Latin Jazz This Week will bring you a weekly look into news from the Latin Jazz world. You’ll find new releases, recommended performances, web finds, and more. You can check out some current sounds in the Listening Center tab at the top of the page.
I did want to remind everyone that Episode #3 of The Latin Jazz Corner Podcast came out this past week. I’m excited about this new piece of our site and think that it holds some good promise for promoting Latin Jazz. With that in mind, a couple of requests:
Stay up to date on all the latest happenings at LJC and the greater Latin Jazz world on the LJC Facebook Page, so go there and LIKE us today to stay in the loop!
Last week, Arnold Jay Smith encouraged us to Boycott The Grammys (an action that I would wholeheartedly agree with!), and he returns this week with more thoughts on Latin Jazz. In this week’s article, “Latin Jazz Lives!,” Smith restates the issue with NARAS and then takes a fascinating approach by asking Jazz Journalist Association president Howard Mandel for his take on this issue. Mandel’s comments seem a bit snarky and cynical about the whole thing – granted, this might be the way that Smith frames the conversation, but I just don’t sense a whole lot of support for Latin Jazz there. It’s definitely worth reading – some thought provoking stuff HERE.
Don’t forget, for all the latest updates on the protest against The NARAS elimintion of 31 Grammy categories, check out Grammy Watch.
NPR’s World Cafe kicked off a new program this past week entitled Latin Roots, an ambitious program that aims to dig through the history of Latin music through a combination of talk and music. Host David Dye, along with producer and Latin music specialist Aaron Luis Levinson, jump into the mix this week with a focus on salsa. The duo discusses Fania, the influence of jazz, and more, giving us some examples from Cortijo and Bio Ritmo. It’s a good listen that is both accessible and interesting, showing potential for future episodes. Take a listen to this week’s salsa episode of Latin Roots and check back in for future shows!
NPR delivered a couple of Latin Jazz gems this week – in addition to the Latin Roots show, they’ve got a streaming live performance of the David Murray Cuban Ensemble. This group delivered a fantastic tribute to a legendary singer in 2011 entitled David Murray Cuban Ensemble Plays Nat King Cole En Español. Part of the beauty of that recording was the arrangements and thoughtful authentic perspective on Cole’s original recording. Here you get to see the group take those arrangements and stretch out, giving you a wonderful compliment to the recording. There’s about an hour of David Murray’s Cuban Ensemble performing live – put aside the time to check this out, you’ll be glad that you did.
Over at the Latino Music Cafe, Hector Aviles looks back upon the Latin Music Highs and Lows, with a focus on Latin Jazz. He points out some great albums, reminding us once again what a whirlwind of wonderful music came along in 2011. The low point undoubtedly falls upon the elimination of 31 Grammy categories by NARAS, with a special focus upon the loss of the Latin Jazz category. There’s some good thoughts here – give the Highs And Lows of 2011 a read for some insightful looks back at the year.
Jon Gold: Bossa of Possibility
Fernando Huergo: Suite En Celeste Y Blanco (Suite In Blue And White)