CD Reviews: Machito, Bobby Sanabria, Arturo O’Farrill, Pedro Giraudo

Big Band with a Latin Accent,Then & Now. By Fernando Gonzalez El Padrino (Fania/Codigo) Machito The big band occupies a special place in Latin Jazz history. For starters, in the 1940s and ‘50s, the orchestras led by Tito Puente, Tito Rodríguez and Machito, the real life Mambo Kings, not only defined a certain sound, putting… Read More CD Reviews: Machito, Bobby Sanabria, Arturo O’Farrill, Pedro Giraudo

Latin CD Review: “Systema Solar”

Systema Solar “Systema Solar” (ONErpm) By Fernando Gonzalez Post-modernism might be a cool, interesting artistic choice in wealthy cultures, but in Latin America recycling, repurposing, mixing and matching, and generally ignoring stylistic rules is both a way of life and a necessity. Systema Solar, a Colombian collective that freely mixes hip-hop, rap, and techno with… Read More Latin CD Review: “Systema Solar”

Jazz CD: Guillermo Klein’s “Domador de Huellas”

Guillermo Klein Domador de Huellas (Sunnyside) By Fernando Gonzalez Argentine pianist and composer Guillermo Klein is at the forefront of global jazz. His music, usually performed by large ensembles, freely draws from jazz, classical music, tango, Argentine rock and folk music. In Domador de Huellas, Klein applies his imagination and craft to the music of … Read More Jazz CD: Guillermo Klein’s “Domador de Huellas”

Jazz CD Review: Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden “Jasmine”

By Fernando Gonzalez Keith Jarrett / Charlie Haden Jasmine (ECM) Back in early 2007, pianist Keith Jarrett agreed to participate in a documentary film about old friend Charlie Haden. The reunion led to some unexpected, informal duet playing (they hadn’t played together in more than 30 years), and the results moved Jarrett to invite Haden… Read More Jazz CD Review: Keith Jarrett/Charlie Haden “Jasmine”

Jazz CD Review: Ralph Towner and Paolo Fresu

Ralph Towner and Paolo Fresu Chiaroscuro (ECM) By Fernando Gonzalez While perhaps best known for his work in the 70s and 80s with the still-occasionally-active group Oregon, guitarist and composer Ralph Towner also has a rich solo career that includes collaborations with Weather Report, Egberto Gismonti, Kenny Wheeler, and Jan Garbarek, among others, and duet… Read More Jazz CD Review: Ralph Towner and Paolo Fresu

OpEd Commentary: The Numbers in the Music

By Fernando Gonzalez The recently released Recording Industry in Numbers 2010, the report by the International Federation of Phonographic Industry, the London-based organization that represents record companies, offers a snapshot of the changing state of the business. Predictably, overall sales numbers declined (at 7% globally) — and the industry sees piracy as the most important… Read More OpEd Commentary: The Numbers in the Music

Jazz CD Review: Tord Gustavsen Ensemble “Restored, Returned”

Tord Gustavsen Ensemble Restored, Returned (ECM) By Fernando Gonzalez Perhaps, as the saying goes, you can’t be too rich or too thin. As for everything else, you can have too much of a good thing. Restored, Returned, the latest recording by Norwegian pianist and composer Tord Gustavsen is a case in point. Gustavsen established his… Read More Jazz CD Review: Tord Gustavsen Ensemble “Restored, Returned”