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...

2

Miguel de Armas: What’s to Come

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count
Well, there is a word for it. tumbao. The Urban Dictionary defines, tumbao, as "An Afro-Puerto Rican word (or African Caribbean...), which means "an indescribable African sexiness or swing." I have always wanted to know what that thing in Latin jazz is: that certain attitude and approach that runs through the body when this music is heard. It is appropriate that this "thing" be defined as, and prove as elusive as, the concept of "swing" in the mainstream jazz vernacular. Cuban pianist and composer Miguel de Armas possesses a boatload of this tumbao, which is necessarily nourished by the clave rhythm, genetically driving Latin music. Armas heaps both generously into the compositions making up his release, What's to Come, a slick, contemporary imagining of "that thing" provided us from the Afro-Cuban contributions to music in the Western Hemisphere.

What What's to Come is not, is not an exposition of a Bebo Valdes and Chucho Valdes method of playing. North America's re-acquaintance with Cuban music stimulated by the Buena Vista Social Club recordings produced by Ry Cooder was a much more organic experience than is had on What's to Come. Armas ensures that all of the necessary Latin elements are present in his recording while, at the same time, expanding the perimeter of the genre by interpolating elements from adult contemporary jazz and pop. Armas' use of synthesizers alone ensures this palette expansion. Armas displays grace and creativity in his highly-stylized compositions expertly rendered by his band of fine musicians, including, on one cut, soprano saxophonist Jane Bunnett. This is beautifully sophisticated music that is readily enjoyable.

Track Listing: Yasmina; A Song From My Little Son; La Dama y el Perro; His Bass and Him; Pam Pim Pam Pum; Illusion; What’s to Come; Rumba on Kent; Tango Asuncion; Freddie’s Drink.

Personnel: Miguel de Armas: piano and keyboards; Michel Mendrano: drums and percussion; Marc Decho: bass (2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9); Arien Villegas: congas (5); Alexis Baro: trumpet and flugelhorn; Roberto Riveron: bass (1); Carlitos Medrano: congas and percussion (1, 3, 5, 8, 10); Mathiew Senechol: bass (4, 8, 10); Galen Weston: electric guitar (4); Jane Bunnett: soprano saxophone (7).

Title: What’s to Come | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: MDA Productions

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Lab 2018, The Rhythm of the Road CD/LP/Track Review
Lab 2018, The Rhythm of the Road
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Live CD/LP/Track Review
Live
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 25, 2018
Read 8 Songs CD/LP/Track Review
8 Songs
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Facing Dragons CD/LP/Track Review
Facing Dragons
by Chris Mosey
Published: September 25, 2018
Read Brothers CD/LP/Track Review
Brothers
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2018
Read The Fearless Flyers CD/LP/Track Review
The Fearless Flyers
by John Bricker
Published: September 24, 2018
Read "Playmates" CD/LP/Track Review Playmates
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 14, 2018
Read "Yes, and...Music for Nine Improvisers" CD/LP/Track Review Yes, and...Music for Nine Improvisers
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 6, 2018
Read "Live" CD/LP/Track Review Live
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 4, 2018
Read "Solo" CD/LP/Track Review Solo
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 13, 2018
Read "Komitas:  Seven Songs" CD/LP/Track Review Komitas: Seven Songs
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: January 7, 2018
Read "Transition" CD/LP/Track Review Transition
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 30, 2018