The Argentinean tango has formed a strong connection with jazz not unlike the Brazilian samba and bossa nova. As developed by Astor Piazzolla and those who came after him, classical tango has been widened to include the Folklorico of Argentina.
(accordion and Galician bagpipe), Jorge Roeder (double bass) and Richie Barshay (drums and percussion). All of the material was composed by Solla; the one exception is the classical tango "Malena," featuring a sensitive piano statement as well as wonderful arco work to supplement a heavier tango-typical bass presence. "Hartbeat" was written for and features drummer Billy Hart. Also notable is "Chakafrik," with Tim Armacost (soprano) and Cheek (baritone) in a bit of sax interplay embellished by Prieto's runs and fills.
Cheek and Prieto met in 2006 working with Solla and their new duo CD Rollo Coaster (a followup to a DVD from 2008) shows off how much music these two virtuosos can make. A collection of original music, this album, however, is more connected to the tango rhythm. Playing only soprano (an instrument which can sound painfully shrill at times), Cheek achieves a wonderfully mellow tone especially on the ballads "Shelter" and "Los Recuerdos." Prieto does double duty, his left hand supplying the percussive element and right taking care of the melody and often he captures a haunting bandoneon-like sound. The material is all lyrical and/or playfulas in "Six Note Samba," a piece based on only six notes. But the most significant element is the rich interplay, especially on Prieto's "Chatting With Chris."
Whether you call them "post-tango" or "world jazz," these are prime examples of the partnership between South American music and American jazz.