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Tom Coster

During his tenure with Santana in the 1970’s, Tom Coster made his mark as a keyboard player and composer of versatility and power. Detroit-born and San Francisco-raised, Coster played piano and accordion as a youth, continuing his studies through college and a productive five-year stint as a musician in the Air Force. He then invaded the Bay Area club scene, soon acquiring his reputation as a standout keyboard player. After successful tenures with the rock group The Loading Zone and jazz guitarist Gabor Szabo, Coster was asked by Carlos Santana in 1972 to bring more jazz fusion influence to that phenomenally successful band. This historic alliance produced six classic Santana albums -- "Caravanserai," "Welcome," "Lotus," "Borboletta," "Amigos," and "Moonflower." Coster also performed on three Devadip Carlos Santana solo albums (including "Illuminations" with Alice Coltrane)

ARTICLE: PROFILE

US Military Service Bands: Histories & Heroes

Read "US Military Service Bands: Histories & Heroes" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 US Air Force Airmen of Note The premier jazz ensemble of the US Air Force, the Airmen of Note is one of six musical ensembles that comprise The US Air Force Band. Created in 1950 to continue the tradition of Major Glenn Miller's Army Air Forces ...

NEWS: RECORDING

Brazilian Bassist Marcos Milagres Releases His First Album As A Leader

Brazilian Bassist Marcos Milagres Releases His First Album As A Leader

The album is entitled Feira (Portuguese for Street Market). As the name suggests, the music portrays a mix of scents and colors from great Brazilian masters like Hermeto Pascoal, Egberto Gismonti, Antonio Carlos Jobim and its interaction with jazz improvisation and the rhythms and sounds of the American continents. His electric bass performance is pushed to ...

ARTICLE: REASSESSING

Amigos

Read "Amigos" reviewed by Jeff Winbush

It's a cliche, but for Carlos Santana, the year of 1976 was a critical turning point in his long career. Coming after Borboletta, his third consecutive jazz fusion record, he was catching heat from the execs at Columbia Records to come up with something reminiscent of the classic Latin rock which had made him a star ...

ARTICLE: EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Light of the Supreme: Carlos Santana’s Devadip Trilogy

Read "Light of the Supreme: Carlos Santana’s Devadip Trilogy" reviewed by Rob Caldwell

To the casual music fan in 1971 Carlos Santana appeared as if he was on top of the world. His band's appearance at Woodstock two short years earlier, plus their cover of Fleetwood Mac's “Black Magic Woman" had catapulted him to stardom. Yet, behind the scenes, his band was splintering. Different musical and personal objectives, plus ...

ARTICLE: REASSESSING

Santana: Welcome

Read "Santana: Welcome" reviewed by Jeff Winbush

SantanaWelcomeColumbia1973 Once upon a time there was a guitar god who had grown bored with all his fame, riches and glory. He longed for something more than another multi-platinum selling record. He desired not simply acclaim, but respect. He knew to get it he would have to walk ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Steve Smith and Vital Information: Live! One Great Night

Read "Live! One Great Night" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Drummer Steve Smith means different things to different people. Arena rockers will always think of Smith as the rhythmic force that drove Journey's hits, while straight ahead jazz fans appreciate him as a keeper-of-the-flame, honoring the great drummers of the past through his work with his own Jazz Legacy group. Others rightly view him as a ...

Steve Smith and Vital Information: Live! One Great Night

Read "Steve Smith and Vital Information: Live! One Great Night" reviewed by Jeff Winbush

Steve Smith and Vital InformationLive! One Great NightBFM2012Even now, the two questions probably most asked of Steve Smith go something like, “Hey, are you the Steve Smith who played drums in Journey?" and “What's Steve Perry like?"This is clearly unfair to Smith, who spent ten years ...

Yo Miles! Revisited: Lightning and Shinjuku

Read "Yo Miles! Revisited: Lightning and Shinjuku" reviewed by John Kelman

Amongst the plethora of tributes to trumpet icon Miles Davis' electric period on Columbia, beginning with 1969's In a Silent Way and ending with 1975's Agharta and Pangaea, only a few stand out as being truly reverential--not just to the electrified energy and jungle funk of the music, but to its undeniably avant leanings as well. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Steve Smith and Vital Information: Vitalive!

Read "Vitalive!" reviewed by John Kelman

Recorded on tour in 1988 and originally released in 1991, Vitalive! is, in the words of drummer Steve Smith, “the most 'jazz' version of Vital Information to date." It would be easy to argue with Smith, even though he's the group's leader, that VI has always been a jazz band, as evidenced by Come On In ...


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