Latin Jazz

Artist: 
Mariza
Label: 
Nonesuch records

I just discovered Mariza and love her voice and the musical arrangements. this CD is perfect for pronunciation purposes and overall a keeper for a romantic dinner, some relaxation or to have on the background. She sings a couple of songs in Spanish, one in English and Esperanto.

Sounds Like: 
Ana Moura
Sounds Like: 
Cristina Branco
Name: 
Aerin Mazza
Date Reviewed: 
11/29/2016
Artist: 
iLe
Label: 
Sony Music Latin

iLe has a beautiful voice on this album and honestly I could listen to this for hours. The album is romantic and reminiscent of another time period. I feel like the beauty of this album is only increased if you speak Spanish. Unfortunately I don’t speak the language but the beauty and care that was put into this album was not lost on me. This whole album is beautiful and romantic and perfect for any world or jazz show. The only song I wouldn’t play on air is the last track because it has about 30 seconds of white noise at the end. But otherwise this is an amazing album.

Sounds Like: 
Calle 13
Sounds Like: 
Olivia Newton-John
Name: 
Alexis Walker
Date Reviewed: 
09/04/2016
Artist: 
The Interplay Jazz Orchestra
Label: 
Self Released

This Long Island band wails, man. They're great. While I personally would prefer only original compositions over jazz standards, The Interplay Jazz Orchestra really hits it home with Detour. They definitely have their own flavor of jazz. I approve. Heartily. AH. APPROVED HEARTILY. I will say that they do have a distincly Afro-Cuban vibe that isn't detectable to the un-jazzified. But, there's a wonderful balance between hard boppin' and foot tappin' jazz and slow, ballad-like tunes.

Sounds Like: 
Count Basie
Sounds Like: 
Charlie Parker, if he and Ricky Ricardo had a lovechild and that lovechild started a jazz orchestra in memory of their fathers
Name: 
Melanie Zelikovsky
Date Reviewed: 
02/24/2016
Artist: 
Nano Stern
Label: 
Nano Stern Music

Starting off this album off I liked it a lot. The first two tracks are really genuinely interesting. The mix of Latin (Chilean) jazz and funk is great and supports Nano Stern's voice well, setting up some of the best mixes of rhythm, song writing, and singing I've hear in a while. After those brilliant first seven minutes of the album, though, the dropped the ball. Everything from track 3 forward is the sort of bland multi-cultural chill music you'd expect to hear on a public television broadcast about painting and the great plains of Spain.

Sounds Like: 
Manuel Garcia
Sounds Like: 
Gepe
Name: 
Cullen Walsh
Date Reviewed: 
12/16/2015
Artist: 
St Germain
Label: 
Primary Society

St Germain is the third studio album by French producer St Germain aka Ludovic Navarre. This is his first album in fifteen years and follows 2000's Tourist, a widely-acclaimed and surprisingly popular deep house album with a distinct jazz influence. I can credit the song "Latin Note" from that album for being one of the earliest songs to get me interested in electronic music, and while I never really explored St Germain's work much past that, I definitely was looking forward to giving this new LP a listen.

Sounds Like: 
Thievery Corporation
Sounds Like: 
Quantic
Name: 
Jake Calegari
Date Reviewed: 
10/13/2015
Artist: 
Peliroja
Label: 
Chulo Records

I selected this CD to review purely based on the length of the album.  I’m a bit cramped for time, and programming starts tomorrow, so I thought I’d try to find a slightly shorter one.  That was the premise of picking this CD, and I have never been luckier in my life.  WOW.

Sounds Like: 
Elastic Bond
Sounds Like: 
Pedrito Martinez Group
Sounds Like: 
Souljazz Orchestra
Name: 
Daniel Witter
Date Reviewed: 
09/01/2014
Artist: 
Chucho Valdes
Label: 
Jazz Village

I have to say, this is the first Native American-influenced jazz I’ve ever heard, and it’s something special.  With a tasteful blend of Latin, Afro-Cuban and Native American influences, Chucho Valdes and his cats have a unique sound all their own.  I would say that “Latin” dominates their sound over the other two, but you can hear distinct influences of the others as well, so don’t be counting them out in that regard.

Sounds Like: 
The Pedrito Martinez Group
Sounds Like: 
Yo-Yo Ma
Sounds Like: 
Thelonious Monk
Name: 
Daniel Witter
Date Reviewed: 
11/19/2013
Artist: 
In Flight
Label: 
In Flight

WELCOME ABOARD THE 5:30 FLIGHT TO RIO DE JANIERO. Please fasten your funk seatbelts and place your latin-jazz tray tables in their upright and locked position. Our flight to Rio will take approximately 1 hour and 6 minutes. We will be serving alcoholic-funky refreshments on this flight, however be mindful of some vocal turbulence we may experience. Overall, this is a solid Latin jazz album with some good funk bass and guitars. However, avoid the songs where there are vocals: this is definitely one of those jazz bands that should stick to their instrumentals.

Sounds Like: 
Al Di Miola without the shredding guitar
Sounds Like: 
Herbie Hancock's backing band
Name: 
John Millerd
Date Reviewed: 
10/29/2013
Artist: 
Pete Escovedo
Label: 
Concord Picante/Stiletto Flats

Being a live Jazz album, most of the tracks on this CD are pretty long (most are at least 4 minutes and up to 10 minutes). That being said, this album showcases a really tight knit rhythm section, and some awesome latin grooves. The horn section and guitar leads make it interesting enough so it doesn't just fade into background grooves, but always keeps the listener interested in the complex sambas and grooves. I guess I'm using the word groove a lot in this review, but I think that accurately describes this album: it just grooves from start to finish. Give it a listen if you have the time.

Sounds Like: 
Tito Puente