389

Pat Martino: El Hombre

By

Sign in to view read count
Pat Martino: El Hombre What a journey this hombre has had. The man in question, Italian-American guitarist Pat Martino, as it has been often reported, fought through a series of severe predicaments throughout his career. After undergoing diverse medical treatments, he resiliently baby-stepped his way back in the music business. He has since catered to his creative force and connected it to others' in live and recorded performances and by getting involved in music education. He may now be in his early 60s, Martino was still a young man when he released El Hombre, his first solo effort for the late Bob Weinstock's Prestige label. Forty years later, Concord has reissued the original 1967 soul-jazz session with an additional track.

El Hombre is a blowing affair. It mainly features the guitarist, who even takes two solos on some tracks; organist Trudy Pitts and flutist Danny Turner take few, succinct outings. The influence of Wes Montgomery (introduced to Martino by label owner and fellow Philadelphian Joel Dorn) is evident throughout the record, and so is the kinship with George Benson. He plays long bouncy eighth-note lines and verbatim ideas interspersed with high-register double-stops and bluesy slides—flawlessly, using a similar tone and approach.

The title track captures the vibe of the era well. The brisk, almost trance-inducing flux of percussion rhythms, organ riffs and lengthy improvisations are reminiscent of the trippy dance gyrations and tie-dyed psychedelic swirls the late '60s are known for. "Jazz for Deadheads" might be a not-so-serious way of describing it.

Most compositions here are dedications. "A Blues For Mickey-O is a straight-ahead walking blues for the guitarist's performer-father, Carmen Azzara (pka Mickey Martino). It offers an opportunity for jazz guitar cognoscenti to hear Martino comp. The decision to cover Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Once I Loved as a cha-cha may have stemmed from producer Cal Lampley (the late pianist, critic, radio host and Columbia Records producer led an orchestra known for its recording of "red hot cha-chas). Martino shares the spotlight with Pitts on the other standard, "Just Friends, both swinging hard behind drummer Mitch Fine's shrill ride cymbal work.

The previously unreleased "Song For My Mother, an evasive ballad, closes the record with an inspired Wes-like octaves solo.

Track Listing: Waltz For Geri; Once I Loved; El Hombre; Cisco; One For Rose; A Blues For Mickey-O; Just Friends; Song For My Mother.

Personnel: Trudy Pitts: organ; Danny Turner: flute; Mitch Fine: drums; Abdu Johnson: conga Drums; Vance Anderson: bongos; Pat Martino: guitar.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Prestige Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Rags And Roots CD/LP/Track Review Rags And Roots
by James Nadal
Published: April 25, 2017
Read Tangled CD/LP/Track Review Tangled
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 25, 2017
Read Is It Me...? CD/LP/Track Review Is It Me...?
by Edward Blanco
Published: April 25, 2017
Read Live CD/LP/Track Review Live
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 25, 2017
Read 14.11.2016 CD/LP/Track Review 14.11.2016
by Nicola Negri
Published: April 25, 2017
Read Malnoia CD/LP/Track Review Malnoia
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 24, 2017
Read "Afternoon In Paris" CD/LP/Track Review Afternoon In Paris
by Chris Mosey
Published: June 16, 2016
Read "Nomad" CD/LP/Track Review Nomad
by Nick Davies
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "As If By Magic" CD/LP/Track Review As If By Magic
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: December 3, 2016
Read "3's a Crowd" CD/LP/Track Review 3's a Crowd
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 21, 2017
Read "Trio Miami" CD/LP/Track Review Trio Miami
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: November 8, 2016
Read "Songs Of Bacharach And Manzanero" CD/LP/Track Review Songs Of Bacharach And Manzanero
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 12, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM RECORDS | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!