Lins.

When Lins heard “Night Kisses,” he said that he cried. “The album is fantastic. Totally surprising. Not only the repertoire, because there are songs that nobody recorded besides me, but the textures, the timbres, the ideas of the arrangements, the instruments used. It’s incredible.” Joining Daniels on “Night Kisses” are pianist Josh Nelson (who also contributed three arrangements), bassist Kevin Axt and drummer Mauricio Zottarelli. Kuno Schmid makes an appearance on piano and authored a handful of arrangements. The tracks are lavishly draped with string section work by GRAMMY winners The Harlem Quartet. While the album title refers to the romance, sweetness, tenderness and love inherent in Lins’ music, which James describes as “romantic and adventurous,” Daniels fondly recalls another story that is romantic and adventurous as well as audacious. While standing in the wings waiting to go on stage 38 years ago, singer Deborah Rothrock turned her head just as Daniels was overcome with the spontaneous desire to kiss her. Their lips met and the couple has been together ever since.

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Ricardo Bacelar – Ao Vivo No Rio (Live In Rio)

The discography of Brazilian composer and pianist Ricardo Bacelar is still manageable. After his debut album In Natura (2001), followed Concerto para Moviola (Concerto for Moviola),  a live album, recorded in 2015 during the Guaramiranga Jazz and Blues Festival at the Via Sul Theater, Fortalezea, Ceara, Brazil, and Sebastiana (2018). Now he returns with his second live album recorded in May 2018 at The Blue Note in Rio, Brazil aptly titled Ao Vivo No Rio (Live In Rio).

Ricardo was accompanied by guitarist João Castilho, saxophonist and flutist Danilo Sina, double bassist Alexandre Katatau, drummer Renato Endrigo and percussionist André Siqueira. Most of the repertoire of the live album covers compositions of the groundbreaking Brazilian musicians Milton Nascimento, Tom Jobim, Gilberto Gil, Flora Purim along with American greats Benny Golson, Horace Silver, Pat Metheny and Chick Corea.

Ricardo considers his album, which was recorded in the intimate circle of the 300-seat Blue Note, an incentive to return to live performances after the end of the pandemic. Ricardo comments: “People need the warm sound and feelings of live music as opposed to the electronic stuff we hear on studio recordings. By listening to this live album, you can embrace the warm sound from the safety and comfort of your home.”

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Ricardo Bacelar – Ricardo Bacelar: Live in Rio (Ao Vivo No Rio)

Like here in the US, Brazil is being ravaged by coronavirus, making it impossible for people to go out to hear live jazz. Early on in quarantine, Brazilian jazz pianist Ricardo Bacelar (http://ricardobacelar.com.br) realized that it would be quite some time before clubs and concert venues would reopen so he decided to release a concert recording of his band performing at The Blue Note in Rio to remind music fans what live jazz sounds like. Filled with the unique energy, warmth and ambiance that is live jazz, “Ricardo Bacelar: Live in Rio (Ao Vivo No Rio)” drops August 21 as a digital-only release.

During this period of dramatic change impacting the world, Bacelar chose to release a version of the Milton Nascimento classic “Nothing Will Be As It Was (Nada Sera Como Antes)” as the first single from “Live in Rio.” The duet sung in Portuguese by Bacelar and Brazilian vocalist-pianist Delia Fischer will begin collecting playlist adds this month.

The “Live in Rio” album was recorded two years ago while Bacelar was celebrating the release of his “Sebastiana” album. The set-list consists of songs written by Brazilian icons Nascimento, Tom Jobim, Gilberto Gil and Flora Purim along with American greats Benny Golson, Horace Silver, Pat Metheny and Chick Corea. Also included is a composition that Bacelar wrote with producer Cesar Lemos (Ricky Martin, Paulina Rubio) titled “Sernambetiba, 1992” from “Sebastiana.”

Source: Great Scott Productions

Jimmy Haslip – Nightfall

Bassist Jimmy Haslip has released in his solo career only three albums. His debut album Arc came out in 1993. His sophomore album Red Heat was released in 2000 on Unitone Recordings followed by Nightfall in 2010 on VIE Records. The latter two albums are now newly released on Blue Canoe Recordings.

