All About Jazz: The web's most comprehensive jazz resource

Serving jazz worldwide since 1995
All About Jazz: The web's most comprehensive jazz resource


Luis Mar

By Published: July 25, 2004
What was like then, both personally and professional, to work under his own musical guise rather that someone else's? "Logically, the pressure as a leader is higher because of the responsibility to present the proper repertoire and fulfilling the public's expectations. Even so, after beginning the performance, everything smoothes out as the music takes over everyone and goes beyond a moment of experimentation and expression where -when having the right musicians- it becomes one of the most pleasurable experiences one could feel. When working as a sideman, that responsibility is substituted for the fulfillment of the task at hand and the need to contribute to the music -without overdoing it- in order to satisfy both the artist and his music."

Finally, since bassist Pedro Pérez is one of my favorite salsa musicians, I asked Marín about him as a jazzer. His reply was rather surprising as I thought Pérez was more versed in jazz than his performances reveal. "Pedro," Marín states, "is a very curious case. I met him about 15 years ago when we were at the Andy Montañez band. His musicality and knowledge as a salsero impressed me a lot. We were always in touch as friends throughout the rest of our lives, as well as professionals as we recorded together for other artists after leaving Montañez's band -he left in '88 and I in '89. In 1997, I performed for the first time as a leader at the Puerto Rico Heineken JazzFest and I selected him as bassist for the group. Ever since, I have tried to have him in all the projects I have been involved in. I said his case was curious because jazz isn't a part of his musical formation -except for a 1992 eight-week course at Berklee he took at my behest. To this day, he's still not considered as a jazz bassist -which I understand perfectly. Some times, however, the labels placed upon a musician are not as important as his performances and musicality. In that regard, in my opinion, Pérez is one of the best bassists in the world, no matter what genre anyone might want to enclose him in."

Visit Luis Marín on the web at .

comments powered by Disqus