All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

5

Richard Bona: Heritage

James Nadal By

Sign in to view read count
The roots of Afro-Cuban music can be traced to its primordial source in the West African Mandika Empire (Mali) of the 15th century. Heritage is a collaboration of Cameroonian bassist Richard Bona with the Mandekan Cubano ensemble in a musical exploration of two cultures with the common bond of Africa as a point of origin and influence. This venture revolves around familiar Cuban dance oriented, melodic structure, accented with Bona's dominant African traits, for an engaging tour de force.

They begin with the Bantu incantations of "Aka Lingala Te," where the unaccompanied voices invoke the ancestral spirits. The Cuban piano montuno, provided by Osmany Paredes, shines on "Bilongo," considered an Afro-Cuban classic, it is reworked with Bona singing Douala derived lyrics. The acoustical "Matanga," translates into funeral or wake, Bona accompanying himself on guitar, it is a melancholic remembrance of a lost loved one. "Jokoh Jokoh," is arranged on the identifiable Cuban son, which endures on "Cubaneando," highlighted by the horn arrangement accenting the vocals.

Africa is the inspiration of "Esse We Ya Monique," a spatial adventure where Bona's bass nuance goes back to his roots. "Santa Clara Con Montuno," is pure Cuba, where again the piano and horns play off each other in an invitation to dance by the call and response singing. The elements of mambo surfaces with "Muntula Moto," (The Benediction of a Long Life) in a fresh arrangement of a Bona original from a previous record. There is a slight shift into a more popular vein in "Eva," before returning to the Cuban danzón flavored "Kivu," featuring stunning trumpet work by Dennis Hernandez, as the blending and concocting gets more interesting. The sets closes with the African invocation "Kwa Singa," the music returning to its homeland, after a long journey around the Caribbean.

With a slew of albums out since his debut in 1999, and a fixture on global stages, Bona continues to evolve his unique craft of storytelling enhanced by his virtuosity on bass. This foray into Afro-Cuban music expands upon his repertoire and reputation of defying genre categorization, and exhibits what a perfect collaboration should sound like.

Track Listing: Aka Lingala Te; Bilongo; Matanga; Jokoh Jokoh; Cubaneando; esse we Ya Monique; Santa Clara Con Montuno; Ngul Mekon; Muntula Moto; Eva; Kivo; Kwa Singa.

Personnel: Richard Bona: bass, guitars, electric sitar, vocals, percussion, keyboards; Osmany Paredes: piano; Luisito Quintero: percussion; rey Alejandre: trombone; Dennis Hernandez: trumpet; Roberto Quintero: percussion.

Title: Heritage | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Qwest Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop Music & Tickets

Click any of the store links below and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read Fearless And Kind CD/LP/Track Review
Fearless And Kind
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: November 14, 2018
Read 25th Anniversary Project CD/LP/Track Review
25th Anniversary Project
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 14, 2018
Read Any Day Now CD/LP/Track Review
Any Day Now
by Mark Sullivan
Published: November 14, 2018
Read Adrift CD/LP/Track Review
Adrift
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 14, 2018
Read Folkjazz from Finland CD/LP/Track Review
Folkjazz from Finland
by Anthony Shaw
Published: November 14, 2018
Read Circulate Susanna CD/LP/Track Review
Circulate Susanna
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 13, 2018
Read "Seldom In The Wells" CD/LP/Track Review Seldom In The Wells
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 10, 2018
Read "The Street Doctor" CD/LP/Track Review The Street Doctor
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: January 26, 2018
Read "Street Scene" CD/LP/Track Review Street Scene
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: October 23, 2018
Read "Simply Because It's Winter" CD/LP/Track Review Simply Because It's Winter
by David A. Orthmann
Published: October 25, 2018
Read "The Berlin Concert" CD/LP/Track Review The Berlin Concert
by Troy Dostert
Published: June 18, 2018
Read "New Hope" CD/LP/Track Review New Hope
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 23, 2018