141

Bill O: Latin Jazz Fantasy

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
Bill O: Latin Jazz Fantasy With a full session of songs composed by the leader, this contemporary album features strings, percussion, and a large, swinging ensemble that's dedicated to the Latin feeling found in today's popular art form. Featured co-stars include tenor saxophonist Bob Malach and flutist Dave Valentin.

The pianist swings hard. As he steers his companions through formats that include duos, trios, quartets and quintets, Bill O'Connell caresses each melody with a dreamy focus for the more lyrical qualities found in Romantic classical music. With qualities that emulate those of a soulful singer, the pianist and his featured guests pour it on. Melody oozes like maple syrup and honey, dripping slowly and meaningfully. This fantasia on Latin themes eschews most traditional Afro-Cuban, Central, and South American elements in favor of European comments from the Romantic period. Thus, the appeal is to a more contemporary audience who appreciates smooth jazz as well as Latin backgrounds.

"6 for Claude," dedicated to Claude Debussy, features O'Connell and Malach in a sensual duet straight from the heart. Their outpouring turns vocal-like and presses forward with intensity. "Maybe Tomorrow" and "After the Dust Settled" roll along smoothly with visions of a lazy afternoon with nothing to do. Three songs, relying on smooth jazz for their piety, feature the full orchestra with flutist Valentin.

"Pogo Sticks" serves as the album's high point, with its contemporary jazz intensity. On this one, Malach and O'Connell work with bassist Charles Fambrough and drummer Steve Berrios to fire up the level a few notches. Together, they make a perfectly modern statement of where Latin jazz goes when it bonds with forward-leaning themes.

Audio samples are available at the label's web site.

Track Listing: Barcelona; Fast Eddie; After the Dust Settled; Latin Jazz Fantasy; Maybe Tomorrow; Pogo Sticks; Laurie; Wind It Up; 6 for Claude; El Yunque.

Personnel: Bill O'Connell- piano; Bob Malach- tenor saxophone, clarinet; Dave Valentin- flutes; Kim Plainfield- drums; Steve Berrios- drums, congas; Milton Cardona- congas, chekere; Myra Casales- percussion; David Finck- bass; Charles Fambrough- bass on "Pogo Sticks;" Lincoln Goines- bass on "Laurie," electric bass on "Fast Eddie" and "Wind It Up;" Randy Brecker- trumpet; Barry Donelian- trumpet, flugelhorn; Mike Migliore- alto saxophone; Roger Rosenberg- baritone saxophone; Richard Sortomme- concertmaster, violin; Sara Schwartz, Suzanne Ornstein, Robin Bushmun, Robert Chausow, Barry Finclair- violin; Arthur Fiacco, Stephanie Cummins- cello.

Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Random Chance Records | Style: Latin/World


comments powered by Disqus

Shop

More Articles

Read The Big Wig CD/LP/Track Review The Big Wig
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Dreamer Is the Dream CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert CD/LP/Track Review Bill Evans – Another Time: The Hilversum Concert
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 24, 2017
Read The Failure of Words CD/LP/Track Review The Failure of Words
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 24, 2017
Read Groove Dreams CD/LP/Track Review Groove Dreams
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 23, 2017
Read Kami Fusen CD/LP/Track Review Kami Fusen
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2017
Read "WANDERlust" CD/LP/Track Review WANDERlust
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 19, 2016
Read "Godspeed" CD/LP/Track Review Godspeed
by Roger Farbey
Published: December 14, 2016
Read "A Little Bit Of This And A Little Bit Of That" CD/LP/Track Review A Little Bit Of This And A Little Bit Of That
by James Nadal
Published: April 15, 2017
Read "Irmãos De Fé" CD/LP/Track Review Irmãos De Fé
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 6, 2017
Read "Sinking Houseboat Confusion" CD/LP/Track Review Sinking Houseboat Confusion
by Mark Sullivan
Published: June 14, 2016
Read "Swivel" CD/LP/Track Review Swivel
by Mark Corroto
Published: October 16, 2016

Why wait?

Support All About Jazz and we'll deliver exclusive content, hide ads, hide slide-outs, and provide read access to our future articles.

Buy it!