25th Ottawa International Jazz Festival - Day Ten, July 2, 2005
Pucho's band is yet another example of how many fine players are out there working in the trenchesnever receiving particular recognition, but consistently delivering the goods. Bassist Tehrin Cole was full of energy, yet never less than completely supportive; between him and Goran, the groove was constant and unbreakable, regardless of the stylistic context. Likewise, pianist John Spruill was an impeccable accompanist and a soloist capable of meeting every demand. The horn section, with saxophonist/flautist Edward Pazant, trumpeter Richard Lee Wendell, and trombonist Michael Grey, created a powerful and flexible front line.
Despite the music's scriptingeven in the solo segments where, for example, Cole's bass solo had a clear form that would involve the rest of the group at various pointsthere remained a feeling of spontaneity throughout the show. And while Pucho and his Latin Soul Brothers aren't necessarily moving music forward, they've managed to create a distinctive combination of Latin and soul jazz, bringing in elements of hard bop, soul, and Afro-Cuban grooves. In a career that spans fifty years, Pucho has shown that good jazz can also be good entertainment.
Tomorrow is the festival's final day, featuring vibraphonist Matthias Lupri and a double bill with saxophonists David Sanchez and Joshua Redman.
Visit Adrian Cho, CBC Galaxie, and the Ottawa International Jazz Festival on the web.