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Chris Trinidad: Chris Trinidad's Changing Tides


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Chris Trinidad: Chris Trinidad's Changing Tides
During the course of 2021's lockdowns and distancing, music educator and bassist Chris Trinidad began to wonder if technology was bringing people together or keeping people apart. During these reflections, he reengaged with music he had written years earlier, for a release he titled Certain Times (Iridium, 2014). "The compositions on that album were written in a span of seven days in the midwinter month of December 2013," Trinidad notes on Changing Tides. "During the liturgical season of Advent, the time in the Western Christian calendar when expectant waiting and preparations for Christmas took place."

In this spirit of "expectant waiting," the bassist virtually reconnected with several colleagues, spanning several continents and musical styles, and asked them to formulate new arrangements of 2014's Certain Times to reflect 2021's Changing Tides. Trinidad digitally distributed these new charts to an ensemble including pianist Christian Tumalan (co-conspirator on 2019's Chris Trinidad y Con Todo and co-leader of the Pacific Mambo Orchestra), tenor saxophonist Reggie Padilla and trombonist Jamie Dubberly, and each musician recorded their individual parts "remotely in isolation in California, Hawaii, Texas, New York, and British Columbia."

Saxophonist Charlie Gurke (UK) and pianist Alex Conde (Spain), two musicians from 2014's baseline recording, reshape two titles that seem to predict their 2021 reimagining. Conde rebuilds "Something New in the Familiar" upon a bouncy drum beat, then polishes it with smooth rhythm guitar and Dubberly's high-stepping trombone solo into a sunny Caribbean/Latin sheen. "I remember quite distinctly Alex suggesting that we lay down this track with a more explicit funk-informed vibe," Trinidad notes.

Gurke's take on "A Reading in Retrospect" is a genuine masterpiece of understated yet swinging ensemble jazz. The trumpet issues the ensemble's first call, but echoing horns quickly follow one by one, each coming in one beat later so their accumulating sound seems to cascade like a waterfall. Bassist Trinidad overlays strong, stretchy lines across David Rokeach's drum patterns to provide a firm yet supple foundation, and pianist Tumalan swings into a jazzy spotlight that seamlessly shifts from improvisation into accompaniment to tie all the horn sections back together.

"The Benefit of Hindsight," arranged by Jared Burrows (Canada), spotlights guitarist Alex Hand's metallic fireworks and Trinidad's extended, more melodic solo. Ivor Holloway (US/UK) stirs more hot Latin pepper into his arrangement of the closing "Though Certainly Speaking." With Trinidad's plucky bass, José Sanchez's funky percussion and Tumalan's propulsive piano pumping its rhythmic bellows, soloists Hand (guitar) and Padilla (saxophone) grab on, jump in, and soar up, up and away!

Track Listing

Inevitable Evolution; Something New In The Familiar; The Benefit of Hindsight; Finding Somewhere Forever; A Reading in Retrospect; Transcending December; Though Certainly Speaking.


Chris Trinidad: multi-instrumentalist; Reggie Padilla: saxophone, tenor; Jamie Dubberly: trombone; Miguelito Valdes: trumpet; Evan Francis: flute; Alex Hand: guitar; Christian Tumalan: keyboards; David Rokeach: drums.

Additional Instrumentation

Chris Trinidad: bass guitar; Reggie Padilla: saxophones; Jamie Dubberly: trombones; Miguelito Valdes: trumpets, flugelhorns; Evan Francis: flute (1,6,7); Alex Hand: guitars; Christian Tumalan: piano (3-7); David Rokeach: drums; José Sanchez: percussion (2,6,7).

Album information

Title: Chris Trinidad's Changing Tides | Year Released: 2021 | Record Label: Iridium Records

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