Grupo Los Santos: Lo Que Somos Lo Que Sea (2008)
A spirited group of Latin jazz players called Grupos Los Santos offers its brand of music on Lo Que Somos Lo Que Sea, which translates to What We Are What Will Be . The title of the group could also be loosely translated to mean that they are not playing a singular type of music but bring in many elements, tempo and cultural diversities.
When "Rumba in the Bronx" begins, it is with a percussive rumba beat and guitarist Pete Smith's Brazilian chording, a charming tune with a hypnotic pulse. Tenor saxophonist Paul Carlon possesses a clear a mainstream jazz voice, influenced by Sonny Rollins and/or John Coltrane. Although clearly identified as a rumba song form, the group thus brings many elements to the fore.
As wth his previous solo album, Other Tongues (Deep Tone, 2006), Carlon creates a finished product that never sits still or is the same from one track to the next. He also brings along several of the musicians from that album including bassist David Ambrosio, drummer William "Beaver" Bausch and "rumba tap" tap dancer Max Pollak When. Pollak performs on several of these tracks, his contribution is both a sonic one, his syncopated work barely audible, as well as an imagined enthusiasm of his live presence at group performances..
The combination of Cuban Son, Rumba as well as Bossa Nova is an indelible musical contribution and Carlon is the primary melody voice on tenor, hinging the music back to American mainstream jazz that to provide an irresistible combination and pulse.
Among the album's highlights are the opening "Rumba in the Bronx," "Boogie Down Broder," written for the late trombonist Juan Pablo Torres and which shows the strongest jazz leanings from both Carlon and Pete Smith's solo work, and "A Danco Dos Santos," a perfect fusion of Cuban and Brazilian dance music.
Track Listing: Rumba in the Bronx; A Danca Dos Santos; Happified; Clave 66; Absurdities & Atrocities; Manna; Guajira Santa; Boogie Down Broder; Toreja Kulo; Pedrito La Vaca.
Personnel: Paul Carlon: tenor sax; Pete Smith:electric and 9-string guitar; David Ambrosio: acoustic bass; William "Beaver" Bausch: drumset; Max Pollak: tap dance/"rumba tap" (1, 9).