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Ruben Rodriguez

There are many ways to measure the greatness of a musician. You can talk dollars or awards or recordings or even high-profile gigs. But for the best of the best, put your money on the ones that other musicians talk about. Among Latin bass players, that's Ruben Rodriguez. His first big gig was with Johnny Colon in 1979. Since then he's worked with Tito Rojas, Luis Ramirez, Ray de la Paz, Willie Colon, Dave Valentin, Charlie and Eddie Palmieri, Hilton Ruiz, Johnny Pacheco, Jose Fajardo, The Fania All Stars, and the late great Machito to name just a few. In the mainstream jazz field there's people like Grover Washington Jr

The Latin Side of Horace Silver

Label: Savant Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Nica’s Dream; Song for My Father; The Gods of the Yoruba; Peace; The Cape Verdean Blues; Filthy McNasty; Silver’s Serenade; Nutville.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Conrad Herwig: The Latin Side of Horace Silver

Read "The Latin Side of Horace Silver" reviewed by Jack Bowers

New York-based trombonist Conrad Herwig began exploring the “Latin side" of various jazz musicians in 1996, with The Latin Side of John Coltrane, which earned him the first of four Latin Grammy Award nominations. Since then, Herwig has done the same for Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Joe Henderson and, now, pianist Horace Silver. The ...

ARTICLE: SOCAL JAZZ

Steve Khan: A Rich Discography and A Priceless Left Hand

Read "Steve Khan: A Rich Discography and A Priceless Left Hand" reviewed by Jim Worsley

The life and times of guitarist extraordinaire Steve Khan stretch through a high volume of evolving chapters that fuse together like the passages of a finely crafted arrangement. An expansive conversation with Khan touched on a variety of memories. Still, this is perhaps the Reader's Digest version of the seventy-three years old musician and composer's remarkable ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Samuel Torres: Alegria

Read "Alegria" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

After delivering a politically-pointed statement in the form of Forced Displacement (Zoho Music, 2015), Colombian percussionist Samuel Torres most certainly could've doubled-down in that direction. There's no shortage of political turmoil across the globe these days, so that move would've been completely understandable. But, as Torres clearly understands, there's something to be said for the power ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Steve Khan: Patchwork

Read "Patchwork" reviewed by John Kelman

Amongst the many myths out there about music-making—especially in jazz, where the improvisation quotient is often so high—is that composing may, indeed, be work, but doesn't require the kind of relentless attention to detail that far more truthfully defines how many artists write and arrange their music. These days, one need only look to music by ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Steve Khan: Backlog

Read "Backlog" reviewed by James Nadal

In what could best be described as an enduring exploration, Steve Khan has undertaken the role of expanding and redefining the role of the guitar in the hybrid genre of Latin Jazz. Backlog continues with the concept established as far back as 2005 on The Green Field (Tone Center), in the transformation of straight-ahead jazz compositions ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Newport Jazz Festival 2015: Day 2

Read "Newport Jazz Festival 2015: Day 2" reviewed by Timothy J. O'Keefe

Newport Jazz Festival Fort Adams State Park Newport, RI Saturday, August 1, 2015 Miles Davis' earliest memory was a flickering blue flame, and a similar flame, one of passion and remembrance, was clearly evident at the 2015 installment of the Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Steve Khan: Subtext

Read "Subtext" reviewed by Mark F. Turner

From his obscure gems on Columbia Records--Tightrope (1977), The Blue Man (1978) and Arrow (1979), or the critically acclaimed 1980s Eye Witness recordings, to 2011's Latin-tinged Parting Shot (Tone Center), jazz guitarist Steve Khan continues to deliver his unique artistry--exquisite touch, expressive solos, and warm tonality--that's made his music identifiable. Subtext finds that mastery still intact ...

Subtext

Read "Subtext" reviewed by John Kelman

Change is a fact of life, and it's something that's better to be embraced than challenged; as inevitable as death and taxes, it's one of those things that you may as well accept, because there are few, if any, options to do otherwise. That said, while the then-aptly titled Parting Shot (Tone Center, 2011) suggested that ...


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