Like its predecessor, Nightfall is a collaboration between Haslip and Joe Vannelli. Jimmy performs on his album electric and fretless bass, additional synths,  baritone guitar. Joe Vannelli plays keys, programming, Rhodes, piano, organ, orchestration.

They are supported on selected tracks by Bob Mintzer (tenor sax), Katisse Buckingham (flute), Wayne Bergeron (trumpet), Steve Tavaglione (alto and soprano sax), Judd Miller (EVI), Jason Hann (percussion, congas), Jimmy Branly (timbales, bongo), Roger Burn (vibraphones), Ross Vannelli (acoustic guitar), Stella Castellucci (harp), Lori Perry (vocals), and The Perry Sisters (background vocals).

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Jimmy Haslip – Red Heat

Bassist Jimmy Haslip is commonly known as founding member of the jazz fusion group the Yellowjackets. He mainly spreads his wings in the jazz fusion genre where he is involved as a sideman in numerous collaborative projects. He is also very popular as a bassist in the field of smooth jazz.

Compared to his frequent collaborations, his solo releases are somewhat sparse. His debut album Arc was released in 1993. His sophomore album Red Heat was released in 2000 on Unitone Recordings followed by Nightfall in 2010 on VIE Records. The latter two albums are now newly released on Blue Canoe Recordings.

Even though it is a solo album, Red Heat is a joint project of Haslip and Joe Vannelli. Jimmy performs on his album electric bass, acoustic bass guitar, synth bass, fretless bass, additional keyboards, drum and additional percussion programming, background vocals, horn arrangements. Joe Vannelli plays keyboards, synth bass, drum programming, additional percussion programming, horn and string arrangements.

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Ricardo Bacelar – Nothing Will Be As It Was

Brazil is leading the world per capita in coronavirus cases making it unlikely that people will be cramming into a concert venue anytime soon to hear live music. Then there is the recent unrest that erupted in response to civil injustices in the US that bodes to spark meaningful change around the world. These are the events that inspired contemporary jazz pianist Ricardo Bacelar to release a new version of the Milton Nascimento classic “Nothing Will Be As It Was (Nada Sera Como Antes)” as a single ahead of the release of his “Live in Rio (Ao Vivo No Rio)” album, which drops August 21 from Bacelar Productions.

“‘Nothing Will Be As It Was’ summarizes the existential questions raised globally by the coronavirus pandemic. Add to it the civil injustice and unrest that has surfaced over the last couple of weeks with Black Lives Matter, which is an especially important movement. We’re talking about the subject here in Brazil, too. We have a lot of problems with racism here, but our people have not yet taken the streets to protest and have social demonstrations. The world is watching the United States and people are talking about these issues everywhere,” said Bacelar who produced the 11-song “Live in Rio” collection.

Bacelar’s 2018 album, “Sebastiana,” contains a very different version of “Nothing Will Be As It Was,” which was sung in English by American singer Maye Osorio and accompanied by an animated video that suited the pop-electronic rendition of the song. The new live version has a different arrangement and features Bacelar dueting with Brazilian vocalist-pianist Delia Fischer in Portuguese backed by a jazz band. Continue reading

Eddie Daniels – Night Kisses: A Tribute to Ivan Lins

“It’s jazz, it’s beauty and it opens the heart.” That is how six-time GRAMMY-nominated horn player Eddie Daniels describes his forthcoming album, “Night Kisses: A Tribute to Ivan Lins.” Slated to drop July 31 on Resonance Records, the new collection is the second chapter in a trilogy devoted to iconic Brazilian composers and the follow up to the 2018 GRAMMY-nominated “Heart of Brazil: A Tribute to Egberto Gismonti.” Both albums were produced by the series’ conceptualizer George Klabin.

Daniels, who is best known as a clarinetist and tenor saxophonist accomplished in both jazz and classical music, has a long history of playing Brazilian and Latin music. However, he admitted to “being kind of a dummy about the specific great Brazilian composers that I was about to tackle when George approached me with the idea for the trilogy, but I have this clave (Afro-Cuban groove) in my body as much as anyone because I just love this music so much.”

Klabin selected a dozen tunes from Lins’ songbook for “Night Kisses,” which closes with an original composition by GRAMMY and Emmy winner Bob James, “Ivante,” inspired by and named for Lins. When Klabin sent the music to Daniels, the multi-hornplayer only knew one song, “Amor,” and the material itself presented a challenge. Continue reading